By Travel Oh TravelThursday, November 14, 2013 | 3:24 AM
winter cruise can be a fun adventure for college students on break. This is a good time to get away from cold, snowy weather and thaw out with time in the warm sun. A cruise cannot only be the answer to a much-needed vacation, but a chance to experience other cultures. A college cruise with friends is a chance to visit several ports of call, make new friends, and become closer with travel mates. Winter destinations include Mexico and the many Caribbean islands.
For those on the Pacific Coast, try a cruise from Los Angeles, California down the coast to Mexico. Several cities are stretched along the coast in what has been dubbed the Mexican Riviera for its popularity among cruisers and tourists. Twenty cities and lagoons steeped in tradition and filled with celebrations make up this region known for its beautiful beaches, with a backdrop of cliffs, caves, and rugged jungle-like terrain. Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan, and Cabo San Lucas are three popular ports of call.
For those at school in the chilly Northeast, the Western Caribbean Islands make for a relaxing and enchanting vacation. Weeklong cruises in the warm, tropical climate of the Cayman Islands or the Bahamas, with perhaps a stop in Cozumel, Mexico, will make frost, snow and schoolbooks seem a world away. There is plenty of fresh sea air, lots of entertainment, fine food, and beverages, and a festive atmosphere on board the cruise ships. When stopping in port, travelers can enjoy the sights of palm trees and beautiful beaches. Guests can dine locally or go shopping while experiencing the Caribbean culture.
Winter break from classes means returning from trip with a sun-baked tan and a sunny disposition. With many islands to choose from, the Eastern Caribbean is a popular choice for a college student cruise. Ships leave from a number of different ports in the Southeastern United States that are easily accessible by plane or by road trip. One fun way to start vacation is a visit to southern cities of Charleston, South Carolina; Mobile Alabama; or a number of ports in Florida where the cruise will begin. Depending on the cruise line, sailing dates, and traveler's preference, the possibilities for Eastern Caribbean ports of call are many. They include St. Maarten, Netherlands Antilles; Guadeloupe; Barbados; Fort-de-France, Martinique; St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands; and the Turks and Caicos Islands.