Although cruise vacations to The Bahamas are extremely popular, planning these tropical getaways can be tricky. Truthfully, most times of the year are great for traveling to The Bahamas, but some seasons are arguably better than others. Things like holidays and events can dramatically affect prices, crowds, and available excursions, and every season has its advantages and drawbacks for travelers. Some vacationers even prefer hurricane season to the bustling winter months.
So, what is the best time of year to cruise to The Bahamas? That largely depends on you. If you’re looking for a relaxing vacation where you can lounge on the beach undisturbed, you’ll want to cruise to The Bahamas at a different time of year than someone who wants to participate in parties and festivals. Below, you’ll find the best times to take a cruise to The Bahamas based on your needs.
For a Relaxing Vacation
If getting away from crowds is a priority for you on your trip, you may want to avoid visiting during the peak season. The peak season takes place between mid-December and mid-April when the weather is optimal and the hurricanes are no longer a threat. Fighting for space in the pools and on the beach won't be an issue if you visit during the off-season months between May and November, and you'll also bypass waiting in lines at restaurants and tourist excursions.
Visiting during these months can help you experience the relaxed island life that you’ve always dreamed of, but there are a few drawbacks to consider. To begin with, not all cruise excursions or island activities may be available during these months as excursion operators may take time off to prepare for the peak season. Services also may not be as comprehensive, and many businesses take this time to undertake construction projects and renovations.
For Exciting Gatherings
If crowds, parties, and festivals are up your alley, then you’ll love cruising to The Bahamas during the peak season months of December, January, February, March, and April. Spring Break brings young crowds to the various islands between mid-February and early April, and this is also when many of the wildest parties take place. Christmas and New Year bring some of the best crowds for the celebration of the holidays, and the Junkanoo parades fill the streets adding to the festivities and joy.
Junkanoo is a celebration of the history of the islands that features people in colorful masks, elaborate costumes, a variety of musicians, and dancers. Hundreds of islanders dance through the streets to music made with drums, cowbells, trumpets, and whistles between Christmas and New Year's Day. If you're not afraid of crowds or waiting in lines, cruising to The Bahamas during the peak tourist season will give you some of the best opportunities to celebrate, participate in top excursions, and receive premium services.
For the Best Prices
The highest costs, unsurprisingly, come in the peak season during the winter months. For those who are looking for a bargain, considering a Bahamas cruise during the off-season can significantly slash prices on excursions, dining, and souvenirs. Bargain hunters who are looking for a more relaxing experience prefer these periods to peak season months despite the few drawbacks, which include a narrower selection of excursions and the possibility of some rainy weather.
Saving money is often a necessity when it comes to trips for the whole family and when traveling on a strict budget, and booking during the summer and fall when prices are lower can help people plan a dream vacation at a fraction of the usual cost. In particular, the cheapest months to be in The Bahamas are August, September, October, and November. For more information on getting the best cruise deal with Norwegian, be sure to see this great bit of info on Free at Sea vs. Sail Away rates.
If peak season sounds like the best time for you to cruise to The Bahamas, make sure to book your cruise and activities at least six months in advance. If you’d rather go during the off-season, it may still be a good idea to book early to avoid any last-minute challenges. Also, be sure to take the weather conditions into consideration and look into purchasing travel insurance if you’ll be in The Bahamas during hurricane season.
No matter what time of year you decide to take a Bahamas cruise, try to avoid major back-to-back state holidays like Good Friday and Easter as most businesses and services will be closed. To get a better idea of what your vacation will look like check out Norwegian’s cruises to The Bahamas sailing year-round.