Guide To Setting Sail From The Port Canaveral Cruise Terminal

sky princess at sea
Sky Princess out of Port Canaveral

Port Canaveral, located on the eastern coast of Central Florida, serves as the launch pad for many ocean adventures with Princess Cruises. This bustling port is not just a departure point—it’s a gateway to pristine beaches and exciting attractions. With so many things to do before your cruise begins, it’s no wonder the Port Canaveral cruise terminal is a preferred choice for travelers. 

Learn more about the best ways to access the terminal, accommodation options nearby, and local attractions. Embarking from Port Canaveral means modern amenities and a beautiful destination that sets the stage for your cruise experience. 


  1. What Makes The Port Canaveral Cruise Terminal Special
  2. Tips For Getting To Port Canaveral Cruise Terminals
  3. Where To Stay Near Port Canaveral Cruise Terminal
  4. Things To Do In Port Canaveral
  5. Port Canaveral Cruise Terminal Growth
  6. Princess Cruises From Port Canaveral

What Makes the Port Canaveral Cruise Terminal Special

Port Canaveral is a top choice for cruises since it offers a range of exceptional features from a strategic location. Here are some of the key benefits of this Orlando cruise port: 

  • Weather: From Port Canaveral, you can enjoy the warm, sunny climate typical of Florida. This makes it an ideal year-round destination for cruising.
  • Local Attractions: The Port Canaveral cruise port is just a stone’s throw away from famous attractions like the Kennedy Space Center and the beautiful beaches of the Space Coast.
  • Accessibility: Located less than an hour’s drive from Orlando International Airport, the port offers easy access for both international and domestic travelers.
  • Cruise Destinations: Whether it’s a trip to the tropical Caribbean or a picturesque voyage to the Bahamas, Port Canaveral provides an array of cruise options.
  • Modern Facilities: Modern, well-equipped terminals ensure a smooth and comfortable start to your voyage.
  • Convenient Parking: There are plenty of parking spaces available close to the ships, making it easy for those who prefer to drive.
  • Exceptional Staff: Helpful and friendly staff at the port enhance the overall experience with their excellent customer service.
  • Top Vacation Destination: Ranked as a leading vacation spot, the region offers a wealth of activities and sights to explore before or after a cruise.
Port Canaveral, Florida.
Port Canaveral, Florida.

How to Get to the Port Canaveral Cruise Terminal

Where is the Terminal?

Port Canaveral is strategically located to facilitate easy access and efficient boarding. Directions to the terminal are found here:

Transportation Options

Navigating to the Port Canaveral cruise terminal is pretty straightforward as it is accessible to several convenient transportation modes. 

  • Shuttles: Many local hotels offer complimentary shuttle service to the cruise terminals. These shuttles are scheduled to ensure you arrive in time for your cruise, with prior reservations recommended.
  • Brightline Train: Set to open in 2024, the new Port Canaveral station will be part of Florida’s high-speed rail network, linking the cruise port to cities like Miami and Orlando. The 'rail and sail' program offers bundled packages for a hassle-free travel experience.
  • Uber/Lyft: Rideshare services provide a direct and flexible way to reach your terminal. They are often more economical than traditional taxis and can be scheduled in advance through their respective apps.
  • Rental Cars: For those preferring to drive themselves, several car rental facilities are located near the port. These agencies offer competitive rates and provide the convenience of car drop-off right at the port.

For those embarking on a cruise from Port Canaveral, the most convenient airport is Orlando International Airport (MCO). Located just under an hour's drive from the cruise terminals, MCO provides a range of transportation services, including rental cars, shuttles, and taxi services, which can take you directly to Port Canaveral with ease.

Navigating the Port

Once you arrive at Port Canaveral, follow these tips to ensure a stress-free start to your cruise.

  • Arrive Early: Boarding typically begins several hours before departure. Arriving early can help you avoid long lines and give you extra time to enjoy the terminal's amenities.
  • Parking: Port Canaveral offers multiple parking lots with varying rates for short-term and long-term stays. Pre-booking your parking spot can often save time and money. If you aren’t sure exactly where to go, talk with the parking agents for assistance and they can provide you with more details. 
  • Finding Your Terminal: Your cruise documents will detail the exact terminal for your departure. Once at the port, well-marked signs and helpful staff can guide you to your destination.
Westgate Cocoa Beach Pier aerial view
Westgate Cocoa Beach Pier.

Where to Stay Near Port Canaveral Cruise Terminal

Finding the perfect place to stay before or after your cruise can enhance the overall experience. Check out these recommended areas and hotels near Port Canaveral. 

Cape Canaveral

Just minutes from the cruise terminals, Cape Canaveral offers a range of accommodations suitable for every budget and preference. Consider staying at:

  • Homewood Suites by Hilton Cape Canaveral-Cocoa Beach: This hotel offers spacious suites and is ideal for families or groups needing extra space. 
  • Residence Inn by Marriott Cape Canaveral Cocoa Beach: Known for its friendly service and excellent amenities like free breakfast and a pool. 

Cocoa Beach

A short drive from the port, Cocoa Beach is famous for its beautiful coastline and vibrant local scene. Here are a couple of hotel choices in the area:

  • Hilton Cocoa Beach Oceanfront: Perfect for those looking to unwind by the beach before setting sail. 
  • Best Western Cocoa Beach Hotel & Suites: Offers great value and direct beach access, plus it’s close to local dining and shopping areas. 

Near Orlando Airport

For those flying into Orlando before their cruise, staying near the airport can provide ultimate convenience. Recommended hotels include:

  • Hyatt Regency Orlando International Airport: Located directly inside the airport for ease of access and comfort. 
  • Sheraton Suites Orlando Airport: Offers spacious suites and a complimentary airport shuttle service.

While the Port Canaveral area is compact, and some hotels and local attractions are relatively close to the cruise terminals, walking is not generally recommended due to the layout and the distances involved. Most terminals do not have pedestrian paths directly connecting them to nearby hotels or amenities. For safety and convenience, it's best to use a shuttle, taxi, or other forms of transportation to get to your terminal.

View all Princess cruise ports and recommended hotels.

different rockets at kennedy space center visitor center
Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex.

Things to Do in Port Canaveral

Port Canaveral is a hub of exciting activities and attractions. Some of the must-visit spots that can make your stay even more memorable include: 

  • Beaches: The Space Coast is famous for its extensive and beautiful beaches. Cocoa Beach, a short drive from the port, offers soft sand and excellent surfing opportunities.
  • Theme Parks: While Orlando's world-renowned theme parks like Walt Disney World and Universal Studios are about an hour away, they are well worth the visit, especially if you're extending your stay in Florida.
  • Kennedy Space Center: Explore the history and future of space exploration at this iconic NASA facility. It's a fascinating experience for all ages, located just a short drive from the port.
  • Manatee Sanctuary Park: This peaceful park is a great spot to observe Florida’s gentle manatees in their natural habitat, especially during the colder months.
  • Exploration Tower: Visit this architectural marvel for panoramic views of the port, interactive exhibits, and insights into the local maritime and space history.

Explore more things to do in Port Canaveral.

Port Canaveral Cruise Terminal Growth

Port Canaveral is not only one of the busiest cruise ports in the world but also among the most forward-thinking. With continuous upgrades and expansions, the port is designed to accommodate the future of cruising. Some of the key aspects of growth at Port Canaveral include: 

  • Deep Water Channels: Port Canaveral boasts deep water channels that allow even the largest cruise ships in the world to dock easily. This feature is crucial for accommodating new generations of mega-cruise ships.
  • Drive-in and Fly-in Access: The port’s location near major highways and the Orlando International Airport makes it an optimal choice for both drive-in and fly-in passengers.
  • Room for Expansion: There is ample land reserved for future development, which ensures that Port Canaveral can continue to grow and adapt to the evolving needs of the cruise industry.

As Port Canaveral continues to grow, it sets new standards for what a modern cruise port can be, promising an efficient and enjoyable start to your cruising adventure.

sky princess
Sky Princess.

Princess Cruises From Port Canaveral

Setting sail with Princess Cruises from Port Canaveral is an unmatched blend of elegance and convenience. The cruise line offers a wide array of itineraries that range from short, relaxing getaways to the Bahamas to expansive voyages across the Caribbean and even transatlantic adventures. View all Princess cruises and ports crafted to highlight the best experiences each destination has to offer.

Guests can expect an exceptional onboard experience full of gourmet dining, world-class entertainment, and comfortable accommodations. The attentive and personalized service from the crew means that every guest feels uniquely cared for. 

Learn more about cruises from Port Canaveral and book your cruise today!

Caribbean Cruises From Orlando (Port Canaveral)

Among the many exciting Princess cruise destinations, Port Canaveral offers a magical experience. Sail to the Eastern or Western Caribbean on a cruise from Port Canaveral (Orlando) and island hop to top rated islands such as St. Thomas, Turks & Caicos, and Cozumel. Can't decide between the Eastern or the Western Caribbean? No problem – we have an itinerary that brings you to both regions from Port Canaveral, as well.


Port Canaveral Shore Excursions

Kennedy Space Center Visitors Complex

Debark Tour: Kennedy Space Center & Airport Transfer (MCO)

7 hours | Port Canaveral (Orlando) | PCV-105P C V - 1 0 5

Moderate Activity

Embark on a captivating journey into the realm of space exploration at Kennedy Space Center. This is a perfect opportunity to make the most of your time before your evening flight departing after 6PM. Explore independently for approximately 5.5 hours the world of space travel at this world-famous destination.

Pelican Standing front green wall.jpg

Debark Tour: Wildlife Lagoon Pontoon & Airport Transfer (MCO)

4 hours | Port Canaveral (Orlando) | PCV-615P C V - 6 1 5

Easy Activity

This is the perfect opportunity to enjoy the natural wonders in Port Canaveral before heading to Orlando International Airport (MCO) to catch your flight. Embark on a two-hour eco-tourism pontoon cruise that immerses you in the breathtaking beauty of the saltwater marsh and intricate mangrove tunnels within the Indian River Lagoon. 

You May Also Like

Stateroom connecting multi-gen family

13 Top Things to Do in Port Canaveral

Nestled on the edge of Florida’s Space Coast, Port Canaveral is a destination brimming with adventures and attractions. Discover the top things to do in Port Canaveral, your gateway to exciting possibilities.

San juan Puerto Rico excursion family walking coblestone stairs colorful bulidings

Packing Tips for a Warm Weather Cruise Vacation

Princess Cruises offers a wide variety of itineraries to choose from that can take you to tropical, exotic destinations, whether you're interested in a Caribbean cruise or a trip to South America. 

St Kitts Caribbean Bay Beach Hillside Nevis

Caribbean Cruise Weather by Month

Prepare to be awed as you sail into the best Caribbean cruise destinations with Princess, where relaxation and adventure are the only things on your to-do list. With any of our itineraries, experience the island lifestyle that keeps so many guests coming back for more.