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From the bright lights of New York down to the genteel southern charm of Charleston, the east coast of the USA offers an enticing and varied range of cruise ports. The oldest cities in the USA are along this coast and the whole region has a distinctly sophisticated and cultured atmosphere.

The Port of New York and New Jersey is one of the largest natural harbours in the world, and the busiest on the USA’s east coast. There are three major passenger ship cruise terminals in the harbour: the Manhattan Cruise Terminal, the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal and the Cape Liberty Cruise Port, New Jersey. The ports are home to the world’s fastest, biggest, and most luxurious cruise ships, stopping off and departing year round to Bermuda, Canada and New England, Europe, the Caribbean, and around the world. New York itself needs no introduction – from the frenetic pace of Times Square to the leafy green surrounds of Central Park, it is truly one of the world’s great cities.

Heading south, Baltimore is the departure point for large ships headed to the Caribbean or Canada as well as smaller ships sailing around the Chesapeake Bay and Intracoastal Waterway. Maryland played an important role in the Civil War and the city is dotted with historic sites, as well as quirky bars and restaurants, art galleries and museums. It’s also a short distance from the national capital, Washington DC.

Norfolk, Virginia, is one of the oldest cities in the continental United States, dating back to 1682, and was the site of the first US naval base. Charleston, South Carolina, epitomises the Old South, made famous in Gone With the Wind. See grand southern mansions, historic plantations, cobblestone streets and secret gardens. It’s also a thoroughly modern city with new hotels, a thriving restaurant scene, stylish bars and cutting edge boutiques. No wonder it’s been voted the best city in the USA three times.

WHERE CAN YOU CRUISE?
Click for for a list of the top cruise ports along the East Coast of the USA.