Cruise vacations are becoming increasingly popular worldwide. Today, there are many cruise lines offering attractive packages that allow guests to visit multiple destinations during their cruise tour. Many of these destinations, especially islands in the Caribbean region or other tropical islands often witness heavy cruise traffic during the peak seasons. These islands generally have a low local population but experience a surge in population during the holiday season when cruise passengers often outnumber the locals. Some of these locations have been mentioned below.
Dominica is a Caribbean island with towering mountains, thick rainforests, rushing waterfalls, pristine rivers and beaches, and much more that gives it the nickname of “The Nature Island”. As such, it attracts holidaymakers from all parts of the world including a significant number of cruise passengers. While Dominica has a population of 73,543 individuals, the island has 3.478 cruise passengers per year per local.
Bermuda’s pink-sand beaches and pastel-colored homes are a top attraction for thousands of cruise passengers. Most of the top cruise lines operate in the area. Bermuda is an island and a British Overseas Territory in the Atlantic Ocean. Tourism is one of the biggest sectors of the island's economy. Although Bermuda is home to around 71,176 individuals, cruise passengers on the island significantly outnumber its local population.
The archipelagic state of the Bahamas is known for its scenic beauty and vibrant local culture. There are over 700 islands, islets, and cays of the Bahamas in the Atlantic Ocean most of which remain uninhabited or are privately owned by cruise lines as island retreats for the cruise guests. For example, Princess Cay is owned by the Princess Cruise Line while the Coco Cay is the property of the Royal Caribbean. Although the Bahamas has a significant population of around 321,834 individuals, cruise passengers on the island surpass this number to outnumber the locals.
Bonaire is a Caribbean Island that is part of the Leeward Antilles archipelago with its capital in Kralendijk. The all-year-round warm, sunny weather of this island is a major draw for tourists. It is also a popular destination for scuba diving and snorkeling. Over 15 cruise lines make over 80 calls per season in Bonaire. These ships have a total passenger capacity of around 185,000.
6. Saint Kitts and Nevis
Saint Kitts and Nevis is a top cruise destination attracting major cruise line passengers with its natural beauty, vibrant Caribbean culture, untouched beaches, and adventure and recreational outdoor activities. It is an island country and a Commonwealth realm in the West Indies with a population of 54,821 individuals. Here also, cruise passengers outnumber locals with 16.44 cruise passengers per year per local. It is also the smallest country in North America both by land area and by population.
5. The United States Virgin Islands
With 17.087 cruise passengers per year per local, the US Virgin Islands also rank among the top 10 destinations where cruise guests outnumber locals. These islands are geographically part of the Virgin Islands archipelago and politically part of the US. They are known for their natural scenic beauty and offer a plethora of outdoor and recreational activities to the cruise passengers visiting these islands.
4. The British Virgin Islands (BVI)
Shimmering beaches, green mountainsides, quaint towns, colonial history, and more, all serve as tourist magnets in the BVI located in the Caribbean Sea. There are four main islands and 50 smaller islands that are part of the BVI. Only 15 of these islands are inhabited with a total population being about 28,000 individuals. However, cruises passengers outnumber the locals in the BVI. There are 22.41 of the former every year per resident in the BVI.
3. Turks And Caicos Islands
Another British Overseas Territory, the Turks and Caicos Islands consist of tropical islands in the Atlantic Ocean. These islands may be small but they are packed historic charm and spectacular natural scenery. Most major cruise lines like the Carnival Cruises, Princess Cruises, Celebrity Cruises, and others operate in the area.
2. Cayman Islands
The British Overseas Territory of the Cayman Islands is also a top cruise destination. It is a group of three islands covering an area of 264 square km in the western Caribbean Sea. Together, the islands have a population of around 64,420 individuals. There are 27.81 cruise guests for every local every year in this British territory. These sun-splashed islands are considered to be one of the world’s best snorkeling and scuba diving spots.
1. Sint Maarten
Sint Maarten is the top destination where there are more cruise passengers than local residents. It is a Caribbean island country that is part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. It has a resident population of around 40,000 individuals living in an area of 37 square km. There are 41.6 cruise passengers per year for every local in this country.