Cruises are popular largely because they’re an all-in-one option for vacationers who like their itineraries as uncomplicated as possible. But more and more, passengers are looking to use their time in the port city as an opportunity to explore and be entertained. Rather than dishing out the standard list of prefab shore tours and souvenir shops, give clients more to remember with a few ideas for can’t-miss events in top port cities.
American Airlines Arena is one of Miami’s biggest venues. In addition to being the proud home of Miami Heat basketball, AAA hosts major acts from every niche, including Katy Perry, Shakira, the WWE and Mumford & Sons.
Art enthusiasts with winter cruise reservations may find themselves in Miami during the annual Art Basel art fair. Each December, organizers showcase conversation starters by both established and emerging artists. Attendees flock in from all over the world, making the people watching almost as rewarding as the art browsing.
The Seminole Hard Rock Casino in Hollywood hosts headlining comedians like Kevin Hart, Trevor Noah, Jerry Seinfeld and Dane Cook as well as touring luminaries like Moody Blues, Jackson Browne, Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons, Barry Manilow and Mary J Blige.
Clients also have the option to head over to the Broward Center for the Performing Arts in Fort Lauderdale for an assortment of live entertainment including touring musicals like A Gentleman’s Guide to Love & Murder, The Bridges of Madison County, Wicked & Memphis: The Musical as well as the Riverdance, the Miami Ballet, the South Florida Symphony and other special events.
The Miami Open, played in Key Biscayne in March, offers a gorgeous outdoor backdrop to watch some of the the best tennis players in the world. Past Champions include Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray and Serena Williams. Fun Fact: Rafael Nadal and Maria Sharapova have never won, despite making their respective Finals five times each.
Miami’s balmy weather and beach culture create the ideal backdrop for tons of outdoor festivals, including the Lifetime Miami Marathon, Coconut Grove Arts Festival, Food Network & Cooking Channel’s South Beach Wine & Food Festival, Cirque Zuma Zuma, the Ultra Music Festival and the Game of Thrones Live Concert Experience.
Cape Canaveral’s position on the Space Coast makes it a top stop for passing cruise ships. The area is undoubtedly known for both the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station and the Kennedy Space Center, and the latter is always scheduling fun events like Meet the Astronaut get-togethers and holiday celebrations. For tourists lucky enough to be sailing by at the right time, the Center sells tickets to historic events like the SpaceX Falcon 9 launch, where guests can witness history firsthand.
Other events in Cape Canaveral showcase local flavor, such as Florida Beer Company’s Tap Room Taste and Brewery Tour, in addition to events at the Maxwell C. King Center for the Performing Arts, where audiences enjoy seasonal shows as well as tour stops from artists like Steve Earle, ZZ Top, and a Musical Tribute to Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons.
For those seeking a sit-down show, carve out time to see Cirque du Soleil: La Nouba, Dancing with the Stars, The Lion King & Waitress, Trevor Noah, AJR, or the soulful House of Blues Gospel Brunch.
Concert fans can catch the likes of Pink, The Killers, Miranda Lambert, Tyler the Creator with Vince Staples, REO Speedwagon.
And don’t worry, we have something for your sports fans, too! They can make their way towards the Arnold Palmer Invitational, or any one of the many Orlando Magic games.
Everybody knows the Big Apple is big on entertainment. In addition to an iconic experience of watching a play or musical on Broadway, you can direct clients to The World’s Most Famous Arena, Madison Square Garden, home turf for both the New York Knicks and the New York Rangers and a host of events ranging from Professional Bull Riders tour to performers like Pink & Billy Joel.
Hipper clients may be inclined for a short jaunt to Brooklyn to cheer on a Brooklyn Nets or New York Islanders game at Barclays Center. Depending on timing, lucky clients might be in town while hot artists like The Killers, Demi Lovato or Lorde are passing through. Any families visiting in late February or late March? Send them to Brooklyn for Marvel Universe Live or the ACC Men’s Basketball Tournament.
There is also Lincoln Center, Radio City Music Hall, Beacon Theatre, Bowery Ballroom, Apollo Theater, Irving Plaza and even more venues where one can experience some of the best performers in the world of dance, music & comedy of all types. From ballet to broadway, there is truly something for everyone in New York!
Seattle is known as the Emerald City due to the abundance of greenery blanketing the nearby landscape, and it is exactly this lush backdrop that makes festivals even more fun. From Taste Washington to the Seattle Cherry Blossom Festival to the Capitol Hill Block Party, Seattle serves up convivial get-togethers that are beloved by locals, and welcome guests with open arms.
Theater aficionados can cozy up to the likes of Mamma Mia, and Hamilton- The Musical. Meanwhile, travelers looking for something off the beaten path can do themselves a favor by making time for Emerald City Comicon or Cast of Impractical Jokers, National Geographic Live, OMD- Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark or Trailer Park Boys — all of which are sure to provide a fun and quirky time.
For larger-scale events, encourage travelers to check out KeyArena at Seattle Center, where both the Seattle Storm and Seattle University take on opponents between appearances by Macklemore, Queens of the Stone Age, Lorde, Stars on Ice and the Game of Thrones Live Concert Experience, among others.
Those eager to dive into Vancouver’s quirky culture can do so with the annual New Year’s Day Polar Bear Swim, but there are some slightly less chilly alternatives as well. It’s almost always game day at BC Place Stadium and Rogers Arena, where the BC Lions, Vancouver Canucks and Vancouver Whitecaps play.
If you’re looking for something other than live action sports, indulge in the musical talents of 2CELLOS, Lorde, Rod Stewart and Shania Twain.
Lastly, theater and comedy enthusiasts can get a dose of Trevor Noah or Motown- The Musical.