Ready to break out of your flannels and cruise to a warm and sunny destination? March is a popular month to cruise, with most ships sailing at or near capacity, often with families enjoying spring break vacations, and the warmest places to cruise in March may surprise you.
It's not too late to consider a last-minute cruise or to start planning ahead for next year's spring thaw. There are options for warm places to cruise that will have your core temperatures back to normal in no time. With that in mind, we went looking for the best cruise destinations for warming up in March, all with plenty of fun under the sun and in the sea.
Here are some of the warmest places to cruise in March:
All cruises to the Western Caribbean are practically guaranteed to bring sunshine and warm temperatures in March. But if you're looking for a jungle to play in or warm waters to splash around in, Jamaica is situated far enough south to be well out of the path of any stray cold front that might attempt to escape North America.
The three cruise ports in Jamaica -- Falmouth, Ocho Rios, and Montego Bay -- offer more for cruisers to do than ever before. From all three ports, you can enjoy a beach break, watersports or opt for something totally different on the Jamaica bobsled course. Venture to the famous Dunn River Falls. You can raft or tube the river, or perhaps you'd rather be more adventurous with a horseback ride in the ocean. From ziplines to ATV tours to snorkel boats, Jamaica is an ideal spot to warm up in March.
The average daytime temperature in Jamaica in March is in the mid-eighties, or around 29 degrees Celsius. It's a sticky heat, but you'll miss it when you're back at home for those final winter blasts that always seem to sneak into March. Sea temperatures are a comfortable eighty-one degrees (27C) on average, or warm enough to splash around all day.
It's easy to warm up in the ports of Jamaica in March. Cruise lines that call on Jamaican ports this time of year are Royal Caribbean, Carnival, Princess, Holland America, MSC Cruises, Costa, Celebrity, Norwegian Cruise Line, Viking, and even Disney Cruise Line on occasion. Departure ports that can get you to the sunshine in Jamaica include most Florida ports, as well as New Orleans and Galveston.
Okay, let's be honest. There's not a bad time to cruise to Tahiti. It's truly a year-round destination. But if you have any concerns about a freaky dip in the temperature, March is typically the warmest month in the South Pacific archipelago of French Polynesia, of which Tahiti is the largest island.
Your cruise likely will begin in or stop in Papeete, the capital of French Polynesia, where you can enjoy sandy beaches and some of the best scuba diving and snorkeling in the world. Expect to experience both the culture of the South Pacific islands and a wealth of sealife – often up close and personal.
Temperatures on land in March average near ninety degrees (30C), with ocean temperatures an incredibly warm eighty-four (29C) on average. Those are the kind of temperatures that allow for as much water fun as you can manage.
Look for Tahiti cruises in March on Paul Gauguin, Seabourn, Princess, Norwegian, Silversea, Windstar, and Oceania.
Mexico’s warm beaches are the answer to your cruise cravings, and Mazatlan is one of the most idyllic ports in the Mexican Riviera on the country’s west coast. It may very well be the spot you’ve been dreaming about all winter. It’s a charming town to simply wander through but there are plenty of shore excursion opportunities here as well.
Land activities range from ATV rides to camel rides. Really! The waters of the Pacific are a little chilly any time of year—in the low seventies (22C) in March, but the sun will warm you quickly after water fun like snorkeling, diving, paddle boarding, and windsurfing. Mazatlan is also known for deep sea fishing.
Air temps average around eighty (29C) during the day. A few cruises even overnight in Mazatlan. If you’re on one of those, prepare for slightly cooler temperatures after dark.
Cruises that include Mazatlan in March are Princess, Carnival, Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, and Holland America.
If exotic destinations are what you crave for your spring warm-up cruise, Dubai tops the list of options. You can find cruises in the Middle East that leave from Dubai or make a port call there after departing from Abu Dhabi or Doha. Itineraries are a mix of week-long cruises as well as more extended multi-week cruises, with many sailings staying overnight in Dubai, allowing passengers the opportunity to experience the city lights. Fun (and warm) things to do in Dubai are desert four-wheel safaris, beach visits, and watersports, in addition to city tours.
Daily high temperatures in March average in the mid-eighties (29C), with ocean temps a comfy average of seventy-five (24C).
Because March is the perfect month for a cruise to Dubai, you’ll find a variety of lines with stops there, including Regent Seven Seas, Cunard, P&O Cruises, Seabourn, Costa, MSC, and Princess.
Temperatures in Sydney, Australia in March begin to edge downward just a bit but remain warm enough for you to enjoy outdoor activities like the Sydney Zoo, beaches, and watersports like snorkeling. March cruises that stop in or leave from Sydney come in a wide range of itinerary lengths, from short four- and five-nighters to lengthy cruises of twenty or more nights in the South Pacific.
Sydney’s temps average in the upper seventies (25C) in March, with the ocean temperatures not far below that, averaging around seventy-six (24C).
Cruises with Sydney either as a port of call or as the port of departure/return in March include sailings on P&O Cruises Australia, Viking, Cunard, Seabourn, MSC, Royal Caribbean, Princess, Holland America, Celebrity, NCL, and Carnival.
Updated February 27, 2023