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Cruises to La Palma

La Palma (Photo:Karol Kozlowski/Shutterstock)
La Palma (Photo:Karol Kozlowski/Shutterstock)

About La Palma

If your idea of a perfect day in port includes ambling along winding cobbled streets, browsing offbeat craft shops and watching the world go by from a street cafe, Santa Cruz de la Palma is an ideal destination.

The city is the capital of La Palma, the most northwesterly of the Canary Islands. On the island, the town is sometimes referred to -- confusingly -- as just La Palma. To further complicate the name game, the island itself owns many titles, too: Its full name is San Miguel de la Palma, but it's also known as La Isla Bonita y Verde, "the beautiful green island."

Whatever you call La Palma, often found on transatlantic itineraries, you'll find fine Spanish colonial houses with elaborate balconies and bougainvillea-draped white frontages -- and one of the world's largest volcanic craters. The Caldera de Taburiente measures nearly 17.5 miles across and nearly half a mile deep, and because it is home to rare animal and plant life, it has also been designated a national park.

La Palma is a volcanic island, just like the rest of the Canary Islands, and some of La Palma's dramatic volcanoes are still active. The island was claimed by the Spanish in 1493, and both human remains and ancient utensils indicate that the island has been inhabited since pre-historic times.

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DAY 1: Barcelona

14 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Barcelona
Visiting:
Lanzarote, Gran Canaria ...
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Cruise Line:
Royal Caribbean International
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DAY 1: Lisbon

17 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Lisbon
Visiting:
Madeira, La Palma ...
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Cruise Line:
Oceania Cruises
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DAY 1: Rome

16 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Rome
Visiting:
Villefranche, Barcelona ...
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Cruise Line:
Oceania Cruises
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111 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Los Angeles
Visiting:
Honolulu, Kona ...
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Cruise Line:
Princess Cruises
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111 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Fort Lauderdale
Visiting:
Cartagena, Panama Canal ...
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Cruise Line:
Princess Cruises
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22 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Rome
Visiting:
Florence, Portofino ...
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Cruise Line:
Oceania Cruises
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Cruise Critic Favorite

50 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Cape Town
Visiting:
Luderitz, Walvis Bay ...
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Cruise Line:
Crystal Cruises
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10 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Lisbon
Visiting:
Madeira, La Palma ...
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Cruise Line:
Oceania Cruises
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40 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Cape Town
Visiting:
Luderitz, Walvis Bay ...
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Cruise Line:
Crystal Cruises
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55 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Dubai
Visiting:
Muscat, Aqaba ...
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Cruise Line:
Princess Cruises
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97 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Los Angeles
Visiting:
Honolulu, Kona ...
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Cruise Line:
Princess Cruises
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41 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Dubai
Visiting:
Muscat, Aqaba ...
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Cruise Line:
Princess Cruises
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66 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Singapore
Visiting:
Langkawi, Phuket ...
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Cruise Line:
Princess Cruises
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38 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Venice
Visiting:
Ljubljana, Split ...
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Cruise Line:
Princess Cruises
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16 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Rio de Janeiro
Visiting:
Vitoria, Bahia de Salvador ...
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Cruise Line:
Azamara
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10 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Barcelona
Visiting:
Lanzarote, Tenerife ...
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Cruise Line:
Regent Seven Seas Cruises
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26 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Barcelona
Visiting:
Malaga, Tangier ...
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Cruise Line:
Seabourn Cruise Line
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26 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Monaco
Visiting:
Toulon, Barcelona ...
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Cruise Line:
Oceania Cruises
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13 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Lisbon
Visiting:
Madeira, La Palma ...
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Cruise Line:
Silversea Cruises
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16 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Bristol
Visiting:
Cobh, Lisbon ...
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Cruise Line:
Cruise & Maritime Voyages
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17 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Rotterdam
Visiting:
Lisbon, Las Palmas ...
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Cruise Line:
Cruise & Maritime Voyages
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4 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Las Palmas
Visiting:
La Gomera, La Palma ...
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Cruise Line:
Sea Cloud Cruises
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14 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Las Palmas
Visiting:
San Sebastian, Tenerife ...
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Cruise Line:
AIDA
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14 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Las Palmas
Visiting:
San Sebastian, Cape Verde ...
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Cruise Line:
AIDA
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13 Night
Cruise to La Palma

Leaving:
Lisbon
Visiting:
Praia da Vitoria, Horta ...
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Cruise Line:
Hapag-Lloyd Cruises
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Why go to La Palma?

Pros:

The port is filled with cute cobbled streets and a scattering of cafes, restaurants, bars and craft shops

Cons:

Traffic can be busy around the immediate port area

Bottom Line:

There's beauty to be found in port and further out for those looking to explore the island's volcanic terrain

La Palma Cruise Port Facilities?

The port is unpretentious and uncommercialized, which is a nice way of saying there's no reason to hang around. It offers a cafe and a car rental office. The marina has a few bars, a cafe, an ATM and free Wi-Fi.

Good to Know?

Traffic is busy as you walk into Santa Cruz from the port gates; you need to cross several junctions. Although there are crossings, traffic seems to come from all directions, so be cautious and alert.

Getting Around?

On Foot: Most ships offer free shuttle buses from the small cruise terminal to the main port gates; from there, it is a five-minute stroll into town.

By Bus: Buses operate around the island from Avenida de Bajamar. For a couple of euros, you can buy a return ticket to the nearest beach, Playa de los Cancajos, which lies about three miles to the south.

By Taxi: Taxis are a good way to travel on the island, though most are pricey. A taxi from the port (just outside the terminal) to the beach costs around 20 euros one way -- this is more reliable than buses if you're on a tight schedule. For an island tour, budget around 35 euros for an hour or so, depending on your negotiation skills (establish the fare in advance).

By Car: If your ship is in port for a long time, you could consider hiring a car at Autos la Palma on Avenida Maritima. It's not recommended on a short cruise call because the roads are winding, mountainous and slow to negotiate.

Currency & Best Way to Get Money?

The currency is the euro. See www.oanda.com or www.xe.com for conversion rates.

Language?

Spanish is spoken, and many residents speak at least a smattering of English, but it could be worth investing in a phrase book if you're heading off on your own.

Where You're Docked?

You'll disembark at the port of Santa Cruz, located on the eastern part of the island.


La Palma Cruise Reviews

Mein Schiff
berlinNYC
Sail Date: Jan 2020
Very pretty town of Santa Cruz de La Palma. A nice surprise.... Read More
Jedi61
Sail Date: Sep 2018
We took a City Sightseeing bus around Palma. Very crowded bus and queues for the bus were so long we decided to stay on for the whole round trip.... Read More
Marella Explorer
TheFatFryer
Sail Date: Feb 2020
Very pretty for the cararies.... Read More
Essex Man
Sail Date: Nov 2019
If you stay in the main town, 3... Read More
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