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Houston (Photo:f11photo/Shutterstock)
3.0 / 5.0
Cruise Critic Editor Rating

By J.M. Lee
Cruise Critic Contributor

Port of Houston

Editor's Note: As of April 2016, Houston is no longer an active cruise port.

Houston welcomed the first steamboat to the Houston Ship Channel, one of the busiest seaports in the United States, in 1837. In 2013, cruise ships found their way back to the area at the Bayport Cruise Terminal, which cost $108.4 million to build and has contracts with Princess Cruises and Norwegian Cruise Line.

About Houston


Pro

Houston has an up-and-coming arts and food scene

Con

The city is spread out, and there's nothing near the port itself, necessitating transportation

Bottom Line

Houston is not currently an active cruise port


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Reached through Galveston Bay, the Port of Houston sits on the southeast corner of what's known as Bay Area Houston -- a complex of seven small cities and 35 miles of waterfront that connect Houston and Galveston. The port is 25 miles long and includes the Bayport Cruise Terminal, which sits close to plenty of tourist attractions in the nation's fourth-largest city and in nearby waterside towns. The port is located about an hour from George Bush Intercontinental Airport and 45 minutes from Hobby Airport. The port is also about 30 minutes closer to the airports than the Port of Galveston and half the distance to downtown Houston than Galveston.

Houston is well known as an international city, and its restaurant scene is ranked as one of the best in the country. The Houston Museum District features 19 museums within walking distance. Closer to port are the famous Space Center Houston and Kemah Boardwalk.

Where You're Docked

Houston Cruise Port Address:
Bayport Cruise Terminal, 4700 Cruise Road, Pasadena, Texas 77586

The Bayport Cruise Terminal (4700 Cruise Road) is technically in the town of Pasadena.

Good to Know

The smell in Pasadena is overpowering. Because of the stretch of refineries, which produce a burnt chemical odor, the city holds the unfortunate nickname of "Stinkadena."

Currency & Best Way to Get Money

Houston's currency is the U.S. dollar. ATM's are available at both airports and also in all Bay Area cities. The closest is Seabrook, which is about three miles from the Bayport Cruise Terminal. Banks also are located in Webster, Clear Lake City, Nassau Bay, League City, La Porte and Kemah.

Several exchange bureaus are located at George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH). Major banks also provide exchange services. Banks are typically open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Friday, with many having Saturday hours and some having limited Sunday hours.

Language

English is spoken in Houston.

Shopping

Y'alls Texas Store, which has locations in the Willowbrook Mall, The Woodlands Mall and in Old Town Spring, features a wide range of items that scream Texas, including Dr. Pepper jerky, a "God Bless Texas" pewter cross and Texas Armadillo Droppings (pralines). And don't forget the waffle maker that produces your breakfast in the shape of Texas.