Miami, a port of call

We are going on Royal's Southeast Coast and Bahamas itinerary leaving this Thanksgiving. I knew we would be stopping in Miami as a port of call (huh??) but decided that the low cost and convenience associated with vacation/PTO days was worth the less than stellar itinerary. I mistakenly thought that the proximity to Biscayne National Park would mean I could find a not too complex means of taking a snorkeling excursion.

It seems the only tour company working from Key Biscayne is closed on Mondays. Other tours that I can find out of marinas local to the port are more focused on either pulling a full-on party boat vibe or cruising up millionaires row (my pet name for it). We could snorkel from shore at the north of Key Biscayne (fossil coral) which looks to be ok (YouTube video) or by the lighthouse at the south end. To get there we could Uber/Lyft or rent a car. ...Not overly pricey, but I would really rather get offshore, because I know the snorkeling would be much better.

So, does anyone have any suggestions? ...and I still have to ask why Royal would even stop in Miami to begin with (?) ...especially if they don't want to bother to offer any 'real' excursions other than Everglades tours. I did a bit of research, and it looks like this Grandeur stop once a month-ish is all but the only one that comes in this way. (SMH)

Tags: Miami

9 Answers

We had a full day in Miami before a cruise, and we took a Hop On Hop Off trolly tour. We got off in South Beach and spent a couple of hours just enjoying the beach, and swimming, before changing, getting back on and returning to Biscayne Bay.

We were in FLL for a couple of days before our last cruise. We did the Everglades airboat tour. It was a lot of fun--something different from anything else we've done.

We've also done the Miami HOHO trolley and enjoyed that as well.

Thanks for the replies. The HOHO tour is a reserve option. We have done the Everglades a year and a half ago when we stayed in Sanibel (full day with meals) and it was a blast. It is the only really nice option for the port, so we thought we'd leave it to others who might appreciate it more since we've 'just been'. I did some digging on the scuba website forums and found a dive operator that offers snorkel trips (, and it is right across the MacArthur Causeway. As long as he gets enough people, I think we will do that.

I have been searching the forums, but not finding what I am looking for regarding the Miami port. My Sister-in-Law said there was a free (she thought) shuttle to a shopping area available at the port. Can anyone confirm this, or provide details for what is available (free or otherwise) from the port. I am interested in ones going both directions from the port.

we have done the things mentioned plus South beach on trips there but no snorkeling. I think the shopping area your sister-in-law was talking about is Bayside Market Place. It is a very neat place with lots of shops and dozens of restaurants like Hard Rock Hooters and Chiles. We shopped and sat at a table by the water ate some pizza and drank a couple of beers. This is also where we caught the hop on hop off tour.


If you have the Ship Mate app for your smart phone you can find lots of non-ship excursions for port of Miami and most ports you will stop at.

You could also spend some time in Coconut Grove and maybe see a show.

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