A relaxing five-day Bahamas cruise

For Specials on Carnival Fascination cruise click here

January marks the beginning of North America’s busiest cruising season, so why not leave December holiday stress behind with a relaxing five-day Carnival Bahamas cruise? Several Bahamas cruises set sail from South Florida, but Carnival passengers also have the option of beginning their cruise in the lesser known northern Florida city of Jacksonville.

Many visitors are surprised to learn Jacksonville is not only the biggest city in Florida, at least in terms of size, but also the biggest city in terms of area in the entire continental United States. Most major Jacksonville attractions, however, are located within a relatively small area of the city near the two scenic riverwalks adjacent to St Johns River.

The Friendship Fountain stands next to the Museum of Science and History at the end of one of Jacksonville’s riverwalks, the Southbank Riverwalk. Another riverfront attraction, Walter Jones Historical Park, is home to an 1876 farm complex in addition to the Mandarin Museum and Historical Society. The long Jacksonville Beach has become both a local sunbathing spot as well as a popular destination wedding venue.

After the Carnival Fascination sets sail from Jacksonville late in the afternoon, passengers have an entire day and a half to explore every corner of this impressive vessel. Passengers can run or walk along the ship’s jogging track, join in a yoga or Pilates class, relax at the spa, or even freshen themselves up with a shave or haircut at the Carnival Fascination’s own beauty salon.

For Specials on Carnival Fascination cruise click here

The Carnival Fascination docks alongside countless other cruise vessels early in the morning at Nassau. Nassau is not only the biggest city in the Bahamas, but also one of the busiest cruise ship ports on Earth. A bridge links Nassau with Paradise Island and one of the most famous resorts in the entire Caribbean, Atlantis.

Passengers can spend an entire day at Atlantis Resort, starting with a guided tour of this sprawling facility containing the Caribbean’s biggest water park. A stroll through the Dig marine exhibit will take spectators past many of the more than 50,000 creatures of the sea who call Atlantis home.

The Atlantis Aquaventure Water Park has plenty of body slides, water coasters, pools, and many other ways to get wet. Atlantis guests can also buy duty-free goods at Marina Village’s more than 20 shops, gamble at the Caribbean’s most massive casino, or snorkel beneath the protected Paradise Lagoon. Passengers can also spend a day at the quieter private island of Balmoral, which features a stunning beach and once in a lifetime chance to swim with dolphins.

This cruise’s next stop is Little Stirrup Cay. A plethora of fun activities can be found on this tiny island, including parasailing, snorkeling, and glass bottomĀ  Berry Islands boat tours. Stingray City, where visitors can feed and frolic with southern stingrays, is also a calm boat ride away from Little Stirrup Cay’s Southern Dock.

Passengers then enjoy another full day aboard the Carnival Fascination prior to returning to Jacksonville. This is just enough time to feast on a seaday brunch, take in a set at the Punchliner Comedy Club, browse the art gallery, or play a round of mini golf on deck.

For Specials on Carnival Fascination cruise click here

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