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Embarking on a cruise from the iconic Port of Miami offers an exciting start to your vacation. If you’re planning your cruise out of Miami, here’s a comprehensive guide to navigating the city, from arriving at the airport to setting sail into the sunset.

Arriving in Miami: Miami International Airport (MIA)

Miami International Airport is the primary airport serving the Miami area and one of the busiest airports in the U.S. It’s conveniently located about 8 miles from downtown Miami and 10 miles from the Port of Miami. Once you land, you have several options to reach your cruise terminal efficiently:

  • Taxi Service: Taxis are readily available outside the baggage claim area. A ride to the Port of Miami typically takes about 15-20 minutes, depending on traffic, and costs approximately $27.
  • Ride-Sharing Services: Uber and Lyft operate in Miami and can offer more competitive pricing compared to traditional taxis, with the added convenience of booking through an app.
  • Public Transportation: The Miami-Dade Transit System offers an economical way to travel. You can take the Orange Line from the airport to Downtown Miami and then hop on the Coral Way Route Trolley to the port. While this is the most budget-friendly option, it’s also the slowest, so make sure you allow plenty of time.

Where to Stay: Recommended Hotels Near the Port of Miami

photo of a room at The Elser Hotel, just minutes from Port of Miami
The Elser Hotel, located in the heart of downtown Miami – just minutes from the port

Choosing the right hotel can significantly enhance your pre-cruise experience by offering both comfort and convenience. Here are a few recommended hotels near the Port of Miami:

  • InterContinental Miami: This luxurious hotel is located just a mile from the cruise port, offering stunning views of Biscayne Bay. It features spacious rooms, a spa, and several dining options, providing a plush start to your cruise journey.
  • The Elser Hotel: A modern and stylish option, The Elser is situated in the heart of downtown Miami, close to various dining and shopping destinations. It boasts contemporary rooms with spectacular city and bay views and is just a short drive from the cruise port, making it an excellent choice for those looking to merge urban exploration with their cruise plans.
  • YVE Hotel Miami: For those seeking a more budget-friendly option, the YVE Hotel is conveniently located in downtown Miami, offering easy access to the port, Bayfront Park, and a plethora of shops and eateries.
  • Holiday Inn Port of Miami-Downtown: Positioned directly across from the Bayside Marketplace, this hotel provides practical amenities and comfort at a reasonable price, featuring comfortable rooms and an outdoor pool to relax in before embarking on your cruise.

Each of these hotels offers different amenities and price points, ensuring that you can find the perfect spot to suit your needs and preferences while waiting to board your cruise from Miami.

Transportation to the Port of Miami

Once you’re ready to head to the Port of Miami, consider these transportation options:

  • Shuttle Services/Ride-Sharing: Many hotels offer shuttle services directly to the cruise port. Be sure to inquire when you make your reservation. If your hotel does not offer shuttle service, using a rideshare app like Uber or Lyft to get from the hotel to the port should be a fairly inexpensive alternative.
  • Parking at the Port: If you’re driving to the port, you’ll find ample parking facilities available. The port charges a daily rate, which varies depending on the garage or lot.
  • By Car: Arriving by car is straightforward. The Port of Miami is well-signed, and it’s just a short drive from most parts of the city. Rental car services are also available at the airport if you choose to rent a car during your stay.

Tips for a Smooth Departure

  • Arrive Early: If you are traveling from out of state, plan to arrive a day prior to your cruise departure date. This will bake in enough time to prevent any unforeseen delays from disrupting your vacation. The day of your cruise embarkation, aim to arrive at the port early. This gives you plenty of time to check in, go through security, and find your boarding area without stress.
  • Explore Downtown Miami: If you have time before your departure, explore some of Miami’s attractions, like the Perez Art Museum, Frost Science Museum, or the shops at Biscayne Bay.
  • Stay Informed: Check your cruise line’s website for any last-minute instructions or changes to your itinerary.

Cruising from Miami is more than just boarding a ship; it’s the start of an adventure. By planning ahead, you ensure that your vacation begins smoothly and stress-free. Enjoy the journey from the moment you touch down in Miami to when you sail off into the Caribbean sunset.


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