Accessible Port Guide For A Caribbean Cruise

Me on a Cruise Ship

The Caribbean is a region of the Americas that consists of the Caribbean Sea, its islands and the surrounding coasts. The region is southeast of the Gulf of Mexico and the North American mainland, east of Central America and north of South America islets, reefs and cays. The Caribbean is one of the most popular vacation destinations in the world for disabled travelers, but not all Caribbean Islands are created equal when it comes to accommodating visitors who are disabled, in a wheelchair or have limited mobility. When picking a cruise itinerary, look for port calls with docks that can accommodate large cruise ships, since tendering from the ship to shore can be an obstacle for some disabled travelers. Some cruise lines offer special accessible tour packages. Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, are ideal Caribbean destinations for travelers with mobility restrictions or in wheelchairs for one simple reason: since these islands are part of the United States, hotels here must comply with the Americas with disabilities act (ADA), so you’ll find wheelchair ramps, elevators, and accessible bathrooms just like in the U.S. The same standards apply to other public places, such as museums. Puerto Rico also is home to the Sea Without Barriers at Luquillo Beach, an ADA-compliant facility that includes a paved path leading to a semi-submerged platform that allows people in wheelchairs to experience the warm waters. Wheelchairs specially designed to enter the water can be rented for the day, and the beach also has accessible bathrooms, showers, and other facilities. Other Caribbean islands with a reputation for accessibility include Barbados, which recently launched its island-wide Fully accessible Barbados initiative; Aruba, Jamaica, and St Maarten .

Caribbean

Antigua

Antigua

Antigua is one of the 2 major islands that make up the Caribbean nation of Antigua and Barbuda. Ringed with coral reefs, the island is known for its many sandy beaches. Set along English Harbour, restored Nelson’s Dockyard, which Admiral Horatio Nelson made his base in the 1780s, includes a marina and the Dockyard Museum. Trails lead up to Shirley Heights, a former military lookout with panoramic views.

Antigua
  • Tidal variance: Slight tidal variance is unlikely to restrict full-time wheelchair users in disembarkation.
  • Accessibility around port: Flat and even
  • Distance to main town: Approximately 100 metres.
  • Accessibility of main town paving: Accessibility of main town paving – The town itself is mainly flat and most of the pavements have dropped kerbs
  • Accessible toilets: Located at King’s Casino on pier side
  • Cobblestone streets or unsuitable terrain: None.
  • Public transport: Not accessible
  • Shopping areas: Approximately 100 meters
  • Accessible places of interest: Heritage Quay and Redcliffe Quay

Barbados

Barbados

Barbados is an eastern Caribbean island and an independent British Commonwealth nation. Bridgetown, the capital, is a cruise-ship port with colonial buildings and Nidhe Israel, a synagogue founded in 1654. Around the island are beaches, botanical gardens, the Harrison’s Cave formation, and 17th-century plantation houses like St. Nicholas Abbey. Local traditions include afternoon tea and cricket, the national sport.

Barbados
  • Tidal variance: Slight tidal variance is unlikely to restrict full-time wheelchair users in disembarkation.
  • Accessibility around port: Flat and even
  • Distance to main town: Approximately 1km
  • Accessibility of main town paving: The town itself is flat and most of the pavements have dropped kerbs
  • Accessible toilets: Located in some restaurants
  • Cobblestone streets or unsuitable terrain: None.
  • Public transport: Not accessible:- Euro taxis (able to carry 1 wheelchair user)- Available upon request – Limited – Larger adapted vehicles – Available upon request – Large coach only – Standard taxis – Available upon request – Shuttle service – Berth dependant – Generally not wheelchair accessible
  • Shopping areas: Approximately 1km
  • Accessible places of interest: Generally Museums, Hotels, Public buildings are accessible

St, Kitts

St. Kitts

Saint Kitts and Nevis is a dual-island nation situated between the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea. It’s known for cloud-shrouded mountains and beaches. Many of its former sugar plantations are now inns or atmospheric ruins. The larger of the 2 islands, Saint Kitts, is dominated by the dormant Mount Liamuiga volcano, home to a crater lake, green vervet monkeys and rainforest crisscrossed with hiking trails.

St. Kitts
  • Tidal variance: Slight tidal variance is unlikely to restrict full-time wheelchair users in disembarkation.
  • Accessibility around port: Flat and even
  • Distance to main town: Approximately 500 meters
  • Accessibility of main town paving: The town itself is flat and most of the pavements have dropped kerbs
  • Accessible toilets: Located in Hotels – Marriott & Sugar Bay Club at the Frigate Bay Area
  • Cobblestone streets or unsuitable terrain: There is no cobblestone however, some of the pavements are without dropped curbs and bumpy and can be difficult to negotiate.
  • Public transport: Not accessible
  • Shopping areas: Approximately 200 meters
  • Accessible places of interest: Caribelle Batik and Romney Gardens

St. Lucia

St. Lucia

Saint Lucia is an Eastern Caribbean island nation with a pair of dramatically tapered mountains, the Pitons, on its west coast. Its coast is home to volcanic beaches, reef-diving sites, luxury resorts and fishing villages. Trails in the interior rainforest lead to waterfalls like the 15m-high Toraille, which pours over a cliff into a garden. The capital, Castries, is a popular cruise port.

St. Lucia
  • Tidal variance: Slight tidal variance is unlikely to restrict full-time wheelchair users in disembarkation.
  • Accessibility around port: Flat and even
  • Distance to main town: Approximately 15 metres from Port Castries and 100 metres from Pointe Seraphine
  • Accessibility of main town paving: The town itself is flat in areas, uneven pavements and rough ground and most of the pavements do not have dropped kerbs
  • Accessible toilets: Located at the Mamiku Gardens, the Old Mill and Waterwheel Restaurant in Soufriere and at Marigot Bay view point
  • Cobblestone streets or unsuitable terrain: There are sections where there are open drains and the pavements uneven
  • Public transport: Not accessible
  • Shopping areas: Approximately 15 metres
  • Accessible places of interest: Pointe Seraphine and Port Castries (there is an elevator at La place Carenage) can accommodate and the following sites are accessible in certain areas: La Place Carenage & Desmond Skeete Animation Centre Mamiku Gardens Diamond Botanical Gardens & old Mill & Waterwheel Restaurant Pigeon Island Landmark St. Lucia Distillery Tropica Gardens

St Maarten

St. Maarten

Sint Maarten, part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, is a country on the southern part of a Caribbean island shared with Saint Martin, a French overseas collectivity. Its natural features span lagoons, beaches and salt pans. The capital, Philipsburg, has cobblestone streets and colorful, colonial-style buildings lining its Front Street shopping area. The port is a popular cruise-ship stop.

St. Maarten
  • Tidal variance: Slight tidal variance is unlikely to restrict full-time wheelchair users in disembarkation.
  • Accessibility around port: Flat and even
  • Distance to main town: Approximately 2km
  • Accessibility of main town paving: The town itself is flat and the pavements do not have dropped kerbs
  • Accessible toilets: Some public toilets are accessible
  • Cobblestone streets or unsuitable terrain: Some side roads in Philipsburg
  • Public transport: Not accessible
  • Shopping areas: Approximately 1km
  • Accessible places of interest: St. Maarten disabled access is better on the coast than on the mountains in the interior. Wheelchair ramps are present in many of the shops and multiple accessible excursions are available. Cruise ships arrive near Philipsburg on the south side of the island, and both the Dutch side of the island and the French side of the island can be visited in a single day. the route into town includes going over a bridge that some wheelchair users may find difficult, and the route is 0.9 miles long.

Tortola

Tortola

Tortola is the largest of the British Virgin Islands in the Caribbean. It features several white-sand beaches, including Cane Garden Bay and Smuggler’s Cove. Road Town, the capital of the British Virgin Islands, has a harbour dotted with sailing boats and is known as a yachting hub. In the island’s southwest, forested Sage Mountain National Park offers trails and sweeping views over neighboring cays.

Tortola
  • Tidal variance: Possible tender if alongside slight – Slight tidal variance is unlikely to restrict full-time wheelchair users in disembarkation.
  • Accessibility around port: Flat and even
  • Distance to main town: Approximately 300 metres
  • Accessibility of main town paving: The town itself is flat and accessible and most of the pavements have dropped kerbs
  • Accessible toilets: None advised
  • Cobblestone streets or unsuitable terrain: None
  • Public transport: Not accessible
  • Shopping areas: Approximately 300 meters
  • Accessible places of interest: None advised

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