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American Cruise Lines’ Florida Gulf Coast & Keys Cruise has been fully booked since the cruise itinerary was added in December 2023. As a result of the cruise’s initial success, company officials will add a second ship that will follow the same route in December 2024. 

Starting and ending in St. Petersburg, the eight-day, seven-night cruise stops in Punta Gorda on Day 6. 

The itinerary “has been enormously successful,” American Cruise Lines company spokesperson Alexa Paolella said. 

The captain drops anchor in the middle of Charlotte Harbor due to the harbor’s shallow depth, which prohibits the ship from docking. Guests are tendered over in smaller boats to Fishermen’s Village. 

The first ship in the line to cruise to Charlotte County is American Glory, a 56-room coastal cat with a guest capacity of 100, with six common areas. 

It was inaugurated in 2023 and first arrived in Punta Gorda on Christmas Day 2023. 

The last Florida Gulf Coast & Keys Cruise for the season began March 15, and the itinerary won’t resume until Nov. 25, when the second ship, American Legend, will join American Glory in transporting guests along the same route, with a sixth-day stop in Punta Gorda. 

American Legend is American Glory’s sister ship, which was also inaugurated in 2023 and has the same room and guest capacity. 

Beginning at the end of 2024, each of the ships will be anchored on Charlotte Harbor, two days apart. 

American Cruise Lines is accepting bookings through Jan. 31, 2026. 

American Cruise Lines has a stop in Punta GordaBeginning in November 2025, American Pioneer and American Patriot will carry guests on a 15-day, 14-night Grand Florida Coast & Keys Cruise with stops at 10 ports on the east and west coasts of the state, including Punta Gorda.  

Paolella said American Cruise Lines executives were pleasantly surprised to see how popular the Florida cruises are, and that the company is considering adding more Florida destinations. 

Currently, the cruise line also runs a Great Rivers of Florida Cruise, beginning and ending in Jacksonville. It traverses the St. Johns River and stops include Amelia Island and St. Augustine. 

Other cruises that stop in Florida begin farther north in Charleston, South Carolina, and Baltimore, and their southernmost stop is Jacksonville. 

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