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'Cruising is coming back, baby!' | Cruisers, tourists pack into Galveston Island for busy holiday weekend

Carnival Vista cruises out today, making it the first cruise ship to sail out of Galveston since the pandemic shutdown.

GALVESTON, Texas — All the way from Phoenix, Ariz. to Galveston, Texas, “Cruising is coming back, baby, and we’re ready for it!" Jamie Asmus said.

"We’re leaving out tomorrow, and it’s the Caribbean," Gina Breland said.

On Saturday, it’s anchors aweigh for Carnival’s very first cruise since the pandemic.

“Everyone is going to be so interested to see what it’s like in this quote unquote post-pandemic world," Asmus said.

Cruisers Sharon and Jamie Asmus were at the airport in Phoenix.

“We are so excited. It’s been so long since we’ve been on a cruise ship," Sharon Asmus said.

But Leslie and Gina Breland are already on the island.

“We have been missing cruising for a year and a half," Gina Breland said.

And it’s clear they’re excited.

“We are so prepared. We got all the stuff for our doors, inside the ship. We’ve got balloons everywhere to decorate inside," Leslie Breland said.

Away from the port, the beach is busy, and the Strand finally looks back to normal.

“It’s a welcome change for sure. A welcome change," said Brandi Stephens, manager of La Palapa. “But we all made it, and everything is good now, and we’re just so happy that everybody’s out and about and having fun.”

With cruises coming back, it’s another life raft for the island, and on top of that, it’s a holiday weekend. 

“We’ve all kind of been anticipating this for sometime and, like, just kind of waiting for that one weekend where we can actually almost reminisce about the good ol' times and see it happening again," Stephens said. "We’re back! It’s awesome!”

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