If you live on Florida’s Space Coast, driving to Port Canaveral is simple. Located in the middle of Florida on the east coast, Port Canaveral is an easy drive from any direction.
Maybe you’re driving to Port Canaveral from Atlanta, Georgia or Raleigh, NC. Or from Tampa or Orlando. When you finally drive into Brevard County, that’s where highway signage gets goofy. Let me try to help you get to Port Canaveral and the surrounding Cape Canaveral area.
It can also be confusing because most cruise booking sites advertise “Cruises from Orlando”. In fact, Orlando is 60 miles due west of the port. If you fly to Orlando for your cruise and rent a car, you need driving directions to the port.
Driving Directions to Port Canaveral
Several roads lead to Port Canaveral. They are State Road 528, known as the Beachline Expressway, S.R. 520 and S.R. 50, all running east and west. The state roads also connect with Highway 1, the Florida Turnpike, Interstate 95, and Interstate 4.
From the North or South on Interstate 95
Watch for Exit #205, Beachline Expressway (S.R 528 East) and drive east for approximately 12 miles toward Port Canaveral. Follow signs to either Cruise Terminal A (the North Terminal) or if your ship is docked at Terminal B, continue a little further east on 528. The turn-off is on your right.
Driving to Port Canaveral from Tampa
Take I-4 East and exit at the Beach Line Expressway (S.R. 528 East). Continue east toward Port Canaveral. Follow signs to either A Terminal (the North Terminal) or if you ship is at B Terminal, continue a little further on 528.
Orlando International Airport – MCO
Allow about an hour east-bound drive to Port Canaveral. From the airport, be sure to take the North Exit and stay to the right. Follow the signs for S.R. 528 East – the Beachline Expressway. S.R. 528 runs straight towards Port Canaveral.
Melbourne International Airport – MLB
This is a wonderful local airport. It’s located about 25 miles south of Port Canaveral. Turn left when you exit the airport onto NASA Boulevard and keep going to U.S. Highway 1. At Highway 1, turn left and go north. About 25 minutes later, after driving through Rockledge and past the intersection of S.R. 520 in Cocoa, watch for signs for State Road 528, the Beachline. Veer right onto 528 and continue east for approximately 10 miles. You’ll go over bridges for the Indian River, Merritt Island and the Banana River. In the distance on your left, you’ll start to see cruise ship funnels slowly come into view.
Sanford International Airport – SFB
This airport is about 1 hour northwest of Port Canaveral. When you leave the airport, head south to Toll Road 417, the Central Florida Greenway. Continue south for about 23 miles until you reach S.R. 528, the BeachLine and take the eastbound exit. It’s easy to miss this one-lane turnoff. Continue on the Beach Line for 37 miles until you reach Port Canaveral.
Parking at Port Canaveral
Port Canaveral does not offer pre-paid parking. You’ll pay to park at your cruise ship designated parking area. All parking lots are secure and patrolled 24-hours/day. Parking is close to the terminal and only a short walk on even pavement to the entrance. There is also parking for RVs at each terminal. You can drop off passengers and luggage in front of the terminal and then go park your car. And the same for pick-up after your cruise.
Parking Cost at the Port
Parking is $17.00 per day for all vehicles, including day of arrival until departure. Note that rates are subject to change. Disabled parking spaces are available. You may pay with American Express, Visa, MasterCard, and Discover credit cards.
I’m the editor and creator of CruiseMaven.com, a solo traveler cruising the world on waves and wheels. I hope my articles and photos entertain, advise and inspire you to travel the world without flying. Take a breath… stop for a meal and a glass of wine along the way.