The port of Rockland, Maine, has built its cruise business from zero calls a decade ago to some 40 or so ship visits yearly, fulfilling a niche for small ship operators American Cruise Lines and Blount Small Ship Cruises, while also seeing the occasional big ship, said Frank C. Isganitis and Alicia Bagnall of the Penobscot Bay Regional Chamber of Commerce.

The port can handle ships up to 215-feet dockside, and is looking at expanding its pier to handle larger vessels, according to Harbormaster Matthew Ripley.

Foreign ships entering the United States cannot call at Rockland as a first point of entry, but the port does offer a geographical advantage when it comes to fuel consumption, pairing itself with calls to Portland and/or Bar Harbor.

Photo credit: PJ Walter