--Updated by David Swanson, Cruise Critic contributor
Long Beach Cruise Terminal Address
231 Windsor Way
Long Beach, CA 90802
Originally built to display Howard Hughes' "Spruce Goose" airplane, the 12-story geodesic dome of Long Beach Cruise Terminal, located beside the regal Queen Mary, was also used as a movie production soundstage for such films as "A.I.," "Last Action Hero" and "Batman Forever." Today, it's owned by Carnival Cruise Line and used primarily by Carnival ships. Follow road signs to the Queen Mary to find your cruise ship. From Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), it's 22 miles away, roughly a 40- to 50-minute drive; it's 11 miles from Long Beach Airport (LGB) -- approximately 20 minutes of travel time.
Long Beach Cruise Terminal Directions
From Los Angeles International Airport (LAX): Travel southbound on the San Diego Freeway (405) and then southbound on the Long Beach Freeway (710). Follow signs for Queen Mary. At the entrance to the Queen Mary attraction, stay to the far right of the parking ticket-taker for the Queen Mary ship; this lane is the entrance to the Long Beach Cruise Terminal. Follow signs for passenger parking and luggage drop-off area.
From Long Beach Airport (LGB): Follow the airport exit signs to Lakewood Boulevard. Head southbound on Lakewood toward the San Diego Freeway (405). Take the 405 north and then go south on the Long Beach Freeway (710). Follow the signs for the Queen Mary. Stay to the far right, as stated above; this lane is the entrance to the Long Beach Cruise Terminal.
Traveling from San Diego (north): Take I-5 north to the San Diego Freeway (Interstate 405) and then southbound on the 710 Freeway. Continue on the 710 Freeway south and follow the signs for the Queen Mary. Follow directions above.
Getting to the Long Beach Cruise Terminal from the Airport
Passengers on cruises departing from Long Beach Cruise Terminal can fly into LAX or LGB. UberX and Lyft are available for pickup at LAX (approximately $50) and LGB (about $25). Taxis are available from both LAX (about $75) and LGB (roughly $40), as are shared van rides, $20 per person from either airport. If you wish to take public transportation, see the section below.
Getting There by Public Transit
Go downstairs in any LAX terminal and find the pickup point for the LAX FlyAway bus service to Long Beach ($9 per person). The buses depart from all LAX terminals and operate nonstop once per hour, arriving at the Long Beach Transit Gallery 50 minutes later. From here, take the free Long Beach Transit Passport bus to the Long Beach Cruise Terminal/Queen Mary.
From LGB take the Long Beach Transit system, route 111 ($1.25) to the Long Beach Transit Gallery and then take the free Long Beach Transit Passport bus (every 10 minutes) to the Cruise Terminal/Queen Mary.
Amtrak to Long Beach Cruise Terminal
Disembark at Los Angeles Union Station to connect with a bus specifically for Amtrak customers that stops directly at Berth 95 at the World Cruise Center. Look for Thruway signs in the train station, past the baggage claim, to go to the Catalina Express Terminal. These buses run daily. The bus transfer fee is included in the rail fee. From Berth 95, take a taxi (roughly $20) to the Long Beach Cruise Terminal.
In downtown Long Beach, Avis, Budget, Enterprise and Hertz all have car rental offices on Ocean Boulevard, 2 miles from the cruise port. However, all of these offices close at 2 p.m. or earlier on weekends and 6 p.m. on weekdays. If you want to pickup or drop a car later in the day, opt for an office at the Long Beach Airport (which includes National/Alamo).
Long Beach Cruise Terminal Parking
At the port, Long Beach cruise parking is offered in a five-story, 1,450-space indoor parking garage. Oversized vehicles will be charged per parking space occupied. With proof of valid permit, disabled parking is available. RVs may have to use the adjacent outdoor parking facilities if they exceed height maximums. Rates are $17 per day; free under 30 minutes; $4 per hour for the first two hours. Full payment is due upon exiting the garage.
Taxis are readily available on days when ships embark or disembark. It's 23 miles to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX); allow 50 minutes and a $75 fare. From Long Beach Airport, it's 11 miles, roughly 20 minutes and a $40 fare. Uber (UberX only) and Lyft are both available for pickup at the port, about $25 to LGB, $50 to LAX.
What Time to Arrive and Embark
Cruisers can check-in and board for Carnival Imagination and Carnival Inspiration between 1 and 4 p.m. as the ships depart at 5:30 p.m.; Carnival Splendor passengers can check-in and board between 1 and 3:30 p.m. as the ship departs at 4:30 p.m.
The Long Beach Cruise Terminal does not provide wheelchairs for passenger use. If you require wheelchair assistance to board the ship, make sure to arrange with Carnival in advance. If wheelchairs are required for the duration of the sailing, passengers are responsible for providing their own.
Where to Eat or Shop Near the Long Beach Cruise Terminal
The Queen Mary is a fun option for combining sightseeing, dining and souvenir shopping. There are six dining options, from fine dining to coffee shops, and the ship is within a few minutes' walk. If you have more time, head to downtown Long Beach. Catch the free Long Beach Passport C Bus (running every 10 minutes, most of the day) at the corner of Pine Avenue and 1st Street, 2 miles or a 10-minute taxi ride from the terminal. The bus makes stops at several tourist destinations along the way, including the Coast Hotel, the Aquarium of the Pacific, Shoreline Village and others, plus dozens of restaurants. For shopping in Long Beach, head to City Place shopping center that includes both retail and general stores.
Porters are available at the entrance of the berth to take your luggage.
Where to Sit at the Cruise Terminal
Ample seating is available within the terminal, designed to look like park benches surrounded by trees. If you arrive early, you have to wait outside the terminal. There is some "seating" on concrete walls/benches, but nothing super comfortable.
There are plenty of restrooms available inside and outside of the Long Beach Cruise Terminal.
Wi-Fi at the Cruise Terminal
Free Wi-Fi is available at the Long Beach Cruise Terminal.
Where to Store Luggage
Lockers are not available at the Long Beach Cruise Terminal. Contact Carnival to make arrangements to check your baggage with the cruise ship. Carry-on baggage must stay with you until you board.
More Long Beach Cruise Port Tips
Google has a hard time recognizing the actual address at the port. If you're driving here, the GPS coordinates are N 33° 45' 4.61", W 118° 11' 19.53" (Long Beach Cruise Terminal).