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Plunder treasure on a New Jersey pirate cruise

by Ana Eastep

by Gina Gallucci-White

Pirate cruises have grown in popularity during the last decade. Travelers will find dozens of options stretching from Maine to Florida. How did these adventures become so popular? We can thank fictional Captain Jack Sparrow of “The Pirates of the Caribbean” movie series for that. 


Wildwood Crest, N.J.’s Dark Star Pirate Cruises owner Tracie Cicicchitti says pirates offer allure and mystery.

“They just never go out of style, I think,” she says. “They were popular when I was a kid. There has been a re-emergence with ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ (movies) and everybody loves a pirate.”


Actor Johnny Depp didn’t get an Academy Award nomination for the first “Pirates” movie for nothing. So, when pirate cruises need employees, they look for good local actors and enthusiastic high school and college students.


The Dark Star is a 50-foot modern-day pirate ship, offering authentic themed cruises “fer Buccaneers young and ol’ to sign on with the crew, and ye’ll find a fortune of tales, tunes, and treasures that would turn ol’ Blackbeard green with envy.”

Join the crew for a fully interactive cruise and enjoy entertaining pirate stories, a treasure hunt, a water cannon battle, music, and loads of family fun.

A popular pirate cruise on Dark Star’s line-up is called “A Siren’s Call,” and features a mermaid and her treasure captured by an evil pirate. 

These cruises are family friendly, but there are also after-dark cruises available for the 21-and-older crowd. 

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