Very extensive 9/11 Spirit Review

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#41
Kansas
216 Posts
Joined Jul 2011
Originally posted by slycruiser61
Had a question for you about Roatan...did you have any problem with sand fleas? I know you had mosquito problems in Costa Maya, but I've heard the sand flea problem in Roatan can be really bad. We are doing the Tabayana Beach/Gumbalimba tour and from what I have read in other posts we should bring along some heavy duty bug repellant because of the sand flea problems....
I didnt have any issues with sand fleas in Roatan, but I did in Iraq and Kuwait. Other than heavy duty bug spray, eat something with garlic in it, the night before and in the morning. I was told that by a Special Forces doc, and I thought he was just messing with me, until I had enough, tried it, and was never bitten or bothered again. Take it as you wish, but its a suggestion that works. Hopefully your special someone wont mind the garlic breath, lol

Joyride37
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03-05-1997 Carnival Ecstacy just us
07-31-2011 Norwegian Spirit family
03-03-2012 Norwegian Sun just us
01-06-2014 Carnival Elation entire family
#42
OH
24,060 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Originally posted by slycruiser61
Had a question for you about Roatan...did you have any problem with sand fleas? I know you had mosquito problems in Costa Maya, but I've heard the sand flea problem in Roatan can be really bad. We are doing the Tabayana Beach/Gumbalimba tour and from what I have read in other posts we should bring along some heavy duty bug repellant because of the sand flea problems....
We did not have a problem with any sand fleas. We were told the same thing too and it was suggested to buy the cactus pear juice repellant (from people on here) because it was safe for the water (coral), safe for children (no deet) and was also a sun blocker. I'm here to tell you...IT DOES NOT WORK. Waste of money. (As you can tell by the bite marks on my daughter).
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NCL:
EPIC studio SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination
BAHAMAS: Great Stirrup Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Freeport: Paradise Cove
BARBADOS: Boatyard
BELIZE: Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Island Shark Ray Alley Goffs
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Bay Snorkel Park Tobacco Bay St Catherines Beach Achilles Bay Jet Ski & boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Bay Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue Kay
COZUMEL: Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion IslandPalancar
GRAND CAYMAN: Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK: BOHIO Governors
HALF MOON CAY
JAMAICA: Sunset Hilton Rose
ROATAN: Little French Key LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS: Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN: Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS: Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths
#43
OH
24,060 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Originally posted by Joyride37
I didnt have any issues with sand fleas in Roatan, but I did in Iraq and Kuwait. Other than heavy duty bug spray, eat something with garlic in it, the night before and in the morning. I was told that by a Special Forces doc, and I thought he was just messing with me, until I had enough, tried it, and was never bitten or bothered again. Take it as you wish, but its a suggestion that works. Hopefully your special someone wont mind the garlic breath, lol

Joyride37
Thanks for this info. Good thing I like garlic. I'll have to keep this in mind.
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NCL:
EPIC studio SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination
BAHAMAS: Great Stirrup Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Freeport: Paradise Cove
BARBADOS: Boatyard
BELIZE: Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Island Shark Ray Alley Goffs
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Bay Snorkel Park Tobacco Bay St Catherines Beach Achilles Bay Jet Ski & boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Bay Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue Kay
COZUMEL: Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion IslandPalancar
GRAND CAYMAN: Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK: BOHIO Governors
HALF MOON CAY
JAMAICA: Sunset Hilton Rose
ROATAN: Little French Key LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS: Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN: Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS: Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths
#44
OH
24,060 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Ok, this is going to be a long one. Lots of details here. We really enjoyed our visit to Belize.

BELIZE CITY, BELIZE

We decided to book with cave tubing .bz for this port. This was the one and only port I was truly petrified of going to because of the tendering. I have not had to tender since the 80’s and 90’s when cruising and I don’t remember it to be a very pleasant experience.

However…. It was a breeze. I was worried over nothing trust me. We ate breakfast and sat up on deck waiting for them to announce when we should go get our tickets. When they did, we went down to deck 7 and there really weren’t a lot of people there. When it was time to hand out the tickets, they told everyone to form a line to “his right”. We did…however, others that were waiting on the other side decided to form their own line. The guy with the tickets laughed and ask why there were two lines and ask if we knew how to follow directions. LOL He went ahead and handed out the tickets taking turns back and forth between the lines. No problem. We ended up with tender #1.

We sat outside and waited for them to load the first two tenders with 1) the suite guest and 2) the people with NCL tours. Then we were called. It was about a 20 minute ride to the pier. They did tell us that the water we were in was only about 5-6 deep, which is why the Spirit has to dock so far out.



I’m going to start with the ONE AND ONLY complaint that we had about .bz in the beginning of this. We were taken to our van, then was told to stand outside (in blazing 92 degree weather I might add) while the rest of our people got there. This is the first time that this has ever happened to us whether it be taking a taxi/bus and waiting for it to fill up, to taking a scheduled tour. They usually have the vehicle running and cooled for the guest to get in and wait. Everyone was sweating and it was pouring off my husband’s head to where he finally said something to the driver asking why we couldn’t be sitting down in the van in a/c. The guy said the other guide (that had just walked back to the port to see if the others were coming) had the keys now. They did provide us with cold water to drink while waiting.

Ok, next problem…now I know why we weren’t waiting in the van/bus…the a/c SUCKED!! We had several elderly people in our van and they kept asking “is this all the colder you’re a/c is going to get?”. They replied it would get better once they got on the freeway…no, it didn’t. But we all made it and didn’t pass out of dehydration or heat exhaustion, no worries. ;o) We had a tour guy JUNIOR who sat toward the back in front of us. He ended up being our person “tube tour guy” THANK GOODNESS! He was the absolute best and told us so much about the island. We could not get enough. Seriously, this guy was the most informative person ever and knew everything. He could answer any question you could throw at him.

I will try to remember some of the interesting facts, but there were SO MANY, I know I’ll forget most. Belize was having Independence Day there and celebrating that from September 10th to I think he said the 23rd??? But it’s a LONG celebration. He showed us the graveyards on the way. It appears as if the bodies are buried above ground with the stones, however, religion is big in Belize and they believe that you can only dig 3 feet down and you have to go 3 feet above. The body is to be buried in the middle. They have to face a certain way with the heads all the same way. I believe it was the sunrise up over the feet and sunset behind the head (please forgive me if it’s the other way around). He joked that he was going to go against all odds and be buried opposite to shake things up. LOL He was hilarious.

He showed us a mining mountain that looked like a Giant laying down, you could see the head, nose, mouth and body. He explained that everyone there lives within their means and live conservatively using and having only what they need. We witness ladies in the rivers washing clothes, clothes hanging dry outside at houses. He explained those that had washers, they were located outside of the home. He showed us the richest mans house that lived there, which happened to be a guy from New Hampshire, I believe. He explained that the population was so small there that there was no crime because everyone knows everyone. They unite and help each other out. The richer (the doctors, lawyers and so on) people lived in the city, the average to poor lived outside of the city.

My husband is a skater, so they talked “skate” talk for a while and he was telling him about skating there and where you would find the skate park at (in the ghetto on the south side).

He talked about his family and children. He was born in Belize, but his family had moved to the US when he was young for several years (for some reason, I’m thinking age 6-12ish). So, he could relate to ANYTHING we talked about and actually told us about his recent visit back to the US and how a “camera took his photo and issued him a ticket for speeding…a CAMERA” LOL

There were no stop signs or street lights (I think he said they have maybe a total of 4 there) and that there was no speed limit. I ask about the police pulling people over for things, he said the only thing they are looking for were people smuggling any American cigarettes and several other things.


The taxes there are so high that it made buying things so expensive, but yet it was the one place (unlike most of the islands) that you could actually purchase your land and have a title like here in the US. He said most places, like Costa Maya and so on, people actually lease their property (and do so on like a 99 year basis), so if you wanted to get rid of it, you really just had to walk away from it, unless you have it in your lease that it could later be transferred. He said you could get an acre for $500-$1000 and it was pretty cheap, but hard to purchase.

He talked about the protected areas and how no one was allowed to build, hunt, or remove anything from that area, but they were very helpful with drying up rain and during hurricanes for protection.

He spoke about the cashew trees and showed us some along the way. I LOVE cashews and now have a better understanding for why they cost SO DARN MUCH!! For each nut on the tree, you get the fruit, 1 nut inside, and 1 seed only. So you can only imagine how many it takes just to make a bag of cashews! Of course I already knew about the seed inside and when burning it, the smoke is toxic. He talked about their cashew wine and how tasty it was…he would give us a taste when we were done with the trip. Then told us about all the things they use on the island to make wine out of.

So, I know I’ve missed a lot, but maybe other things will come to me later. There’s still a lot more during the actual cave tubing. ;o)



We arrived at the site where everyone arrives at for the tubing tours (all companies). It was beautiful and big. We gathered our equipment and off we went on our “15 minute hike”….sorry, it’s way longer than that and we joked with Junior about it. We ended up doing 2 caves, which he said is the most they do and most companies only do 1. I inquired about the 3 caves because I’ve read from many people that they do 3. He said people use to consider it 3 caves, but in order for it to be considered a different cave, there has to be a certain amount of opening, which they didn’t have with one of the caves, so they changed it to call it 2 caves instead of 3 (but it was still the same that people are referring to as 3 and you know this because the trail ends).

Along the walk, we were shown a tree that when you cut it open, the ink inside of it is used to make money. We seen the HUGE vines (tarzan vines) hanging and he informed us that if you were to cut it open, there is a water supply in it that would keep you hydrated if you were stranded in the rain forest. There was another plant that we got to eat. At first you don’t taste it, then it’s like a burst of water and makes your mouth water. Another source of hydration when you are hiking.

Along the walk, we were shown a tree that when you cut it open, the ink inside of it is used to make money. We seen the HUGE vines (tarzan vines) hanging and he informed us that if you were to cut it open, there is a water supply in it that would keep you hydrated if you were stranded in the rain forest. There was another plant that we got to eat. At first you don’t taste it, then it’s like a burst of water and makes your mouth water. Another source of hydration when you are hiking.

Ok, here comes the fun part. We stop at a tree with a huge hive like thing on it…termites. Yep, we all ate them. My daughter looked at me like we were nuts for eating something that was crawling around on daddy’s hand. But, she did it. They tasted like mint. Junior said you could survive for about 2 days on these as a food source out there. I’ll keep that in mind. ;-)



Then came the tarantula…they coaxed him out of his house and passed him around for everyone to hold that wanted to. My daughter wanted to hold it, so we told her under no circumstance was she allowed to move if it moved. It started on her hand and then moved up her arm to her shoulder. She didn’t budge. I’m now thinking my daughter is such a daredevil. First zip lining, eating bugs, now holding spiders. Whew. She has guts for a 3 year old. I’m now hoping she doesn’t think it’s ok to go around eating plants, crawling bugs and playing with spiders. Hmmm



There had been a lot of rain over the last several days, so they said the water was a little higher and rougher than normal and it had actually been closed the day prior and they would not let anyone tube that day. But things were ok for us today. We came to the river and there is a rope to hold on to and cross. But no one had any problems. They took my little one over and put her down in the running water to let her play for a minute then took her over to the side to wait on us. She loved it. Then back to hiking we went.


Junior told us how that area had been known to have Jaguars in it and I believe there were 6 living in the area. He encountered them only once during a night tour.

When we finally made it to the area for tubing, they put us in our tubes and Junior took just us 3 with him. He said he wanted to be responsible for the child. They are certified in just about everything from rescue, cpr and so on for safety. We were very happy we ended up with him. HERE COMES THE BAD; MY FRICKEN CAMERA BATTERY DIED. GACK! I was so upset!!! Just my luck. We did not witness most of the tour guides from several other companies giving the details about the cave, bats and everything else you could think of the way Junior did. I noticed at one point another companies people were listening to him. Junior showed us where the lady that drown doing the excursion with .com happened and I can understand if you are floating along, not tied together, how that could be any issue at this particular spot. He said he was 3 minutes behind her and had he been there, he could have saved her. It was a traumatic day for everyone, including him. I can only imagine.

There were only a few areas that were a little rapid, but nothing to be scared of and he kept us in control at all times. He worked his butt off pulling us and paddling us around in areas. Those tubing guys must have the strongest arms. I can only imagine how hard it is to pull around the limit of 8 people. Whew. We felt safe with him at all times.

The caves did have one area that was dark and he told us to all turn off our lights so that we can see that we actually can’t see. LOL However, there are so many other tours both in front and in back of us, that we could see their lights on from a distance. Nothing scary at all. There were opening here and there in the caves. We seen fruit bats, vampire bats, and the bats that eat insects only. It was a great experience.

After returning from tubing, we all piled in the HOT van and headed to the place to eat. We had chicken, rice, cole slaw and rum punch. It was the best ever. Yes, I had 2 plates and could have had more even though I was full. Junior let us try the cashew wine…of course we loved it and had to purchase some to take home. It’s chillen in the fridge now just waiting for us to open it.

We arrived at the port around (in plenty enough time to shop and look around) and it seemed like the place was packed at this point. People were everywhere trying to coax you into buying something or getting your hair braided. It was their one last attempt to get to you as you made it up the stairs and past the security with your ship ID because then, they were not allowed to bother you. Once inside, it was like a shopping mall and you could shop at your own leisure.

We arrived at the port around (in plenty enough time to shop and look around) and it seemed like the place was packed at this point. People were everywhere trying to coax you into buying something or getting your hair braided. It was their one last attempt to get to you as you made it up the stairs and past the security with your ship ID because then, they were not allowed to bother you. Once inside, it was like a shopping mall and you could shop at your own leisure.

This is the man right here…request him!

A link to more pictures: http://kimbakersphotography.smugmug....497080_RgCvTqD
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NCL:
EPIC studio SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination
BAHAMAS: Great Stirrup Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Freeport: Paradise Cove
BARBADOS: Boatyard
BELIZE: Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Island Shark Ray Alley Goffs
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Bay Snorkel Park Tobacco Bay St Catherines Beach Achilles Bay Jet Ski & boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Bay Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue Kay
COZUMEL: Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion IslandPalancar
GRAND CAYMAN: Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK: BOHIO Governors
HALF MOON CAY
JAMAICA: Sunset Hilton Rose
ROATAN: Little French Key LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS: Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN: Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS: Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths
#45
Arizona
228 Posts
Joined Oct 2009
Great review on the Spirit. We are gearing up for the same trip on
Oct. 9. I have heard it wil be fresh out of dry dock that week. Sounds like you really had a nice trip, We are really looking forward to it. Thanks for sharing your review and your pictures. You have a beautiful daughter! Enjoy her, they grow up fast. My baby is 28!
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Carnivale 1984
Diamond Princess 2007 (Mexico)
Star Princess 2008 (Alaska)
Star Princess 2009 (Alaska again)
Carnival Elation 2009 (Mexico)j
HAL Oosterdam 2010 (New Year's, Mexico)
Carnival Spirit 2010 (Birthday, Mexico)
NCL Spirit 2011 (Birthday, West Caribbean)
Island Princess 2012 (Alaska, Denali, McKinley)
Coral Princess 2013 (Panama Canal)
Azamara Journey 2014 (French Riviera)
Carnival Dream 2015 (W Caribbean)
Ruby Princess 2015 (Hawaii)
Grand Princess 2016 (Alaska)
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#46
The 'shwa, Ontario!
4,143 Posts
Joined Sep 2008
Wow Mitsu, you have some seriously interesting cruise experiences!

So sorry to read about the mishaps again. You always do seem to make the best of it though and I'm thorougly enjoying the review (just not the parts about you getting hurt, the red ants or your cutie pie kiddo getting bit - poor little thing ). Now, off to check out those photos.

Are you ready to start stalking another ship or two yet
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...If you allow yourself to settle for less than you deserve, that's exactly what you'll get

#47
OH
24,060 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Originally posted by tracyd1014
Thanks for sharing your review and your pictures. You have a beautiful daughter! Enjoy her, they grow up fast. My baby is 28!
My pleasure. I can't wait to get it all done. Whew. Reviews are exhausting and my first day back to school for this quarter is tomorrow.

I know what you mean about them growing up fast. My oldest (son) is 25 and my other daughter just turned 23 while we were on vacation (happened last year too since we also did a 9/11 cruise back then). Needless to say, she has not been happy with me for 2 straight years for not taking her. Then I have a 16 year old son as well. Time has flown by. I miss them all being young. I'm hoping to get all 4 of them on a cruise with me some day soon.

Originally posted by kerrytens
Wow Mitsu, you have some seriously interesting cruise experiences!

So sorry to read about the mishaps again. You always do seem to make the best of it though and I'm thorougly enjoying the review (just not the parts about you getting hurt, the red ants or your cutie pie kiddo getting bit - poor little thing ). Now, off to check out those photos.

Are you ready to start stalking another ship or two yet
Maybe I just have bad luck everywhere I go. Someone is testing me, that's for sure. But I always bounce back.

YES!!!! Ready to stalk and I bought 2 cruise certificates. Now if they'd just stop being so secretive and release the itineraries that would be nice!!!
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NCL:
EPIC studio SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination
BAHAMAS: Great Stirrup Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Freeport: Paradise Cove
BARBADOS: Boatyard
BELIZE: Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Island Shark Ray Alley Goffs
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Bay Snorkel Park Tobacco Bay St Catherines Beach Achilles Bay Jet Ski & boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Bay Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue Kay
COZUMEL: Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion IslandPalancar
GRAND CAYMAN: Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK: BOHIO Governors
HALF MOON CAY
JAMAICA: Sunset Hilton Rose
ROATAN: Little French Key LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS: Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN: Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS: Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths
#48
Arizona
228 Posts
Joined Oct 2009
Overall, a pretty good experience - yes? Would you do it again?
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Carnivale 1984
Diamond Princess 2007 (Mexico)
Star Princess 2008 (Alaska)
Star Princess 2009 (Alaska again)
Carnival Elation 2009 (Mexico)j
HAL Oosterdam 2010 (New Year's, Mexico)
Carnival Spirit 2010 (Birthday, Mexico)
NCL Spirit 2011 (Birthday, West Caribbean)
Island Princess 2012 (Alaska, Denali, McKinley)
Coral Princess 2013 (Panama Canal)
Azamara Journey 2014 (French Riviera)
Carnival Dream 2015 (W Caribbean)
Ruby Princess 2015 (Hawaii)
Grand Princess 2016 (Alaska)
Ruby Princess 2016 (Cabo)
#49
OH
24,060 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Originally posted by tracyd1014
Overall, a pretty good experience - yes? Would you do it again?
You didn't say which one you are referring to that I've posted so far. But, the answer is if I hadn't already did the things we did, I would definitely decide to do them again...in a heartbeat. Now that we've done those things, if we go back, we will find something new to do. I like adventure and trying new things and new places.

Let me know if you are referring to any particular thing.
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NCL:
EPIC studio SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination
BAHAMAS: Great Stirrup Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Freeport: Paradise Cove
BARBADOS: Boatyard
BELIZE: Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Island Shark Ray Alley Goffs
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Bay Snorkel Park Tobacco Bay St Catherines Beach Achilles Bay Jet Ski & boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Bay Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue Kay
COZUMEL: Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion IslandPalancar
GRAND CAYMAN: Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK: BOHIO Governors
HALF MOON CAY
JAMAICA: Sunset Hilton Rose
ROATAN: Little French Key LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS: Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN: Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS: Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths
#50
1,437 Posts
Joined Oct 2006
Originally posted by Joyride37
I didnt have any issues with sand fleas in Roatan, but I did in Iraq and Kuwait. Other than heavy duty bug spray, eat something with garlic in it, the night before and in the morning. I was told that by a Special Forces doc, and I thought he was just messing with me, until I had enough, tried it, and was never bitten or bothered again. Take it as you wish, but its a suggestion that works. Hopefully your special someone wont mind the garlic breath, lol

Joyride37
Yes, i have heard that garlic works. In my office, there is the occasional mosquito and I have noticed that they don't bite. I put the reason to my daily garlique branded pill. Will make sure that I take them on my trip in Oct.
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NCL Sun from N.O - Oct 2006
NCL Spirit from N.O - Nov 15th 2009
NCL Sky from Miami - July 12th 2010
NCL Spirit from N.O - Nov 28th 2010
Carnival Elation from Mobile - May 2nd 2011
NCL Spirit from N.O - Oct 23rd 2011
NCL Star from N.O - Dec 16th 2012
NCL Star from N.O - April 14th 2013
NCL Jewel from N.O - Oct 22nd 2013
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Carnival Dream from N.O - July 2014
NCL Dawn from N.O - April 2015

#51
Middle, Tennessee, USA
2,397 Posts
Joined Jan 2003
Loving you rewiew and photo's will be on the Spirit in October.
I have a few questions. Is it ok to email you.

Thanks,
Marcy
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RCL- Allure April 2017. Cozumel, Labadde, Jamica
CCL-Conquest Oct, 2016 to the ABC Islands
Princess Crown Pacific Coastal Cruise April 2015
RCI - Independence 2014, St. Martin, St. Kitts, Haiti, San Juan
CCL- LEGEND 2012 HONDRUS-BELIZE-GRAND CAYMAN-COZUMEL
NCL-SPIRIT 2011 NEW ORLEANS TO BELIZE, HONDRUS, COZUMEL, COASTA MAYA
CCL- Freedom 2010 Key West Jamica Grand Cayman
HAL- Oosterdam 2009 Mexican Riviera
RCI- Mariner of The Seas 2008 Coco Cay Bahams, St.Thomas/St. Martin
NCL- Pride of Aloha Hawaii 2007 Island Hopping
NCL- Star 2006 Seattle/Alaska
RCI Mariner of the Sea 2005 St. Thomas St. Martin
CCL Victory 2004 New York to Canada
CCL Sensation 2003 Cozumel/Grand Cayman
CCL Fantasy 1993 Bahamas
#52
Nashville, TN
434 Posts
Joined Aug 2000
Originally posted by thescot123
On your cruise did you have a Cruise Critic Meet & Greet? On my Oct 23rd cruise, we have already planned one and so far have over 30 people. Great way of making new friends at the beginning of the cruise.
Yes, we did have a Meet & Greet on Kim's sailing. The Captain didn't attend, but Kaj, the Hotel Director, lead the meeting and was very kind. They had a card with all of the officer's direct numbers for us and the ususal refreshments.
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Tim

Norwegian Spirit 6/28/2018 (Western Mediterranean from Rome-10 nights)
Carnival Paradise 3/23/2017 (Western Caribbean from Tampa-4 nights)
Norwegian Escape 07/31/2016 (Western Caribbean from Miami-6 nights)
Norwegian Spirit 03/19/2016 (Western Caribbean from Port Canaveral-7 nights)
Norwegian Spirit 12/19/2015 (Eastern Caribbean from Port Canaveral-7 nights)
Carnival Magic 10/04/2015 (Western Caribbean from Galveston-7 nights)
Norwegian Jewel 03/21/2015 (Western Caribbean from Houston-7 nights)
Norwegian Pearl 12/22/2014 (Southern Caribbean from MIA-11 nights)
Norwegian Gem 10/04/2014 (Canada/New England from NYC-7 nights)
Norwegian Sun 06/09/2014 (Alaska Northbound-7 days)
Carnival Splendor 10/08/2013 (Exotic Caribbean from NYC-8 days)
Norwegian Spirit 03/11/2012 (Western Caribbean from NOLA, again-7 days)
Norwegian Spirit 09/11/2011 (Western Caribbean from NOLA-7 days)
Norwegian Star 3/12/2011 (Mexican Riviera-7 days)
Norwegian Sun 06/09 (Alaska Vancouver RT-7 days)
NCL-America Pride of Aloha 09/07 (Hawaii-11 days)
Carnival Glory 06/06 (Eastern Carribean-7 days)
Norwegian Wind 02/03 (Hawaii/Fanning Island-10 days)
Carnival Spirit 06/01 (Alaska Southbound-7 days)
Norwegian Majesty 04/98 (Key West/Mexico-4 days)
#53
Ohio
1,343 Posts
Joined Feb 2004
Really enjoying the review of the Spirit (we sail her 2/5/12). The only thing I question is the fact that your little princess, at age 3, was able to zip line alone. Boy, I would have a serious problem with that. My kids are grown and gone on their own and I worry about them all the time (they are 39 and 30).
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Carnival Breeze 9/12/15
Carnival Fascination 3/7/16
NCL Escape 4/16/16
Carnival Magic 6/11/16
Carnival Valor 9/9/16
Carnival Paradise 1/7/17
NCL Getaway 2/19/17



#54
Kansas
572 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
I am loving your detailed review with pictures! We will be on the Spirit in October. I'm even more excited (my friends, co-workers and family would not know if that is possible) now that I am reading your review. We will be staying at the Drury Inn and going to Costa Maya also. Thanks so much for taking the time to write the review and adding pictures with it.

We love cahsew wine! It's very sweet, but oh wow, is it ever potent! Be careful! One time a Belizian clerk told us that it even gets the locals really drunk! I save it for special occasions even though it is inexpensive. We have not been able to find any in the states nor have any local liquor stores been able to order it from Belize for us. I can't wait to buy more.

I can't wait to read the rest of your review.
#55
Brookhaven, GA.
5,523 Posts
Joined Nov 2004
Wonderful pictures and review.
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GOTTA LOVE CRUISING
I am not in a hurry, I am on VACATION!!

Emerald Seas 8/80-Bahamas
Carnival Fantasy 5/92-Bahamas

Carnival Fantasy 4/94-Bahamas
Norwegian Sea 11/02-Western Caribbean
Carnival Triumph 11/04-Eastern Caribbean
Carnival Celebration 3/07-Bahamas
Holland America Eurodam 4/09-Eastern Caribbean
Celebrity Eclipse 4/11-Western Caribbean
Royal Caribbean Liberty of the Seas 2/12-Western Caribbean (17th Anniversary )
Holland America Eurodam 3/12-Eastern Caribbean
Norwegian Epic 11/12- Eastern Caribbean
Celebrity Silhouette 4/13- Western Caribbean
Disney Dream 1/14 Bahamas
Royal Princess 4/14- Eastern Caribbean
Norwegian Epic 4/14 Western Caribbean
Celebrity Constellation 2/15 Bahamas (20th Anniversary)
Star Princess 4/15 California Coastal
Holland America Nieuw Amsterdam 4/16- Western Caribbean
#56
Eden Prairie, MN
344 Posts
Joined Mar 2010
Mitsugirly,

I am really enjoing your review. One of the best I have ever read. I am going for my second Spirit cruise in Feb and can't wait. Also am going to Maya Chan for the second time. Your pictures are wonderful.

I am not a wild animal fan. Love to look at them in their own environment from a safe place. We also did the Bodden tour last time, but asked not to go near the monkeys. None of us wanted any issues.

Were you happy with your meals on board? What was your favorite part of being on th Spirit?

Karen
#57
OH
24,060 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Originally posted by marcyjane
Loving you rewiew and photo's will be on the Spirit in October.
I have a few questions. Is it ok to email you.

Thanks,
Marcy
Absolutely. I'll try to get to it as soon as I can. I started back to school today for this quarter, so things are about to be hectic again. Then I go back to work on Saturday (have been off 3 weeks for vacation). I've been posting pics on my smugmug for here at the same time on my facebook and our roll call on facebook...so...I'm getting hundreds of notifications every day of replies that I'm trying to keep up with too.

Originally posted by lilcruzr
I am loving your detailed review with pictures! We will be on the Spirit in October. I'm even more excited (my friends, co-workers and family would not know if that is possible) now that I am reading your review. We will be staying at the Drury Inn and going to Costa Maya also. Thanks so much for taking the time to write the review and adding pictures with it.

We love cahsew wine! It's very sweet, but oh wow, is it ever potent! Be careful! One time a Belizian clerk told us that it even gets the locals really drunk! I save it for special occasions even though it is inexpensive. We have not been able to find any in the states nor have any local liquor stores been able to order it from Belize for us. I can't wait to buy more.

I can't wait to read the rest of your review.
Hope you have a wonderful stay at the Drury. Did you get a good deal? When I booked, I found a special code for cruisers only.

This was the first time I've ever had Cashew wine. It was very yummy and can't wait to open the bottle we brought home some time soon.

Originally posted by gelo7
Wonderful pictures and review.
Thanks
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NCL:
EPIC studio SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination
BAHAMAS: Great Stirrup Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Freeport: Paradise Cove
BARBADOS: Boatyard
BELIZE: Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Island Shark Ray Alley Goffs
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Bay Snorkel Park Tobacco Bay St Catherines Beach Achilles Bay Jet Ski & boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Bay Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue Kay
COZUMEL: Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion IslandPalancar
GRAND CAYMAN: Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK: BOHIO Governors
HALF MOON CAY
JAMAICA: Sunset Hilton Rose
ROATAN: Little French Key LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS: Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN: Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS: Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths
#58
OH
24,060 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Originally posted by kmo123
Mitsugirly,

I am really enjoing your review. One of the best I have ever read. I am going for my second Spirit cruise in Feb and can't wait. Also am going to Maya Chan for the second time. Your pictures are wonderful.

I am not a wild animal fan. Love to look at them in their own environment from a safe place. We also did the Bodden tour last time, but asked not to go near the monkeys. None of us wanted any issues.

Were you happy with your meals on board? What was your favorite part of being on th Spirit?

Karen
Thanks. I'll have to get working on the rest of it. It takes forever to try to remember everything we did and what all happened. It was a long, but too short week if ya know what I mean.

We were satisfied with the meals on board. However, we are not too picky and I'll go into more detail about that when I get to the ship review. I'm kinda saving it for last just because I know it's going to take awhile for it.
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NCL:
EPIC studio SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination
BAHAMAS: Great Stirrup Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Freeport: Paradise Cove
BARBADOS: Boatyard
BELIZE: Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Island Shark Ray Alley Goffs
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Bay Snorkel Park Tobacco Bay St Catherines Beach Achilles Bay Jet Ski & boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Bay Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue Kay
COZUMEL: Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion IslandPalancar
GRAND CAYMAN: Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK: BOHIO Governors
HALF MOON CAY
JAMAICA: Sunset Hilton Rose
ROATAN: Little French Key LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS: Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN: Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS: Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths
#59
OH
24,060 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
COZUMEL, MEXICO

We decided to do the Dolphin Encounter at Chankanaab (because of our little one) but also knew that we wanted to do some snorkeling and had heard that the snorkeling here was AWESOME.

I’ll start this review with the Chankanaab portion first, because that is what we did first. The Dolphin Encounter price included admission to Chankanaab, so we didn’t have to pay the $21.00 admission price (which after going there, I would more than be willing to pay the admission price). There is a discount coupon online for $2.00 off admission if you are going there and not doing a dolphin, manatee or sea lion swim.

http://www.cozumelinsider.com/images...naabCoupon.pdf

The port at this place is…well LONG and winding in order to get out. You have to walk around and up and down and back and forth and….well you get the picture, just to get out of here. You are passing every darn shop wanting to sell you something along the way. Make note that on the way back, it’s more like a straight shot and up the escalator and you are there. Of course I conclude this is a selling tactic to get you to buy things there because it forces you to go by all of them.

We caught a cab and the driver told us it would be $12 to Chankanaab. Now I know, because I do extensive research prior to going anywhere, that it was supposed to be a $10 ride. However, I did know that RC Allure and a Carnival ship was docked on down (toward the way we would be traveling, and I knew exactly where we would be going because I “walked the streets” in that entire area on google earth to familiarize myself with it before hand LOL) and thought, well maybe it’s because they are docked closer and the $10 taxi fee was cheaper there. WRONG, on the way home, we found out it was a $10 ride back. So, yea, I was scammed $2. No big deal I guess.

We arrived and immediately knew this was going to be good. The entrance and huge “hut” you walk under was beautiful. Waterfalls, beautifully decorated and several shops. We immediately went to the left (after passing the falls on the left that say Chankanaab)ßalso, if you need to use the restrooms when you enter, they are located UNDER the falls in the “cave”. ;o)

To the left was a really neat path that takes you to different sculptures and replicas of Mayan Ruins. It was in a rain forest type setting and absolutely stunning IMO. We ran across several lizards/salamanders along the way and a big Iguana sunbathing on the roof of the “sacrifice hut”.





At the exit of the walk, we came out and found the small beach area, that people have mentioned here on cc before, that has nice calm waters with a gentle slope walking in. It’s the “kiddie” area people say. We decided not to stay there and walk over to the bigger beach area to look around first.



The beach was GORGEOUS! Of course it’s not a beach that you walk right into the water. There is a wall all the way around it and you must walk down steps OR rocks, depending where you enter at, to get into the water.

We headed to the big snorkeling shack to see about renting equipment. It was $10pp for the mask, snorkel tube and fins. They did have snorkel vest, however, you had to pay $5 to rent them and they flat out told us that you could get them for free and the small shack right before them. So, we walked over to the small shack (which only had life vest, the kind you blow up=real snorkeling vest) and they just required your picture ID. Only 1 ID needed for everyone in your group. People have mentioned that they run out of these quickly, however, they seem to have plenty that day and as I mentioned, there were 3 ships there…including ALLURE!



We were ready for some snorkeling and put our things at one of the MANY shade hut/papaya’s they had along the beach. One of the locals told us that the water is calmer more to the right (while facing the beach) than to the left. So, we headed down that way. There were a lot of places along there to enter (maybe 7 or 8???). Immediately there were fish EVERYWHERE….WOW. What a beautiful site! Some places had metal steps to walk into the water (then dropped off at the last step) and others just had huge rocks placed as steps. They are slippery, so be careful. I would walk down far enough to get my fins on then pretty much dive in to keep from walking on the steps. We start toward the right and worked our way toward the left. I could not believe how clear the water was and just how many different types of fish we seen all by the areas along the shore line entrances. You could just swim up and down there and see tons without even going out.



There are several statues that are placed deeper out in the water. My husband swam out there later in the day to take pictures. I stayed back with our little one because at that point, she had snorkeling herself out and just wanted to play in the sand. We started to head out that way at one point, then I saw how deep it was getting and the water was getting colder and turned back because of her. Facing the beach, to the left far out is a person statue standing real tall. To the far right and far out were several other small statues. There were a lot of scuba divers out there, which made my husband very jealous and he wanted to scuba after that. Now, I don’t know how things work in Mexico, but we were told that we could scuba right then and there and the person at the rental hut can “certify us on the spot”. Hmmm, anyone know anything about this? Doesn’t sound too safe to me.

We did run a tab with one of the waiters going up and down the beach taking orders. I thought that was nice that they allowed you to do that. The banana daiquiris were AMAZING! Alcoholic drinks (mixed) were $6.00 and soda was $2.00.

We decided that we wanted to go check out the lagoon there and we decided to turn out snorkeling vest in (for fear of walking away and someone taking them) so we played it safe. We started walking and then discovered the lagoon is RIGHT BEHIND the beach area where we were sitting. Duh! I thought is was a far distance away from the snorkeling area for some reason. I thought I had seen a map of Chankanaab and it looked like it wasn’t close by. Wrong.



The lagoon was amazingly beautiful! We walked all the way around it taking pictures. There were several iguanas (black in color) laying around here and there. I had seen pictures of some orange iguanas and had hoped to find one….no luck. We did notice someone along the side with a pool like skimmer taking the leaves and such off the top of the water around the edges. They must hire someone to care for the lagoon to keep it so beautiful.

Then back to the snorkeling we went for a little longer. We had scheduled our dolphin swim for 1pm (but there was a mix up, which I’ll go into in my Dolphin review) so we decided to turn in our equipment and start walking toward the dolphin area. On the way back, I finally ran into several green iguanas (had a little bit of orange on them). I don’t know a lot about iguanas, so maybe they start black, turn green, then orange as they mature and get older??? Or maybe they are just a different species all together?

Whenever we decide to revisit Cozumel…this place will be a priority on our list. We loved it that much! Last year we loved Sapphire Beach at St Thomas on the east Caribbean, now we’ve found our little slice of heaven for the western Caribbean as well. We did not want to ever leave!!!!

A link to all my pictures...TONS of snorkeling pictures...the good ones. ;o)

http://kimbakersphotography.smugmug....563924_PMtsWsq
Expand Signature
Collapse Signature
NCL:
EPIC studio SPIRIT PEARL STAR JEWEL GETAWAY SUN SKY DAWN BREAKAWAY JADE EPIC
CARNIVAL:
Dream Pride Breeze Fascination
BAHAMAS: Great Stirrup Cay Blue Lagoon Melia Junkanoo Freeport: Paradise Cove
BARBADOS: Boatyard
BELIZE: Cavetubing Cavetubing Bannister Island Shark Ray Alley Goffs
BERMUDA: Horseshoe Bay Snorkel Park Tobacco Bay St Catherines Beach Achilles Bay Jet Ski & boat rental Warwick-Horseshoe Long Bay-Clearwater Tobacco Bay Snorkel Park
COSTA MAYA:Almaplena Maya Chan Nohoch Blue Kay
COZUMEL: Chankanaab Dolphin Swim Chankanaab Nachi Playa Mia Sanchos Passion IslandPalancar
GRAND CAYMAN: Stingray Sandbar Stingrays, Rum Point
GRAND TURK: BOHIO Governors
HALF MOON CAY
JAMAICA: Sunset Hilton Rose
ROATAN: Little French Key LFK Maya Key West Bay ZiplineLFK
SAN JUAN:Pamelas
ST KITTS: Reggae Carambola
ST LUCIA: Jalousie
ST MAARTEN: Orient & Maho Mullet Maho Divi Pinel
ST THOMAS: Saphhire Coki Linquist Coki
TORTOLA: Baths