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  #41  
Old March 14th, 2012, 05:21 PM
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Montego Bay = our worst vacation ever.
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  #42  
Old March 14th, 2012, 05:24 PM
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Caracas.
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  #43  
Old March 14th, 2012, 05:24 PM
elcuchio24 elcuchio24 is offline
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I've never been in a port that felt unsafe/uncomfortable. We've spent alot of time in central america away from the touristy areas in panama, guatemala, mexico where there is alot more danger so maybe our threshold is just higher than most. Jamaicans can be pushy, and you may be offered drugs but that's status quo for most places in the carribean. You have to remember that the 'built for gringo' cruise stops for the most part are very sheltered, so if you see anything different it can seem dangerous. As far as poverty goes, I don't really see who people get upset over that....I mean if just SEEING poor people ruins your day, I guess that's a YOU problem.
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  #44  
Old March 14th, 2012, 05:26 PM
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Belize is the only port where I had a a sense of needing to be on heightened alert. The area inside the fence is very nice, a couple of enjoyable bars/restaurants there. Walking outside the fence at the port was a no-go, and we usually are pretty adventurous. On a city tour excursion we got off the bus to visit the oldest church in the city and I wandered about a block away to snap a few pics. At one point the hairs on the back of my neck stood up. No visible threat, no one close to me, just a few stares from people a block or so away. You have to listen to that inner voice and I did, and returned to re-join the group. Only time I have had that reaction, and I have been to most of the ports others have mentioned on this thread, and have toured the Yucatan penninsula by rental car, wandered on my own in Caracas and Valencia, Venezuela and enjoyed a few other places friends & family have told me I shouldn't have done. (By the way, I saw Samantha Brown describe this exact sensation in one of her travel shows - also in Belize. She too hurried back to her group).
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Last edited by old sole; March 14th, 2012 at 05:33 PM.
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  #45  
Old March 14th, 2012, 05:39 PM
chicasarita chicasarita is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elcuchio24 View Post
I've never been in a port that felt unsafe/uncomfortable. We've spent alot of time in central america away from the touristy areas in panama, guatemala, mexico where there is alot more danger so maybe our threshold is just higher than most. Jamaicans can be pushy, and you may be offered drugs but that's status quo for most places in the carribean. You have to remember that the 'built for gringo' cruise stops for the most part are very sheltered, so if you see anything different it can seem dangerous. As far as poverty goes, I don't really see who people get upset over that....I mean if just SEEING poor people ruins your day, I guess that's a YOU problem.
I second this. It's probably because we have a similar background- as I have traveled independently throughout most of Latin America via local bus. Belize didn't phase me on our last trip. I'm actually planning a solo trip there this summer. I have however been mugged once in Atlanta and once in Europe- so I honestly feel safer outside the developed world.
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  #46  
Old March 14th, 2012, 05:44 PM
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Been to Belize 2 x and had a wonderful trip. Did snorkeling both times. The only place I really did not like, years ago was Martinique.
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  #47  
Old March 14th, 2012, 05:49 PM
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No problems with Belize! We love it! Ocho Rios would be the port I have to really on on my game. Very aggressive folks trying to sell you something and then when you politely decline, you get verbally assaulted (our experience!) For the most part, the tour operators and others we have met there are wonderful, it is just having to walk the gauntlet!
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  #48  
Old March 14th, 2012, 06:09 PM
mitsguy2001 mitsguy2001 is offline
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I'm booked on the Magic, which goes to Jamaica, Grand Cayman, and Cozumel. I'm surprised that people find Jamaica to be so bad (I've never been there). What excursion do you recommend in Jamaica? When you say avoid Mexico, I assume you're not including Cozumel.
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  #49  
Old March 14th, 2012, 06:17 PM
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Miami, felt like I was in another country.
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  #50  
Old March 14th, 2012, 06:22 PM
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By far, the worst port I have ever been to was Acapulco, Mexico. Never again.
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  #51  
Old March 14th, 2012, 06:26 PM
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Dh and I have never had a problem in Jamaica it was really poor but, that's almost all of the ports we have been to. The only time I have felt uneasy was in Costa Rica a guy was following us so, Dh asked him if he had a problem and he ran away...
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  #52  
Old March 14th, 2012, 06:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mitsguy2001 View Post
I'm booked on the Magic, which goes to Jamaica, Grand Cayman, and Cozumel. I'm surprised that people find Jamaica to be so bad (I've never been there). What excursion do you recommend in Jamaica? When you say avoid Mexico, I assume you're not including Cozumel.

I'm pretty sure that person was were referrring to the Pacific coast areas as those are some of the towns that are getting hit with drug danger and violence (Acapulco, Mazatlan, Puerto Vallarta). Caribbean side of Mexico is not dangerous to tourists, in general.
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  #53  
Old March 14th, 2012, 06:30 PM
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Jamaica is definitely "sketchy" as far as a cruise port. With that being said, it really IS a beautiful island! We have been to Sandals Montego Bay 4X and had a blast. But on our cruise 25 years ago, I don't think we were off the ship for 20 minutes, we actually went BACK to ship and enjoyed the P & Q for the day. Disappointed after that experience!!!!
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  #54  
Old March 14th, 2012, 06:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ncbeachteacher View Post
No problems with Belize! We love it! Ocho Rios would be the port I have to really on on my game. Very aggressive folks trying to sell you something and then when you politely decline, you get verbally assaulted (our experience!) For the most part, the tour operators and others we have met there are wonderful, it is just having to walk the gauntlet!
EXACTLY my experience in Ocho Rios (Montego Bay wasn't so bad). . . the only time EVER I was fearful of the safety of my family (and I live in LA county). Police with automatic weapons everywhere. I couldn't get my son and wife back to the ship fast enough.

In Belize I walked all over OUTSIDE the gated area. Nice people . . . very run down city where the ship tendered. Prettiest building complete with beautiful white exterior and huge green grass lawn under the flag on a tall pole, at the end of a long street . . . The United States Embassy.

EDIT to point out Ocho Rios was many many years ago, a wife ago, actually.

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Last edited by glrounds; March 14th, 2012 at 06:38 PM.
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  #55  
Old March 14th, 2012, 06:41 PM
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It's been 15 years ago but, Cartagena,Columbia had me nervous. Especially seeing the Policia toting machine guns with large drug dogs in tow.Been to both Moe Bay and Ocho Rios and except for the pushy people, I never felt threatened.
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  #56  
Old March 14th, 2012, 06:42 PM
Ready 2 Go Ready 2 Go is offline
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So I am curious now reading all of these posts. With Montego Bay, is unsafe/uncomfortable at the port? I had decided early on we probably wouldn't go "into" Jamaica. But should I be worried just at the port as well? I have 4 kiddos. Would hate to get caught up in drama.
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  #57  
Old March 14th, 2012, 06:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ready 2 Go View Post
So I am curious now reading all of these posts. With Montego Bay, is unsafe/uncomfortable at the port? I had decided early on we probably wouldn't go "into" Jamaica. But should I be worried just at the port as well? I have 4 kiddos. Would hate to get caught up in drama.

There's nothing at the port. Just a small indoor shopping area where the check-in is. Mo Bay is the worst Caribbean port I have ever been to.
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  #58  
Old March 14th, 2012, 06:52 PM
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Jamaica and Belize...........
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  #59  
Old March 14th, 2012, 07:07 PM
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I have never been in a port which worried me? This past January I was in Belize, and though it looks a little dicey, found the locals to be amongst the kindest friendly folks I ever met in a port on 3 cruises. I wandered around Ladyville some and in Belize City, I loved the fact it was no Carlos&Charlies, Magaritaville, Fat Tuesday all look the same kinda place, loved the culture of it, the early architecture etc. Never felt fake like some places do.

We try on our cruises to get away from the ship area as far as possible, some of the best times I have had was going inland in Ensenada and going to the oppsite side of Cozumel where the bigger waves crash and the beach is endless and rustic.

This being said, I have never done Jamaica, Ochos etc.. moatly 2 Western Caribs and Catalina, Ensenada, so pretty sheltered cruise life.
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  #60  
Old March 14th, 2012, 07:10 PM
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Costa Maya, Mexico...Gun boats in the water and armed guards on land.

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