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About cookingmom

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    New Jersey
  • Interests
    Camping, baking
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Holland America
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    New England

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  1. We took the exact same cruise last year and I honestly don't recall noticing any children.
  2. On our last cruise in March, when we boarded in Fl Lauderdale, HAL employees were not yet at their table set up to collect the corkage fees. We were instructed to just proceed to check in (along with our 6 bottles!). We did opt to bring 2 bottles to the MDR so we were charged accordingly for them there.
  3. We used Uber for the very first time last month FLL to 17th Street hotel and then from hotel to the cruise terminal the next morning. Great experiences and bargain prices. However, when exiting the cruise terminal I was unable to get a signal/connection (Verizon) and we took a cab back to FLL. The cab was waiting and by the meter the fare was about $15. It was a step down from the Uber rides since the driver was gruff and the vehicle was stinky!
  4. We rented a car from Advance Car Rentals (Celestino) and drove there easily using the simple GPS supplied in the car. It was our first stop of the day an amazing! The car rental was a great bargain at $75 all inclusive.
  5. We just returned from our Panama Canal cruise. Of all our port experiences (Aruba, Curaçao, Cartagena, Panama), Puerto Limon was the most spectacular and that was attributable to our tour with Relax Day Tours and Federico. He met us at the port and we were delighted to discover that we were the only ones on this tour! We started out with a quick tour of the city (comfortable air conditioned van) and Federico's knowledge and insight into the country was valuable. From there we headed to the Tortuguero Canal and between Federico and Juan our boat captain, we saw sloths, monkeys, iguanas, lizards, birds, etc. We were blessed with beautiful weather so the breezes of the early morning made for a really pleasant experience. From there we went to a fruit stand and Federico educated us on the various fruit crops (especially pineapples and bananas). We developed a new appreciation for the fruit we enjoy here at home in the States! He then brought us to a banana plantation were we saw the growing plants. Our next stop was the Cahuita National Park. There we took a delightful walk on a shaded trail that was right next to the beach. It was a nature lovers paradise! We saw large river turtles, sloths, white faced monkeys, iguanas, lizards, leaf cutting ants, raccoons- I felt like I was in a National Geographic movie! We also took a delightful refreshing swim at the beach. I can't say enough about this day and this wonderful man! He was so knowledgeable and accommodating and made our experience magical.
  6. Celestino from Advance Car Rental will renew your faith in people! He is such a wonderful, honest man who delivers a great product. We recently returned after our adventure in Curaçao. Our brand new Jeep was excellent for our party of 4 adults (and beach gear.) We loved the ease of the GPS and utilized it to head out immediately to Playa Granda. Our snorkeling experience was unbelievable. We swam with at least 6 large sea turtles- close to the shore in about 5 feet of water. Lots of fish too. We didn't bring our fins along and having just water shoes was perfect. From there, we headed back to a few other beaches, enjoying lunch at one. We did try to see the flamingos but none were visible. It was a wonderful way to explore the Island and a real bargain at $75.
  7. We just returned from our Trikes Aruba adventure. They are a legitimate company and a good choice if you want to see the island. Be advised that driving the trike isn't so easy! As the "backseat driver", I felt uncomfortable with the high speeds and busy roads while my husband enjoyed the thrill. Returning you to the port on time is a priority for them too!
  8. We bring a noodle and use it at Half Moon Cay etc.
  9. I hadn't paid anything at that point except the $1 deposit!
  10. Is the $49 Unlimited Laundy bargain on the Zuiderdam as well?🤞
  11. No, we don't leave until March 20th. Check out the very favorable recent reviews on TripAdvisor for Relax Day Tours. They have helped make me "Relax" about my choice.
  12. We are also renting a car in March. I'm also curious if there is parking near the port so that we could stop back at the ship during the day.
  13. Sadly, no "perks" other than a small OBC so I transferred the booking (with the new pricing!) to a TA and scored prepaid gratuities too👍
  14. Called HAL yesterday because the final payment is due Jan 4 for our March 20-31 Zuiderdam Panama Canal cruise. I was delighted to learn that the cruise fare had dropped over $350 pp. It was a sweet deal since we had taken advantage of the $1 deposit promotion last April!
  15. We had robes last April on the Eurodam and actually used them when it got chilly!
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