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Caribbean Beach trouble getting out of the water


RedHeadArmyWife
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On our Caribbean cruises with princess we enjoy stopping at the islands and taking a dip at the local beach.   Sometimes I have a hard time getting out of the water and back on dry land as there is steep drop off on the sand/water line.   I have witnessed many people struggling and fall as they attempt to walk/climb up the steep sandbank.  Also, I have witnessed many people have other people pulling them up out of the water.    I have been thinking that it would be nice if there was a ramp of sorts that people could float or swim over to and then person could just walk up out of water without a struggle.   Has anyone on a cruise seen a ramp at the beach similar to what I am thinking about?  If yes, maybe I have missed it.  If not,  I was thinking of writing to Princess about my idea. 

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Princess won't have any influence on how various island nations manage their beaches.  There are tons of Caribbean beaches with calm, shallow entries.  Why not do a little research for the islands you are visiting and make choices accordingly?

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14 minutes ago, BarbinMich said:

We've been to all the Caribbean islands multiple times and I don't remember having this experience.  What island or islands are you referring to where this has been the case?

I should have been more clear in my wording.   The beach at Princess Cays beach was a challenge for some folks.   I did have to help a few people on Grand Cayman seven mile beach a few years back.   Maybe we just visited the beaches after some strong storms went through and changed the beaches.

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1 minute ago, steelers36 said:

Princess won't have any influence on how various island nations manage their beaches.  There are tons of Caribbean beaches with calm, shallow entries.  Why not do a little research for the islands you are visiting and make choices accordingly?

I have made my choices accordingly.    I had trouble once getting out of the water and fell with no injuries except my pride, but after helping few people out of the water that were truly struggling it got me thinking.   Maybe Princess could make the visit to the Princess Cays beach a bit easier for some folks.

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1 minute ago, shanecindy21403 said:

I've never seen that to be an issue. Maybe don't go out so far next time?

 

It is not matter of going far out.  It is when you leave the water and come out of the water back onto the beach.  Sometimes the climb is a bit steep, and the sand moves under your feet and it is hard to get your footing.    Maybe we just visited the beach after a storm and the tides shifted the sand a bit.  So, I may be overthinking it 😐

 

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I know what the OP is talking about.  Although I am not yet at that stage where it is too difficult for me, I am still only in my 50s.  Maybe it depends what part of the beach you are in front of, but we were over on the edge of the beach near the snorkeling area and it was quite a dramatic step down into the water just off shore.  With it being sandy and unstable, it was hard to step back up onto the lip of the beach when coming out of the water.  I could easily see many elderly people struggling with this.  We were on the left side of the PC beach (facing the shore coming off the tender), so not sure if it is as steep to enter the water at other parts of the beach.

 

I know Princess can't do anything about it at other beaches, but one of the beaches off Cozumel that faces the channel has both a strong current and an unstable step down into the water.  

 

The good news is, if you do fall, you fall on shifting sand, so generally a pretty safe landing, but a ramp in might not be that big a project and could be a benefit

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I understand. If the OP writes to Princess maybe it's possible to remedy, maybe not. At Princess Cays the beach to the left, main area, seems to always have a coral pebble area close to the shore line. Once past this area the bottom is sandy. The pebbles make it more difficult to walk. The shore line is ever changing. Believe that any type of ramp structure would not last very long in the sea and waves. Any structure that goes below the water line would develop sea growth including barnacles which would cut the feet. When I encountered beach areas that were difficult to get into and out of I found floating/swimming seemed to work.

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It's a great idea to aide the elderly or impaired, but I would imagine the maintenance on a structure in open waters would be time consuming and costly.  The ocean bottom is ever changing, plus the potential for growth of algae, making it slippery and even more risky, is a real possibility.

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Princess cays has some dangerous parts to it. The large flat rocks that people walk on as they are getting out are very slippery. I saw a lot of people fall both young and old.  I'm young and I was nervous about falling.  I'm sure there are a lot of injuries that occur.  Just ask the lifeguards if there are any sections that don't have rocks.  If you are walking in and see rocks just find another area, because walking back out will be much harder. I'm not a fan of Princess Cay.

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There are beaches on many of the Caribbean Islands that have a varying degree of drop-off very close to the waterline. I’m not sure, but this may be a result of the local tides or sea conditions on a given day. We’ve seen lots of people requiring help out of the water. St. Kitts comes to mind as one where at the same beach you may fund a drop-off on one visit, & none on another.

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3 hours ago, RedHeadArmyWife said:

I have made my choices accordingly.    I had trouble once getting out of the water and fell with no injuries except my pride, but after helping few people out of the water that were truly struggling it got me thinking.   Maybe Princess could make the visit to the Princess Cays beach a bit easier for some folks.

I see that you updated your posting details such that you were really referring to P Cay and not the Caribbean as a whole.  I don't go in the water much myself, but don't recall any serious issues at P Cay, but it is certainly possible as many are stating. 

 

For @richsea, we are returning to St Kitts for the first time in over 30 years.  Our friends have recommended - and we are going to - Cockleshell Bay.  When I looked up that one, the pictures show super calm water and very shallow at the shore, so I am thinking it won't have the steepness issue.

 

Sorry to hear folks have challenges at P Cay.  It should be a safe place, but we don't know how much leeway Princess has to make shoreline adjustments per Bahamian laws.

 

 

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steelers36, I’ve heard of Cockleshell, but can’t recall if we’ve been before. The beach we were at is Frigate Bay. The water is calm, but one time there was an incline at water’s edge that was difficult for some to transverse. The sand was also coarse, & brown.

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Strange request - when waves come into the shore they pull sand back into the water.  Based on wave action it drops immediately, creating a very soft lip into deeper water.  Happens EVERYWHERE there is wave action.  Have seen this lip be a few inches or over a foot.  While you could put in a concrete ramp extending beyond the wave action (like a boat launch ramp) it would both build up algae and become slippery, and be undermined by wave action around it.  Doesn't work well.

 

The small coves at Princess Cay are designed to limit scouring of the sand back into the ocean by reducing wave action at the water's edge.  They help, but don't eliminate the lip.  

 

Most Caribbean and Bahamian beaches use dredged or imported sand.  This stuff is soft and makes the problem worse.

 

Really isn't much anyone can do to help this - just use caution at the wave line.  By the way, sitting down in that area does tend to cause sand to accumulate inside a swimsuit.....

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Haven't heard of that kind of ramp.  Sounds like a great idea but I think it would give people watching a lot less humor.  I'll never forget how graceful I looked while attempting to get out of the ocean in St. Maarten while my husband looked on and just shook his head. 

There was a double rip current with waves going toward the beach and back out to sea, so I got knocked by one wave attempting to get UP the sand berm.  I finally got on my 2 feet again, only to get knocked again from the wave going back out to sea.  I looked like an uncoordinated oaf trying to get out of the water.  🙄

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If they build something like you suggest they assume liability for those that use it. Not to be rude, as I sometimes have difficulty getting in and out myself, but it is a risk one takes when getting in the ocean.

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3 hours ago, meatloafsfan said:

A wheelchair ramp into the water would be a great addition. This would make the beach more accessible to a lot of people (as you can use the ramp to walk in and out of the water).

They actually have these at some beaches in So. Cal.  It's a Lego-type-looking brown, plastic-type material with planks that unroll out on top of the sand.  I suppose it could go all the way into the waves but the one I saw recently at the beach stopped about 15' from the water so those in regular wheelchairs could get down to the best part of the beach.  We also saw sand wheelchairs being used.

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