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Just_Cruising

Legend OTS-Riviera 8/29/04 Part Three

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[font=Times New Roman][size=3]Let’s talk about the ports. San Diego is an incredible town with so many things to do. We only live a couple of hours away and frequently take the kids on weekend road trips there. Here is some detail about San Diego from an earlier post of mine:[/size][/font]

[font=Times New Roman][size=3]-[/size] [/font][color=#3300cc][font=Times New Roman][size=3]“As far as good hotels go, there is an abundance of them. Unfortunately, this time of year San Diego is a popular destination and the seasonal rates are quite pricey! You probably will not find much under $100 with most of the better hotels in the low $200s. I have used Priceline.com in the past to get rooms at nice hotels for under $100. We have stayed at the Hyatt Grand Manchester (downtown), the Coronado Island Marriott, and the Catamaran (Mission Bay) all of which I would recommend. Again, I would use Priceline.com to look for a four-star hotel with a bid price of $100 and see what that gets you. Location-wise, Downtown puts you in the center of everything and is close to the Trolley, which inexpensively connects you to many things in the city.

As far as what to do...Bay cruises, Old Town with it's historical venues, restaurants and shops, Gas Lamp district with it's restaurants, clubs, and art stores, Little Italy, a small area with shops and restaurants, Hotel Del Coronado on Coronado island is a famous old hotels that many famous people have stayed at, Balboa park with it's many museums and the world-renowned San Diego Zoo. Head down to Tijuana for a day of shopping (don't drink the water or ice!). Water sports in Mission Bay. La Jolla is a beautiful little city with nice views, restaurants, and shops. Check out the San Diego Padres in their new downtown ballpark. San Diego is a great city with so many things to do![/size][/font][/color]

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[font=Times New Roman][size=3]I must slightly revise the above recommendation. I would encourage all to use [/size][/font][url="http://www.biddingfortravel.com/"][font=Times New Roman][size=3][color=#800080]www.biddingfortravel.com[/color][/size][/font][/url][font=Times New Roman][size=3] to research and understand how to use Priceline most effectively. Read the Hotel FAQs on this web site. We ended up getting a room at this same hotel for $85 (Expedia rate was $239)[/size][/font]

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[size=3][font=Times New Roman]Cabo started out fabulous with an incredible 6:00AM electrical storm – remnants of tropical storm Georgette. We had the balcony windows open and woke up to the sound and sight of some awesome thunder and lightening. What a special treat as we rarely get that in Southern California. I went back to sleep for about an hour, waking up as we were coming up by Los Arcos. I was pleased to sea a Mexican security vessel speed to the ship and police the sides and stern of the ship. Speaking of security, in all the ports they were positioned in the water on all sides of the ship. [/font][/size]

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[size=3][font=Times New Roman]The tendering process is easy, however, get early tender tickets or you might be waiting a while. As soon as you hear the announcement that they are available, I would get after it. [/font][/size]

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[font=Times New Roman][size=3]Cabo is a small city of approximately 30,000. Grabbed a glass bottom boat (they are all over the place) and paid I think $20 for a trip out to Los Arcos. Great time. Didn’t spend any time at Lovers Beach, although a lot of people go out, get dropped off, and get picked up later. The Pacific Window was very cool; a narrow slit carved through the rock with water rushing back and forth between the Pacific and the bay. Saw lots of pelicans, seals and some fish (when the captain chummed the water). Highly recommended. Only took about 40 minutes.[/size][/font]

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[font=Times New Roman][size=3]Took a taxi a very short distance to Hotel Fnisterra.[/size][/font]

[url="http://www.finisterra.com/htdocs/index.html"][font=Times New Roman][size=3][color=#800080]http://www.finisterra.com/htdocs/index.html[/color][/size][/font][/url]

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[font=Times New Roman][size=3]I think the other taxi drivers were laughing at us as the distance is minimal, however up a slightly steep hill. I didn’t care as it was already hot and I didn’t want to listen to the kids whine on our way to a relaxing, nice place.[/size][/font]

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[font=Times New Roman][size=3]Walked right into the hotel with nobody saying a word. Walked out to the pool area and …WOW! There are three large beautiful pools each on it’s own terrace. On one side of the middle pool was a nice swim-up bar connected to a large palpa-covered casual restaurant. Nice! Kids jumped in the pool and we kicked back in the shade of a palapa.[/size][/font]

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[size=3][font=Times New Roman]None of the servers were paying much attention to us (I think they can recognize the cruise ship profile) although they walked by frequently. We needed towels as we did not want to cart them from the ship and none were available poolside. After forking over a $10 to waiter, Hector, we were absolutely taken care for the rest of our stay. Hector RAN up to the main hotel to get our towels. The warm rain came and the kids loved swimming in it, however, when the wind started blowing the rain under the palapa getting our camera, etc wet, here comes Hector to help us move our stuff into the restaurant. [/font][/size]

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[size=3][font=Times New Roman]In the restaurant enjoyed Coronas and sandwiches…excellent! The rain passed quickly so we went back out to swim in the pool and watch the kids frolic. The pool was great in that it was only 3 ½-4 feet deep. Perfect for our kids, as our youngest is still a little afraid of the deep end. No water slides, etc. but still great. Bottom line: Thoroughly good time at this hotel! Have also read good things about the cruise-passenger friendly hotel Pueblo Bonito Blanco, where people sometimes elect to have their boat driver drop them at it’s beach by the Office restaurant. [/font][/size]

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[font=Times New Roman][size=3]Took the easy walk DOWN the hill and walked into town. Lots of merchants peddling their wares but not too much trouble. In the shops around the Cabo Wabo our haggling efforts didn’t fare too well as we could not get a pair of basic flip-flops for under $12. The wife picked up a pretty ceramic plate after negotiating down to $10. Probably best off getting the deals between the ship and town if they have what you are looking for.[/size][/font]

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[font=Times New Roman][size=3]Tendered back in without a problem (although I have read the tender line gets long around 4:00).[/size][/font]

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[font=Times New Roman][size=3]Got in our “Mexican Limo” (as young Jorge described it). He wanted $20 for the eight-mile drive but we eventually negotiated down to $10 when I pointed out how many taxis were in line. We ended up giving him a $20 for his great information about the town, easy-going attitude, and great sense of humor.[/size][/font]

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