Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Kami's pal

Xpedition, incredible!

Recommended Posts

I mean it. Unbelievable. All the cliches to describe the beauty, and experience of Galapagos on Xpedition failed to prepare me for the actual experience.

The people planning this have done an excellent job, both in the macro events and the micro events. There are a lot of lovely extra finishing touches that enhance the hospitality of the crew. I'm being deliberately vague as I don't want to emphasize one and perhaps leave out another which was an equally surprising treat for someone else.

 

I will respond as best I can to questions. Anticipating a few:

 

I took the entire Celebrity package, 10 days, air, hotel, transfers etc. Only problem was the air connections. Tto fly into Quito, I left Calgary at at 7:00 am and arrived in Houston at 11:00. Then I waited 5 hours for the connection to Quito. Returning, left Quito at 7:50 (left hotel at 5:30 am), arrived Houston noon, left Houston 8:40 p.m.. That's a long time to explore Houston airport. Others going to eastern Canada had only an hour to clear customs, collect baggage, go back through security, check bags and make their flight to Toronto. The airline, Continental, could have facilitated that by simply separating the groups for immigration in Houston into 3 groups, marking one especially for the connecting flights that were too close together. I saw little carts being used to deliver people from terminal to terminal. Having 3 or 4 of those carts meet the deplaning passengers after they clear the immigration area, carrying them to luggage pick up and then to the proper gate would have prevented the frantic ending those from eastern Canada went through. If Celebrity and Continental could cooperate on the small detail in Houston, that would prevent the sour taste left by the hassle with air arrangements. I'm not certain if anything can be done about the long wait for my connection. I asked but there was only the one flight that day to calgary from Houston on Continental. My experience with Continental Air has always been positive. This was no exception. I only wish the wait time could be less.

 

The excursions planned by Celebrity in Quito were excellent. Buses are new. Guides are well informed and hospitable. Meals were excellent and venues well chosen.

 

There was ample time to shop for souvenirs both in Quito and on the excursion to the Galapagos Turtle Conservation Station / Darwin Station. The ship stops twice at that island so one could shop twice if desired, though in that case the excursion to the highlands would be curtailed. There was also more than an hour in Baltha waiting for the plane back to Quito to shop at more booths right there at the airport. And the last excursion before the evening meal is a craft fair in Quito.

 

I was glad I read my documents carefully, because I knew to save $25 for the last tax before leaving the airport in Quito. I did meet two people who were scrambling to find that cash.

 

My one regret was that I didn't take my light hiking boots. My feet were twisting inside the shoes. The scramble over the boulders is difficult and having proper shoes would have made the first two days that much more comfortable. There is a supply of hiking sticks available. I used them on the 3 high intensity hikes and found them very helpful because I am short (5'2"). Those younger and more agile than I did not appear to need them.

 

I did pack too many clothes, so I left one bag in the hotel. Most people discovered that this was necessary.

 

The sun is fierce. Sunscreen is a must. I was more comfortable in long sleeves and pants, but most relied on sunscreen.

 

Rain jackets were necessary twice.

 

Fleece or some sort of wrap necessary in the early morning, and sometimes in the air conditioned spaces.

 

Noise of anchor chain is heard everywhere. No cabin is immune. I had cabin 314. It's part of the experience.

 

A few people found the mild rocking of the ship bothersome. I saw several wearing a patch.

 

Altitude is very noticeable when in Quito, but because we arrived late Friday, we weren't too taxed. The next day we just moved more slowly than any of us expected that we'd ever need to.

 

I had packed re-hydration therapy (Gatorade) but left it in the checked bag in Quito. Fortunately, the doctor had Pedyolite.

 

I'll check back here over the next few days and attempt to answer any specific questions. I have to retrieve my dog, so I will be away. Be patient. I will return!

 

And I repeat. This is a cruise not to be missed!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Darn you are lucky to have gotten on such a great sounding trip! I was curious about ship movement though-you did indicate some patch wearers-how "rough" was it? Also, did it feel like a Celebrity cruise, or like another experience entirely? Did you find enough to do on such a small ship?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Kami's pal,

 

Thanks for a taste of this amazing trip. We received our documents today for the 12/5 sailing and are getting excited. How was the water temperture? Did you do much snorkeling? How much film, digital media did you go through? I hope you got your doggie. I will miss my two goldens when we go. Anything else you could think of would be great.

 

Dara

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Kami's Pal,

 

Thanks for the wonderful report and I'm sure your doggie is happy to have you back. I was wondering about the overpacking. Did they limit you to 30 lbs.? What would you advise leaving at home? I'm trying to get orgazined as we leave in about 2 weeks. Not planning to bring any dressy clothes. Thank you!

Marla

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'll try to answer each of you.

 

Agree! I was lucky. I'm so grateful that I had the resources and courage to do this. It is a different type of cruise. I will admit that I had lots of butterflies the week before I left.

 

Darn you are lucky to have gotten on such a great sounding trip! I was curious about ship movement though-you did indicate some patch wearers-how "rough" was it? [/
How Rough? Well, not very at all. To try to describe it, hmmm ... well, think of looking out a porthole and watching the horizon move slowly up out of sight and then slowly return to the first position. That's how my eye registered the roll of the ship. This movement never became violent. At night, I could feel the roll slightly when I went to bed, but the movement was so gentle that it sort of rocked me to sleep! This was at anchor. Since we moved over calm seas, I didn't notice much difference while under way. All the long trips happen at night. Not much distance moved during the day.

 

Also, did it feel like a Celebrity cruise, or like another experience entirely? This certainly is a Celebrity experience. All the hospitality, warmth from the crew, the great food, the lovely decoration, the attention to detail that I experienced on The Infinity were present on Xpedition. Yet it is different too. There were only 70 passengers, and we were having such a good time that visiting was easy. People who take cruises, and Celebrity people in general are friendly. Even though I was traveling solo, I never felt uncomfortable. Even at the hotel, first morning breakfast, I sat down alone, but was quickly invited to join a group.

 

Did you find enough to do on such a small ship?Oh there isn't enough time to do everything! From first minutes on board to last morning, the events are carefully scheduled. There is time for a nap in early afternoon, if needed. There are briefings and presentations to inform about the islands. The tv has good Discovery type programs. There is a small library, and some board games. There are two decks for lounging. There is a hot tub, but I never used it. Not enough time!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So glad to see your report. We are going in March, 2005 and really excited about both the trip and the wonderful reports we've read.

 

Curious about reported high crime rate in Quito...any problems? We'll be there an extra few days and would like to do some additional sightseeing. Ideas? Anything you can share would be great. Sounds like the hotel was quite accommodating about storing excess luggage. We plan to leave the warmer clothes we heard we'll need in Quito.

 

Sheila

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This sounds like a great experience...do you feel that folks is their 60's would find the hikes too much? We have the average knee pains and to tell the truth are not mountain climbers, etc. ;) You had mentioned something about

"those younger" so thought it would be a good question before we sign up.

 

Many thanks,

 

Sue

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Kami's pal,

 

Thanks for a taste of this amazing trip. We received our documents today for the 12/5 sailing and are getting excited. How was the water temperature? Did you do much snorkeling? How much film, digital media did you go through? I hope you got your doggie. I will miss my two goldens when we go. Anything else you could think of would be great.

 

Dara

 

I did not do any snorkeling, so my answer is based on the reports of those who did. After listening to them, I did wish that I had the courage to try it. Apparently the water temperature at this time of year is cold, (i.e. between 65 and 70 degrees F) due to the Humbolt current which comes from the Antarctic. There were at least 6, many 7 opportunities to snorkel, and one was a very easy beach entry. The other entries were from the zodiac. The water was at times very "soupy" but the animals do come to investigate YOU! Those who went in were very enthusiastic. Some brought their own equipment, some requested it from Xpedition. Wet Suits were necessary, and provided by Xpedition. I heard lots of kudos about the quality of the equipment and the experience, so if you like snorkeling, go for it. I was almost tempted into the very easiest level, but another activity was also offered so I chose not to try it. I heard after that the guides were very helpful in instructing, so I missed a good opportunity. There was one opportunity extra for those very experienced, enthusiastic snorkelers, so even this itinerary was modified to fit the desires of the group.

 

I used film technology. I had brought 7 rolls of 400 speed, 36 exposures and ended up buying 3 more. So that's at least 36 pictures a day. I am a reluctant photographer, preferring to buy postcards, books etc. I still could not resist taking those pictures! We were asked, and at times sternly reminded, that repeated FALSH DAMAGES the eyes of the animals, so an 800 speed might have been better. I did buy film on board, but it was expensive. In town, 400 speed was difficult to find. By the way, bring an extra battery. I can't speak for digital photographers, except to say that those who had brought a video cable with them enjoyed using the video port on the tv to review and edit their pictures each night. I envy that immediate feedback. I won't know how successful I was until I get my film developed.

 

My dog was very glad to see me. She gets to visit with my daughter while I'm away, and is thoroughly spoiled. However, she always seems relieved that I've found my way home again. She would prefer to keep her pack together.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hi Kami's Pal,

 

Thanks for the wonderful report and I'm sure your doggie is happy to have you back. I was wondering about the overpacking. Did they limit you to 30 lbs.? What would you advise leaving at home? I'm trying to get organized as we leave in about 2 weeks. Not planning to bring any dressy clothes. Thank you!

Marla

OK. I'll try to answer this by describing what I actually used. I won't list the items I left at the hotel.

 

The 30 pound is not too strict, but the 1 case plus snorkle equipment is 'highly recommended' by the guide in Quito. I used my largest suitcase and a carry on. Together they weighed about 45 pounds at home. I left another smaller case at the hotel with the clothes I wore on the plane and in Quito, plus my shopping purchases. Most people did that. The hotel was most accomadating. I didn't see anyone weigh my cases.

 

I took 1 pair of hiking pants, the kind one sees in stores selling outdoor gear. They were all I needed on the hikes. I wore a t shirt on top, and a hat. The Tilly type would have been ideal, but I found a Panama style in a craft booth first day, and managed to attach a lace to it. The under the chin strap is necessary because of wind on the zodiac and even along the shore.

 

As I said in my OP, I used Adidas cross trainers for hiking, but wished I had my hiking boots instead. Some people wore Tiva sandals always, and seemed comfortable. On board I had 2 pairs of shoes, a light sandal and another with a slight heel. Either one of those would have been enough.

I had 10 days' changes of underwear, socks etc. but I like fresh undies when I shower so I did rinse out a few articles each night. There is no clothes line in the shower. I wanted the retractible one with suction cups that I forgot at home. I ended up using the rods of the pants hangers, and hanging them in the shower after propping open the shower door with a shoe.

I had 3 short sleeve t shirts, 1 heavier long sleeve shirt and a fleece jacket for evening and early morning. I bought 2 more t shirts at Darwin center. Couldn't resist. The shirts there are very nice, and the money goes to a good cause.

 

I changed after each hike into a lighter pair of pants and a shirt. Really, if one keeps clean (not hard to do), that would be all one needed. However, I like variety, so I did have another pair of dressier pants and top that I wore for dinner. Lots of people wore shorts the whole time, and were very appropriate. Dressing up is unnecessary. If you are comfortable in air conditioned rooms in shorts, or not wanting more sun protection, shorts would be all one needed. I need heavy sun protection. I even wore a light jacket on the hikes. The sun is fierce.

 

A rain jacket was needed twice, and will become more necessary as the rainy season is approaching.

 

I took 2 nightgowns. There are lovely heavy terry towel robes in the cabins.

 

Toiletries, of course, but shampoo, lotion, soap, conditioner are supplied so really one could get by with razors, tooth care products and deodorant. Hair dryers are supplied.

 

Bring 2 pairs of glasses, sunglasses, lenses etc just in case!. One poor fellow had his one pair of sunglasses break when he got excited and sat on them. He used a strip of duct tape, but ...

 

Medicines; Your own prescriptions, of course. Also, Imodium, or Kaopectate will likely be necessary. Many on this trip were felled by what I'm calling 'Galapagos Gallop'. I've had it once before, on another cruise. It is a nasty painful gastro-intestinal bug that is present everywhere. The ship is clean. It just isn't possible to always avoid it. I was pleasantly surprised that the doctor's bill was very reasonable, $60.00 US for a room call, and rehydration fluids. He also ordered a special diet to be delivered to the room for 2 days. This consisted of bland, milk free, fat free but too generous portions of poached chicken, fruit, tea, etc. I was scrupulous about hand washing. I brought my own alcohol wipes, and a small bottle of hand sanitizer. But this bug is very sturdy. It lurks on every surface: the door handles, phone, remote control, bannisters, chair backs, light switches etc. etc. etc. And like the common cold, one does not build immunity to it.

The worst of the 'attack' lasted 12 hours. I did not try to treat it until I felt that my system was empty, then I used aggressive Imodium and Tylenol #3. I held the Imodium under my tongue (as one would with a nitro glycerine tablet) to ensure the med. entered my system. The doctor was not happy with Imodium use, but I didn't want to miss any more of my trip that I could help. Email me if you want more details about the medical information.

 

I also brought my own journal and pens. Several people had pc notebooks with them. They seemed to have no problem using their own charger and adaptor in their rooms.

 

Alcohol is supplied very freely. I'm not an expert, so I was happy with the selection. People enjoyed special 'coffees' and cocktails.

 

Tea supply is ok but if you have a favorite, bring your own. I don't drink coffee but some didn't seem to think it was very good. Not that they complained. There simply are too many choices to let that be a problem. However, if you are one who must have a certain jolt of whatever blend early in the morning, bring your own equipment.

 

Hope I've answered the question. If not, ask again.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
So glad to see your report. We are going in March, 2005 and really excited about both the trip and the wonderful reports we've read.

 

Curious about reported high crime rate in Quito...any problems? We'll be there an extra few days and would like to do some additional sightseeing. Ideas? Anything you can share would be great. Sounds like the hotel was quite accommodating about storing excess luggage. We plan to leave the warmer clothes we heard we'll need in Quito.

 

Sheila

I didn't see or hear of any victims, but we were warned about pickpockets. I use a money belt, and there are safes in the hotel and in the cabin.

 

I saw lots of homeless, children and adults, on the roads and streets selling stuff. I asked our guide if I could give to one child and she advised me to refrain. Ecuador is a third world country. Begging is a reality. This is perhaps the one bad memory I have.

 

However, we were carefully escorted to the sights and transported by buses, so opportunities to interact with population is limited. Normal precautions such as staying with the group, not wearing flashy jewelry is sufficient. If you have the time and energy to explore by yourself, ask the Celebrity representatives at the hotel, or at the hotel desk where to go and how to get there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow! You are fantastic. I'm sure all of us future Galapogos cruisers are so appreciative of all the information you are giving us. I have a clothing question. Do you need warmer/cooler clothing for Quito? Can my husband wear shorts in the evening onboard? (Nicer shorts and polo.) It would be great if he didn't have to bring long pants. (Says he. :)) From your descriptions it sounds like you wore one thing for land excursions and changed in the afternoon. Did you change again for the evening? Sorry for so many clothing questions, but it will certainly help in the packing.

Did you see lots of species of animals at this time of year? Again, thanks so much.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This sounds like a great experience...do you feel that folks is their 60's would find the hikes too much? We have the average knee pains and to tell the truth are not mountain climbers, etc. ;) You had mentioned something about

"those younger" so thought it would be a good question before we sign up.

 

Many thanks,

 

Sue

The ages ranged from 80 to 25.

If you can walk, this cruise will be accessible. Activities are "graded" high, medium and low. Each excursion is described by the head naturalist, and pictures show you the terrain, so you have adequate information. However, if you do change your mind, arrangements will be made for a guide or zodiac to pick you up. The rangers and drivers all carry radios. Even the high intensity was accessible for those who are able to walk 3 miles in 2.5 hours and climb stairs at a very slow rate. Walking sticks are provided. I found them especially helpful on the first 2 high intensity hikes.

 

I opted for low intensity twice and was very pleased. Each outing brings you into the living space of these incredibly trusting animals. The zodiac rides (low intensity) were every bit as much exciting as the land hikes.

 

Couples did not always choose the same activity. There was a feeling of safety which allowed one to go off with the group and meet to exchange stories after.

 

One woman 'confessed' at dinner that she had been very reluctant to come. She had 2 hips and a knee replaced. Her husband had persuaded her and she was almost in tears as she described her delight in the zodiac experience.

 

Boarding and exiting the zodiac was fun. Careful instructions were given. There were two members to assist, and I didn't see or hear of anyone who had problems. The policy is "hands free". Which meant that you first handed over any item you were carrying so that both hands were free to hold the rail and reach for the supporting hand of the guide. I used a waist pack/water bottle holster. Others used a small backpack to carry water and photo equipment.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Wow! You are fantastic. I'm sure all of us future Galapagos cruisers are so appreciative of all the information you are giving us. I have a clothing question. Do you need warmer/cooler clothing for Quito? Can my husband wear shorts in the evening onboard? (Nicer shorts and polo.) It would be great if he didn't have to bring long pants. (Says he. :)) From your descriptions it sounds like you wore one thing for land excursions and changed in the afternoon. Did you change again for the evening? Sorry for so many clothing questions, but it will certainly help in the packing.

Did you see lots of species of animals at this time of year? Again, thanks so much.

 

Quito is cool, about 55 dgrees F at night. Temperature decreases with altitude. Also the venue was a very elegant restaurant. I don't remember any shorts on the last night. I do remember lots of shivering as the wind chill cooled us even more. I think long pants more appropriate for those two reasons.

 

I did change out of my hiking clothes into different pants and shoes. Not necessary, I just don't like the tight cuffs on my hiking pants.

 

In the evening, I did tend to put on a touch of make-up, and wear a smarter looking shirt than a T shirt, but that was my choice. Some were very comfortable and appropriate in shorts and a t shirt. No one was much interested in what anyone wore. I guess if someone was very dirty or smelly or ... But Celebrity guests just aren't, so why go there.

 

Animals are the main attraction. Since some birds migrate through, there is a change of characters depending on the season. Plus, again depending on season, the mating, nesting, protection of territory behaviors will vary. Gives us all a reason to go back for a different season. I don't like hot humid weather, so I think I'll avoid January through April, but apparently that's also a very active time because the rain brings food. I started keeping a log of animals but soon gave up. I just relaxed and enjoyed the changing cast. The male frigate bird's display was a definate highlight for me. I had expected the turtles of course, but they are so much more majestic in their setting.

 

 

Bon voyage everybody. You are all privileged to be going to this very wondrous place.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Kami's pal,

 

I also want to express my sincere gratitude for the info you have provided. I used one of your posts as a basis to start organizing my packing list. Keep the info coming if you think of anything else.

 

Dara

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Alright, I'm a little scared of the sickness :( I suspect this ship is not part of the VSP (Vessel Sanitation Program) as it does not dock at an American port. This leaves you to trust that everything is "up to code" so to speak. Yikes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Kami's pal,

 

I also want to express my sincere gratitude for the info you have provided. I used one of your posts as a basis to start organizing my packing list. Keep the info coming if you think of anything else.

 

Dara

 

Two items I'd really recommend are a good fanny pack and a plastic bag.

 

I took a fanny pack with attached water bottle holster which I impulsively bought at Wal-Mart (Wal-Greens in the States?). I don't like fanny packs, so I almost left it behind. That became the most useful item. I wore it on every excursion. It has zippered pockets where I could put my glasses, my lip balm, the extra camera film, extra battery, my camera, money at the Darwin Station excursion. The water bottles supplied by the ship fit easily into the holster and were accessible without the bother of taking off a backpack each time I need a swallow of water. It snuggled into the small of my back, out of the way for 'hands free' zodiac boarding, and hiking, but I could twist it around to the front into my waist as I sat on the rim of the zodiac or while observing an animal, making for very easy access to camera or water.

 

The other item was a small Zip Lock sandwich size bag into which I put my camera. It fit nicely into one pocket of the fanny pack. It was necessary to protect the camera while on fast zodiac trips to the landings as splashes did happen, not often, but when the guide warned us to "Protect your cameras" I could just slip my camera into the bag. I did see one person's camera drenched by a surprise wave. For some reason, the owner hadn't covered her camera despite repeated warnings. I didn't ever find out if the salt water damaged the camera.

 

Another item I packed just because it was small were two bandanas. They were only a dollar at Wal-Mart, and were so useful as handkerchiefs, to wet down and tie around my neck when the temperature rose, etc. Much better than paper tissues.

 

Also, if you wear glasses or sunglasses. pick up individulally wrapped moist lens cleaning cloths in little foil packets, again at Wal-Mart. The hike can leave your glasses dusty, and these cloths are designed to clean without scratching.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Alright, I'm a little scared of the sickness :( I suspect this ship is not part of the VSP (Vessel Sanitation Program) as it does not dock at an American port. This leaves you to trust that everything is "up to code" so to speak. Yikes.

 

I think I understand. That was a very big fear for me. I'd already hosted this bug on one other cruise, and the memory is frightening. However, when I discussed this with my doctor and other travelers, I was reminded that I'd also caught it right here at home! When my children were in kindergarten, and again when I was teaching. I decided that I wouldn't let my fear of catching a cold stop me from traveling, nor should I stay home for fear of catching what has been described as the second most common virus. I think I fear the embarrassment of a sudden attack. However, the episodes aren't as surprising as a sneeze. One does have enough warning to get to a safe place. It's not as if we are on a trek in the wild, camping away from all facilities.

 

If you are in reasonable health, and use common sense to recover (diet restriction, fluids, rest) you will survive, and you won't miss out much of the activities. The 'attack' is self limiting, about 12 hours of acute gastrointestinal activity, and another 12 -48 hours of secondary activity.

 

 

I know what you mean by the VSP, but I truly don't think that would help. The entire crew and ship would have to be shrink wrapped and cooked in order to kill all the bacteria, and then the next group of passengers would re-infect the ship.

 

Keep in mind that you have lived most of your life with this bacteria. It isn't just in third world countries. I'm guessing that our immune systems are more challenged after the long plane trip, the copious amounts of rich food, the lack of sleep etc. And, being sick away from home is more frightening than when we are home. We FEEL more vulnerable. I had to talk sternly to myself. Self talk is important. I kept reminding myself that I was in a very private, comfortable room, with a toilet meters away, and a doctor on call. In fact I was safer than if I were in my home city's hospital!

 

Email me if you need a more vivid description of what to expect.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for those two suggestions. I will look for a fanny pack that holds a bottle of water and bring plastic bags.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Kami's pal,

 

You are a font of invaluable info!! I'm making notes of all the essentials you recommended. Tks also for touching on the medical issues as that helps me prepare as well. Am taking along powdered Gatorade - DH drinks a lot of it and with the hi-intensity levels that I think he'll be going after, sounds like a good preventive. For now, I will pass on your offer to get a more vivid description of GG (Galapagos Gallup)!:eek:

 

I just found that the Great Britain correspondent for CC is writing a "Virtual Tour" of her recent Xpedition tour!!:D Read the 1st three installments today and it will be running till 11/22!:) So far we're off to a good start. As it was nearly impossible for me to find (so I can't tell you how to search it), the email I got back from CC's kind assistant directed me to this link:

 

http://www.cruisecritic.com/virtual/virtual.cfm?ID=9. You can also access it from our home page at www.cruisecritic.com. I hope you enjoy it!

One question: we just got our cabin assignment #307 for the 1/14/05 eleven nighter. Checking the diagram & calling Celebrity, they confirmed that it is an deluxe ocvw and that it has a window, even though the website says "porthole" for those cabins.

Just curious, since you were in 314, was that a similar type of rm (appears so on the deck plan) - did you have a Porthole or Window?

Are those rms more susceptible to the "anchor dropping"?;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is Judy's husband, Jim. Thanks for the excellent info. You are an encyclopedia of knowledge of the Xpedition cruise. We are on the Dec. 5th cruise. Three weeks to go.

Jim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Kami's pal' date='

 

You are a font of invaluable info!! I'm making notes of all the essentials you recommended. Tks also for touching on the medical issues as that helps me prepare as well. Am taking along powdered Gatorade - DH drinks a lot of it and with the hi-intensity levels that I think he'll be going after, sounds like a good preventive. For now, I will pass on your offer to get a more vivid description of GG (Galapagos Gallup)!:eek:

 

I'm glad you found this helpful. The Gatorade will be the same as the Pedialyte that the doctor supplied for rehydration therapy. You will have a fridge so you can mix it into a water bottle and cool it in the fridge. Makes it more palatable.

 

I just found that the Great Britain correspondent for CC is writing a "Virtual Tour" of her recent Xpedition tour!!:D Read the 1st three installments today and it will be running till 11/22!:) So far we're off to a good start. As it was nearly impossible for me to find (so I can't tell you how to search it), the email I got back from CC's kind assistant directed me to this link:

 

http://www.cruisecritic.com/virtual/virtual.cfm?ID=9. You can also access it from our home page at www.cruisecritic.com. I hope you enjoy it!

 

Thanks. I've been reading her posts. She is a great travel writer. I just hope that she doesn't give away the two surprises.

One question: we just got our cabin assignment #307 for the 1/14/05 eleven nighter. Checking the diagram & calling Celebrity, they confirmed that it is an deluxe ocvw and that it has a window, even though the website says "porthole" for those cabins.

Just curious, since you were in 314, was that a similar type of rm (appears so on the deck plan) - did you have a Porthole or Window?

Are those rms more susceptible to the "anchor dropping"?;)

Room 307 is across the hall and slightly aft of room 314. They do have what I call windows because the shape is rectangular not round. The view is unobstructed. The only problem is that the curtains do not quite close tightly enough, nor hug the wall closely enough so sometimes the sun reflected off the mirror. I'm used to inside cabins, so I laughed at myself complaining about the light.

 

The noise from the anchor chains became a rueful joke among the passengers. I think those on deck 5 heard it as much as I did. There may even have been 2 or 3 chains! The ship didn't swing as it would have from one. There is also the noise from the winch as it raises or lowers the 4 zodiacs. That is very annoying and since the crane is on top, the noise on top surely would have been louder than I heard on deck 3. So sleeping in is a challenge. Not that you'd want to. A hearty breakfast is welcome before all that exercise.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This is Judy's husband, Jim. Thanks for the excellent info. You are an encyclopedia of knowledge of the Xpedition cruise. We are on the Dec. 5th cruise. Three weeks to go.

Jim

 

Bon voyage. No matter how much info I give or books and reviews you read, you will be blown away by the actual experience.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Your experience and insight is very much appreciated.

Would it be possible for you to give me an idea of the cost of the shore excursions? Maybe a low to high estimate for each day/excursion? I believe we would be taking the high intensity excursions and I am just curious of the cost of these as I try to figure out a budget for the entire tip.

Thank you very much.

Charles

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Your experience and insight is very much appreciated.

Would it be possible for you to give me an idea of the cost of the shore excursions? Maybe a low to high estimate for each day/excursion? I believe we would be taking the high intensity excursions and I am just curious of the cost of these as I try to figure out a budget for the entire tip.

Thank you very much.

Charles

 

The package I bought from Celebrity, and I think the ONLY one they sell on Xpedition, was all inclusive. That meant that hotel, air, transfers, land tours in Quito, guides (which are national park rangers), zodiac drivers, equipment rental, tips, even bottled water, alcohol, meals, transfers, park entrance fees were all included in the price. Some people made private arrangements for air and some chose extended pre and post cruise packages. I booked through my travel agent, but I think you can book directly through Celebrity.

The one thing you can not do is go into the park without a permit. And to get that you must book with an Ecuadorian licensed cruise ship. To protect this fragile environment, you must be escorted by park rangers.

 

I was very impressed by the attention to detail that Celebrity and Ecuador have paid to make this experience not just possible but easy while protecting the animals and their habitat.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • 2019 Cruisers' Choice Awards
      • NCL Sail-Away Giveaway Sweepstakes - Win a 7-Day Cruise on Norwegian Joy!
      • Forum Assistance
      • New Cruisers
      • Community Contests
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...