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Old May 16th, 2004, 11:34 AM
Joe Gagnon
Posts: n/a
Default Re: windjammers barefoot cruise


I went 2 years ago on the Polynesia's sister -ship- the "Yankee Clipper". The Yankee is almost an exaxt replication of the Polly. My cruise left from Genada. This type of sailing is simplicity. It's not about "creature comforts". It's not dressing "to impress". It doesn't offer all the modern conveniences and entertainment options of the cruiselines. Basically, plan to bring an "open mind" and a novel. You'll have plenty of time to catch up on that book-you've put to the side for just the right moment. I say that-because; frankly, there's nothing to do on the boat. NOTHING! There is no where to go. It is about as much fun as walking out your backdoor- to the lenghth of your backyard and back. Once you've done that a few times- the excitement is over. The first night you will "stow-a-way" on the boat- at it's peir. Because passengers will be arriving at all different times of the night..because of the Caribbean will be arriving very late. This allows everyone to make it for the early departure the next morning. I chose to go with the "bunk-cabins" down below main deck. I would say next time-if I go- to definetly not do that lower cabin location. Try to get somthing on the main deck with the picture windows. The cabins below- did offer 1 port-hole window-however most the time- we were in line directly at the sea level- and you never actually saw the sun- because it was mostly splashing water over the window. My cabin -and most of them below deck-had 2 bunk style cabins. 1 top, 1 bottom. A small shared closet...extremely small bathroom with shower-though not enclosed. So basically when you took a shower- you would have to remove and paper products and electrical items- so as not to get them wet. While taking showers- you would just get everything wet- toilet, sink, door, vanity- everthing! Hot Water is at a premium especailly in the mornings. No biggie- you soon realize that your on a schoohner- and by no means- are you there to impress anyone- were 'all in the same boat" as everyone else. Frankly I brough way too many cloths. No need for so many nice shirts and pants. I could have vacationed the whole time in my swimming suit.. I did see other seasoned veternes doing just that. Breakfast, lunch and dinner- for 75% of the cruise- were served "buffet style" on the main deck-sometimes with a covered canopy. Basically, line up- get your food and scatter for a wooden bench or the floor deck to eat. Speaking of seating- there are NO CHAIRS, NO CHAISE LOUNGES.You sit on the hot deck or grab a coushion and sit on that or a wooden bench that stores the life preservers. Sitting on those was not at all comfortable. That was a big complaint of mine...while your on this boat- with no where to go- and nothing to want a nice comfortable chaise lounge to relaxe, read a book, listen to some CD's or just fall asleep. Not gonna happen. You're gonna have to make the best of it with the cushion- or go back down to the sinkhole of a cabin and lay on your twin bed. Sailing is at night- or sometimes will set sail around 5pm. Yes; it is rough. You will have to be very sea-worthy. You will feel it. Actually you will feel every motion of that boat-its small; they'r are no fancy stabalizers- and that's one might y sea. After a day or so; youl'll get the hang of it. Walking on the deck- is never just a straight walk. It's as if you are extremely intoxicated- just trying to walk to the bow. It's funny though. Food on average was fine; there is a small dinning room in the back- lots of bulk U shaped dinnets. Remember- there are NO Chairs! Dinining is family style. Comfort food- but not gourmet. Far from it. Again; you can stay in your shorts or bathing suit and eat there too. Staff- extremely friendly and generally fun. Alcohol drinks-you purchase with for maybe 3 or 4 tokens that you would get you a pina-colada..maybe 2 would get you a beer. Moderate pricing. Tipping- at your descetion. Don't bring any jewelry. Nobody cares about that on this type of sailing. Don't bring any fancy cloths- again nobody cares! No high heels, dress shoes...again; they don't care. You wont be visiting any fancy places on that boat anyhow. You actully could barefoot the entire time-its that casual. T-Shirts, shorts, more T-shirts and your book will do you well. Lunch was brough to the beach daily while we were in remote ports. Snorkling gear is assigned to everyone at the beginning of the cruise. You are responsible for it the entire time. Some nights- got together with fellow mates-and went to town on the islands -to eat a a local restaurant- thay was a very nice privlige to be able to get off the boat! Ideally, 3 days would have been enough. Not 5 or 6 days. It's just too long to be on that type of boat without anything to do. Would I go again; probalby not- I might opt for the luxury type- of a masted schooner- like maybe StarClippers or Windstar Cruises...both offering a much more ammentiy type of ship. And thats the difference- it is a ship- not a schooner. Yea I had fun; but would not do it again. Sorry to be so honest- but think that this might help you. I am a travel agent- so I do travel alot and can compare that to alot of different experiences- that otherwise might not be able to do so. Call me if you wish- I do sell vacation travel only...I am in Southfield Michigan and have been a travel agent for 14 years now and know the products well.. I hope this helps you. or 248-358-5330 x114
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