First time cruiser needs some advice..which port is better for shopping...Cozumel or Grand Cayman?..and which port is the best for snorkeling? And also..what the heck do we do in Montego Bay Jamaica besides go to Dunns River Falls? And last but not least...what is the purpose of the Carnival Inspiration stopping in Playa Del Carmen for 30 minutes before going on over to Cozumel? If they let you off there for an excursion, I assume you have to go to Cozumel to board the ship? How far is it back to Cozumel and what are the "must do" activities in Playa Del Carmen? I've heard something about some ruins but it didn't seem appealing..any other suggestions? Thanks!
My daughter, friend and I did the Western Caribbean on the Truimph in July. The purpose of the stop in Playa Del Carmen for the 30 minutes is to let those wanting to see the Ruins off, in my opinion they are a waste of time, bugs bite you and you can't even climb them anymore. They take you on a sort of a ferry which takes about 30 minutes best part of the trip if you get off there to get back to Cozmuel. In my opionion Cozmuel is the better of the two for shopping at least there you can bargain with the people in the shops. Grand Cayman does however have the best Rum Cakes around, and the excursion to the Sting Rays although those I was traveling with did not think so was really neat. Do not know about Montego Bay as the Truimph went right into Ochos Rios, Dunns River is a must if you are in shape to climb it I did it for the second time when I was there and loved it. Great exercise. Beware of the drug pushers. Stay with a ship excursion on this island. Enjoy your cruise. I am looking forward to the Destiny in May for the Southern Caribbean.
As already answered the ship anchors in Playa Del Carmen to let people off for the Mayan Ruins Tour. I've heard good and bad about this tour, but 6 hrs on a bus in Mexico didn't really appeal to me ;-( They get everyone back to the ship on this tour.
For shopping, Cozumel is the better of the two IMO. Everything is really all on the one street, whereas Grand Cayman is kinda a maze like shopping experience with higher prices. Although, the Rum Cake in Grand Cayman is incredible!!!!! I don't drink, but I tried the rum cake, and by the time I finished sampling all of it (by the 5th or 6th store, if they weren't sampling Rum Cake, I wasn't going in it ;-))), I was a little light headed when I got back on the Tender to the Ship ;-))))
Jamaica, DO A SHIP Tour!!!! Unless of course you like being harassed to buy Drugs, Sex, etc........ I did the Dunns Falls/Kayak tour and had an awesome time, completely ignored all the street people. Once you've climbed the Falls once though, you'll probably never do it again, cause it is just a HUGE tourist trap.
I think the shopping is best in Jamaica..... I did not do a ship tour.... The tours took up too much time and the ship leaves @ 3. It is a bit intimidating to walk off the ship in Jamaica but after you say no to the taxi drives waiting out side the port gates.... The town gres on you and the people are nice. make sure you look at people and say no thanks you. The ship tells you to go to the places thqat are the most expensive. I just returned yesterday from this cruise. If you do not get out and walk around Jamaica.... I assure you, you will not have a desire to return. Walk arounf town and go to the beaches..... The people need you dollar and they will take 1/2 of what the price originally is. Jamaica is greatalesia wrote: