I am having a hard time trying to pick a destination. Being that this is going to be my first time, I would like for this to be a great vacation( who doesn't) that leaves me longing for my next trip I am more interested in meeting new people and seeing places that i have only seen on the discover channel, now if i do so happen to find someone thats a plus.
If you are wanting to visit those exotic looking places with bright turquoise waters and white sands that you see on the discovery channel and Corona beer commercials (haha)...then I, too, would recommend the Caribbean. It is where we took our first cruise and it hooked us (Carnival and the ship had something to do with it too ). We are cruising the Mexican Riviera next because we didn't want to hassle with flying this time (we live in L.A.), but we will definately do the Caribbean again in the future.
Luane's right, you need to provide more info. But if you're lookin for an inexpensive 5 day, check out Inspiration outta Tampa going to Grand Caymen and Cozumel. Generally speakin, the shorter the cruise the older the ship. You'll find the newer behemoth's runnin 7 day and up cruises outta Port Canaveral or Miami. Also, if you're lookin to hook up, the time of year makes a big difference. Schedule a cruise during college spring break and you'll be cruisin with lots of younger folks out to party.
I chose to take the Southern Caribbean cruise because I wanted to see as many of the islands that I've only seen on the travel or discovery channel. I wanted to swim in the blue waters and taste the local foods.
We were on Carnival Destiny. It really was a dream come true.
The others are absolutely right. Everyone has their own perfect idea of a cruise. Do you think you want more time in port or days at sea. How many days do you have? etc... all of this makes a difference.
Life is too short to let the ship of your dreams sail without you.
Carnival Destiny Feb. 2006
Carnival Fascination Feb. 2007
Royal Caribbean Grandeur of the Seas Feb. 2008 The DTW & MsBJ tour
Carnival Valor MsBJ and Dina Feb. 2009
Carnival Glory MsBJ and Dina Feb. 2010
Carnival Dream MsBJ and Dina Feb. 2011
As the others have stated to you so much depends upon what you want to do and see. Do you just want to veg out on gorgeous white silky sandy beaches with turquoise waters, great scenery and good shopping- then go Eastern Caribbean --Or do you want to do something more active like climbing water falls, interacting with StingRays, zip-line tours, river tubing, river rafting, snorkeling, Mayan Ruins,-then go Western Caribbean.
If you want a port-intestive tour with more local flair then go Southern Caribbean.
Then there is always Alaska.
Since this is your first cruise, I would first think about doing a 3-5 day cruise, just in case you are on the ship and decide that you don't like cruising (hard to believe but it happens once in 1000 tries (VBG)..and you are not out alot of money..also a shorter cruise will have a younger crowd and probably more singles
I would chose the Bahama Islands and look for a cruise that has a stop at a private island and I would also purchase an inside cabin. If you enjoy cruising with an inside cabin, then you will really enjoy your next cruise which should be a 7 day cruise and if you can afford it get a balcony or at least an oceanview
Get your toes wet, before you jump all the way into the pool and then come back and tell us about it
While you are on your short cruise, I would plan your next 2 cruises..the first would be to the western caribbean, the second to the eastern caribbean
I feel that the 7 day eastern is the best for first timers. They usually hit the highlights and you have a few days at sea to enjoy the ship. St T, San Juan, and the Bahamas are synonomous with the caribbean and are house hold words for when you get back and lay people ask you where you went.
A good 2nd trip would be the southern. You get to see the less touristy parts of the caribbean. Id suggest saving some $ and getting an inside cabin here as there are only one maybe two days at sea to enjoy a balcony. There's a new island just about every day so plenty us stuff to keep you on the run.
Western for 3rd, just to say you've done it.
Repeat until broke.
CCL Inspiration 09
RCCL Explorer of the Seas Eastern 09
CCL Miracle Southern '08
RCCL Enchantment of the Seas Western '07
PCL Caribbean Princess Eastern '05
RCCL Explorer of the Seas Western '05
RCCL Explorer of the Seas Eastern '04
CCL Destiny Southern '01
CCL Sensation Eastern '94
CCL Ecstacy Western '92
CCL Jubilee Eastern '90
Well... I have read some of "ya'lls" comments and i realize that I have found the right place for info.I do not care much for cold whether (unless i have a snuggle partner ); although i would like to do some zip-line or horse back riding. Hanging out at the local yocal could be interesting, bottems up AS far as what port does not really matter, airfair is about the same. Thanks you all for the help and maybe I'll get to enjoy the sea life as ya'll have
either east or west u can't go wrong. The best way is topick the right time and ship. The ship can make or break a cruise. my friends and I made the mistake of getting on the Dolphin Seabreeze. It was the SSMinow from Gilligans Island. This was the smallest and oldest andsmelliest ship ever. By the way Iheard it finally sanked a few years ago. We were told it was fun like Carnival. NOT!! That year I wished we had stuck with Carnival. I now just cruise Carnival because of the fun carefree atmoshpere. There are lots of onboard activites. There are a variety of people there young and old. Everybody party.
We also travelled Princess. This ship is a little more conservative. No glitz but pretty. Lots of brass. Anyhow we did make the best of it. Caribe Princess has pretty pools and nice spa. Also the Giant Screen TV on the Lido Deck kept us entertained.
The next cruise ship we might try is Royal Freedom or the next ship they build.
It all depends on your personality. Do some research and read reviews.
U like horseback then try Ocho Rios Jamaica and Cozumel.
Hope that helps.
What have you seen on the Discover Channel? I tell most new cruisers to try a short cruise first to see if they like it. There are short cruises for three and four day cruises to the Bahamas with Carnival on the Fantsy, and RC. Or perhaps you would like a cruise to "no where". This gives you a small experience of the whole cruise experience. Then you can decide if you would like a longer cruise. Recently, I saw a cruise from Boston to Bermuda listed. I have never taken this cruise, but thought it would be interesting.
Personally, I prefer the warm Caribbean. I have traveled to both the Western and Eastern Caribbean. Some people book Alaska cruises. I have never heard anyone complain about cruising to Alaska. The Alaska cruises have to be booked a year in advance because there is a small window of time available for these cruises to be taken each summer.
Regardless of which you choose, happy cruising!
Click on the link below if you would like to see my "Packing List and To Do List" perhaps they will help you when you decide where you would like to go.
To see things from the Discovery Channel, I would suggest the 8 day Exotic Western. Belize, Costa Rica, and Panama.
Cave tubing in Belize is awesome to say the least. Hiking through a jungle to get to the river, seeing leaf cutter ants marching across the paths. Unbelievable.
Costa Rica, you can do white water rafting or zip line through the canopy of a rain forest. Take a 4X4 up through the mountains and rain forest to see small villages where their main form of transportation is horse.
Panama, take a train from one coast to the other, ride into the canal and go through the locks, many things.
This is the most exciting cruise I have ever taken.
Voyager of the Seas 5/03
Celebrity Solstice 2/09
Oasis of the Seas 10/16/10