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Old April 4th, 2004, 01:20 PM
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Default San Diego, Catalina, Ensenada

Hi,
I'm taking my 7 y/o son on a 4 day Baja cruise. It is the first for both of us. I wanted to know if anyone had an opinion on what to do in San Diego. I know I will only have time to do one thing and I was thinking of the zoo or Sea World but which is better?. Any ideas from recent visitors or residents would be great.
Also, he is too young to do any of the snorkeling excursions in Catalina or Ensenada. Since I will have his birth certificate with me, I can't fib. I was thinking of bringing masks in case we saw anything while we are wading in the water but I don't know if any fish can be seen that close. Any other ideas that kids like to do in Catalina or Ensenada?Thanks.

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Old April 4th, 2004, 02:18 PM
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Default Re: San Diego, Catalina, Ensenada

Definitely the zoo in San Diego. There is even a monorail for tired little feet.

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Old April 5th, 2004, 12:50 PM
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Default Re: San Diego, Catalina, Ensenada

Terry,

Pam is right on the money -- the zoo is an excellent choice. You can book it on the ship, or do some investigating about getting over there on your own (it's about 7 miles or so from the pier).

In Catalina, I bet you and your son would love to rent one of the golf carts. If you book before noon, you get 3 hours for the price of 2 -- $60. You can see the whole island, and they give you a map of sights to see. You will also have plenty of time to stop at he Botanical Gardens and mosey about the outside of the casino, etc. The views are phenomenol.

Finally, in Ensenada, you can take him to the Bufadora -- or blwo hole. One of only 3 in the world in the ocean. There is also a fair number of shops as you stroll down. Very safe. Just get in the shuttle van at the pier, and it wilol cost $13 for them to take you there.

Hope this all helps. By the way, I have a photo gallery of the MOnarch of the Seas posted here. Just go under Interactive Features, scroll down to photo galleries. Then do a gallery search for my name, and you will see it.

Harry Martin

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Old April 5th, 2004, 05:06 PM
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Default Re: San Diego, Catalina, Ensenada

Thanks Pam and Harry!
I will definitely consider the zoo as an option.

Harry, you're pictures are great. The ship seems so intimidating though. I had no idea all that was on it. I knew about the rock wall but I didn't know there was a casino.

I think my son would love the golf cart idea too. I understand there are wild animals that freely roam like buffalo? Is this correct? Can we take the golf cart to see them or is that part of a tour?

Thanks for all your input.

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Old April 6th, 2004, 12:07 PM
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Default Re: San Diego, Catalina, Ensenada

Terry,

You're right about the animals, but it's in a protected part of the island from what I gather where you have to take an organized tour to see it. (By the way, many of the animals are on the island because movie companies imported them for films. "Mutiny on the Bounty" was filmed in Catalina.

I forgot to mention the golf cart place is smack dab in the center of town. You will see the kisok right when the street becomes open to cars.

And, speaking of cars, there is a 15-year waiting list to bring cars on the island!

We found the Monarch incredibly easy to navigate. It's smaller than the mega-long ships, so it's easy to go from one end to the other without being exhausted. Royal just refurbished the ship about 6 months ago, so it's looking very fresh now. It was also just brought over to the West Coast to doi the 3 and 4 night runs. We sailed her in January, and I was really looking forward to trying her out. I would again in a heartbeat.

Harry

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Old April 7th, 2004, 05:47 PM
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Default Re: Re: San Diego, Catalina, Ensenada

Hi there,
We are doing this trip with our 5 year old son on 4-19-04. I'll write when we return with any info.

We live in so.cal so will probably pass on zoo, it is great. Sea world is fun too! They have a water ride that gets you soaked but the KIDS LOVE IT.

We are thinking golf cart in catalina as well.

Talk with you later.
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Old April 8th, 2004, 02:13 PM
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Default Re: San Diego, Catalina, Ensenada

Is there any beach or snorkel tour for Ensenada, I may be cruising there next month.
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Old April 8th, 2004, 08:34 PM
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Default Re: San Diego, Catalina, Ensenada

Not that I can recall at all -- your better bet is Catalina, but I hear the snokeling is not that good there.

Harry

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Old April 14th, 2004, 08:35 PM
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Default Re: San Diego, Catalina, Ensenada

I would go for the zoo . You can't see pandas just anywhere.
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Old April 15th, 2004, 06:12 AM
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Default Re: San Diego, Catalina, Ensenada

Yes, the zoo and if he is old enough to enjoy airplanes the Aerospace Museum is walking distance away. As far as snorkeling in Mexico one should always be careful of water sports in Mexico. I am unaware of any sewage processing in Mexico and I have never seen them close beaches because of pollution.
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Old April 15th, 2004, 11:32 AM
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Default Re: San Diego, Catalina, Ensenada

Here is the zoo's Panda cam ... hopefully you will also be able to find some info to plan your outing there, too:

http://www.sandiegozoo.org/pandas/pandacam/index.html

Harry

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Old April 16th, 2004, 12:29 AM
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Default Re: San Diego, Catalina, Ensenada

Hi there, I have 4 children and we are doing this cruise April 26th- Carnival though...however we only live 2 hours from San Diego....been ther alot as we have family there. Personally I am a Sea World person, but also do go to the zoo about 3 times a year. But thinking from a 7 year old point of view....well that would be the highlight of his trip, lots of animals and show to see, plus interaction with animals to pet or feed (like dolphins or such), plus a few great rids...and if you are here during the week, well it won't be very crowded. The zoo is nice for walking around, or taking the bus around to see the animals....but honestly..are you going to let him off in Ensenada (we have been to Ensenada, and are not letting our kids off in this port), and Catalina with its breathtaking views and shopping..well is more for you? So maybe San Diego is for him? It's just my thought as having been to all 3 ports and living nearby with children. I will say , my boys have been to Catalina with us and even my 7 year-old has gone snorkeling in the calm bay with us- but it will be cold this time of year! You could also rent him a "snorkelboard" which is a boogie board with a "viewmask" in the center so he can lay on top and look through the mask and see the fish clearly below with out really getting too wet...or trying to use the breathing tube- rents for aout $5.....a great website for you is Descanso Beach club.com and Descanso Watersports.com, they are right off the pier and offer water rentals, and even a kayak class for kids that includes a lesson and kayak tour for $16.00! They have alot to do, inexpensive, we are going to do the lesson tour with all of our kids this trip! there is also parasailing for $65.00 per person which is awesome, but with 4 kids and 2 adults, well we aren't doing it this trip- but we have- it was great! If you need more info let me know! Email me! Have fun!
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Old April 25th, 2004, 10:19 PM
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Default Re: San Diego, Catalina, Ensenada

hi there, just back from sd, catalina, ensenada with our 5 year old son! Who had the TIME of his life. The monarch is a good ship, food ok, 1 night the entertainment was fabulous the others ok. BUT the ADventure OCean Club for Kids was awesome!!!!!!
In SD we did this tour in seaport village called "seals" it is a amphibious vechile thats tours sd and then goes in water twice and back , a 2 hour tour that was $25 for adults and $15 kids. Well worth it! We have lived in sd for over 15 years and learned alot form Frank the guide.

In Catalina we rented golf cart and went all around the island, fun , but chilly in early am. Then we went on glasss bottom boat tour and saw alot of fish.

In Ensenada, we took the "La Bufadora" tour to the water blowhole and shoppoing area, it was worth seeing, but then headed right back to ship and swam in the pool all afternoon.

Our son went to the kids program in the evenings 6 or 7pm -9-10pm. it was fabulous and he had a great time. one night is pirate night(fabulous experience)

Hopes this helps!!!!!! We will definelty be cruising with our son again soon!!!!!!
Happy sailing!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old April 26th, 2004, 11:51 AM
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Default Re: San Diego, Catalina, Ensenada

Hostess, glad you had such a great time!

I love the 4-nighter on Royal Caribbean because of the stop in San Diego ... makes booking a cheap cabin no problem with a port a day.

Harry

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Old May 24th, 2004, 07:29 PM
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Default Re: San Diego, Catalina, Ensenada

We are going on a cruise in october two of the ports we will be going to will be Catalina and San Diego so we to have been researching to find something to do that we could get the most out of since we will only be in port for the day.The way we figured it Sea World has show times which would mean we would be on their schedule and probably miss alot.So we have decided on either the zoo or Animal Kingdom in San Diego and in Catalina there is a submarine ride called the nautalis I believe it is a 45 mintue underwater cruise and for a few dollars xtra you can buy fish food which is somehow attached to the outside of your porthole so the fish will come right up to your window to eat.So hope this helps you with your adventure....
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Old May 25th, 2004, 01:07 PM
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Default Re: San Diego, Catalina, Ensenada

Chie,

I would opt for the zoo -- much closer to the ship. The Wild Animal Park is a good 30+ miles from the terminal.

Once again, the golf cart tour is lots of fun in Catalina. I seem to recall someone saying the sub tour was kinda "eh"

Harry

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