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Old April 15th, 2006, 09:23 PM
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Default Choosing ports of call on Mexican Cruise

I'm planning mexico cruise next spring and typically enjoy seeing more of the native culture in lieu of tourist traps in each port. I'm not big on shopping or partying but like to do snorkeling and other water sports. So I'm thinking the Carnival Spirit itinerary that goes to Acapulco, Ixtapa and Manzanillo might be a better choice than the Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan and Cabo itinerary on the Pride. I know Acapulco will be a tourist trap and party port but thought Ixtapa and Manzanillo might be a little more laid back and flavorfull. Any suggestions? Also, what to expect weatherwise end of March?
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Old April 16th, 2006, 03:48 PM
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Milo, I think you have the right idea. I've been on both cruises, and the Spirit one had the best ports. Manzanillo and Zijuatenjo are great, as far as being far less Americanized and coming across as tourist traps. If you choose to go to Ixtapa, the beach sports are great there.

We sailed in February to PV etc and had the best weather. When we sailed to Acapulco in Oct/Nov, it was defnitely hot.

Hope this all helps

BTW search the photo galleries for my name, and I have a gallery of port photos there.

Harry Martin
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Old April 16th, 2006, 11:43 PM
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milovenus,

I'm planning mexico cruise next spring and typically enjoy seeing more of the native culture in lieu of tourist traps in each port. I'm not big on shopping or partying but like to do snorkeling and other water sports. So I'm thinking the Carnival Spirit itinerary that goes to Acapulco, Ixtapa and Manzanillo might be a better choice than the Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan and Cabo itinerary on the Pride. I know Acapulco will be a tourist trap and party port but thought Ixtapa and Manzanillo might be a little more laid back and flavorfull. Any suggestions? Also, what to expect weatherwise end of March?

Hmmm.....

I would look for a cruise that includes all of these ports except Manzanillo.

>> Cabo San Lucas has a large American influence, but it is a gorgeous resort where nature is also a major attraction. Be sure to take a small boat cruise that goes out to "Land's End" (or "Los Arcos").

>> If you take the city tour of Mazatlan, you'll encounter a LOT of the local culture. It's probably stronger here than in any other port of call. The folkloric show featuring the Pampatla Fliers also is one of the best in Mexico.

>> Puerto Vallarta is also a good place to encounter Mexican culture, via a city tour.

>> Acapulco is a tourist trap, but it also has some worthwhile attractions like the historic fort (now a museum) and the famous cliff divers.

>> Zihuatanejo is a true Mexican fishing village. The shopping district (go to the end of the tender pier and turn right) serves the locals. A few shops near the tender pier specialize in souvenirs for tourists, but you can still see the fishermen landing their catch and repairing their nets a couple blocks up the waterfront. The local authorities decided to build the resorts in the area a few miles away, in Ixtapa, to minimize the direct impact on the character of Zihuatanejo.

>> Manzanillo is a commercial shipping port. If you land there, take an excursion that spends the day at a nearby resort becuase there isn't much else.

Have a great cruise, whatever you decide!

Norm.
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Old April 17th, 2006, 01:00 PM
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I have to agree -- not much to see in Manzanillo, but the plaza by the bay is very pretty. If I did it again, I would book an excursion next time. I hear the ones that go inland are cool.

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Old April 19th, 2006, 12:37 PM
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In Manzanillo, the "Colima/Comala" shore excursion is really great.
You get to see towns with no tourists at all, except yourselves !
There's a stop at a very nice little museum in the lovely town of Colima, then there's a stop at a pyramid and archeological site nearby, from where there's an outstanding view of 2 vulcanos, then they take you to Comala, which is gorgeous, for a nice lunch.
Manzanillo was my favorite stop (11 day Mexican Riviera on Celebrity's Mercury)

I really enjoyed the shore excursion we booked in Mazatlan, which drove us through the Sierra Madre up to a wonderful village named Copala (great lunch there !) and to the little town of Concordia.

Those 2 excursions were the "real traditional Mexico", they were outstanding.

In Cabo, we took a tour called "Coastal highlights" which was great too. We went to San José del Cabo, which is just gorgeous.

We had such a wonderful time !
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Old August 9th, 2006, 10:37 PM
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We are doing the 11-night Mercury Mex. Riv. 1/29. I chose this cruise over RCI's 7-night because it was actually less per day for the longer cruise. I like the 6 Mexican ports as opposed to 2 Cal/4 Mex on Infinity. Infinity was more expensive, also.
We've never done this itinerary, but figured we might as well see as much of Mexico as possible. I used to be certified to teach Spanish and will be brushing up on my conversational skills. It's sort of like riding a bike, you never totally forget. We've been to Costa Maya once and Cozumel twice on Carib. cruises.
I have checked out the excursion list for this cruise qnd have pretty much decided what to book. We will do Celebrity excursions for every port, except possibly Acapulco. A fellow passenger who started a Roll Call thread on CC lives near me and has invited us to join his group for a private tour. I haven't heard for sure if we're "in".
Others are:
Mazatlan--Estuaries and Bird Watching Expedition
Puerto Vallarta--Whale Watching
Ixtapa--Isla Ixtapa Beach Getaway
Manzanilla--Catamaran Snorkeling Adventure--did this in Cozumel on Panama Canal cruise. It included unlimited Mexican beer, margaritas and water for the whole trip, not just on the way back as per the description in the excursion list. I snorkeled and DH drank beer; I used margaritas to get rid of the salt water taste in my mouth after absent-mindedly drifting 100 yards away from the ship and having to swim hard to get back. (worked better than water!). We had a nice 2 hr. beach time with our margaritas and beer. All in all, no one on that trip was feeling any pain afterward, lol. This time I will definitely pay more attention to where I am while snorkeling.
Cabo San Lucas--not sure yet--probably Coastal Highlights.
I'm so glad to be doing another winter cruise. We skipped the winter cruise this year in favor of the N. European RCI cruise in June.

1/02 Explorer E. Carib.
1/03 Explorer W. Carib.
8/03 Summit Alaska cruise/tour
2/04 Adventure S. Carib.
2/05 Galaxy Panama Canal
6/06 Jewel Brit. isles/Nor. Fjords +3 days in London
1/29 Mercury Mexican Riviera
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