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  #1 (permalink)  
Old February 25th, 2007, 09:36 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 1
Default Acapulco, Zihu/Ixta, Manz VS. Cabo,Mazat, PV

We have 2 free Air Tran tickets so we want to cruise out of a furthur port than we can drive to (FL) so we're thinking LA or San Diego which brings us to port choices now. Please give me your advise and why.
married 20 years not bringing kids. going in Oct or Nov.
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old February 26th, 2007, 12:32 AM
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Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 176

Hi my husband and I were looking at both of these cruises. What finally made up my mind was the reviews on the Pride vs the Spirit. We live in San Diego so the Spirit would have been more conveinent but we decided to go with the Pride ship. Now I have been on the Cabo, MZ & MV cruise out of LA before on the Elation back in 1999. I was really wanting to do the other ports but I just couldnt get past all the bad reviews on the Spirit saying that it was dirty all the time. So that is what basically sold me. I have found some excursions on my own that we are going to do and we are definitely looking forward to going.

Have fun!

Carnival Spirit 11/07
Carnival Paradise 12/01
Carnival Elation 12/99
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  #3 (permalink)  
Old February 26th, 2007, 09:38 AM
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Join Date: May 2003
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 4,770
Default Re: Acapulco, Zihu/Ixta, Manz VS. Cabo,Mazat, PV


Originally Posted by You
We have 2 free Air Tran tickets so we want to cruise out of a furthur port than we can drive to (FL) so we're thinking LA or San Diego which brings us to port choices now. Please give me your advise and why.
married 20 years not bringing kids. going in Oct or Nov.
Okay, I'll serve it straight up.

>> Cabo San Lucas is a resort destination in its own right with great beaches and water excursions. I highly recommend any of the shore excursions that include a boat ride out to "Los Arcos" (literally, "The Arches") at "Land's End." This area is teeming with an incredible array of wildlife as well as impressive rock formations. There are several excursions that go there, variously combining it with snorkeling, beach time, a scenic coastal drive, or various other activities. Ashore, there are a lot of villas for the rich and famous, but the upper middle class also can afford to go there for vacation.

>> Mazatlan is an older resort city with a lot of history, art, and architecture, so the tour of the city highlights is definitely worthwhile. Most of the shore excursions also include a very impressive folkloric show featuring the Pampatla Flyers. The shopping area called the "Golden Zone" is not very classy, though there probably are bargains to be had. The resort hotels have nice pools, but the beach venders (not allowed in the pool areas) are very aggressive.

>> Puerto Vallarta also has a lot of history, art, and architecture, so the tour of the city highlights is also worthwhile here. It's also the gateway to the Tequilla region, where the tours of the tequilla distilleries are very interesting.

>> Manzanillo is primarily a commercial port that does not have a cruise terminal, so the few cruise ships that call there are currently docking in the commercial port area. There are, however, some nice all inclusive resorts along the bay, both to the north and to the south of the commercial port area. I highly recommend a shore excursion to one or another of these resorts, as there's not much else to do.

>> Zihuatanejo is a very quaint and charming Mexican fishing village. The main shopping district, where the locals do their shopping, is very accessible -- just walk to the end of the tender pier and turn right along the waterfront. If you walk a couple blocks up the waterfront, you'll come to the beach where the local fishermen land their catch. In the morning, you'll see them servicing and stowing their gear before taking their catches to open air market. The resorts in the area are in Ixtapa, which is about ten miles northwest of Zihuatanejo along the coast.

>> Acapulco is the largest city on the Mexican Riviera. It has an old urban downtown with a lot of history, more or less where the ships dock, but it also has very exclusive new sections to the north and the south where the rich and famous own expensive villas and where you'll find exclusive hotels like the Fairmont Acapulco Princess Hotel that cater to the rich and famous. This is another destination where the tours of the city highlights -- and there are two or three that visit different attractions -- are very worthwhile.

I should mention that several of these ports have "flea markets" by the pier where you'll find very good bargains on local handcrafts and other local products, including vanilla extract (stock up if you cook!) and Mexican silver (be sure to look for the ".925" stamp).

BTW, there are eleven night itineraries that call at all six of these ports and ten night itineraries that call at all of these ports except Manzanillo.

Have a great cruise, whatever you decide!

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  #4 (permalink)  
Old March 8th, 2007, 08:04 PM
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Location: Northern CA
Posts: 4
Default The Spirit

We went on the Spirit and had a good time, it was very clean. The service was great and we enjoyed our trip even though I think I like flying to a place and staying there for a week. Good luck.
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  #5 (permalink)  
Old March 10th, 2007, 12:50 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 252
Send a message via ICQ to Cynda

We looked at Carnival Spirit and Carnival Pride, and Royal Caribbean Vision of the Seas...but in the end, we chose Norwegian Star. The main reason, itinerary...4 ports instead of 3, 8 days instead of 7, and we had not tried the freestyle dining before. We are taking the kids, so freestyle dining was an attractive option for us.

We are also picky about the asthetics of the ship. The Carnival ships were too dark and gaudy for our tastes, Norwegian Star has light airy interiors.

So do your homework, look at the pictures of the ship online, you'll be happy with your final choice whatever you choose
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  #6 (permalink)  
Old March 15th, 2007, 11:47 AM
jq jq is offline
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 66

The Rev did a nice summary of the ports. We were on the Pride in Feb 2004 and enjoyed the ports and the ship, our 1st on Carnival. We had done years earlier on RCCL to same ports and just last Feb, did the Dawn 11 day trip from SF. I think the 8-10 day cruises from San Diego on HAL or others that go to 4 or 5 ports would be the best way to see most of Mex on one cruise at reasonable price. Our SF trip for 11 days was almost 1/2 the cost of our upcoming Sep 10 day SF to Alaska cruise. Read this board plus cruisecritic to see lots of review of these ports.
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  #7 (permalink)  
Old May 1st, 2007, 04:02 PM
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Northern California
Posts: 75

We did the Nor. Star last year and went to Auc., Ze., P.V. and Cabo. We picked this because we like the tropical greenery of southern Mexico. IF you are more into the browns of the desert, then go to Cabo and the norther ports.
Celebrity Mercury - Hawaii

Princess Golden - Meaxican Riviera Oct/Nov '07
Norwegian Star - Mexican Riviera Oct '06
Carnival Ecstasy - Catalina/Mexico April '02
Disney Wonder - 3 day Bahamas Nov '99
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