My husband and I are going on our first cruise this June. We are going on Carnival Dream to Cozumel, Belize City, Roatan, and Costa Maya. We are a young couple who spent all our money on the cruise, so we were wondering what to do at the ports. We would like to just kick back at the beach and shop and some places and maybe do 1 or 2 excursion type things. What would you suggest to be the best places to do an excursion, shop and hang at the beach??? Thanks for the help!
Cozumel: Sorry, I can't help you on this one.
Belize City: Cave tubing with Charlie! Best Caribbean shore excursion I've ever done, and reasonably priced. We paid a bit extra to hike further (which also meant we tubed more of the caves) and it was well worth it. There is a video of our experience here: YouTube - Cave Tubing in Belize
Roatan: We went snorkeling. I don't have any strong recommendations on tour company... you'll save a lot of money by NOT booking through the ship. We saw quite a bit of wildlife, including sea turtle, lobster, puffer fish, barracuda. However, on the day we went (unusually windy... so much so that the ship almost cancelled the port, and ultimately docked at the other, older pier which was a little more sheltered from the wind), the current was very strong. Visibility was not very good. I am a strong swimmer, but some of the others in our group got tired and had to get back on the tour boat prematurely. I am almost positive this is not a typical experience, however.
Costa Maya: We went to Chacchoben. I can't remember the name of the tour company (again... save money by booking with a local company, not through the ship) but they were very good, and the tour was enjoyable.
Cozumel and Belize have some of the best diving and snorkeling you will find anywhere. I would suggest doing a snorkel excursion in Cozumel and if you dive then do that in Belize.
The cave tubing has been a popular excursion in Belize but if the water is high it can be a little more excitement than you may want.
In Costa Maya I strongly suggest doing a Mayan ruins excursion. It will be well worth it. Costa Maya itself is merely a shopping mall. You can go to the village of Mahahual, just a short cab ride away, and enjoy the beach, restaurants and local bars and shopping.
Enjoy yourself and I know you will enjoy the cruise.
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If you decide you only can do an excursion in one port - do it in Belize City. The other ports are easier to DIY. Was in Cozumel last week - it was $7 for a taxi to town if you want to shop. You can also head to the beach as well.
Check out the Caribbean forum for more ideas on these ports.
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