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Old December 5th, 2005, 09:04 PM
medontelord's Avatar
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Default Western Caribbean Shore Excursions

We are taking the Star Princess to the Western Caribbean in early January. What recommendations does anyone have for shore excursions in Ochos Rios, Grand Cayman and Cozumel. We are very active people.
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Old December 6th, 2005, 11:32 AM
Join Date: Sep 2005
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Just got back from Star Princess Western Carribean cruise and loved it!

In Cozumel we did the CAVES tour. There were only 12 of us in the group which made it very personalized. The tour operator was great. They took us in an airconditioned minivan to the CAVES where we saw monkeys, snakes, and of course the caves. Then they took us to a private beach for lunch. The Chicken Fajitas were awsome!

Grand Cayman was a nightmare for all of the tours becuase there were at least 7 cruise ships that day and the lines for the tours were very confused. We did the 7 mile beach which was basically a bus to the beach. You could easily take your own taxi. TRAFFIC is very bad so timing can be a problem getting back on the ship. I heard the Sting Ray tour was great though. Just make sure you book the early tours so that you hopefully get back in time with the traffic.

In Jamaica we did the Catamaran and snorkel and beach tour. It was a lot of fun!
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Old December 6th, 2005, 01:43 PM
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There's a bunch of good stuff to do in these ports...

Ocho Rios - the biggie is to climb the Dunns River Falls. We did that our first cruise, along with a ride to some botanical gardens. On our last cruise, we did the White River inner tubing and my son did the canopy zipline adventure. Both were excellent. A tour not offered on the ship (but it is offered in the port) is a tour of Bob Marley's house, which would be neat if you're a reggae fan. If you ask nicely, I hear they'll also show you Bob's ganja fields...

In Grand Cayman, you should stick to a ship's tour as that way you won't miss the boat if your tour is late returning (all ships must use tenders). The Stingray City sandbar is the highlight here. The Turtle Farm is pretty neat. Hell is just a post office and a geologic formation, but it's fun to send your friends postcards from Hell. There's an Atlantis submarine (my son loved his ride on the one at Cozumel) and there's even a deep-diving sub that can take two passengers down 1000 feet.

Cozumel was pretty ravaged by Wilma and it's not all up and running yet - for instance, the dolphin swim at Chankanaab Marine Park isn't ready. On our first visit here, we took the Tulum tour and it was pretty awesome. On later trips we've been to the Xel Ha eco park, ridden horses, and done some diving.

Diving is popular in every port, so if you have any interest, get a PADI Scuba license before you go.

There's further details and photos on my web site at www.mycruiseadventures.com.

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Old December 6th, 2005, 02:42 PM
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JAMAICA - look into a private tour with Peat Taylor-go to his web site, same as his name. Dunns River Falls is a blast, the climb is fairly easy.There are river tubing tours which are really fun, horseback riding is beautiful and very popular. There is a canopy zip-line tour that is fast becoming really popular. If you can include a trip to Fern Gully in your tour - its very beautiful.
GRAND CAYMEN - a trip out to StingRay City/Sandbar is a must-do, you can snorkel with the rays if you wish, or you can stand on the sandbar and let the rays swim all around you, you can touch and feed them also. The rays are amazing, when then glide by you it looks like they are flying thru the water, and it feels like a feather brushing your legs when they touch you. These tours are very popular and they book up really fast, book it in advance, we used Captain Marvin and loved his tours, go to his web site- same as his name, just budget time coming and going as you need to tender in and out in Grand Caymen. There is also some very good snorkeling on Grand Caymen, you can snorkel right off the pier at Eden's Rock, or for something a bit more you can book a ships tour out to the sunken ships "graveyard". The Turtle Farm is also interesting.
COZUMEL - If you snorkel or want to give it a try, definatley book a ship's excursion out to the Palencaar Reef - amazing snorkeling, and its easy.
A ship's tour to the Mayan Ruins is also very interesting. At this time i would not book any independant tours in Cozumel just becuase things are still not totally back to normal after the hurricane. There are some great beaches in Cozumel also.
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Old December 18th, 2005, 07:13 PM
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I disagree with the previous poster about Grand Cayman. The island is not very big, and there are a lot of good independent operators there. We took the Buccaneer to Stingray City, which you should NOT miss! It is a marvelous place to visit. Here is a list of independent operators that were recommended on another board:
I suggest you check out their tour times, and then be sure to give yourself a couple of hours to walk around the town after your tour. That way you won't be stressing over missing that last tender!

In Cozumel Paradise Beach is up and running! You can grab a taxi and spend time there lounging on the beach, eating, drinking, playing on their water toys (you will need an $8 bracelet to play on them.) We went there and then did an afternoon snorkel/snuba excursion through this company: http://www.cozumelinsider.com/Snorke...rom=Snorkeling

Have a great cruise!
Mariner of the Seas 3/30/08
"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."
Mark Twain

Check out my cruise photos: http://community.webshots.com/user/Sheffie100
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