We are wondering if anyone has done the River Tubing Safari in Ocho Rios Jamaica? If so, was it good or is there an excursion that is better and why? We are on Navigator of the Seas on Sept 20th. So far our plan is to relax on the beach in Labadee (or just play it by ear), Jamaica we are still trying to decide, but leaning to the tubing safari if others say it was fun, Grand Cayman we are planning on scuba diving as well as scuba diving in Cozumel, Mexico. Do you think we are missing something anywhere? Please help, your opinin will help.
Kody, sounds like you have a funfilled vacation coming up. I am sure the Jamaica excursion you have planned will be a lot of fun. Just prepare yourself mentally for the "high pressure sales pitches" you will get on that island. Everything from drugs to braids is offered to you. It can be a bit overwhelming. I don't consider myself a shrinking violet, but the people on that island can be pretty aggressive and assertive. Many people just do Island Village and Margaritaville to avoid that. If you are on a ship's tour though, it should be fairly pleasant.
We have done Western Carib a few times and here are some thoughts...
Grand Cayman - you have the right idea here. I haven't done scuba there (my wife is chicken) but the water is amoung the most awesome clear blue/turquoise waters I have ever seen. Not much goin on on land there so you should definitely take advantage of the water! You MUST stop at sting ray city as a breather to your scuba. Its really amazing to play with the rays. There are hundreds of them waiting to play.
Jamaica - The Tubing trip (I assume you mean the one down the white river) is the move - AWESOME! A bit of a drive through winding mountain roads but you get a nice feel for the Jamaican countryside. The river is beautiful, cool, clear water with awesome scenery. Fairly mellow but there are a couple of white water spots (nothing to worry about). MUCH better than climbing the falls (if you are going to do that, do it on your own rather than with a group). If you bring your camera or other valuables, you will have to leave it in the van unless it is waterproof. By far, the best tour we have taken in Jamaica (the ocean kayak was pretty cool too)
Mexico - If you are certified for scuba, they probably have some nice spots to go around here. If you are looking for other alternatives, the ruins at Tulum are pretty cool if you have not seen them. There is a combo tour that goes there and stops at Xel Ha (I think that is how you spell it). Xel Ha is a really nice nature preserve. There is a really nice lagoon with many tropical fish where you can snorkel and there are tons of lizzards around. Nice place to relax for a couple of hours. The bus stops for a break on the way to tulum at a tourist trap place to buy souveniers but I would not buy there. You can get the same stuff in the parking lot at tulum (there is a small shack with an old women) if you bargain with her. The other option I would consider is to do some fishing there. You can search online for a charter boat. Generally you could charter for 1/2 day for 450-500. If you have 3 couples, it works out to be about 80pp and you will have your own boat. Some of RCL boat tours get overbooked and crowded.
Labadee- They used to run a tour to a small island off the coast called amiga island. They stopped that tour but I am preparing for my next trip and I see they have anew one. Labadee could be a bit much - especially if there is more than 1 ship there. It used to be that you could walk over to Dragons Rock and be completely alone. Now they have a barbque on that side and more people go there but it is still the place to go on labadee. If you go to the far side there is no swimming cause of the tide but it is a beautiful beach. This island tour is probably the way to go. I just booked it myself. If it is like the old one, you can walk around the entire island in 10 minutes. Pretty cool.