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Shore Excursions Snorkeling, SCUBA, sightseeing - discuss ports and activities

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Old March 8th, 2009, 10:37 PM
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Default Key West, Grand Cayman, Ocho Rios

We are a family of 4 on our first cruise in June. I'm trying to figure out shore excursions. I think we want to do Sting Ray City at Cayman Islands. My question is when you get off at each port, are you close to a beach? Can you just hang out for the day without any planned activities.
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Old March 9th, 2009, 09:21 AM
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Some beaches are right near the post, unfortunately, not with the ports you mentioned. I would recommend doing some kind of excursion in Jamaica, not much by the port and not a beach within walking distance, which I wouldn't recommend there anyway.

Key West is a lovely town however to walk around in. You may find a beach close by, but lots to do there, including a butterfly farm, etc.

I'm sure you'll love Sting Ray City, thats the thing to do in Grand Cayman.
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Old March 10th, 2009, 02:38 PM
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Yes definately do the Sting Rays on Grand Caymen. Grand Caymen is a tender port, which means that the ship will anchor out into the harbor and you will be shuttled to the town dock, no beaches within walking distance on Grand Caymen. I would highly recommend looking into booking your sting ray tour with Captain Marvin, he is great.
Ocho Rios- look into an excursion to Dunns River Falls with Peat Taylor or do the Canopy Tour with the ship
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Old March 10th, 2009, 04:43 PM
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I agree with Stingrays in Cayman and Dunns River Falls!
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Old March 11th, 2009, 11:04 AM
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Thanks for the great information. I am so excited about this cruise!!! I think the canopy tour and the Dunn's River falls sounds great in Jamaica! We are looking into booking a charter boat to Stingray City and Rumpoint Beach at Grand Cayman as we are part of a group of 35 and everyone seems to want to do that one. I think I won't book an excursion in Key West and just see the town. I had originally wanted to save money and only do one shore excursion but now I'm thinking this may be my only chance to experience these things. It may be worth the extra expense for the memories.
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Old March 11th, 2009, 12:03 PM
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Hi Minnie,
Yep, you are so right, may as well do some different things while on this trip. As much as you try to plan the next one, why wait to see things. Have a wonderful time. You'll love visiting Rum point, the water there is absolutely like a post card, lovely beach too.
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Old March 15th, 2009, 07:19 AM
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Minnie just got back from a cruise with the exact same ports!!

We had the sting ray booked for GC also! Captain Marvin was wonderful as we had no problem tendering in, but the sting ray city is on the other side of the island. It was way too windy on the other side and the government closed it. You might want to have a plan B just in case. Cap. Marvin was so gracious and accomodating helping us.

We did an island tour for 20.00 and then got dropped off at 7 mile beach. It was fun. My 3 girlfriends were disappointed as I was the only that had done the stingray excursion before.

So if you have a chance do it!!! I have been back 2 times to GC since my first time of being able to do the stingrays and both times after could not due to wind!
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Old March 15th, 2009, 08:32 AM
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The group I am traveling with has 36 people and we have decided to charter a boat to do the Stingrays and Rum Point Beach at Grand Cayman through Grand Cayman Cruise Excursions (Island Marketing, ltd). I think it will be a catamaran (Buccaneer or Hannibal). Does anyone have any experience with this tour company? Also how much does it cost to see the butterfly farm at Key West? I think my daughter would love that. Thanks for all your help!!!
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Old March 15th, 2009, 11:40 AM
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Default I am also going to GC and Ohco Rios...

I've heard it is best not to book through Carnival, as you can easily find the same tours on shore. Any thoughts. I am interesred in doing the Martha Brae tour in Ocho Rios, and the Rum Point tour in GC sounds good (although I don't think I've seen it on the Carnival site)
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Old March 15th, 2009, 01:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Donna
Hi Minnie,
Yep, you are so right, may as well do some different things while on this trip. As much as you try to plan the next one, why wait to see things. Have a wonderful time. You'll love visiting Rum point, the water there is absolutely like a post card, lovely beach too.
How long does it take to drive to Rum Point?

Thanks
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Old March 15th, 2009, 02:02 PM
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I believe that the trolley stops at the Butterfly Farm in Key West. You can book the trolley on the spot...a lot cheaper than through the ship. It is a bit away from the main area around Malllory Square. A lot of "tours" are within a block or two of that, but not the butterflies. If I still have my map, I'll look it up for you, but it has been several years, so don't count on my having it. You also might want to try googling for it.
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Old March 15th, 2009, 07:55 PM
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Hi Minnie,
Most people take a boat to rum point, its way longer driving. On a boat, you pass by Sting Ray City....
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Old March 16th, 2009, 09:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Donna
Hi Minnie,
Most people take a boat to rum point, its way longer driving. On a boat, you pass by Sting Ray City....
Thanks Minnie,
I assume there is a tour available at the Dock for this. Thanks for the info.
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Old March 17th, 2009, 02:08 PM
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Minnie, in Jamaica you are going to have to make a choice between the Canopy Tour and Dunns River Falls, as you probably wont have the time to do both.
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Old March 17th, 2009, 02:11 PM
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Minnie, Island Marketing LTD is a very reputable company to deal with.
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Old March 17th, 2009, 02:21 PM
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I leave on the 28th and will be in GC and Ocho Rios so i'm going to piggy back on this. We are doing SC on GC, should i book something online or should i wait to book with someone at the port in the event that wind cancels the excursion?

In Ocho Rios, I've been told by numerous friends and relatives that I will be extremely frustrated and board at ocho rios because of the volume of people (just my personality i guess) so we are considering just a beach day. There is an excursion for, i think, $50 to do a beach day for 4 hours with unlimited drinks and food as well as entertainment. Has anyone done this and is it worth the time/money?
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Old March 17th, 2009, 02:21 PM
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I leave on the 28th and will be in GC and Ocho Rios so i'm going to piggy back on this. We are doing SC on GC, should i book something online or should i wait to book with someone at the port in the event that wind cancels the excursion?

In Ocho Rios, I've been told by numerous friends and relatives that I will be extremely frustrated and board at ocho rios because of the volume of people (just my personality i guess) so we are considering just a beach day. There is an excursion for, i think, $50 to do a beach day for 4 hours with unlimited drinks and food as well as entertainment. Has anyone done this and is it worth the time/money?
I want to have a set plan in Ocho Rios as i've heard the locals can be somewhat bothersome and i really don't want to be put into an uncomfortable situation on my vacation.
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Old June 2nd, 2009, 09:06 AM
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Default Advice too needed!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jdudley13
I leave on the 28th and will be in GC and Ocho Rios so i'm going to piggy back on this. We are doing SC on GC, should i book something online or should i wait to book with someone at the port in the event that wind cancels the excursion?

In Ocho Rios, I've been told by numerous friends and relatives that I will be extremely frustrated and board at ocho rios because of the volume of people (just my personality i guess) so we are considering just a beach day. There is an excursion for, i think, $50 to do a beach day for 4 hours with unlimited drinks and food as well as entertainment. Has anyone done this and is it worth the time/money?
I want to have a set plan in Ocho Rios as i've heard the locals can be somewhat bothersome and i really don't want to be put into an uncomfortable situation on my vacation.
So we're on the same boat I believe. I kind of feel the same way that you do concerning Ocho Rios but DH and DS want to do something adventerous while in the Caribbean.

I was looking at "Fat Fish Adventures" in Ocho Rios. They advertise the Dunns River tour and this ATV adventure. Anyone know how that is and is it safe to do that tour as far as where they go? Thanks;-)

Susan in NY
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Old August 16th, 2009, 07:13 PM
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We did this cruise in late July/Early August.
Jamica:
We throughly enjoyed the trip to Dunns Falls and the afternoon at the Bamboo Beach club. You sit on the beach in lounge chairs while they bring you jerk chicken and other foods, acohol and non-alcoholic drinks right to your lounge chair on the beach. They have dancers on the beach for you to watch if you get tired of the beautiful beach and ocean. Very decadent. And highly recommended.

Grand Caymans:
You have to do the Stingray tour. It's one of the best experiences you will ever have kissing a stingray, holding a in the wild stingray. Very cool.

I couldn't find a private or through Carnival a tour to Hell and the stingrays that you didn't have to go to the turtle farm. You can get a trip to hell. You can get a trip for the Stingray's but if you want to do both you have to go to the turtle farm.
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Old August 17th, 2009, 02:49 PM
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I avoided the Turtle Farm for years, but finally broke down and went there last year. I was very surprised that it was far more interesting than I had expected. Haven' t been to Hell. Have managed to avoid that and plan to continue avoiding it.
LOVED the Sting Rays!
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