Those of you who said you wanted to join, but didn’t: You missed out.
I cannot emphasize enough how much fun we had. Even Shannon, who experienced bouts of sea sickness throughout the cruise, had a friggin’ amazing time. How many people can say this? Right? You know what a sign of a mutha f#!@’n good time is? Lack of photos to show such.
I’m notorious for taking tons of photos, but I forget about pulling out the camera when I’m in deep into funness. Yeah, I just made up that noun. I did conscientiously remind myself though that I should be documenting this better for the blog. That’s something I need to improve on for 2013, especially if I want to improve this personal blogging thing.
We started in Fort Lauderdale and ended the cruise there as well. Our itinerary included:
I was a bit worried Reet and Shannon who had never cruised before (and honestly would not have considered cruising this early in their lives anyway) may not enjoy the cruise experience. I had no reason to worry! We met lots of people, were always busy on the ship and did so much at each port (except Princess Cays).
Three of us were in a balcony room, mid ship, deck 11. Shannon experienced motion sickness the whole time. Despite this, she still had a blast, but I don’t think she’ll be going on another cruise any time soon. If you’ve never seen a room that accommodates more than 2, here’s what the bed looks like.
The bed comes out of the ceiling. When you leave the room for the day, the room steward puts the upper bed against the wall (as seen in the picture) and in the evening when he makes up the room again, he pulls it out.
Day 1 – At the sail away party, all we saw were couples and families. Reet said that she could see her and hubby really enjoying the cruise. That night, we went to Skywalkers and met our new friends! Hi Breandan, Hilary (aka Britney), Zack and Paola! All of us love to dance and love to party.
Day 2 – Princess Cays. So glad we slept in this day because Princess Cays was blah, blah, and more blah. We returned to the ship hours before we had to get back on. It was day at the beach, drinking beer and exploring little there is to see.
Day 3 – Sea Day. Reet and I did the wine tasting, which was enjoyable. The wine was nothing to write home about. Shannon, who isn’t much of a wine drinker, decided to sunbathe instead with a couple of other friends we met onboard.
Day 4 – St Maarten. This is the day I lost my voice. We walked around Philipsburg. It was a nice, but we wanted to see Marigot which is supposed to be like France in the Caribbean. By the time we decided to go to Marigot (1pm), we were advised by one of the shop owners that we should leave now and won’t have too much time to spend in Marigot (We had to board the ship at 5 pm). There is only one road to the French side and traffic would’ve been horrendous coming back according to him. When I return, I would head to Marigot first and then work my way back to Philipsburg. There’s not much in Philipsburg, except shops and beach.
After touring the shops and pretending we were going to buy jewelry (one shop lured us in by giving a Heineken just for browsing), we decided to grab lunch and hang out at the beach.
At the beach is when I lost my voice. We went on a banana boat, attached to a jet ski. We fell off the banana boat twice, and I’d do it again for only $15 per person!
Day 5 – St Thomas USVI. This was an amazing day. We did a 2 hr taxi tour for $25 each. We shared the taxi with 4 other cruise passengers. The driver/guide brought us to the top of the island where we served with breathtaking views!
Our first stop was Mountain Top, the highest point in St Thomas. We had to try their “world famous” banana daiquiri. Worked out well because it cured our hangover.
USVI used to belong to Denmark, and thatâ€™s why they drive on the left side of the street here!We then spent the rest of our time at a beach. When you leave the cruise terminal here, youâ€™ll see signs to get a taxi/shop. All the prices are clearly shown, ie how much it is to get downtown, to the beach, tour, etc.
Day 6 -Grand Turk. We went horseback riding for $60 per person per hour. Our guide was telling us how there are only 3500 on that island and Shannon who works at Ryerson said, “Then you must know Demarco.”
Shannon works at the Ryerson registration office for international students and he was a student there. He graduated in June and they lost touch, until this day! Our guide called his friend who is cousins with Demarco and 10 mins later, he arrives.
Demarco played our private guide and chauffeur for the remainder of our time on the island.
Day 7 – At Sea. The first time I’ve experienced sea sickness and this was my 4th cruise. I didn’t do much. I did attend a wine tasting on my own, sat with people from Buffalo. We chatted hockey and football before the official tasting began.
Reet went to hang out on the deck and Shannon went to watch a movie at the theatre. I tried to fight my nausea in bed after the wine tasting and passed out.
Although we travelled together, we separated ways often on the ship during daylight hours. Shannon had lots of fun playing trivia, joining a team of two guys, Team Awesome. She came back saying we HAVE to join her next time. We had planned to, but then other activities got in the way. Shannon, although experienced motion sickness, loved cruising and all that you can do onboard. Poor girl though refuses to step foot on another cruise ship in the foreseeable future.
Karaoke was tons of fun (you get to pick a winner at the end) and so was just people watching.
All three of us love to dance, so every night after dinner, we’d go dancing and it didn’t matter if nobody was on the dance floor, we danced anyway and we would dance the night away. The next day was always hard getting up, but we’d say, “Sleep is for the weak!” My feet were swollen by the end of trip.
There were lots of families onboard, a good chunk of people in their 20s and early 30s. Met a handful of Canadians. The good majority were from the US. Lots of young couples, too who were on their first cruise.
Crew – We loved our waiters we had the first night. They treated me and my friends so well. They were personable and joked with us. We dined in their area every night we could! Our room steward was always so pleasant, too.
There’s already talk amongst our Ruby friends on Facebook about another trip. If it’s going to contain even the slightest elements of this trip, I wouldn’t miss it. Thanks to Reet and Shannon for making this one of the best adventures, ever! Who ever said a cruise in the Caribbean is supposed to be relaxing certainly does not travel like us.
I’d like to end this post with a dedication to Shannon, for toughing it out in the name of fun. LOOOOVE you!