7 day W. Caribbean Freedom shore excursions?
We are leaving in Jan on the 7 day W.Caribbean Freedom cruise. We'll be traveling with three children ages 7 (boy), 5 (girl), and 2 (girl); the 7 and 5 year olds will be turning 8 and 6 while on the cruise. We'll be staying in a family oceanview stateroom. Other family will be traveling with us (grandparents, aunts/uncles) so our total party will total 10. This is our first cruise but the rest of the group have cruised before.
Before the cruise we'll be going to WDW for 2 days. On the ship we plan on going to Chops, the magic show, the ice show, dreamworks breakfast, and taking the kids to the cupcake decorating workshop.
We didn't want to be totally scheduled but rest of the group wants to plan. So, that being said, we'd like to snorkel, would like to have the kids do a dolphin/turtle/sea life encounter at one of the stops, and love mexican food. Don't like hokey...thinking no pirate stuff...but kids would like the animals, hair braiding, shopping.
1) What is the best way to get from either WDW or Orlando airport to the ship? Should we go through RC or some other shuttle like Mears?
2) Labadee - We thought this would be a beach day. However, we've also considered these excursions: Haitian cultural tour at paradise cove and beach break, Sandbar Island Cruise, Malfini Castaway. I know the zip line is the thing to do, but kiddos aren't old enough.
2) Falmouth - How difficult is Dunn's River Falls?? Concerned about children on the rocks...don't need to end up on that when vacations attack tv show. If skipping falls, thinking of doing beach break in Negril or Montego (heard Negril has better beaches but resort that they go to in montego looks nicer). Also considered the dreamer catamaran sail and lagoon snorkel. Open to other suggestions.
3) Grand Cayman - done the least amount of research here. More concerned about Jamaica and not going off solo there. What would be the thing to "not miss" at Grand Cayman given the ages?
4) Cozumel - was really looking forward to mexico until reading some posts. Thinking of chankanaab or just doing the beach. Would really love a great recc for mexican restaurant (margaritas, guac, and salsa please!). Should we use pessos in Mexico or just dollars.
Not opposed to doing non-RC excursions as long as reputable, except one in our group is concerned about what if delayed/ship leaving.
5) On the ship, anyone have experience with the babysitting? We aren't as worried about the older two, but there doesn't seem to be much for our 2 year old unless she is with us. It looks like there is group and in-room sitting available and a kid's club (keep them entertained while we eat dinner program). Anyone use any of these services and have feedback.
Thanks for any thoughts and suggestions!