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Old 11-13-2007, 08:04 AM
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Hi Just reading the reviews. We were planning on taking a snorkle excursion but just read the waters are full of sea urchins. Is that for all the waters? doesnt sound like fun to me? Should we just stay on ship? Any good news re: Jamaica?
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Old 11-13-2007, 09:31 AM
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Have been to Jamaica on 3 cruises and have actually enjoyed all 3 visits. Those who went snorkling enjoyed the experience and had been advised to watch out for sea urchins. As far as I am aware no one had a problem. We found that while some sellers were a bit 'in your face' they did stop when we said 'no thank you'. We found the Jamaican people to be fun loving and friendly. Our cash was well locked away, but we did bargain in the markets and found some good handcraft souvenirs. If you are at all in doubt take a ship's tour.
It seems a shame to condemn the whole island for the actions of a few. We will certainly be going ashore again on our next visit.
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Old 11-13-2007, 10:04 AM
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If you're doing a snorkel from a boat, you probably won't have any trouble with the sea urchins. We did a catamaran sail/snorkel through Princess the last time we were there and thoroughly enjoyed it. Jamaica is a beautiful island and it is a shame that a few ruin it for the rest. Just make sure you take an organized tour and stay with the crowd from the ship and you should be fine. Like any big city in the US, be aware of your surroundings. You're in a foreign country, but they do speak and understand English. I would advise doing a ship tour because the vendors have been checked by the cruise line. I enjoy Jamaica, my hubby not so much, but if you've never been, don't stay on the ship.
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Old 11-14-2007, 06:38 AM
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When is your cruise? We will be in Ocho Rios on 12/17 and do plan on getting off the boat. We will not be snorkeling, just because I think the snorkeling will be a lot better in Grand Cayman and Cozumel, so we want to do something different in Jamaica. But if you do snorkel, in my experience, it's not too hard to avoid sea urchins, since they are stationary, unlike jellyfish! (We once snorkeled in Key Largo through something that reminded me of the jellyfish scene in Finding Nemo, and it was terrifying! But somehow, none of us got stung.) My husband did have a run-in with a sea urchin in Aruba, and his thumb was red and swollen like an infected splinter for the rest of the week. But we had drifted too far into shallow water and he reached out to block himself from being pushed into a rock by the waves.... Anyway, I agree that if you did a boat tour, and just keep yourself a safe distance from the coral/etc (which you should do anyway) that you should be fine.

We are going to book a private tour in Ocho Rios, and are not planning to do any shopping, so I'll let you know how we do at avoiding some of the negative experiences you read about. I would hate to stay on the boat and not see Jamaica at all.
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Old 11-14-2007, 04:58 PM
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mlsunshine, I have a couple of inquiries about your post but am not able to figure out the pm system on this site ( a little embarrassing). Maybe you could help me out!!
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Old 11-20-2007, 07:03 AM
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Thanks you so much for your replies. Still not sure about Jamaica. We are going on March 8-08. Ill watch for replies to see how recent visits turn out. We plan to snorkel in Cozumel as well. I hear Jamaica is beautiful but I am still concerned for safety reasons.
 
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