I'm leaving on the Elation July 3rd out of Mobile and have been looking for some excursions for my Dad and I. I was looking at one that I took years ago through Commodore. It was called Lethe Village tour. I loved it back then and thought we could re-visit it. However, I came across a frightening article about an incident that occurred a few years back where passengers were held at gunpoint and robbed on that very same tour. Can someone reccommend a safe tour for us? Jamaica is having some issues right now and I'm just not sure about leaving the ship this time. We did go on a taxi tour last June though and I had my 9 year old with us then...reading that story has really gotten to me. I'm not one to get easily scared...Thanks in advance!
1996-Commodore Enchanted Isle
1995-Commodore Enchanted Seas
1992-Commodore Enchanted Seas
You'll be leaving the ship as Lisa P and I board with our families on July 10.
Jamaica...truly my least favorite place in the Caribbean. I hate to say it but it is the truth.
I will say that hundreds of these tours happen every year and you only hear about the one time something bad happened. To their credit the Jamaican travel authorities have stepped up policing at the popular destinations. Still it's a shame that someone has to go on a tour and see guards standing around with automatic weapons. It really takes the luster off the moment.
All I can say is to stick with a tour through the cruise line. That doesn't guarantee safety, but it beats doing anything on your own.
As for us - when we stop at Mo Bay on the Elation I plan to spend the day on the ship. It isn't that I am afraid, it's just that I truly don't like the place.
Originally posted by luvs2sail:
Thanks for the reply Dave. I hate we're going to miss you. After reading that article, I've been thinking we may just stay on the ship and take it easy!
If we all were afraid to go anywhere after reading an article, most of us wouldn't leave our homes. Right now there's unrest in Haiti, that's not stopping people from getting off the ship at Labadee. Look at the incident in Aruba several years ago. There have been murders of tourist in St Thomas. Things are going to happen. There's no reason you can't take a ships escorted tour and enjoy your day in Jamaica. There are also several of the all-inclusive resorts that offer day passes.
I haven't been back to Ocho since 1996. Boy, that was a trip! I've read better comments since they have the village now. The last time shocked me with all the aggressiveness of the vendors. I did a ship tour that included a rain forest type tour, a shopping stop, and Dunn's. I was approached 3 times to buy drugs. After finishing the falls climb it was total harassment going through vendors to get back to the bus.
One guy saw me glance at a hand carved elephant and absolutely would not give up! I told him I didn't have any money on me which was true. He said he'd take my Durham Bulls baseball shirt I was wearing. I took it off and gave it to him as I hadn't paid anything for it anyway. I figured a decent trade since the elephant was priced at $50.
So now I'm back on the bus without a shirt and my group is asking where is my shirt? They all laughed at me. Another true story from my cruising experience archives.
LHP, I don't worry too much about the violence in Kingsport either as long as it doesn't spread to Bristol.
We've been to Ocho Rios 5 times. Each has gotten progressivekly better. 3 times to the falls - and the last time there were no vendors there following you around. Quite an improvement. The last trip, halfway off the pier, I was offered a wheelchair. Since it is such a long walk, I took the offer. We asked about what we could do there and he took us along side the pier near the water and found a boat ride for us. We were quite satisfied with it. About an hour and a half ride around the shore, saw homes, beaches, divers, etc. The two men were quite personable, took pictures with us and talked. No regrets but I am sure many would say we shouldn't have done that.