What's the best time to cruise to Mexico? I'm talking about Baja or Riveria. We are thinking about taking the kids with us this coming year, but don't know when. We've been told the summer is too hot (and is more expensive). We recently returned from our very first cruise. We went to the Caribbean on Holland America. LOVED it! How does Mexico compare (as far as beaches)? Thank you!
I have cruised to Mexico at all times and seasons of the year (both Pacific and Caribbean sides). The weather and beaches are beautiful at all times of the year. The only difference would be the hurricane season in the Caribbean that runs from June 1 to November 30. During this time, you just have to stay glued to the weather channel and hope that you win the hurricane lottery.
We will be on the Pacific side. Is the water the pretty blue (like Caribbean) or blah blue like Southern California? (I live in California, so I'm allowed to say that.)
If you had to pick a month to go, which month would you pick? I'd like to plan a cruise between February and June, but I just don't have any way to narrow it down. We'd like somewhat warm weather (not too hot, but not too cold). I'd cruise anywhere at anytime, but since this will be the first time for the kids and our first time on another line (probably Carnival), I'd like to make it the best possible timeframe for weather and itinerary. We do NOT want to go to Catalina, but if anyone has any suggestions for good ports, I'd appreciate it. I've started the port research, but there is so much to read and work is so busy right now. Thanks again for any and all advice. Any little tidbit about ANYTHING in Mexico (Pacific side - LOVED Cozumel on the Caribbean side) would be great.
The water is bluer than South Cal. We have done the Spirit in Feb and in Oct, also the Pride in Oct. The weather is great anytime, but will not be as humid in the time period you want to travel. In Feb Mar you can get some storm in Southern Ca when can cause some rough seas for the first day or two. After than you should be fine.
The Pacific side of Mesxico is not as "pretty blue" as the Caribbean side; but I wouldn't call it "blah blue" eithe. It can get a little brownish after a heavy rain, just like Southern California, but your cruise window (Feb.-June) misses the rainy season.
You don't have to worry about "too cold"; it is never cold in Mexico--along the coast--barely even cool. The only place it can be a little chilly is your first day or two out of L.A. and on your return. We like March for the Mexican Riviera--not to cool on the trip down, and not to hot when we get there.
Only the 3 or 4 day cruises go to Catalina. If you take the "classic" 7 day, you don't have any choice of itineraries; they all go to Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan, and Cabo San Lucas--all wonderful ports. You only get some variety if you go to a 10 day--there are a number of possibilities then. But they are all interesting and fun ports.
We were actually looking into the 5 day one on the Elation. It goes to Cabo and Ensenada from San Diego. We aren't sure if the kids will enjoy cruising, but they are begging us to take them this time since they have had to listen to us ooooh and aaaaah over the cruise we recently returned from. We thought a shorter itinerary might be better for them, but not too short.
We took the eight day in the Carnival Spirit in March, and there were loads of kids, all having a great time. This is a beautiful ship (though a bit on the garish side) with very large staterooms, very good food, and a lot of entertainment areas. Teatime on sea days is also lovely. I have not been on the Elation, but I have heard it is an older, smaller ship that does not compare to the Spirit. I am not sure if Elation has laundry rooms for guest use, but I do know the Spirit does, and I would think that cruising with kids, this is important. By the way, of all Mexican ports, Zihuatenajo was by far our favorite, and we have been on both itineries that f-mattox described.
The Spirit Cruise to Acapulco, Manzanillo, and Zihuatenajo/Iztapa is very nice. We have done it twice.
Next Oct 18th they are adding a day and a port Puerto Vallarta. We were really looking at that cruise, however just could not work those days into our schedules.
We have not done the Elation, but have talked to many who have. They all enjoyed the ship.