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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 09-16-2009, 09:15 PM
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I was considering the following excursions, but would like some input. So if anybody out there has booked these excursions I would greatly appreciate you feedback.

1 Samana - Sea Lion Encounter $125/ATV Exp. $129
2 Barbados - Beach Break $30
3 St. Lucia - Volcanic expressions& beach $85
4 Antiqua - Beach escape (Run Away Beach)
5 Curacau - Hato cave and Ostrich Farm $59
Sea Aquarium and Beach $59
6 St Thomas - St. Johns Beach Escape $64
St. Johns Tour $54
St. Thomas Jeep @ Beach Safari $59
Megan Bay Beach Getaway $29
Se Trekkin Helmet Dive $89

If you have any additional information regarding these islands I would love to hear them.

Thank you
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Old 09-17-2009, 09:32 AM
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Hi larraine, welcome to Cruise-Chat. If you'll look a little further down the main page, you'll see a Caribbean Port Chat section with all kinds of posts about your ports. You can use your "Find" feature in the upper left hand corner and type in your ports. It will pull up all the posts made about them. Maybe there will be something of interest to you. You have a great itinerary! I've not been to Samana, but the Sea Lion Encounter sounds like a lot of fun. In Barbados, we have always done the Tiami Catamaran Sail/Snorkel, but last year we just grabbed a cab and went to Folkstone Underwater Sea Park. The driver actually dropped us off a little ways down from there. There was a restaurant/bar, nice beach with chairs for rent, and we snorkeled from there up to Folkstone and back. He charged us $90/each way. St. Lucia is a beautiful island, we've done a few snorkels there, we went to the Pitons on one of them and it was a good snorkel. Last year we went to Pigeon Island. There was a charge to get into the park, I believe it was $10/pp. The cab driver charged us $85/each way. Last year in Antigua we did a great tour on our own. We went outside of the terminal area and negotiated a tour to Shirley Heights, Nelson Dock Yard and a nice beach with restaurant/bar for $25/pp. Curacao we've done snorkels and a land tour, but not the cave. Last time we were rained out, so we just did a little shopping. St. Thomas you picked a great excursion, Trunk Bay is a beautiful beach, one of the top 10 in the world. There is a self-guided snorkel trail about 50 yards from shore. The water is crystal clear and calm (unless there's a storm). Please check out the Caribbean Port Chat section. Best wishes and congratulations on your upcoming cruise!
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Old 09-19-2009, 05:49 PM
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Hi larraine. What a great variety of tours you selected!

Should you decide to stay in St. Thomas, you can easily visit Megan's Bay on your own for less $, plus you'd be on your own time. There will be plenty of taxis at the pier, and you can arrange with the same driver for a return trip, if you'd like.

I await the feedback you may receive on the Ostrich Farm. That sounds like an interesting excursion, off the beaten path, if you will.
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Old 09-20-2009, 06:24 AM
 
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We did Megan's by taxi and it was the best way to do it; on our own and our time, not rushed.
We also like St John's and the snorkeling there, its just beautiful. On Curacao, we did the sunken ship snorkel and the ride there and the boat ride were excellent; lots of beautiful fish to see. We also walked the area upon our return and the colors of the building is just striking. Our newest favorite port.

Peterl
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Old 09-20-2009, 07:49 AM
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Thank for the input. The excursion you had taken sounds wonderful, is that something you did on your own or through the ship?

Larraine
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Old 09-20-2009, 07:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by LisaP:
Hi larraine. What a great variety of tours you selected!

Should you decide to stay in St. Thomas, you can easily visit Megan's Bay on your own for less $, plus you'd be on your own time. There will be plenty of taxis at the pier, and you can arrange with the same driver for a return trip, if you'd like.

I await the feedback you may receive on the Ostrich Farm. That sounds like an interesting excursion, off the beaten path, if you will.

Hi Lisa

I really appreciate your feedback. I am looking forward to adventuring and discovering what the islands have to offer. I will certainly return with a review of our excursions!

Thank you
Larraine
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Old 09-20-2009, 07:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by penny3333:
Hi larraine, welcome to Cruise-Chat. If you'll look a little further down the main page, you'll see a Caribbean Port Chat section with all kinds of posts about your ports. You can use your "Find" feature in the upper left hand corner and type in your ports. It will pull up all the posts made about them. Maybe there will be something of interest to you. You have a great itinerary! I've not been to Samana, but the Sea Lion Encounter sounds like a lot of fun. In Barbados, we have always done the Tiami Catamaran Sail/Snorkel, but last year we just grabbed a cab and went to Folkstone Underwater Sea Park. The driver actually dropped us off a little ways down from there. There was a restaurant/bar, nice beach with chairs for rent, and we snorkeled from there up to Folkstone and back. He charged us $90/each way. St. Lucia is a beautiful island, we've done a few snorkels there, we went to the Pitons on one of them and it was a good snorkel. Last year we went to Pigeon Island. There was a charge to get into the park, I believe it was $10/pp. The cab driver charged us $85/each way. Last year in Antigua we did a great tour on our own. We went outside of the terminal area and negotiated a tour to Shirley Heights, Nelson Dock Yard and a nice beach with restaurant/bar for $25/pp. Curacao we've done snorkels and a land tour, but not the cave. Last time we were rained out, so we just did a little shopping. St. Thomas you picked a great excursion, Trunk Bay is a beautiful beach, one of the top 10 in the world. There is a self-guided snorkel trail about 50 yards from shore. The water is crystal clear and calm (unless there's a storm). Please check out the Caribbean Port Chat section. Best wishes and congratulations on your upcoming cruise!
Thank you Penny with your help in navigating through this forum. I appreciate the help and your suggestions!

Larraine
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Old 09-21-2009, 05:16 AM
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This is more of a question in which cruise you will be cruising that sound like an interesting route...
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Old 09-22-2009, 07:00 AM
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Larraine, save your money and do not do the Sea Lion Encounter in Samana. My mother and I did it and were greatly disappointed. I believe we paid $135 per person and it was supposed to last for 4 hours. It lasted an hour, 90 mins at the most.

When we arrived at Samana we went to an outdoor site and everyone in the group sat on little stumps in a semi-circle. The guide gave a short talk on sea lions and then they brought a sea lion out. She, led by a handler, walked by all of us allowing us to touch and stroke her. Then she went and sat on her own perch and one at a time we fed her a fish and got a kiss from her. Then we went in the water.

I was really disappointed with this portion. First of all, there is no privacy. Other people on the beach can see what we were doing. Granted they couldn't touch the sea lions, but I thought for the amount of money we paid we should get them all to ourselves.

In the water we lined up and a male sea lion was brought out. He swam by each of us and allowed us to stroke him and then he kissed us.

There was no swimming with the sea lions as the excursion description stated. We were told we were not allowed to take pictures. This was because they took their own pictures which they then sold. We did buy a CD of pictures for around $20. Good thing we knew some Spanish because it was hard communicating with the clerk.

During the short talk, the guide had said that a female had given birth recently. I asked if I could look at the baby sea lion--just LOOK at it--and I was told no. I thought this kinda rude. I mean, I paid $135! We didn't go into the building where the sea lions are housed. We only saw the two sea lions. We didn't get to see them really swim. They did a couple tricks.

Overall we were extremely disappointed and learnt that you have be very judicious and read between the lines when reading the tour excursion summaries. I complained to Royal Caribbean and let them know that what the summary said was not what was delivered, but I doubt they changed anything.

I cannot recommend this excursion. If what I have described to you is something you want to do and you don't mind paying $125/$135 for it, then go for it. Like I said, the excursion was 90 minutes at the most (and I'm being generous). After the excursion we just bided our time till the first tender returned several hours later so we could return to the ship. We were not the only ones who were happy to leave Samana as the tender was full.

Samana is a spot on DR where cruise ships drop passengers off. There is really nothing to do there. They say don't drink the water, don't eat the food. There is a beach, beach chairs, water, and a lot of aggressive sellers trying to sell their junk. I was very happy to leave Samana behind and have no plans to ever return.
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Old 09-22-2009, 07:08 AM
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This is Samana:



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