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Your thoughts on this cruise?


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  #1  
January 17th, 2011, 09:49 AM
Jule'sMomInOR's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 4,862
My DH and I are planning to go on a cruise this year. My friend is getting married near Tampa on 11/12 and my parents live in Orlando. We were considering flying in on 11/11 and staying until just after Thanksgiving, and doing a cruise in between.

This itinerary isn't all that exciting since we've done tons of Caribbean cruises and even been to one of the ports, Costa Maya, before. However, we're looking for something that's easy since we'll be bringing our DD, who will be 15 months old at the time. I'm thinking we'll bring my mom as a babysitter, in which case we'll need to book a suite. We like that there will be minimal driving to get to the port.

Norwegian Cruise Line
Norwegian Star

Sun, Nov 13
Tampa 4:00 P
Mon, Nov 14
At Sea
Tue, Nov 15
Roatan 9:00 A 5:00 P
Wed, Nov 16
Belize City 8:00 A 5:00 P
Thu, Nov 17
Costa Maya 8:00 A 5:00 P
Fri, Nov 18
Cozumel 8:00 A 6:00 P
Sat, Nov 19
At Sea
Sun, Nov 20
Tampa 8:00 A
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  #2  
January 18th, 2011, 05:32 AM
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Roatan, Cozumel & Costa Maya will be pretty easy, but Belize might logistically be a bit harder, only because you can't readily get back to the ship if you need to for whatever reason like you can the others. It's about a 20 to 30-minute tender ride from ship to shore and back because they have to drop anchor 5 miles off-shore.

The only thing about your itinerary that I would find to be a real PITA is the need for a car seat. You're going to need one for the taxi's in Roatan & Cozumel since there isn't a whole lot to do right at the pier (unless you dock at Punta Langosta Pier in Cozumel, in which case you get off of the ship and walk right into downtown San Miguel).

You're lucky, this is one of my favorite itineraries to go on. Though I'm not much a fan of Roatan and I'd rather replace it with the Cayman Islands, but it's a really great itinerary.
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  #3  
January 18th, 2011, 07:30 AM
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Never been to those ports, but I *love* NCL.
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  #4  
January 18th, 2011, 08:08 AM
Jule'sMomInOR's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaddiesMama View Post
Roatan, Cozumel & Costa Maya will be pretty easy, but Belize might logistically be a bit harder, only because you can't readily get back to the ship if you need to for whatever reason like you can the others. It's about a 20 to 30-minute tender ride from ship to shore and back because they have to drop anchor 5 miles off-shore.

The only thing about your itinerary that I would find to be a real PITA is the need for a car seat. You're going to need one for the taxi's in Roatan & Cozumel since there isn't a whole lot to do right at the pier (unless you dock at Punta Langosta Pier in Cozumel, in which case you get off of the ship and walk right into downtown San Miguel).

You're lucky, this is one of my favorite itineraries to go on. Though I'm not much a fan of Roatan and I'd rather replace it with the Cayman Islands, but it's a really great itinerary.
Thanks! I am seriously considering bringing my mom to babysit, and if we do, maybe Belize would be a good day for her and my DD to hang out on the ship. My DH and I want to do cave tubing, and I think this is the spot for that.

I'm not sure how each day would go, since I'd want to give my mom at least a couple of days off. Since I've been to Costa Maya, I'd definitely make this one of her days off and DD and I could hang out together. I'd like to have at least 2-3 big excursions where DH and I go off and do our own thing (one being cave tubing and maybe another one snorkeling) but I'd also like to do 1-2 excursions with DD. Do you have any suggestions for excursions a 15 month old would like?

Thanks again - this is really helpful!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Augie View Post
Never been to those ports, but I *love* NCL.
Good to know. I've done Princess, Celebrity, and Carnival but never NCL.
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  #5  
January 18th, 2011, 03:23 PM
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I always advise beach days for things to do in port with infants or toddlers in tow. The thing I noticed before I had kids is that when we would go on shore tours, the smallest kids looked absolutely miserable. They whined and cried, didn't want to sit through bus tours or museum exhibits or Mayan Ruins. Yet whenever we'd go to the beach, the kids we saw were happily playing in the sand. I think Costa Maya would actually make a perfect beach day because the beach is shallow, calm and clear in Majahual or I think they have a manmade beach right at the pier if you don't want to venture into town.

We went last month on our first trip with our daughter and we were going to do both days as beach days - unfortunately, mother nature had alternate plans for us. It was in the 60s in Mexico both days; hardly beach weather. We learned our lesson the first day - the second day, we didn't even bother taking Maddie ashore except for about a half an hour so she could go see the Senor Frogs statues (she's really into frogs - in fact, as I type this, she's playing with a frog).

I've never gone cave tubing because it's not my thing, but Belize is definitely the place to go for it!
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  #6  
January 20th, 2011, 11:23 AM
Jule'sMomInOR's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I get pretty miserable myself on some of those tours where they heard you around like cattle, so I'll definitely be selective about what we bring my DD on.

I can't believe it was 60 in Mexico! The last time we were there was New Year's 2009 and it was like 90 degrees with 95% humidity. This was in Acapulco. When we were in Costa Maya in December 2005 it was about the same.
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  #7  
January 20th, 2011, 12:45 PM
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Weather always turns wacky everywhere we go. If we travel in the winter, a freak snowstorm or record cold temps tend to happen. If we travel in summer, there are usually downpours or hurricanes to deal with. We can never win and have come to accept that we are just cursed when we travel. We went to Disney World in Feb 2009...we had to drive through the aftermath of an ice storm to get there, but that's another story. We'd already left home when they changed the forecast for Florida...highs in the 50s, lows in the 20s. We'd packed for highs in the 70s, lows in the 40s, which was the forecast before we left. Sure enough, when we got there, it was so cold that 1 or 2 of the mornings, Florida had set a new record low temperature.

We don't go on the tours that herd you like cattle either. I can count on one hand the number of tours we've taken through the cruise line and all but 1 of them was just to kill time between debarkation and the airport and cheaper than a taxi hauling us around. I like to book private tours with just a handful of other people. You don't really get a complete cultural experience when you have 70 of your fellow Americans crammed into a tiny space on a tight schedule.
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  #8  
January 20th, 2011, 10:54 PM
Just_Marie's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I've done lots of NCL, and when cruising with kids we usually just rent a cab and spend the time at the beach, tours with little kids aren't fun
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