Cruising Stops

Oct 26th, 2009, 02:32 PM
  #1  
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Cruising Stops

Will be visiting Grand Cayman,Ocho Rios and Cozumel in Mid November so suggestions of things to do , see and beaches to swim would be appreciated as well as information of travelling around these islands would be welcome.

If island would be best to purchase jewellery
clonard is offline  
Oct 26th, 2009, 06:55 PM
  #2  
 
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cozumel has lots of silver. all shopping is duty free. lots for sale besides silver. try to go snorkeling on the chankanaab reef. it's the 3rd largest on earth extending all the way to hondorus.
grand cayman has a nice botanical garden. wonderful snorkeling/diving. a stingray city tour is a good choice. rum point is a good place to spend the day but is a 45 min ride each way.
virginia is offline  
Oct 27th, 2009, 08:49 AM
  #3  
 
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I find that shopping is usually pretty good in Grand Cayman, but there are a lot of big jewelry stores in the open-air mall in Ocho Rios (which is a short walk from the cruise pier). I've never been to Cozumel, but the dollar is strong in Mexico, so I would expect prices (especially for silver) to be favorable there. Not sure about duty-free goods like watches.

But the truth is that gold is so expensive now that it's not a good buy anywhere. And I just don't see such good buys on jewelry anymore. Perhaps you'd save a bit on diamonds or amber.

In Jamaica, I'd recommend a shore excursion from your ship. You don't want to drive there. If you just want to drink and lay by the pool or beach, you can do that right at the mall at Margaritaville. But there are alot of great activities within proximity to Ocho Rios---almost anything you could imagine, and the best tour operators is Chukka Caribbean, which is headquartered just west of town a couple of miles. A couple of miles further is Dunn's River Falls, which is touristy but quite fun. You could easily take a taxi there and not buy a shore excursion, but you need to hire a guide to help you walk up the falls.

I love Grand Cayman,a nd snorkeling with stingrays is a great and popular activity there. But the island has one of the Caribbean's most beautiful beaches, and you can do that without buying an expensive shore excursion. A public bus can take you up to a nice spot on the beach (just go beyond the Marriott) for very little money. Or you can shop in George Town. But it's a tender port, which is a pain.

I don't know Cozumel, but the island is known for diving and snorkeling and its proximity to Maya ruins. Anything along those lines will be excellent.
doug_stallings is offline  
Oct 28th, 2009, 06:08 AM
  #4  
KVR
 
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We've done this route in 2007. Also been to Cozumel 2 other times and Grand Cayman once.

In Cozumel you can take a taxi to one of the beach clubs; Playa Sol, Playa Maya, Mr. Sanchos or Playa San Francisco. They have an all inclusive option for food and drinks. Non moterized water sports. Motorized water sports and massages for an addtional fee.

Or you can take a taxi to Chankanaab Park. Good if you like to snorkel. They have beach chair service for their restuarant and bar. Food was very good and inexpensive.

There is a shopping complex by the cruise pier with a Sr. Frogs and Carlos and Charlies. If your adventures, rent a car and drive around the "wild side" of the Island. Can't really swim in the ocean on that side as it's rough, but there are several beach bars to stop at.

The most popular tour in Grand Cayman is to swim with the sting rays and it offers two other snorkel stops. Capt. Marvin, Sotos and Red Sail Sports offer good trips. You can also do an Island tour to see some of the more touristy spots. tropicana-tours.com is a good company. Shopping is good. Buy a few rum cakes to take home. Most souvinors are "pirate" related. Rum Point is about 45 minutes away from the cruise pier. You'll have to rent a car if you want to go there. There are also several spots on 7 Mile Beach if you just want a beach day.

We never made it to Ocho Rios as the Captian of our ship decided not to stop. Cruise shippers seem to get harrassed a lot coming off the pier, which puts many people off. However, I do suggest that you take a tour and see the Island. Attractions like Dunn Rivers Falls, Coboya, Fern Gulley, and Shaw Park Garden are all worth seeing. Usually the tour ends with a stop to Margaritaville, which is set in a shopping complex. We are finally going to Ocho Rios next year, but on a land vacation.

Check out cruisecritic.com under their ports of call section. Great info.
KVR is offline  
Oct 28th, 2009, 01:03 PM
  #5  
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With regard toyour comments re Cozumel and the various beach clubs do you have to book these in adavance and if so how do you go about ?
Can you just turn up and what are the costs involved
Do you have favourite to recommend
clonard is offline  
Oct 28th, 2009, 05:28 PM
  #6  
KVR
 
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You can book on-line before you go either directly with the beach club or a tour operator. I'm sure you can walk right up and pay the entrance fee when you get there also.

Here's a couple of links to get you started:

www.cozumel-tours.com/beach-breaks.htm

www.mrsanchos.com

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/forumdisplay.php?f=210

I think Mr. Sanchos is one of the more popular ones as well as the Money Bar.

I don't remember an entrance fee for Chankanaab Park, but you can look it up on their web-site. They do not have an AI plan there.
KVR is offline  
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