First time cruise

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Nov 9th, 2003, 04:44 AM
  #1
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First time cruise

My wife and I are planning our first cruise this winter. We like golf, the beach, snorkeling, interesting sights (mountains, waterfalls) and more golf. I'm not big on shopping/browsing (my wife is - I just don't want to have that sinking feeling when I see the credit card bill). What Carribean area destinations fit our interests? What cruise lines offer the best quality/value/service combination?
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Nov 9th, 2003, 05:30 AM
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If you like golf and more golf, then cruising is not for you. Go to a golf resort in Puerto Rico where you can have golf, snorkeling, beach, and interesting sights.

Most all Caribbean destinations will fit your interests, with the exception of golf -- not to say there are no golf courses in the Caribbean. The Caribbean is more known for its beaches and water sports.

Figure out when you want to go, and look at several cruise ships/itineraries, and do a little research on the destinations. Check to see what shore excursions the ships offer, what sites to see at the destination, price, and go on the internet and book it on your own. A lot cheaper.

If you want quality/value/service, I would chose Celebrity as a first choice, Royal Caribbean second, and Princess third.
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Nov 9th, 2003, 07:06 AM
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Last summer we took a Carib. cruise with Carnival with stops at St. Thomas, Martinique, Barbados and Aruba. There is golf in at least 3 of those ports-not sure about Martinique. And as for shopping there is plenty to do in St. Thomas, Barbados and Aruba. Martinique was the most beautiful IMO and even has a rain forest, mountains and an town, since excavated, that was buried by a volcano around the turn of the century. Don't expect Pompei. I am no expert on snorkeling but there is a sinken WW II German freighter in Aruba that is a good site for fish viewing and I am sure there are plenty others. The cruise seemed to offer snorkeling tours on just about every stop. As for the cruise line we were very pleased with Carnival (Destiny) for just about everything, especially the quality of the food. Hope this helps. Bon voyage! Larry
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Nov 9th, 2003, 07:39 AM
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Yes, Larry, there are probably golf courses on all of those islands. My advise to Steve as a first-time cruiser would be to enjoy the ambiance of each island whether it be the beach, snorkeling, sights or shopping.

As an avid golfer, playing golf while cruising could take up all your limited time in port. The entire ordeal, transportation to/from the ship, waiting for your starting time, and playing a round with bunches of other tourists, could take up to 7 hours. I've experienced it, that's why I leave my sticks at home when I cruise.

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Nov 9th, 2003, 08:16 AM
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I'm with you on that one Budman. I was wondering, a you had noted, if Steve really wants to hit the links as he seems to be an avid golfer. Some folks prefer that to sight seeing. As for me relaxation is key as life has enough sand trips and heavy rough. Cheers, Larry
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Nov 10th, 2003, 04:43 AM
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steve27: If you want to golf so much, you may want to go to Bermuda instead of the Carib. Great golf courses there.
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Nov 10th, 2003, 04:54 AM
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Mary brings up a very good point. Bermuda is a great place to cruise and play golf since the ship is in port for 4 days, between Hamilton & St. George. You'll have plenty of time to play golf and tour the island, beach & snorkel.

Cruise ships are now leaving from New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Charleston, so if you live somewhere on the East Coast, you save on air fare.

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Nov 10th, 2003, 07:36 AM
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Agree with the golf part but what about shopping for Mrs. Steve? Never been to Bermuda but it is not duty free is it?
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Nov 10th, 2003, 07:46 AM
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Mrs. Steve will have a wonderful time shopping in Hamilton, St. George, and the Dockyards. Additionally, they have some wonderful pubs on Bermuda. The Frog & Onion Pub was my favorite.
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Nov 10th, 2003, 08:46 AM
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Thanks Budman. is Bermuda a duty free port? Just curious.
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Nov 10th, 2003, 01:44 PM
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I must agree that for a golfing vacation a cruise may not be your best option.

Steve, if you're looking for the best quality/value/service combination, I'd recommend looking into Radisson Cruiseline (rssc.com). I've cruised on numerous cruiselines and think this is the best overall food and service. They have 2 for 1 fares in the Caribbean now that are a great value! (both the Diamond and Voyager I believe). When you look at what all is included in their fares, I think you'll agree.

We generally alternate between land trips and cruises. Both have something special to offer. Like you, I'm not into shopping! Good luck and welcome to the wonderful world of cruising....you may find it very addictive!
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Nov 10th, 2003, 05:13 PM
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Budman: A 7 hour turnaround isn't appealing for a round of golf. We'll probably keep it to down to 2 rounds over the 7 day period, instead of 3 or 4. I was in Bermuda this past Summer on business and was able to hit the links once with Mrs. Steve. Thanks

Larry: Sightseeing while golfing is part of the enjoyment. Mrs. Steve and I have fond memories of golfing in Maui/Wailea (varied elevations and climate in the same round without feeling like you're hiking). Martinique sounds very good. Thanks.

traveller333: Thanks. I'll look into rssc.com.
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Nov 10th, 2003, 06:42 PM
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Have a great time Steve. Bon voyage!
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