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Posted: 1/1/2006 6:34:35 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/1/2006 6:36:34 PM EDT by ffsparky26]
Fellow AR15.comers

I am going an cruise to Beleize City Beleize, Cozumel, Mexico, Costa de Maya Mexico and Grand Caymen.

We are crusising on Royal Carribean cruise lines. This cruise is part of my grand father in laws 80th Birthday. He was a Physician and came from old industrial money, he is paying for the cruise for his kids, grand kids and there spouses. We just pay for excusion costs and alcohol.

For his B-Day gift everyone is chipping in for a laptop for him and I got him a Army Air Corp Base Ball hat. He was in the 8th Airforce and flew a lot of missions over Eurpoe in WWII. He is a great guy, my last grandparent died when I was 17 so I have love to hear his stories. His brother was an Army Ranger, he was KIA in WWII and was awarded a Silver Star. If I can get the documentation on his brother I would like to buy a brick for him at the Ranger Memorial at Ft. Benning.

Sorry for the tangent about why we are going on the cruise.

My question is what should we do and see?

What are the security concerns in these places?

We are going snorkeling in Cozumel, Beleize and Grand Caymen. In Grand Caymen we are going to Stingray City. Cozumel and Beleize are all off shore trips.

Costa de Maya we are going on a tour of some Mayan ruins. I have herd of some trouble in at some ruins sites.




Link Posted: 1/1/2006 6:46:04 PM EDT
Here is what I know of the couple of ports you are going to. I hear Beleize is really bad with beggers but the diving and snorkeling is supposed to be absolutly awsome. Grand Cayman and Stingray City are pertty cool. Food on Grand Cayman can be expensive so you may want to plan accordingly. Sorry I do not know much about Mexico.

Good Luck. I am sure you will be fine if you stick with cruise sponsered trips.

Link Posted: 1/1/2006 6:50:44 PM EDT
I would seriously doubt you will have any security issues at all in the places you mention. Condition yellow should get you through the cruise and in Miami/Ft lauderdale (?) If you drive around in South Florida, just be aware that neighborhoods can change drastically within a block or two. (Coconut Grove is a good example. Not so much in South Beach anymore.) Enjoy your cruise. Congrats to Gramps, too. Stay safe
PS. If you have time, and want to try some good Cuban food w/o the "tourist" angle, let me know.
Link Posted: 1/1/2006 7:37:49 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/1/2006 7:38:51 PM EDT by bigsapper]

Originally Posted By ffsparky26:
...
His brother was an Army Ranger, he was KIA in WWII and was awarded a Silver Star. If I can get the documentation on his brother I would like to buy a brick for him at the Ranger Memorial at Ft. Benning.
...


Link to veteran records request...
www.archives.gov/veterans/evetrecs/index.html
Link Posted: 1/1/2006 7:47:25 PM EDT
As mentioned, Diving and snorkeling will be great in most of the locations you mentioned,

I have been to Beleize, Cozumel, and Grand Caymen. The only thing I would warn you about is getting off the main tourist areas in Beleize. There have been (In the last 2-3 years) a couple of muggings reported.

Stay with a group in common areas, aware of your surroundings, use common sence, and you will have a great time... Thank your family for their service.
Link Posted: 1/1/2006 7:48:58 PM EDT
Grand Cayman has the best diving of all of them.
Link Posted: 1/1/2006 8:10:16 PM EDT
Thank your lucky stars you are going with people you know. Wife and I took that cruise for our honeymoon. Out of 2000 people on the there were maybe 50 under the age of 50. It was like we went on vacation with Jerry Seinfield and George's parents. All the old people did was bitch. Thank God most of the time was sent in the cabin.

On a side note, We're going to see the pyramids in Cozumel. Had to meet in the theater before we left to go. The togo is uneven and there is alot of hiking and climbing. Not advised if you have problems walking. Then the director says if you need assistance go to the elavator and the rest of us will take the stairs. Needed to go down two levels to where the boats were. 2/3 of the people take the elevator..... Needless to say we lost 3 people out of group of 20 during the offshore trip. And Thank God for one of them. Rude old bitter lady. Was pissed that the locals spoke spanish instead of English. This was in Mexico.

All in all hope you have a good time and thank your grandfather for his service.
Link Posted: 1/1/2006 8:32:49 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/1/2006 8:39:19 PM EDT by Sukebe]
If you tour the Mayan ruins, pack a BOB, Camera, bottled water, food, T.P., bug spray, hand sanitizer/wipes, sun screen, sun hats and sun glasses are just a few suggestions.

I went on a western Caribe cruise with Carnival that had an excursion to Mayan ruins. The people who were on the excursion got off the ship at Playa Del Carmen IIRC and the ship continued on to Cozumel. The folks on the excursion complained of no food, extreme heat/sun/insects and outragiously priced bottled water. Topped off by a sweltering bus ride down to Cancun to meet the ship.

For water activities, buy yourself a few disposable water proof cameras before you go. They are expensive to rent or buy on the ship. Book your excursions with the travel agent, the good ones like Scuba and Stingray city fill up fast. You can go snorkeling on your own, The ship will have gear to rent, at very high prices.

Also, pack your toiletries and a change of clothes for your first day on the ship in your carry on. It will be a few hours before you get your luggage. And remember, room service is included and available 24 hrs a day.
Link Posted: 1/7/2006 2:14:21 PM EDT
Link Posted: 1/7/2006 2:27:29 PM EDT
Grand Cayman is the nicest/cleanest destination on your trip - plan on enjoying more there than anywhere else.

Also, look into booking excursions yourself, NOT THROUGH THE BOAT. You'll save alot of $$$$$.

For instance, a rented Jeep on Cozumel? $20 all day if you look around downtown. The boat I was on wanted $80 for 2 hours in a regulated "Jeep tour". I took a Jeep, went to Chankanaab park, and snorkeled for $5, drank on the beach and had a ball.....and I didn't have to wait in lines, or be anywhere at any certain time. Then, I drove around the whole island, found some secluded beach, and the wife and I did the nasty on white sand. Try booking that from a boat.
Link Posted: 1/7/2006 2:35:03 PM EDT
Tag for responses. Wife and I are also talking about a 5 night Westen Caribbean cruise with Royal Caribbean this summer.
Link Posted: 1/7/2006 3:41:41 PM EDT
You will love Cozumel. The water there is bath water warm, and clear. Grand Cayman kicks ass fore diving/snorkeling. I went snorkeling there and was amazed by the number of friendly stingrays and tropical fish that swim right up to you.

You may or may not like Royal Carribean, as it depends on what you like in a cruise ship. They used to be pretty nice, but the quality has been slipping quite a bit as they are trying to compete with the lower end Carnival market. Expect lots of misbehaved and unsupervised kids all over the pool decks and herds of fat women stampeding for the buffet line. Princess has been going downhill in the exact same way(they got bought by Carnival). Celebrity is owned by Royal Carribean and they have nicer ships, better food and service, and they are generally a bit more upscale. Celebrity and Cunard are my cruise lines of choice right now.

I just got off the Sapphire Princess today from a 7-day Mexican cruise(Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan, Cabo San Lucas)so I just had the experience. I was not impressed by the food or service.

My next cruise will be a New England trip on the Queen Mary 2. It is probably the nicest ship I have ever been on and I have been on at least 24 cruises. I cant wait to sail on her again.
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