We took a cruise to the Caribbean and saw some beautiful beached, experienced new food and living conditions and saw a lot of historical sites that shaped the cultures of the area.
As my readers know, I can walk a few hundred feet before the back pain becomes quite intense, so going places that can accommodate my scooter is something I look for. At the time we just decided to take it as it came; a decision I do not regret.
Before I get off on the wrong foot, let me explain why this is Caribbean Cruises 1.
If you have not already looked for a cruise in the Caribbean, when you do you will find that there are a lot to choose from. Cruise 1 goes on one of them, but we expect to go on another cruise and that will be Caribbean Cruise 2. Could there also be a 3 and 4?
In a search of Caribbean Cruises I found the following:
At the time of this writing, cruises leaving US ports are from Boston, Massachusetts; New York, NY; Bayonne, New Jersey; Baltimore, Maryland; Miami, Orlando, Fort Lauderdale, Tampa and Jacksonville, Florida; Charleston, South Carolina; Mobile, Alabama; New Orleans, Louisiana; San Juan, Puerto Rico; Galvaston and Corpus Christy, Texas as well as the foreign ports of Oranjestad, Aruba; Bridgetown, Barbados; Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas, U.S.V.I.; St. Martin, French Antilles . The cruises last for from 4 days (see previous Post Party Cruises), to 14+ day vacations.
The cruise lines include Carnival, Princess, Norwiegan, Celebrity Cruise, Royal Caribbean, Holland America, Disney Cruise Line, MSC, Costa, Windstar, Fathom (to Cuba), Oceania Cruises, Azamara Club Cruises, Cunard Lines, Sea Dream Yacht Club, Crystal Cruises, Silversea, Regent Seven Seas, Viking Ocean Cruises, Seabourn and probably more.
I would love to say I have been on each and every cruise and each and every Cruise Line, but sadly that is not the case. I can tell you about what I know for sure and perhaps I can get some of you to review or add comments related to this blog.
In the Caribbean one thing to consider is the weather. Hurricanes are possible from June to November, but there are areas that see them very rarely and others more frequently. Tap here to get some information. In addition, the Caribbean can be hot and humid at times and attention needs to be paid to the sunscreen and hats.
So, once you decide that you are going, you need to pick the cruise you want to go on. That can be a daunting task, especially since you know little or nothing about the territory. Throwing a dart at a map may be the best way, but if not, here is a suggestion.
The one thing you need to do is look at the tourist stuff on the web. Unless you have a particular place to go, list out all of the possible ports and then, one by one look at them. Have in mind what is important: beaches, snorkeling, shopping, history, food, gardens, wildlife, or RUM, just to name a few. You might think that this will be it, but you have only just begun. Since we are looking for people that can handle some special transportation needs, you will need to contact tour companies where you want to go, or resign yourself to taking what you can get; which, in many cases, will be very little. Even when there are tour companies that can accommodate your needs, they will probably book up well in advance of your arrival.
One last thing. When you find the tours to take be sure that you know when your ship ports and sails. If you miss your departure or your arrival time, you might just have problems. Allow yourself time to get to and from, and enjoy your experience.
I have found that the ADA cabins are not all that spacious, unless you get the more expensive upgrades. The power outlets were 120v which are compatible with US chargers, but there were only a couple of single outlets in the room. I used the USB power outlets I installed on my scooter to charge the cellphones, and other outlets to charge the camera battery packs; have a few extra camera batteries charged and ready at all times; leave a set on a charger in your cabin during the day so you will have them no matter what. I would suggest that you pack a small 120v power strip so that you have enough capacity to take care of all your battery needs during the cruise.
I am currently working on collecting list of tour providers that can handle scooters and chairs in the cruise ports of the Caribbean, but so far it would appear that there is very little for those of us that must have mobility vehicle transportation. Watch your email for updates in this regard.
The next post will outline the first cruise we took in the Caribbean.