I have never been on an overnight cruise, but I’m about to try one out this coming March-April. Eric and I will be on a Western Caribbean 7-day cruise on the Norwegian Spirit. This was kind of a rough year financially, so I’m proud that we saved up the money to do this. I’m not very good at saving, so now I feel inspired to save for other things I/we want – namely, a home down payment that we hope to put to good use in 5 (or more) years. If we dig this cruise, we just may become one of “those couples” that cruises every single year! After all, there are some rather inexpensive ones out there. Some leave right from our local port of Baltimore, and others are simple weekend cruises that will allow you a chance to “get away from it all” without taking any leave or spending too much.
Here are our ports for this cruise:
Origin: New Orleans
Gimme gimme gimme that New Orleans soul. I haven’t been there since my first stay of little over a week (June 2007) when I added it to my list of cities that will never leave my heart! The food and drink are to die for and there’s no shortage of things to do and see. Just thinkin’ about some jambalaya and a mojito at Pat O’Brien’s makes my mouth water. I can’t wait to introduce Eric to all of this. We plan to stay the night before we leave port so that we have some time to enjoy ourselves. If you’re looking for a great city to spend a long weekend in, or even just a weekend, get thee to the Crescent City!
Costa Maya, Mexico
Everything I’ve read indicates this is a smaller port, in Quintana Roo state. There are many Mayan ruins to explore here. We have an excursion to the Chacchoben Mayan ruins with The Native Choice.
Roatan is the largest of Honduras’ Bay Islands. Often touted as an excellent spot for snorkeling and scuba diving, it is home to Barefoot Divers which offers shallow water beginners’ lessons. I would love to learn to scuba – my sister is an accomplished certified diver – and so would Eric, so we are considering booking lessons with them. We may choose to learn scuba in Cozumel instead.
This is one city that I’d heard much about over the years and is famous for many things. We are considering a day trip to Xcaret, an ecological park, or a catamaran tour out into the ocean where we can snorkel and just relax on the beach before heading back toward the U.S. Scuba diving beginner lessons are cheaper here, but only go to 25 feet.
One thing I haven’t considered is whether or not I need to get pesos, etc. out at the airport, or if most of the businesses in these touristy ports will take USD. Another question I’ll need to answer is whether or not one can access public beaches at these ports should we feel like swimming following our non-beach excursions. As you can see, I’m completely ignorant when it comes to cruises, but doing the research is a lot of fun.
Have you been to any of these ports or even on this same cruise? Do you have any tips for a first-time cruiser like me?