Hello fellow readers and welcome to my post on my upcoming holiday cruising round the Caribbean. Aghhh I am so excited.
Although we are going on a cruise round the Caribbean we are starting our trip in Chicago.
Chicago came into the equation because when I was researching flights, our layover to Puerto Rico was there. I first checked the prices of flying continuously to Puerto Rico and then checked the pricing of stopping off in Chicago for 4/5 days and it actually worked out cheaper to spend a few days in Chicago (We used the multi-trip option)
It didn’t take any convincing me to stop off in Chicago for a few days as I have always wanted to visit there. We booked our flights through http://www.expedia.com – when you book flights with them they give you great discounts on hotels for the place your visiting. We saved lots of money by doing it this way – It also found us the cheapest flights.
So far we have planned to do the main touristy attractions that I have found on Google – I was surprised to find attractions very reasonably priced and majority of them free.
If anyone has any suggestions on places to visit outside the usual attractions, restaurants and any other cool places to visit/do – please get in touch.
I can’t wait to explore Chicago
Now onto the Cruise – 7 night Southern Caribbean
The most exciting part… I’m screaming with excitement inside 😀
For our cruise we chose Royal Caribbean – mainly because my mum took me on one years ago round the Mediterranean and I know they have great ships – they are like floating resorts but also because it was at a great price and also included a great drinks package for the week.
Our next reason for picking the 7 night Southern Caribbean is that it includes Barbados and Kyle really wants to visit there.
Finally the last reason – it was one of the only cruises round the Caribbean that didn’t have 2 days at sea. This particular cruise only has 1 day at sea. Its not that we don’t want to be at see we just want to see as many places as we can.
Our Itinerary and Excursions
Day 1 – SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO
Day 2 – PHILIPSBURG, ST. MAARTEN
Day 3 – BASSETERRE, ST KITTS & NEVIS
Day 4- ST. JOHNS, ANTIGUA
Day 5- CASTRIES, ST. LUCIA
Day 6- BRIDGETOWN, BARBADOS
Day 7 – CRUISING
Day 8 – DISEMBARK @ SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO
When we first booked our cruise we knew we wanted to include a few excursions but we didn’t want them to consume our whole holiday and we also didn’t want several hour long excursions either as we want to explore the islands a bit ourselves.
We booked the excursions we have chosen through Royal Caribbean themselves. We chose them as it was easier than trailing through the internet looking – which usually I love but there are so many to choose from and at least when you book through the cruise company they aren’t rogues. ha. Although booking it this way did cost a little more.
We have chosen to do excursions in St Maarten, St Kitts and Barbados. We chose these islands as they had excursions that we liked. They also start at 8.30am and are approx 4 hours long each which still leaves us enough time to explore when we finish.
In St Maarten we are going out on a Catamaran which includes Snorkelling
St Kitts we are going for a walk in the rainforest. I chose this excursion as its not every day you get to go walking in a rainforest.
Lastly Barbados we are going snorkelling with Turtles. This was Kyle’s choice but I’m excited about this.
When we disembark from our cruise we are spending another two nights in San Juan before we fly home. This will give us a great opportunity to see all of San Juan as well.
In total we spend 3 days there – we fly in early in the morning the day before our cruise as we didn’t want to have to rush from the airport to the cruise ship.
After speaking to a few people about cruising, most have said its best to fly in the day before you leave on your cruise. If you fly in on the day of your cruise you may run into problems such as flight delays, missed flights etc etc… No point paying all that money to miss your cruise.
Again if any of you have any cruising hints or tips please pass them on 🙂