Jump to content
Cruise Critic Community
SethCruise

Excursion Recommendations Needed

Recommended Posts

Hello all, I was hoping to get a few recommendations on some great excursions.  This is for an 8 day Southern Caribbean on the Horizon leaving on the 16th of November.  I've never been to any of these ports so I appreciate all suggestions! 😀

 

Grand Turk
November 18, 2019 - Monday
La Romana
November 19, 2019 - Tuesday
Curaçao
November 20, 2019 - Wednesday
Aruba
November 21, 2019 - Thursday

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Depends what you like to do, historical tours, A.I., hang at a beach, snorkeling, diving, fishing, 4 wheeling, As Carolyn says there's plenty of excellent suggestions. We like independent excursion companies and have had some great trips with shoreexcursioneer.com 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm a sucker for the free pool and music at margaritaville, but im a sucker for swim up bars and jimmy buffett (which is played until about 11am and then it's a dance pool party)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, havanadaydreaming said:

I'm a sucker for the free pool and music at margaritaville, but im a sucker for swim up bars and jimmy buffett (which is played until about 11am and then it's a dance pool party)

At grand turk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

Aruba is not really considered a tropical island. One half of it is on the ocean, and the beaches and water, are gorgeous. However there are luxury hotels built all along the water.  You will need to get a taxi at the pier, and they will drop you at one of the hotels. You can walk through all the hotels, and enjoy the beaches and water.   BEWARE the taxi's will not return you to the ship, in a swimsuit. We knew this, but thought it meant a wet swimsuit, so we dried ours before trying to leave. No, if you are wearing a swimsuit, they will not pick you up.  Be sure to take clothes to change into before leaving.  This is just a warning, if the beach is your thing. 

 

We have been to Aruba twice. First time to the beach, 2nd time to other side of island. Now, the other side is sand, cactus, sagebrush, and desert type terrain.  We took an ATV tour on that side. The ATV's all have 4 wheel drive, and believe me you will need it,  to navigate much of that side.  It's dusty and a little rough, but fun, and quite interesting.  

 

Enjoy Aruba, it is beautiful and interesting. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We did the Segway tours in Aruba.  It was interesting and a lot of fun.  They split us into two groups and showed us how to drive them.  Then our group took off on the Segways and did the tour.  The other group went to the beach.  Half way through the tour, we switched and went to the beach and the other half went with the Segways.  When that group got back, they took us all back to the ship.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not sure of the hours in port for Aruba, but the last time there we did a sunset catamaran cruise that was spectacular, top ten material 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, jimbo5544 said:

Not sure of the hours in port for Aruba, but the last time there we did a sunset catamaran cruise that was spectacular, top ten material 

Did this Carnival excursion get you back to the ship ahead of schedule? I haven't booked Carnival excursions in Aruba yet.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, sanmarcosman said:

Did this Carnival excursion get you back to the ship ahead of schedule? I haven't booked Carnival excursions in Aruba yet.

Plenty of time, I think for us it was like 2 hours to spare.  Th excursion leaves right across from where the ship is docked, maybe 100 yards away.  Have great pics and would not hesitate to do it again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you want to go to the beach in Aruba, when you exit through the terminal building, turn left at the bottom of the stairs and proceed to the taxi boarding area.  Advise the coordinator which beach you would like to go to.  We have been to Eagle and Palm Beach and much prefer Palm Beach.

 

You don't have to walk through a hotel to get to the beach, just tell the taxi driver that you would like to be taken to the paved walkway between the RIU Palace Hotel and Hilton Hotel.  The walkway will take you directly onto Palm Beach.  There are quite a few vendors renting loungers and umbrellas.  We walked to the left on the beach towards the water and found a vendor and he set up our lounge chairs and umbrellas.  We were very close to the pier which has Bugaloe's Beach Bar where we ordered take out food and drinks.  They also have restrooms.  They have a web site if you're interested which has photos of their restaurant, menu, and photos from a drone which shows the beach area.

 

In Grand Turk we either stay on the beach which has complimentary chairs and umbrellas or go to the pool at Margaritaville where the chairs are also complimentary.  The wait staff will come around taking food and drink orders but you are under no obligation to purchase either of these.  

 

I try to avoid cruise itineraries that include LaRomana.  The port area has one large building where 75 % of the building is selling liquor.  In this port (in my opinion), you have to book an excursion away from the port and a good majority of the excursions on Carnival are too pricey for my family.

 

Curacao has lots of shopping at the port area.  You take the paved walkway from the cruise port and walk through the RIF Fort (which has shops and restaurants and a very good ice cream shop).  When you exit the fort, you will be able to walk across the floating pontoon Queen Emma bridge to more shopping and restaurants.  We have gone to Mambo Beach at the Blvd. Shops and the water is beautiful and clean and snorkeling is good at the rock breakwater.  There is a Tiki bar on the beach and restaurants and shops.  Grab a lounger and an attendant will approach you and collect the rental fee (the last time we were there it was $5 to rent a lounger).  We saw a lot of the dancers from the ship enjoying this beach.

 

Have a great time!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

La Romona - Chavon river tour!  The best tour I have ever had, and so many find DR unappealing!

Seavis is who we used but I imagine there are several to choose from!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oops, one more thing.  When we were ready to go back to the ship, we walked back on the sidewalk between the hotels and there were quite a few taxis there waiting to take cruisers back to their ship.  We made sure we had dry clothes to put on over our damp bathing suits.  If you don't see any taxis at the end of the walkway, proceed to the front entrance of the RIU or Hilton hotel where you can find taxis.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 10/8/2019 at 12:49 AM, GranysT said:

 

 

Aruba is not really considered a tropical island. One half of it is on the ocean, and the beaches and water, are gorgeous. However there are luxury hotels built all along the water.  You will need to get a taxi at the pier, and they will drop you at one of the hotels. You can walk through all the hotels, and enjoy the beaches and water.   BEWARE the taxi's will not return you to the ship, in a swimsuit. We knew this, but thought it meant a wet swimsuit, so we dried ours before trying to leave. No, if you are wearing a swimsuit, they will not pick you up.  Be sure to take clothes to change into before leaving.  This is just a warning, if the beach is your thing. 

 

We have been to Aruba twice. First time to the beach, 2nd time to other side of island. Now, the other side is sand, cactus, sagebrush, and desert type terrain.  We took an ATV tour on that side. The ATV's all have 4 wheel drive, and believe me you will need it,  to navigate much of that side.  It's dusty and a little rough, but fun, and quite interesting.  

 

Enjoy Aruba, it is beautiful and interesting. 

 

Is this a relatively new thing? When we were there a few years ago, they warned about wet and sandy suits but ours were dry and they had no issues at all with us.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In Aruba the first time we went to Palm Beach. Eagle and Palm are gorgeous beaches if thats your thing. The last time we did a tour as we had never really seen the island and the last stop was Arashi Beach which is also beautiful but not like Eagle and Palm in my opinion.

 

In Curacao you can do alot right off the ship on your own if you like shopping and just looking around. The last time we did Irie Tours which was very inexpensive and let us see the highlights of the island and had a beach stop at the end.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have done this itinerary twice.

 

In Grand Turk we usually stay at the free beach but last time we did a Carnival excursion Underwater Power Scooter, Beach Break & Lunch.  This was a lot of fun and I highly recommend it.

 

La Romana - Carnival excursion we did the Catalina Island Beach Break.  

 

Curacao - This is our favorite stop.  We use Advance CarRental Curacao.  You get a mid size car, fully insured for $75.  You are met just outside the port and are given a GPS preloaded with places to stop and a phone in case you need to contact the owner for any reason.  It is a small island we really enjoy driving around and finding our own places to stop and swim along the way.

 

Aruba - We just take a taxi to Palm Beach.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In both Curacao and Aruba, we paid the taxi driver to take us to the beach, pick us up at an appointed time, and give us a trou of the island.  It was great.

 

In La Romana, we did the Rui all inclusive day pass.  Food blah.  Swim up bar and beach were great.  

 

GT - Margaritaville!!!

Edited by Countrygurl
forgot to mention GT

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

La Romana - Day pass at a resort, great beaches, food & transportation usually inc.

 

GT - Walk pass the crowds at MV and head down the beach towards Jacks Shack or other local vendor.  Both the food and the sand get better the more you walk away from the throngs.

 

Aruba - so much to do here, beaches, shopping, snorkeling, gambling, fishing.

 

Curacao - some small beaches here, very good snorkeling tours available as well..

Edited by evandbob

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I forgot, we had several couples rave about some private home on beach party available through Carnival excursions on Turk. 

 

I expected something like airbnb but they described dozens of folks.  I am pretty sure it had "Home" in title on excursion page. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Forum Jump
    • Categories
      • Forum Assistance
      • SPECIAL EVENT: Q&A with the Quark Expeditions Team!
      • New Cruisers
      • Cruise Lines “A – O”
      • Cruise Lines “P – Z”
      • River Cruising
      • ROLL CALLS
      • Digital Photography & Cruise Technology
      • Member Cruise Reviews
      • Special Interest Cruising
      • Cruise Discussion Topics
      • UK Cruising
      • Australia & New Zealand Cruisers
      • North American Homeports
      • Ports of Call
      • Cruise Conversations
×
×
  • Create New...