Snorkelling, kayaking and ruins
Trip Start Jan 27, 2012
25Trip End Mar 04, 2012
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Another tender port however much closer and much more organised today… once again we thought we were off the ship really early but were the last in the group to arrive at the meeting point! One of the other couples in the group was Aimee from CC, I hadn’t yet met her but she’d booked this tour after reading on CC that I had booked it.
Todays tour was through Ronys Independent Tours, I’d found it through TripAdvisor and it has so many great reviews. Rony picked us up in a nice van with great airconditioning… it’s pretty warm in Roatan!! This island is just so pretty, it’s like a tropical paradise and the people are so friendly. Rony was saying they don’t like being part of Honduras and would he wants the queen to come take it back!! Not going to happen.
We were taken to a place at West Bay where we met our snorkelling and kayaking guides…. Quinton and Diver. First the snorkelling, they fitted us all out with flippers, mask and snorkels. Now I have never done this before except for in the swimming pool at home… Rodd bought me some gear so I could practice but it’s a bit different when you’re in a really really salty ocean.
We swam around out there for about an hour, I was exhausted by the time we’d finished but wow, it was worth it. He took us so far out from shore and into fairly deep water but he’d swim down and coax a turtle out from the bottom to come swim up with us or he’d bring a sea cucumber up for us to feel. It was a great experience and I’m glad I did it.
After that we went back to the café and the served us quesadillas, fresh fruit and corn chips with salsa for lunch. Then it was on to the kayaks for a paddle up the coast a bit to another beach where we got out and went into a bar for a drink before paddling back. Ummmm this was interesting, we were in 2 man kayaks, Rodd in the back, me in the front….. Lets just say my co ordination leaves a lot to be desired!! I tried to keep us as far away from the other kayaks as possible, we did run over one lot but they were very nice about being rammed!! Rodds yelling left..left…left… no goooo left…. Don’t paddle left!!! Pretty funny, but unfortunately I don’t have photos of that cos my underwater camera had flat batteries after snorkelling and I wasn’t taking the good one on a kayak!
After that Rony took us on a bit of a tour, up to the lookout. Gorgeous!! That’s all I’m saying.
Back to port and once inside the cruise terminal once again we found a bar, had a few drinks before getting the tender boat back to the ship for yet another early night!
Friday 17th… Costa Maya, Mexico
No tendering today… the ship docked very neatly at the jetty. It amazes me how they can manouver these huge ships into the right place… sideways thrusters do the job now that the tug boats used to do.
Our tour meeting time was 9am so we didn’t have to rush off today and we got there with plenty of time to spare. Looking around the people waiting we saw a family from Chile that had been in our cave tubing group… and here they were again… in our group. I mean what are the chances?? From 2000 people we managed to be on 2 tours ( in only groups of 9 ) with the same 5 people?!
Our tour guide was a girl named Casey, and like Axel had in Belize she told us lots of interesting stuff on the half hour ride out to the Chacchoben.. Pronounced chuck o ben…. Mayan ruins. When we got there we had another guide to show us around, his name was Joel. This is where booking with a small local company is best cos there were groups of 50 that booked through the ship and not getting half the info we got. Yes, this is another one I found through TripAdvisor, honestly I don’t know what sort of trip we would have ended up with without it!!
Once again I’m not going to go into detail about all the facts he gave us. He told us all about the Mayan calendars, Venus and the Sun and Moon. We saw some spider monkeys as well, although I did try to get a photo they were jumping about and of course I had the wrong lens on to really zoom in.
On the way back they dropped us at Mahahual and once again it was lots of pushy sales chants… we were a bit over it all by then! Ran into “the gang” who were hanging out at the beach but just said a quick hello and kept moving. We didn’t buy anything although if we had been able to find a polo shirt with Costa Maya on it we would have bought one, they are hard to come by… all the touristy stuff are T-shirts only. Also I wanted some cotton hippy pants, you know the kind I wear all the time…. But there were no trousers, shorts etc anywhere, all t-shirts, dresses and tops… weird.
So that’s it, our last port, we got a taxi back to the port… looked at a few shops, I saw a beautiful silver bracelet but he wanted $78 for it!!! What??? When I was importing silver I would have bought that for well under $20 and sold it for $35 so we walked out and sat at the bar out the front…. Rodd went back in and told him I’d said I’d only pay $35... He said $40... Rodd said I’ll have to ask her. He comes back out and sits down at the bar with me, 5 mins later the guy comes out of the shop with the bracelet and says $40?? So I bought it for that….. Ok I now I could buy it for less online but I’m happy with what I paid. Couple more drinks… back on board… somehow we ended up in the Maharini Lounge where the Mardi Gras parade was ending up in... then there was dancing and Rodd and I were crowned the King and Queen of Mardi Gras.. we got nice cardboard crowns!!
I forgot to say that every night at 6pm we went to the Progressive Trivia. Everynight there was Ginny, Bill, Dan, Rodd and I and from night to night there were various others. The Swedish girls were there a couple of nights, Kaia came a few nights…. It was a lot of fun but to be honest Ginny answered 99.9% of the questions.
Our last day was a day at sea.. we went and saw the comedian at the Stardust theatre and then went to Henrys Pub for the "Around the world with beer" ... basically just sitting around chatting and drinking to all the CC gang. Lots of fun... from there we went to the final trivia, thanks to Ginny we won and received a bottle of champagne and 5 gift bags with NCL stuff like playing cards, key ring, Tshirt etc.
Everyone then went for a freshen up and nap and we all met at Windows dining room for a farewell dinner... once again lots of laughs and great times with wonderful people.
We are both sorry to see this part of our holiday end, we've met some fantastic people and have had the most amazing time. Many of the people we met we'll keep in touch with and hopefully, as with our fabulous friends in Vegas ( Jeanne and Rog ) we will get to see them if some day we get back to the States or they travel to Australia. Many of the group are from Arkansas so maybe one day a trip there, who knows??
We've still got Mardi Gras in New Orleans and Walt Disney World left... hope we can keep up, this is an exhausting trip!!