Monday, May 11, 2015

Cruise Ship Excursions



My family loves the cruise vacation. If given the choice, we will always pick a cruise vacation over the alternative. One of the most hidden costs of a cruise vacation are the destination excursions. Many people will argue that you don’t have to spend anything once you get to a port. You can just get off the ship and explore the area on your own, or for some just stay on the ship and enjoy it while most others are on shore. My family has been on multiple cruises and we have always visited our ports of call. From my past three cruise experiences, the ports of call have always been more enjoyable with an organized excursion. Most people would read that and think no more and book all of their excursions through their cruise lines. And indeed there are some cruises where that is not only recommended but may be your only option, such as Alaska cruises. But most of the time, I recommend doing your own research and booking on your own.

For our previous cruise to the western Caribbean, I booked all of our excursions privately. Our stops were Cozumel, Mexico; Belize City, Belize; Roatan, Honduras; and Costa Maya, Mexico. When we cruise, oftentimes my research leads me to CruiseCritic.com. The site has a great summary page for most ports of call. Between the cruise line offered excursions and CruiseCritic, I have a fairly good idea of what to expect in terms of port excursions. From there, I have my trusty Google search engine and off I go to find fun things to do for my family in port.

In Belize, I found that cave tubing was a very popular excursion. The sites I visited also included ziplines and ATV rides as add-on activities.