Scott, Damien, and I spent most of May on vacation. We went to North Dakota to visit my family and then Scott and I left on a 7-day Royal Caribbean Cruise to the Caribbean. We all had a great time.
Day 1 – Flying down to Port Canaveral, Florida.
Scott and I flew down to FL to get on the Freedom of the Seas ship. Once on the ship, it was rather chaotic with all the people everywhere, but that was only the first day. We participated in a Mystery Dinner Theater and afterwards Scott and I learned how to play craps at the casino with their complimentary lessons.
Day 2 – Day at Sea
The second day we spent at sea getting to our first destination. We walked all over the ship and spent some time in the arcade, casino (playing craps), bingo, and watched an in-room movie and played card games. Just a relaxing day.
Day 3 – Labadee, Haiti
We finally get to see a Caribbean island! We didn’t know until we arrived, but Labadee is actually Royal Caribbean leased land in Haiti. This means that the Haitians that work in Labadee come in from the surrounding villages by boat to work only when the cruise ships are there. Since we didn’t know that, we had already picked a historic walking tour as our shore excursion. With not much history to see in Labadee, our tour guide spoke mostly about Christopher Columbus, pirates vs buccaneers, and how awesome Haiti is. After our walking tour, we took pictures of our beautiful surroundings and changed into our swimsuits to enjoy the beach.
After dinner we napped and read until it was time to see Illusionist Phillip Kaiser perform. We’ve both never seen an illusionist before and I loved some of the tricks. How do they do it?!
Day 4 – Falmouth and Montego Bay, Jamaica
In Jamaica we opted for a bus tour that took us to Montego Bay for shopping. I love hearing how other cultures/countries live.
After a day immersed in Jamaica, we saw a musical/comedy act with Tony Tillman (opened for Bill Cosby for 10 years) and saw the Love/Marriage Game Show. Both were very entertaining!
Day 5 – George Town, Grand Cayman
This was Scott’s favorite stop. We picked a SeaTrek Helmet Dive as our shore excursion which allowed us to go underwater and see some ocean life. It was also the nicest-looking location outside of the pier area AND is home of Tortuga Rum to which Scott bought six flavors. We ate dinner at one of the specialty restaurants on the ship called Chops Grille Steak House. Hands-down it was the best meal of the entire vacation.
Day 6 – Cozumel, Mexico
This was my favorite stop. I liked the atmosphere. It was the hottest day of our trip and we picked horseback riding at Rancho Buenavista and beach visit as our shore excursion. On the horseback riding venture, we were able to see both original and replicas of Mayan ruins. The horses walked in a group as opposed to a straight line on a trail like I’ve done before. The horses also had their own distinct personalities. Mine was so bossy! He didn’t want any of the horses behind me to pass and if they tried he’d cut in front of them or start galloping. He’d also bite/nudge the other horses when we stopped to discuss some of the ruins and I’m pretty sure he got kicked. Oh well, it made for an adventure! After horseback riding the bus stopped by two different scenic beach locations. I was pretty disappointed that the beach stops were both only 25 min long. I’d have rather just gone to the second beach for longer so we could have at least enjoyed the water on such a hot day.
After a late dinner, we watched the movie Guardians of the Galaxy in 3D at the ship’s theater. Great movie.
Day 7 – Day at Sea
Our last full day on the ship was spent sailing back to Florida. Scott and I partook in another first–spa treatments! We had a couples massage which included a facial. Very lovely experience. The rest of the day was spent relaxing and packing.
Day 8 – Heading back to ND
Bright and early we started our trip back to North Dakota.
Back in ND
I would have loved to have stayed longer in North Dakota. The time went by way too quickly. Thanks to my parents and brother for taking care of our precious Damien. He had an amazing time and is still telling me how much he wants to go back to Grandpa’s house.