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Carnival Legend

Author: Lori Steelman
Date of Trip: July 2012

Day 3-Cozumel

Woke up early, packed our backpacks and met my sister on the Lido for some omelets and waffles. I never had to wait for an omelet and they were very good! Didn’t touch the powdered eggs. Yuck. After breakfast, we went to the Firebird Lounge to disembark. We got there about 8:30 and was off of the ship about 8:50. We met our group from Dolphinaris at the end of the pier and from there we walked a little way to meet the taxi to take us to the swim. It took about 10-15 minutes to get there. We had a short orientation and then were in the water with our dolphins and trainer about 10:45. There were ten of us in our group. They didn’t allow cameras at the lagoons. If you are traveling with someone who isn’t doing the swim, I would get them to stand on the patio and take pictures. The prices for their pictures were high. Three for $79USD.
We each got a turn to kiss the dolphin, dance with her and ride her. It was awesome! The kids absolutely loved it! We were in the water about 50 minutes with them. After the swim, we got changed and went to lunch. The lunch patio was right above the lagoon, so we got to watch others while we ate. It was gorgeous there! The water is soooo blue. Lunch was very good too. The adults and one nephew got fajitas and the other two got chicken tenders and fries-this was included. We also ordered some margaritas and chips and salsa (these were extra) and the salsa was the hottest EVER.

When we were done eating, we walked down the road to Margaritaville. My sister loves all things Jimmy Buffet, so we decided to stay. They have a great deck in the back on the ocean. There are all sorts of water toys-trampoline, climbing mountain, etc...-that you can play on. The water is incredible there. You get into the water by jumping off of the deck-maybe an 8 foot drop into the water. The water there is about 13 feet deep. They have life vests for anyone who needs them. The only charge for this is that they ask for a tip. This was so much fun! We ordered drinks and nacho’s (surprise!) even though we had just eaten. It was a huge mountain of nacho’s that were hardly touched. But they were good!! We got some free tickets for blue margaritas, which were used by me and my brother in law. My sister doesn’t drink tequila.

When we left there, we went across the street to the supermarket to get a few things. I needed a pair of flip flops because my Teva’s were killing my feet. They had some cheap looking dollar store flip flops right when we went in, so I picked out some and went to pay. She said $32.00. I said pesos???? Nope...USD. Bwahaha. Goodbye.

Got some chips and sodas to take back on the ship and headed back to the port. On the way, we stopped and got A’s hair braided. She only got 3 braids this time. She said that next time she wanted her whole head done. She looked very cute!

Got back on the ship and went to shower and get ready for sail away. A and I watched a few pier fast walkers, but saw no actual runners. Glad no one missed the ship! The Paradise was at the pier next to us. We left first. I really enjoyed Cozumel and wish that we had more time there. Stopped by Guest Services with the kids and got free decks of Carnival playing cards. Nice!

We went and got a little appetizer from the Lido and then took the kids to the game room for a while. After this, A and I went back to the cabin and ordered room service-peanut butter and jelly and a grilled cheese and watched a movie. Worn out!

Day 4-Belize

I have never spent Independence Day out of the country. It was fun! We met my sister for breakfast and then on to the Firebird to wait for the tenders to take us into Belize. We booked a cave tubing excursion on our own through cavetubing.bz. The tender took about 20 minutes to get us there. We went outside of the port to meet our guide. There were vendors there and they were a little pushy, but nothing like I have read. Very little eye contact and a stern “No thank you” worked for me. I didn’t feel threatened at all. Our driver and guide were there and they took us to a van..and thank goodness it was air conditioned!! We were the only ones in the van..yay again. It took about an hour to get to the place where we would start our adventure through the rain forest. We passed the mountains where the Mosquito Coast was filmed. That was pretty cool. The checkpoints with the armed guards was......different. Our driver’s name was Michael and he was very nice and informative.
When we got there, we got to leave all of our stuff in the van. I only took my waterproof camera. We got changed and they gave us tubes and helmets with lights and we were on our way. Our river guide was named Lionel. A stayed very close to Lionel the entire hike and he carried her tube the whole way. He was also very informative and nice. The hike through the rain forest was lovely! It took about an hour to get to the point where we got into the river to go through the caves. The caves were just incredible! A wonderful experience that I am very glad I got to do with my baby girl!

Going through the caves down the river took about an hour and a half. My sister brought her expensive waterproof camera along on the trip. I took a cheap Fuji Film one. Mine is the only one that made it back. She dropped theirs in the river somewhere at the end of our journey. She was heartbroken! Lionel went back after we left to try and find it, but we never heard anything back. She bought another waterproof camera when we got back to the ship.

Our driver Michael then took us to where we would eat our lunch. It was a little house/store/restaurant on the side of the never ever been paved road. It was a bit bumpy. We all sat down and they immediately brought our lunch out. The kids looked at it and made these awful faces. It didn’t look too bad to me. It was chicken, rice and beans. It wasn’t bad at all, but my brother in law and I are the only ones who ate. The others just turned their noses up. They did drink the ice-cold bottled sprite though. The adults got some tasty rum punch with our lunch and then they refilled our cups before we left. They also let us try some cashew wine. I loved it! My sister bought three bottles and gave me one to take home. Thanks!!

I was nervous about this excursion because it wasn’t through Carnival. We made it back to the ship JUST in time. That was a little scary. I sure didn’t have the money to fly to Honduras to meet the ship the next day. Whew...glad we made it!

We ate on the Lido Deck that night for dinner and went back to our cabins afterward. We didn’t have much of a night life on the cruise. We get up way too early. I did try and get into Medusa’s Lair to take some pictures, but it was never open that early. What can I say, I am a lightweight and can’t stay up late!

Day 5-Isla Roatan, Honduras

Up early again for my walk around the ship. Love early mornings! After breakfast, we all got off of the ship in Roatan and went to meet our tour guide for the day. We booked a tour with Victor Bodden tours. Our guide for the day was Kenny. We loved Kenny. He took us wherever we wanted to go. We went all over. If we needed to stop at a store, no problem.

My sister is an elementary school principal and we decided beforehand that we wanted to go and see a school there. We made plans with VB to do this and she brought a bunch of school supplies for the kids. When we got there, we found out that the doctors and teachers were on strike because the government didn’t pay them, so the public schools were closed. There were private schools open, but Kenny told us that the public schools needed the supplies much more than the private ones. We had four backpacks filled with stuff, so Kenny said that he would take them to his daughter’s school when they re-opened.

We had also booked a snorkeling excursion. Kenny took us to Bananarama where we were meeting the boat that would take us out. We snorkeled for a couple of hours and then Kenny picked us up and we head back to Mahogany Bay. Isla Roatan is a gorgeous place. It is very poor, but the people are so nice.

It started to rain a little, so A and I went back to the ship. The line wasn’t long when we got on, but once we got up on deck and looked down, it was huge! Glad we got on a little early. We played some ping pong and then went to get ready for dinner. My sister, brother in law and I had reservations for the Steakhouse. This is the first night that my daughter and 8 y.o. nephew went to Camp Carnival. The 12 y.o. stayed in their cabin and ordered room service.

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