Trip to the Bahamas with Cruisedirect.com
When my friends and I decided to spend our vacation on a cruise we spread out to find the best cruise planner. I came across the one we would use before and during the cruise. Cruisedirect.com was perfect for choosing a last minute cruise with affordable prices. It had an easy to use interface, and all four of us were soon coordinating an effort to make this trip the best cruise possible.
We decided on a classic cruise from Florida to the Bahamas. For the two night cruise we got a package deal that cut off nearly $200 per person. My friend looked over the booking opportunities carefully, and managed to get us hundreds of dollars in discounts within the restaurants, shops, and other amenities. With the site we never had to pay a booking fee, or any hidden charges.
All the reviews on the site about the Celebrity Cruise Line were favorable, and the experience more than lived up to its reputation. The ship had high-end shops, and a few lectures to help passengers familiarize themselves with the ship. The only problem was that there was so much to do on the ship and so little time that we never got to see all the facilities to try out even half of the activities going on. We felt as though the service and entertainment were given as much attention as if it were only month-long cruise, despite its shortness.
There was an impressive variety of food and drink facilities aboard the ship. Celebrity Cruise believed in making their cruises unique from others. So there are all sorts of ethnic menus to choose from, from Italian dining to an upstairs cooking lesson with an all-you-can-eat churrascaria and pizzeria. The best part about it was that we not only had the discounts from the website. We also bought the Celebrity Select flexible dining plan. It allowed us to map out all our reservations so we could bypass the lines before we ever even boarded the ship.
The service was top notch, and the staff was professional and friendly. We were pleased with the cleanliness of the rooms, and not to mention how spacious they were. The ship wasn’t a huge cruise liner. Instead it was smaller and more personable. My friend had gone on many previous cruises said that the attention individual passengers received often lowered when it wasn’t a huge cruise with hundreds of people on it. We never really befriended ourselves with the other passengers, but it was pleasant and sociable on the veranda and around the shopping areas.
The ride aboard the Celebrity Cruise was an experience in itself. Even on a longer cruise the attention to our comfort, access to a wide variety of facilities, and above average food would not have exhausted itself even after several weeks.
We boarded at Nassau, Bahamas right on schedule, on a cool morning. The ship would remain there till 8 PM, to give passengers the full day to enjoy the beauty of the island. Nassau is the capital and the largest city in the Bahamas. There was plenty to see and try out, and for the day it felt like we had our own private island. My friends and I began the day on the shores of the Bahamas searching for shells and snorkeling. Snorkeling in the Bahamas was like swimming through glass. The water was crystal clear, and you can see thousands of fish as far as the eye could see. We were lucky enough to come across a giant turtle and swing beside it. What was truly magnificent was the wide coral reef. It was encrusted with thousands of different types of life, and bright as candy.
After a morning of snorkeling we went on a parasail ride that we had booked earlier. This was a first for me. There is nothing like sailing on a parasail, in which sea and air are combined, and you feel a great sense of power. It was one of the most exhilarating experiences I ever had.
Thereafter we went on a tour along the beach, where the guide talked about the history of pirating. As anyone who did even a little research knew, the Bahamas was a landing port for many smugglers including the infamous Blackbeard. We searched for buried treasure with metal detectors, watched a movie that dated back several centuries about the Bahamas, and got to see an exhibit with many “authentic” artifacts from ye old times.
This was only the morning and the beginning of our great day. After that we relaxed on the sunny beaches, and then had lunch at an airy, charming café right outside the middle of downtown Nassau. We were advised to not bother with the Royal Victoria Gardens. Instead, we went to Paradise Islands, which according to cruisedirect.com was a must-see stop. It was the highlight of our entire day. We visited one of the largest dolphin resorts in the world. We were led by the friendly tour guide, and learned a bit more about piracy. This resort was home to Flipper, and the Dolphins were some of the best trained and friendliest of any place. My friend got a picture of herself kissing one of the dolphins. Were the rumors about all things driving people true? It actually was and worse than you think.
We took some advice from the locals and tried some of the more local fare around town. The guys in our group went off on a scenic hike, well my girl friend and I did some shopping around town. We ended up buying about a dozen items of local variety, and enough clothing to get us through several cruises. We left with our wallets considerably lighter. However, we saved a great deal more than we expected paying for the cruise, and using the choice deals on board that we were able to plan out.
Our trip was unforgettable, and well worth the money. As we went home the cruise line broke out some truly marvelous Bahama style food at a premium price. The atmosphere was festive and light, and we all agreed that this cruise company was well worth the affordable price we paid. And I knew that I would never go a cruise again without consulting the site and reviews again.
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