Monday, November 19, 2012

2012 Nov. HAL 11 night Noordam Southern Caribbean Cruise: Barbados; Dominica; Martinique; St. Lucia; St. Maarten; St. Thomas; Half Moon Cay

11 night Southern Caribbean Cruise

After our last 2 November Caribbean cruises in less then ideal weather conditions, you would think we'ld learn not to cruise the Caribbean in hurricane season!  But we persisted and gave it another try.  This time we did our longest cruise yet---11 nights on the Noordam and had almost perfect weather the whole time!   We actually booked this cruise while we were on the Eurodam last year.

I chose this cruise , (Holland America's Noordam) mainly because it went to St. Lucia.  I've always wanted to see St. Lucia.  The cruise also included stops in St. Maarten, Barbados, Dominica, Martinique, St. Thomas, and Half Moon Cay.  It was very port intensive, which I loved---6 port days in a row, another port later.  Ken's more of a sea day fan, but he held up pretty well.

2012 Noordam ship

2012-11-5,6, and 7  Up to and including our first 3 nights:  Sea days

2012-11-8  St. Maarten 

2012-11-9  St. Lucia

2012-11-10  Barbados

2012-11-11 Martinique

2012-11-12  Dominica

2012-11-13 St. Thomas

After 6 port days in a row, the next day was a welcomed sea day!  Even though I'm not a big fan of sea days, the day of rest was nice.  Althought my plans for sleeping in didn't go so well.  Somewhere in the Caribbean waters I encountered what I assume was sea lice---invisible to the eye, larvae or jellyfish or other stinging ocean critters that attacked me---and I ended up with an extremely itchy rash.  I had this happen before on a couple of our trips to Hawaii (out of about 20 trips to Hawaii), so I wasn't surprised.  Apparently they don't bother everyone---like Ken---but they sure like me.  Took about 5 days for the extreme itching to subside.  At least it happened near the end of our cruise.

2012-11-15 Halfmoon Cay

his was Ken's 4th cruise, my 10th.   Other than my first cruise (when my Dad almost drowned), I haven't had a bad one yet (not counting weather).  I really enjoyed seeing the new places and revisiting the ones we've been to.  We enjoyed it so much we even did the onboard booking for the ship board credit for the next one.  The $200 ship board credit for booking onboard last year and the $100 OBC for having CCL stock came in really handy this year.  After gratuities of $12/day@ , the Canelleto dinner, and a couple other items we bought onboard, we only owed $56 when we debarked.

Now to start dreaming about where to go next!

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