November 03, 2013

Cruising to The Bahamas

We returned early this morning from our first cruise.  It was a great experience and we're looking forward to a longer cruise next time.  Being first-timers, we booked a very short 2-night cruise (about 36 hours) to The Bahamas on the Carnival Glory to determine if we liked cruising.

In Wisconsin, I knew of very few people who had been on a cruise ship and the vast majority were over the age of 50.  However, here in Miami cruising is very popular among all ages.  It's really handy living so close to the Port of Miami.  We disembarked our ship at 8:00 am and were back home at 8:30 am.

The process of boarding the boat was slightly cumbersome, but definitely no worse than an airport.  The first line was to get our passports checked.  Then we stood in line to get our luggage scanned and then one final line to get our room keys.

We quickly dropped our luggage in the cabin and headed out to explore the boat while it was still in port.  I get extremely motion sick, so I wanted to get the lay of the land before the boat started moving.  As it turns out, I only felt queasy a few times during the cruise which was quickly remedied by finding fresh air or laying down in our cabin.


Due to the brevity of our cruise, we had just one port stop which was in Nassau.  Reading port reviews on cruisecritic.com (a first-time cruiser's best friend), words used to describe Nassau include dirty, poor and raw. 

Even knowing this, Chris and I were still taken aback.  Walking the streets of Nassau reminded us of our time in Egypt.  Locals harassing you to buy their goods and services, and not taking no for an answer.  Our cruise ship in the background of the photo below is a reminder of how heavily dependent The Bahamas is on tourism.


I'm so thankful I read reviews on TripAdvisor too because that's how I found Bites of Nassau Food Tasting & Cultural Walking Tour with Tru Bahamian Food Tours.  Chris and I both loved the tour and would highly recommend it!

We visited seven places on the tour and the food at each stop was superb.  Our favorite was Pepper Pot Grill & Juice Bar, where Chris had jerk chicken and I had steamed cabbage (the guide was awesome at providing vegetarian options!).  We also had rice and beans, a fried plantain and freshly squeezed tropical fruit juice at Pepper Pot.


My favorite part of cruising is how easy it is to relax.  We had the option of hanging out on our cabin balcony as we cruised through the Atlantic Ocean, however there are places all over the ship both inside and outside to have a drink and read a book, or just people watch. 

Cruising isn't perfect though.  Our cabin was near a bar that blasted music into the early morning hours, which felt like sleeping in a frat house during a party.  However, the positives definitely outweighed the negatives and now we just need to decide where to go on our next cruise!


9 comments:

  1. I'd be up for trying a cruise sometime. We want to go to Hawaii next year and a friend of mine saw nearly all of the islands by cruising, so maybe that's something we should look into. I think I might get a little motion sickness like you do, so that wouldn't be fun. Sorry to hear that Nassau wasn't that great. That food tour sounded wonderful though!

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    1. Cruising would be perfect for a place like Hawaii. I'd love also to cruise around Alaska.

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  2. I haven't been on a cruise yet and have heard mixed reviews. Good to see you had an enjoyable experience and that food tour looks awesome!

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    1. We've done food tours in quite a few places around the States and in Europe, and it's such a great way to get the know the area!

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  3. I honestly laughed when I saw your post on FB, because we had exactly the opposite reaction to our cruise to the Bahamas--we'd like to go back to Nassau but wouldn't take a cruise again (at least not with Carnival). I'm guessing that the economy has changed Nassau since our honeymoon, though. I'm glad you had a better experience!

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    1. Others on our tour in Nassau came from a different Carnival ship and they were complaining about the food. It seems like each ship is really different, even within the same cruise line, which got us talking about doing our next trip on Carnival Glory too, since we know what to expect. Oh the price difference has us leaning that way too. Everyone say Royal Caribbean is great, but it's twice the price of Carnival.

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  4. I suppose doing a quick cruise from Florida is like doing a quick weekend in another country when you are living in Europe... Alaska is on my cruise wish list, along with the Norwegian fjords.

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  5. I took my first cruise in Feb 2013 with my husband, out of Balitmore. Then I had a business trip in Ft. Lauderdale and the day it end a cruise was leaving out of Miami. It was a weekend cruise and about 20 of us co-workers went on it. A whole week cruise is definitely different than a 2-3 day cruise (aka a booze cruise). I would highly recommend you taking a week long cruise. The whole vibe is different.
    On the food tour, how much of the samplings were seafood/fish? I don't eat either and I'm concerned I would end up passing on many of the choices offered.

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    1. I don't remember for sure, but I believe it was just two stops where seafood was offered, in the form of the conch (fritters and chowder). I requested no meat nor seafood when I booked the tour and was really happy with the alternatives I was given. I'm happy to hear that a week-long cruise has a different vibe! Now we just need to decide where we want to go :)

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