Barrier Reef Snorkeling Wonders - I was worried about going ashore in Belize since I heard about lines getting onto tenders; the night before we were told that shore excursions would be given priority and people not on a RCCL excursion would likely not get on a tender until 10am. On our cruise, they had many early shore excursions meet at 8:30 in the Ice Skating Rink and were given a number corresponding to our excursion. We waited for a little over 1/2 hour, and then were the first excursion to leave the room. We boarded a tender which took us directly to the Barrier Reef excursion at Rendezvous Caye. The ride took about 25-30 minutes each way; on the way there, we were told about some islands in the surrounding area. At the excursion, we were divided into groups. My family went in to the Beginner so it would be slower and less demanding than the others. Although many people were in the beginner group, besides spacing ourselves, I found myself surrounded by clear waters and able to see fish and coral. My 9 year old got tired and was able to ride on one guide's canoe alongside the group. My other son had his googles loosen and was given a replacement. They also stopped at one location where people could choose to get on the beach, or continue with the snorkeling. On the beach, you could buy food like burgers, hot dogs, and drinks; sit on the beach or the shade; play volleyball; or just swim in the water. Definitely bring water shoes, since the caye is made from dead coral and it is a bit rocky there. On the ride back, we were offered water and fruit punch.
Cozumel Bottom Fishing. We had been to Cozumel before, and decided to try something different that my fishing-loving sons would like. The excursion met at the end of the pier at the duty free shop, and on time, we walked over to the fishing boat and boarded. We were taken about 20 minutes away and throughout the 3.5 hours, we were moved to different locations moving back to the pier whenever they felt fishing was slow. We were offered sodas, water, and chips throughout the trip, and soapy water to clean our hands. The crew also provided cut bait fish, helped untangle lines, bait hooks, help cast, and remove fish from hooks, as needed. Together, the 8 people on the boat caught about 10 fish ranging from 8" to 1.5' long.