We traveled on the Valor with friends. We flew into Miami the day before. We had no stress with worrying about the weather or making the ship on time. We were picked up at the airport by the hotel shuttle. We stayed at the LaQuinta Inn East. It was a very nice hotel, but very pricey because of the boat show in town for the weekend. We ate a good dinner at Bennigans. I would stay here again. The next morning we took a bus shuttle from the hotel to the ship. After getting checked in, we were on the boat by 12:30. We went straight up to Rosie's for lunch. We were able to get into our rooms after lunch. We spent the afternoon walking around the ship. We signed up for the spa drawings. My friend was asked if she would like to be a model for the spa tours to get a complete facial. She was very lucky and enjoyed it very much. On Sunday night we ate at the 8:15 seating. We asked to be moved up to an earlier seating. We went to the welcome aboard show on Sunday night. I must say that the singers and dancers were great!
On Monday we spent a day at sea. We found that the back area of the ship wan for adults. So, we spent alot of time by the pool and hot tubs for the day. Our dinner time was moved up to 5:45. So, we ate earlier for the rest of the trip. We enjoyed eating at this time. It allowed us to have more time in the evening to enjoy the other activities--music, clubs etc. The ship musical entertainers put on another great show.
On Tuesday we were in Grand Cayman. There were no real long lines for the tender, so we just went down when we were ready to go. We took a tender to the island and got a cab to take us to Seven Mile Beach to the Royal Palms. This place is a bar and restaurant. Eat downstairs/outside--it is alot cheaper. It cost $4 per person for the ride. We spent a wonderful day at the Royal Palms. We rented chairs for $5 per chair and umbrellas were $10 for the day. We had a great time just relaxing, swimming and walking on the beach. We were served drinks and a very good lunch right at our seats on the beach. They had outside showers and very clean bathrooms to use with one changing room. Cabs were right there to take us back to town. We spent some time shopping around the town area. There was a very long line to get a tender, but they do not leave anyone behind. A juggler and comedian entertained us that night.
On Wednesday we went to Roatan Honduras. What a beautiful place to visit. We dock here. As you come into the port area, you will see the lush green colors of the island. As you get off the ship, you are greeted by dancers and musicians. There is a market set up for shopping, I will say you can get some very nice things there. Wait until you are leaving, they are more apt to give you a better price then. We booked a tour through Victor Bodder tours. Our tour guide was ALI. He was fantastic. He spent the entire day with us. We paid $25 per person for him to take us wherever we wanted to go for whole day. We went to the Jungle Canopy, had a blast on the ziplines. Then off to the iguana farm where we saw iguanas of all sizes, we fed them and touched them. We saw Fantasy island from there. He drove us up to the View, where you can see both sides of the island from the high point, a great place to take pictures and do some shopping at the vendors up there. We ate at a road side stand just down from the View called WIMM'S CAFFEE. We had great island food, a quick stop when you want to see as much as possible. We drove all over Roatan. Unfortunately, they are beginning to build a plaza there. We went Victor Bodden's house where we saw different types of animals, even held baby spider monkeys. They were so cute! We even did some shopping at his house. I really wish we could have stayed another day in Roatan, I will return someday. I really want to go back and snorkel in that area. That night were entertained by country singer and comedian. They were pretty good.
On Thursday we tendered into Belize. You get tender tickets at certain location on the ship to get off if you do not have an excursion scheduled through the ship. We had no problem getting off early. We did some shopping in the early morning hours. We booked the sting ray alley and snorkel to Caye Caulker through Coral Breezes. We repeated this excursion because we enjoyed is so much in July. We took a great boat ride 20 miles north of Belize. We snorkeled at the top of barrier reef for about an hour and then went to another are where we snorkeled with sting rays swimming all around us. We went to Caye Caulker for lunch and had a little time to walk around. Caye Caulker is a tropical island, 5 miles long. About 1300 people live there and you get around on golf carts, bikes or foot. It is such a beautiful island, so quiet and laid back. Definitely check it out if you get a chance. After lunch, we return to Belize. We had a little time to finish shopping and catch a tender. That night the ship singers and dancers put on a fantastic show. This is night we had the midnight buffet, if you want to eat more food. I just went to take some pictures. It is quite something to see.
On Friday we went to Cozumel. We dock here, so you can get off the boat anytime you want to. We got off, spent some time shopping. Be sure to walk all around, there are shopping alleys everywhere. I was amazed how many places there were to shop. We booked the dune buggy excursion through Cozumel Insider. We did this in July with no problems. This time there was a mix up somewhere. The place I was told to meet was not correct. We found out just in time where we were suppose to be. They did not even expect us. Luckily, I had my paper work. So, we finally made our connections and got on the excursion. It turned out to be a fun filled day on the dune buggies touring the island. We returned just in time to make our way back to the ship. That night we were entertained by hypnotist. It was interesting. I tried, but I was not able to be put under. I will say I was glad because it was more fun to watch out in the audience. The people on stage were quite entertaining with what he had them do. After the show went to the deck party. Again there is more food and lots on fun up on deck dancing.
On Saturday we spent another great day at sea. This was the day of the chocolate buffet. It was delicious! We also took a tour of the galley in the afternoon, quite interesting to see. We had picture perfect weather all week. On board the ship they had shuffle board, putt putt golf, the huge movie screen and lots of activities to choose from if you wanted to do any of them. After going to the shows we spent time in the different club areas listening to music, dancing, the casino a little with no luck at all and in the karaoke club. It was fun to watch people perform. The food was fabulous! Our servers Mario and Ketet were just fantastic. We were well taken care of by Rommy and his assistant. We loved every part of being pampered by them. You can spend alot or limited money on the ship, the choice is yours. Watch for special shopping deals in the gift shop and jewelry store. On the last day on board they had great sales in the gift shop on clothes. At the purser desk, ask for a post card or deck of cards, they will give them to you free.
Our entire trip was wonderful. I can hardly wait to go again on another cruise. I want to return to Belize, Roatan and Costa Maya. The Valor is a fabulous ship. I would highly recommend the Valor or the Glory to anyone!