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Home > Member Reviews > Medtech2's Port Reviews of Cozumel, Grand Cayman, Ocho Rios, Great Stirrup Cay

Medtech2's Port Reviews of Cozumel, Grand Cayman, Ocho Rios, Great Stirrup Cay
Norwegian Sun cruise in April 2012
Member Name: Medtech2
Cruise Date: April 2012
Embarkation: Port Canaveral
Destination: Western Caribbean
Member Review: Medtech2's Norwegian Sun Review
Stingray Swim Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
We did the Everybody Loves Rays excursion in Cozumel and I heartily recommend it. You meet at the pier and take a very short taxi ride to the place. Since we were a large group they split us up into two groups. One group snorkeled while the other learned about the rays and vice versa. The reason I prefer this excursion over the one in Grand Cayman was the fact that the area was sheltered from much wave action. The guides took great care of the Rays. I have seen pictures where people in Grand Cayman are holding the rays up and out of the water and this is very stressful for them, akin to someone holding your head under the water. The guides were knowledgeable and had us first pet the rays, then feed them, then hold them (at the surface with their gills still under water). They took a variety of pictures of everyone and these were available as single prints for $10 or all the pictures on a CD for $25. The fellow who prepared the CD corrected for under or over exposure on the shots and the CD contained some very good professionally done underwater pics of the Rays. BTW the barbs are clipped here as these rays are captive. One of the families had previously done the Stingray City tour in Grand Cayman and they said they much preferred this tour. When they did Grand Cayman it was very crowded with not so many rays and very unorganized. Especially for kids or the elderly this excursion in Cozumel was educational, fun, and very much controlled, safety wise.

The snorkeling part was fun as a guide periodically fed the fish and rays so they would swarm around him. You are allowed to use your own camera in this part. After both groups were finished, which took about an hour, anyone who wanted to could go out on a water trampoline. There were hammocks available to lounge in, hermit crab races for the kids, a free soda, and snacks for purchase. There was a fellow weaving personalized wrist bands and massages were available. There were freshwater showers and clean bathrooms. Your wrist band also got you a free (very small) margarita in Margaritaville on the way back to the ship. I had the Fish Tacos there and they were quite tasty. They have a roped off swim and play area you can use, with various trampolines.

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Grand Cayman
Turtle Farm Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
In Grand Cayman we did the Turtle Farm excursion. The lady at the desk told me I would not need a bathing suit as there was only a wading pool for youngsters to get in and hold a turtle. Not So!! If you do the Turtles, Turtles and more Turtles trip you also get access to the Turtle Farms water complex. There is a freshwater pool with slide and a salt water pool with many fish and turtles swimming in it so you could snorkel. We totally missed that part. However we did get to hold turtles ranging in age from 4 months (so cute!!) on up to 11 months. After that they were too big to hold. They also had an aviary and we were given a cup of nectar to hold and some nectar drinking birds would come to sit on your hand. They were not hummingbirds but they were very similar and quite beautiful

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Ocho Rios
Port Rating: Not Rated
We had climbed Dunn's River Falls 25 years ago and figured it would be the same but much more crowded so we did not do any excursions in Ocho Rios. Staying on board in the morning allowed us to enjoy trivia, origami and Yahtzee, which were really fun. We walked to the Main Street to shop a little, saying No Thanks with every step. I know people get upset at the hassle but these folks are just trying to earn a living. There's no sense getting upset or even feeling unsafe, which I've heard people say. The taxi drivers and sellers might walk along with you but just keep walking. One fellow had a great trick. He handed us coffee bean necklaces and said they were free. As we entered a shop he said we could tip him if we chose to when we came out. Sure enough he stuck to us like glue the minute we exited until we gave him a dollar a piece. No worries.

We ate at a Greek restaurant that advertised free internet to use my Ipod to get online a bit. Unfortunately I am so used to an automatic log in at home that I could not remember my email password to save my life, but I did remember Facebook, lol. If you don't feel like Jamaican food this place has a really good Greek salad with really good feta

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Great Stirrup Cay
Port Rating: Not Rated
The last day of our Sun cruise was spent at Great Stirrup Cay. We had rented a clamshell at the excursion desk the first day ($29.99) so did not need to line up to get tender tickets. It was overcast but you can still burn easily and I saw several very red people. There are a few spots around with dappled shade from the few trees and I was surprised these spots were not already taken. If we had not already paid for the clamshell I would have parked there, even though they are not "front beach." We got in line to rent snorkel gear for my husband and were at the window before we could finish filling out the liability waiver. The young lady actually made us leave the window just to finish the signing, although it only took us a second.

Snorkeling was not that great and I can only imagine it was due to the construction. We did see a barracuda and one solitary stingray and flounder, amongst a variety of the typical reef fish. There were some jellies in the water but they were the small round ones and did not sting. I did see a clear plastic cup too deep for me to retrieve and I made a suggestion on board that they use biodegradable cups here.

The buffet was pretty good but they only had water and horrible tea to drink, besides the bars selling drinks. Even though the last tender supposedly left at 5:30 they took down the buffet at 2, INCLUDING THE WATER(!!!!) I asked at two of the bars for water and they would not give me any, telling me to go try at the buffet area or the exit, neither of which had water. When I was at the front beach bar the lifeguard came up asking for water and they would not give him any either! I was dumbfounded at that!

Having no water available after 2 was unexcusable and also there should at least be some fruit available. My blood sugar plummeted and, coupled with my extreme thirst, forced us to return to the ship at 3. Low blood sugar can cause major mood swings and by the time we were back on board I was pretty bad off. I went immediately to Customer Service to complain, after first warning the young lady that I was pretty livid. I did manage to keep it together and she wrote down my concerns to give to the Food and Beverage Director to pass along to NCL, as the Sun was leaving for Europe the next day

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