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Home > Member Reviews > ny-outdoorsman's Port Reviews of Miami, Cartagena (Colombia), Puntarenas (Puerto Caldera), Puerto Vallarta, Cabo San Lucas, Los Angeles

ny-outdoorsman's Port Reviews of Miami, Cartagena (Colombia), Puntarenas (Puerto Caldera), Puerto Vallarta, Cabo San Lucas, Los Angeles
Norwegian Jewel cruise in April 2012
Member Name: ny-outdoorsman
Cruise Date: April 2012
Embarkation: New York (Manhattan)
Destination: Panama Canal & Central America
Member Review: ny-outdoorsman's Norwegian Jewel Review
Port Rating: 3.0 out of 5+
On 1 May (Tues) we took a cab ($12) to the Bayside Mall, just to walk around a bit.

Could not find Puerto Chiapas Mexico, below, so am writing about it here. Rating: 5++. We did the Banana Co-op and Rural Community. This is the BEST tour we have ever done. Drove about a hour, to a small town of 800, south of Tapachula (700K). First went to a primary school, with grades 1-6 plus a computer class. Went into two classrooms and met the kids, who were adorable, and smiling, glad to practice their English, and us our "Spanglish". We also gave school supplies to the teachers, and then watched a dance presentation. Then went to the local church, where the ladies gave us lunch. I ate mine, my wife's, and the Aussie across the tables lunches. Liked the fried Plantain chips. Then went to a Banana plantation, where Roger our guide (day job is an English teacher) and the manager explained the whole process. Was especially enjoyable for my wife, a retired teacher.

Could not also find Huatulco below either, but that was mostly uneventful. Rating: 3. No bargaining here, no purchases as a result. Shops near the ship were not friendly, almost surly. Went to a cooking demo, then lunch inside in the a/c. Watched a chef cook outside, we all melted, as was hot as the devils oven, no fan, nothing.

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Cartagena (Colombia)
City Tour Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
Our guide, Ben Torres, gave us each tour stickers, which all said "Ben Torres", but he said he was the original. He took care of us, helping us with vendors and shopping. We started out at a fishing village, watching a man repairing a net and throwing it. I have one, they are not easy to do! Lots of military standing all over, watching. We next went to a beachfront restaurant with good local fare, and entertainment. Beer was good, $3. We then went to an emerald museum/store. That was interesting, and purchased some things. There is a 1st, 2nd, 3rd best price! Bargain for it, they like the game too!!

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Puntarenas (Puerto Caldera)
City Tour Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
I did the zip line, my wife went touring with our friends.

Zip-Lining Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
Zipping was fun. All the guides were patient with our group, which varied in age and ability. a photo of me zipping cost $20. Longest line was 1028 ft. Very safe, folks. Perspired buckets, but they had water bottles for you along the way. We then had a nice local foods lunch, then a "zoo tour" with our knowledgeable guides all of which have degrees in bio,wildlife conservation, etc. Very eco-friendly place. Jonathan, our zipping guide, seemed like the man who was respected highly by all the other guides.

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Puerto Vallarta
Culinary Tour Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
This was a fun tour, with Alejandro, our guide. Took a bus tour of the town, then went to Hacienda Dona Engracia, where we had a tequila tasting, then lunch, then great entertainment. My wife bought a beautiful leather pocketbook, for $70, which started out at $120.

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Cabo San Lucas
Port Rating: 5.0 out of 5+
I went sportfishing (rating 5), my wife did a tour of the harbor (rating 5), and shopped. Were 6 of us on the boat, two of us caught a marlin. Both were 7 ft, 120 lbs. Catch and release, lot of fun, good group of folks, except for the US couple that were stick in the muds. Had a good time swapping fishing stories with John, the Aussie on the boat with me.

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Los Angeles
Port Rating: Not Rated
Disembarkation went very smoothly. Had a 12:54 United flight back to NYC, no problem making it.

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