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Home > Member Reviews > gracie62's Port Reviews of Grand Turk, Half Moon Cay, Freeport

gracie62's Port Reviews of Grand Turk, Half Moon Cay, Freeport
Carnival Pride cruise in June 2014
Member Name: gracie62
Cruise Date: June 2014
Embarkation: Baltimore
Destination: Eastern Caribbean
Member Review: gracie62's Carnival Pride Review
Grand Turk
Horseback Tour Rating: Not Rated

This was the highlight of our trip, the ranch staff was friendly, courteous and helpful. They hand picked the horses for you based on your size, gender, experience and fear-factor. The horses were well cared for and very gentle. The trail ride was fun (but expect to wear a helmet) and we were in the sun the whole time (wear a t-shirt and/or lots of sunscreen!)
The best part was swapping out our trail horses for the "swimmers" and then being led by our guide to the beach and into the water until the horses were shoulder deep in water, then he signaled the horses into a gallop through the refreshingly cool water, we were splashing and running and laughing and hanging on for dear life, but it was the MOST fun ever! DO THIS EXCURSION!

Semi-Sub Expedition Rating: Not Rated

The semi-sub expedition was way cool! We were lucky enough to see stingrays, sea turtles, barracuda and other beautiful tropical fish. Our captain, (Marky? Mikey?) was funny and entertaining and he even surprised us by coming up from the bottom of the boat in his scuba gear so we could watch him feed a school of fish from our port hole windows!

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Half Moon Cay
Port Rating: 5.0 out of 5+

Most beautiful beach! Crystal clear water, cool, yet warmed up really fast once you were in it. The sand was white, clean, and super soft. This island is owned by Carnival Cruise Lines and is as well maintained and as clean as the ship. The service was amazing, same as what you have on the ship. The afternoon bbq on the beach was amazing! Fresh fruits and vegetables, burgers, hot dogs, jerk chicken, salads, and all the iced tea or lemonade you could drink. Did I mention they had awesome desserts as well?
Beautiful walking trails, beautiful outbuildings, bars, restaurants, and a nice little water park for the little ones. The Pirates Cove bar was lively and entertaining and they held contests all afternoon. The beach was spread out enough where you didn't feel like you were sitting on top of each other. Further down the beach was the horseback riding excursion (which I highly recommend, it was the highlight of our trip!) so you could see the horses from where we sat on the beach. Oh, and get one of the clam shell sun umbrellas for just $20, it's really the only thing that protects you from the sun unless you are lucky enough to snag one of the few shady tree areas. I've been on 3 cruises and Half Moon Cay is my favorite port of call of all time!

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Port Rating: Not Rated

Freeport. Meh. Not sure why Carnival still brings us to this dump port when there are so many other places in the Bahamas to see and a few other ports to choose from.
It's industrialized, loud, dirty, smelly and unattractive. Unless you get a cab and drive 45 minutes to the other side of the island for shopping (and I think there might be a casino?), it's not worth your time, you're only there for 6 hours. It takes just 1 hour to see all the little overpriced shops set up right outside the port docking aread but then you should just get back on the ship and enjoy the pool. This is, however, your last chance to buy last minute souvenirs and trinkets. These shops know this and their prices are outrageous, especially the shops located in the buildings. The outside vendors were a little more willing to negotiate and in fact, offered to discount the prices if they saw you start to walk away. I bought a lovely sundress from a very friendly man for $18, marked down from $30. And it was all his idea. I tried to negotiate with 2 other vendors but they wouldn't budge.
Yes, there's a burger joint/bar, but you can save your money and get it on the ship. Some of the local vendors were just downright rude. Most were friendly and were eager to sell you their trinkets, even at a discounted price, but not all were that way. I asked one vendor to discount a shot glass I had seen a few shops down for less than half her price, but she snarled at me and told me no, so I put it down and went back to the other place and let her watch me buy it from the other vendor. She gave me the evil eye as I walked back past her to get back to the ship. So much for friendly native islanders!

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