Nassau See and Sea Excursion Reviews
A RCCL excursion in Nassau was billed as 3 hours, but was maybe, 2.5 hours. The undersea window boat had plexiglass windows one could hardly take pictures through. The amount of area the boat cruised was so limited that the view was very similar, wherever we went. Maybe another half hour, going further, might have made this better.
We were sorely disappointed with this excursion. The best part was the ride out to the "submarine". The boat captain was informative, funny and had a nice island flair about him. But there was a little too much celebrity sighting information. We were ferried out to the "submarine" which was anchored off the island. While we entered the boat and went downstairs the previous group was ushered onto the ferry. We sat in single file seats next to a glass window that was supposed to be 5' under the ocean, but the glass was fairly clouded and scratched. The captain then directed the boat to various reefs and valleys and through out food to attract the fish. It was hard to photograph and it seemed as if most of the feeding was on the other side of the boat. This tour culminated with a return to the shore and a bus trip basically to the top of a hill and fort area and then around a couple of blocks of government buildings. We like to learn about local culture, but this was a big disappointment. It would have been better to hire a taxi and driver. We have friends who went to Atlantis and were pretty upset with the cost and additional expenses once there. We are not in the gem buying department, so the Nassau shopping was uninteresting. It might have been nice to stay on the boat when everyone else was gone. Lesson learned.
This was fun! Our third cruise and very first excursion. There was a fun harbor cruise, but it was hard to hear the lady that was talking--I think it was the speakers. It was beautiful though. Then we did a boat where you sit in the bottom and watch the fish. It was a tight squeeze but even so it was fun, plenty to look at and the guide was fun and entertaining. The bus tour was also great, our tour guide was very personable and fun. The stop at the fort was just the right amount of time at 20 minutes, not really a lot to do there but it's fun for pictures. We really enjoyed getting to see more of the island and wouldn't have walked around the port again on our own.
At the pier, we were met by our first tour boat which collected us and took us eastward into Nassau Harbor. The guide was very funny as he pointed out the different home sites of the rich and famous, expounded on the going rate for condos on Paradise Island and other interesting tales. He left no room for boredom if one could be bored surrounded with such beauty.
We soon arrived at the SeaWorld Explorer which is not a glass-bottomed boat but, rather, a boat which has a second deck five feet below the water line with glass windows, ample seating and air conditioning! The guide was well informed about the various sea life as the boat maneuvered around the reef. This was the perfect way to experience undersea life without a snorkel or tank (which my mother would never do).
After the tour, our transport boat returned and took us back to the pier near our starting point where an air conditioned luxury coach awaited. This one hour city tour of Nassau was also very interesting and, afterward, we were dropped the pier. We opted to go shopping before returning to the ship.
Its a nice boat ride through the harbor where the guide gives neat little pieces of info about Nassau and some of the celebrity houses you see on the way. He was informative and funny at times. We transferred over to the glass bottom boat. It was more of a semi-submarine. We walked down stairs into the lower part of the boat which was underwater with windows you could see out to the fish. They fed the fish outside the windows. It wasn't amazing, but it was neat. Plenty of fish and a couple of turtles were swimming around. When we were done with that boat, we transferred back to the first boat and they took us back to where we started and we loaded on a small bus/van. They took us to a fort and the queens staircase for about 30 minutes, then drove us back to the pier, pointing out interesting landmarks on the way.
In Nassau, we [unfortunately] bought into the "amazing shopping experience" hype and spent too much only silly Tanzanite jewelry. (Don't buy the "hurry before it's all gone" bull they feed you). But we got some good deals on t-shirts at Del Sol with the $25 coupon book (good for all shops in the Carribean/Bahamas, so keep it for your next cruise!) After shopping we had lunch at a local Asian restaurant and it was great. Then we headed to Tortuga's where my husband got a bottle of rum and enjoyed the rest of his day! In the afternoon, we took the Sea & See tour which was a little lame, but at least we got to see the town of Nassau without having to navigate our selves and we got a great boat ride down the inlet to see the over-priced movie stars' homes.
First part of the excursion was a pretty cool underwater viewing of the reefs on the "submarine". Saw lots of fish (it helped that the crew chummed the water to encourage the fish to come up close), a shark and two barracudas. Bus tour was the land part of this tour. Didn't really excite us that much this time as we did something similar 2 years ago.
Nice mix of a tour. We enjoyed it very much.