I Shot a Permit Fish In Cayman Islands

I shot a Permit fish in Cayman Island and did so with my under water camera. It was an awesome experience to swim right next to a school of permit out in the ocean and then add the hundreds of Blue Tang fish that let me join their feast on the corals. Let me just say the Cayman Islands are one of those places where I have been and where I always want to go back to. It is such a small place but has so much to offer. I just wish I had the money some people in this world have in the banks of this tiny beautiful island. The Cayman Islands was the last stop in our voyage, and as always we left happy and accomplished. We had decided to sleep in late as the excursion we chose was basically at noon. We saw the excursion information and fell for it at just $70:

  • All Inclusive food and drink. Check!
  • Beach umbrellas and snorkel equipment are available for rent. We had our own, Check!
  • Return air-conditioned transportation to the wonderful Tiki Beach Club located on Seven Mile Beach. Check!
  • Beach has natural reef areas close to shore and therefore may be rocky; extra caution should be taken. Check!

We boarded the tender boat, we cruised right by the Holland America cruise ship, landed soon enough and on to our air conditioned ride to 7 Mile Beach.

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The beach as always was a nice white sand and soft to the touch. Some areas had rocks and plenty shells but there was plenty space to choose from.Cayman Islands044

One thing for sure was that if you venture pass the through and encountered rocks there would be plenty chances to step on a sea urchin. So when you go, just be very careful as there might be plenty sea urchins out there.

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If you snorkel, make sure to peak under the rocks and you might find some snappers or schools of grunts lurking in.

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Bermuda Chubs are regulars through out the Caribbean and they sure were here in large numbers.Cayman Islands008

The beach offered plenty rocks and scattered corals to be appreciated.Cayman Islands009

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Cayman Islands011If you look well enough you will be able to see Sting Rays and some other animal life that are good at camouflaging themselves.Cayman Islands006

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Brain Coral was scattered around and some had nice tones, some were just almost a plain beige, but still awesome to look at.

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A lonely Blue Tang was just posing for a picture but did not allow me to get any closer.Cayman Islands024

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A shy Squirrel fish also posed for me and vanished as soon as I took the picture.Cayman Islands027

This I guess is a Butterfly Fish that ran way from me but not before I had a chance to snap a picture of it.Cayman Islands028

A school of grunts was hiding perfectly under the rocks.Cayman Islands029

Then came my big surprise as I just passed the first set of rocks I looked under as hundreds of blue tangs and other fish schooled together to feed on the corals. It was amazing as they only took a couple of bites from one and went to the next as if they were schools of bees jumping from flower to flower. I followed them and as I spent more time with them they let me get closer.

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As the Tangs guided me through the reef yet another surprise came about. A small school of 4 to 5 permit were feeding on the crustaceans in the sand and rocks. I followed them and I got closer and closer without making sudden movements and it was within minutes that they were swimming around me.Cayman Islands035

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Cayman Islands039I found it curious that they would come from under me over and over, I hadn’t noticed that I flipped a Sea Urchin from under me while I tried to turn around and see what they were doing. I am always careful as to not touch the corals or even the live rocks as I do not want to crush any potential reef growth. The sea urchin must have been trying to move as it was swept by the current of my fins. The permits took advantage and had eaten it in seconds. I tried switching to video and captured a bit part of it then switched right back to picture mode.Cayman Islands040The fish were beautiful and had their fun with me, they swam faster and left under the fins of unsuspected snorkelers that were near by. My guess is they are now familiar with people flipping Sea Urchins for them to eat.Cayman Islands041

Cayman Islands042Once again, a Needle Fish said good by to me as I was leaving the water. It was time to get some Rum Punch and some food, yum yum.Cayman Islands043

ayman Islands Beach Panoramic

Our all inclusive included Rum Punch and a BBQ lunch which we enjoyed to the fullest extent. They had good choices of meats, but we picked the usual BBQ chicken we would normally eat.

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The Rum Punch was good enough to get you to smile for a while.Cayman Islands049Once again our vacation almost felt as if it was over, we boarded the Tender Boats and on to the ship we went.Boat TenderIt was yet another amazing vacation. Can’t wait to see what our 30th anniversary will take us in 2016.Herbert Hans and Lilly

Thanks for reading and or looking at the pictures. Until next time!

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Isla Roatan, Honduras Snorkel & Free Diving Adventure

This was stop three of our 2015 annual Anniversary cruise vacation. We arrived at Mahony bay which is the port at Isla Roatan, Honduras. We had been here before and enjoyed the beach and surrounding areas. This was a very relaxing way to enjoy this port of call. After looking at brouchures  we decided that this time we would plan a nice snorkel and free diving adventure.  After talking with the clerk at the excursion desk we reserved our tickets to go to Tabyana Beach. It was advertised that pristine corals could be seen just a short distance from the beach. The clerk confirmed it as the do get to enjoy the attractions at the port of calls and most of them have actually been at the sites advertised. I must say, I fell in love with coral life. It was an awesome choice.

We arrived at Mahogany Bay, the area specifically made for the ship’s arrival. A few nice shops and restaurants to make you feel comfortable and entice you to open your wallet and have some fun. They really work at making you forget your busy life and enjoy your true vacation.

Isla Roatan Reef & Island034We went straight to take a mini bus that took us to the beach Upon arrival we were some of the first to get there. that was great. I was able to prepare and get to the free diving part.Isla Roatan Reef & Island001I spoke to one of the workers and asked what were the boundaries and what area was safe out of the currents. After a few suggestions I went in the water and started to snorkel my way to about 20 feet were I dove down to get some pictures of the corals.

     Isla Roatan Reef & Island002   Isla Roatan Reef & Island005

The area was well taken care of, they even had signs in different languages to basically guide you away from the shallow areas so you would not touch the corals.Isla Roatan Reef & Island015I was in just 2 feet of water when this Palometa fish pass by saying HI!Isla Roatan Reef & Island004The corals were pristine, the area was well taken care of. It was an awesome sight and delightful free dive and snorkeling. From the beach it was not even 10 feet of water and the corals were there already.

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Isla Roatan Reef & Island007After an hour or so I went back to the beach to join my wife for a local beer and some patties.

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Once we took a break we went back in the water to continue enjoying the sights of the reef and the colorful fish. Once again I encountered more signs, this one in Spanish.Isla Roatan Reef & Island018From the water you can appreciate the natural contour of the Island.Isla Roatan Reef & Island016And then back under water we continued to appreciate what nature has to offer.Isla Roatan Reef & Island011Shcools of Blue, Brown, mixed in with Parrot fish and other species were the constant sights all over the reef.Isla Roatan Reef & Island017

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Isla Roatan Reef & Island023It took us quiet few hour to explore and enjoy the reef. It was getting late so we decided to go back in relax and get on our way back to the ship. Below are the restaurant and shop areas of Tabyana beach.

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Below is an interesting stop to get the sand of your body.Isla Roatan Reef & Island027

Isla Roatan Reef & Island026On our way to the boat we were.Isla Roatan Reef & Island028I snapped some picture from inside the bus. I always like to remember how things were when I visited a destination.

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 Isla Roatan Reef & Island033  One last taste of the local brew and on to the ship we were.Isla Roatan Reef & Island035

Mahogany Bay Shops

Carnival Conquest

Thansk for stopping by, our next stop would be Cayman Islands!

2015 Xcaret, Mexico excursion.

 This one is an oldie from earlier this year. Once again my wife and I went on our yearly anniversary cruise vacation. This time we decided to redo a trip that was previously canceled. A few years back we were to visit Cozumel, Belize, and Cayman Islands but we could not make Belize as it was canceled and destination was changed to Costa Maya. This year we did our research and made sure that Belize was still on the itinerary and there were no problems there. Last time visit to Cozumel we went to visit the Mayan ruins of Tolum. This time around we decided this trip would be about Zenotes and Caves so we decided to visit Xcaret. It was an awesome experience and we recommend you experience at least once.

Our trip was cut short, some times the docking takes much longer than anticipated and that can make your excursion a bit shorter. So as always be ready for any last minute changes.

Pictures of things I like.

 

We took the Ferry from Cozumel to Playas Del Carmen. The boat ride is only about 30 minutes, but some people not used to boats do and did get sick in this short ride. I recomend that you take your seasickness medicine the night  before and a couple of hours before getting in these kind of boats. Luckily for me I do not suffer from this problem but I know many others do.

Pictures of things I like.

We arrived at Xcaret, our driver gave us a few tips on how to make our experience better since we had such a short time to enjoy the water attractions. We chose the underground river that was natural and partly man made, there are other two that are man made as we were explained.

Pictures of things I like.

Right when we entered the park there was a nice little shopping center were you can get some arts and crafts to take home or simply enjoy a drink of your choice.

Pictures of things I like.

Pass the shopping area we went straight to get our gear and passed by the first entrance of the underwater cave.

      Pictures of things I like. Pictures of things I like.

While inside we were surprised by a beautiful pool and waterfall.Pictures of things I like.

Pictures of things I like.

Pictures of things I like.

Pictures of things I like.

Pictures of things I like.

On we went to the river and started to appreciate our surroundings right away.Pictures of things I like.

Pictures of things I like.

Pictures of things I like.

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There were several small Cenotes, some man made and most were natural.Pictures of things I like.

Pictures of things I like.

Some areas are just awesome to stop and appreciate.

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Pictures of things I like.

     Pictures of things I like. Pictures of things I like.

Pictures of things I like.

In the ins and out of the rivers there are areas a bit dark but with enough light for you not to get disoriented, then you can see some ropes on the sides where you can hold as it gets a bit deep for you to walk.

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Pictures of things I like.

 

Past the darkest and deepest areas you will see the mangrove trees, a nice sign that the trip has ended and clear sign that the ocean is on the other side.

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The water are a bit chilli and crystal clear, it’s just an awesome place. I wish we were able to experience the other two rivers, this one left a great impression, we will be back.

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Below are fish therapy tanks, right after turning in our gear you can see these on your right hand side.

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Click on the image below to see a full map of the park.

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Past the Aroma and fish therapy area is the entrance to the beach. It looks awesome.Pictures of things I like.

In case you get lost you’ll know hot to get back to Alaska or anywhere else.Pictures of things I like.

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Pictures of things I like.

I must say, we ate like kings and tasted the best fish and seafood I have had in many, many years.

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Past the restaurants there are many other things to see or experience.

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     Pictures of things I like. Pictures of things I like.

Below is a panoramic picture of the dolphin area.

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On the other side of the dolphin area they have a nice beach and lots of tikis to get away from the sun.

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We then found our way to the Coral Reef Aquarium. This place was great, most fish were swimming in what seemed well taken care of system of pools.

Pictures of things I like.

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Pictures of things I like.

Below are pics of baby turtles that will be released into the oceans. A sign asking you to not touch them so they will not get used to humans is set on rocks by the pools.

Pictures of things I like.

Pictures of things I like.

Stingrays swimming.

Pictures of things I like.

They have a snorkel are that I wanted to get into but unfortunately was running out of time. from were I was the water was still crystal clear.

Pictures of things I like.

Pictures of things I like.

Below are pics of the fish tanks, there is a small yet nice area in the shape of a circle with several fish tanks.

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     Pictures of things I like. Pictures of things I like.Below is a depiction of a Mexican Mayan ruins, an amphitheater, and a depiction of a Mesoamerican ballgame stadium.

Pictures of things I like.

Pictures of things I like.

Pictures of things I like.

Pictures of things I like.

past the stadium wand it was back to the shopping center where I just had to have one local refreshment before leaving to the boat.

Pictures of things I like.

Pictures of things I like.

Cozumel Snorkeling Adventure February 15th 2014

One of our stops on the 4 day Cruise was Cozumel. We had no idea on what to do here. I had been there before but had gone to the mainland to Playas Del Carmen and then we went to visit Tolum. On this trip we were 25 people including my grandson, yes I have a Welcome Centergrandson 🙂 So we decided to wait till we got there and figure out on what to do. To go to Playas Del Carmen it would have been $45.99 per person just to get on the ferry and get dropped off at Playas Del Carmen for some shopping, history, and then go to a resort’s pool and beach access were we could also snorkel for an additional cost. I had read before that Cozumel was a great place to snorkel and I remember small man made beaches where we could go and adventure by our selves but when we got there these little beaches by the Cruise Ship docks were gone. Well, I had to do what us males hate to do, I had to ask for directions to the nearest public beach. The minute we got to the docks I asked some of the local tour guides waiting on their customers. They were very helpful and told me that a Taxi cab to the nearest beach would be about $5 per person and showed me the way to go get them. As we approached the exit out to the Welcome Center of Cozumel we saw drivers dressed in white and with ID tags hanging on their necks. They were from a Taxi company, it seemed to be the only one in the Welcome Center area. We were offered a fare of $25 per person and this included $7.5 to go to a resort, $7.5 to get back, and access to the resort and it’s amenities. When we got there we had access to the pool which looked nice, chairs, beach chairs, hammocks, ladder access to the water, and surprisingly a free Tequila tour in which you are basically obligated by your taste buds to purchase a bottle. We haggled the price to $20/person 🙂 and off we went in two packed fairly new vans.

First things first, got a local beer. Victoria, very refreshing semi dark beer.

Victoria Beer

Below is a panoramic view of the resort.

Cozumel Resort Panoramic 2

The Tequila thought might make you see a second image 🙂

Cozumel Resort Panoramic

From inside the restaurant (they charged in Dollars not Pesos) and the pool.

Panga   Cozumel Resort

The beach area.

Beach in Cozumel

Getting ready to snorkel and in the water we went. By the way we were told that snorkeling was included but they did not tell us we had to rent the equipment. Luckily I brought a few sets of my own for everyone to share.

snorkeling in Cozumel Mexico   Cozumel Mexico

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The water was amazingly clear so we were able to enjoy it to the max.

snorkeling Coxumel Mexico   reef in Cozumel Mexico

The corals were healthy but not much variety in this area.

snorkeling Cozumel Mexico

reef in Cozumel Mexico   snorkeling in Cozumel

There were a lot of artificial reefs being populated by corals, seafans, invertebrates, and of course fish 🙂

Cozumel Mexico Sargent Majors and snappers

I just went back to these rocks, had to do a second pass.

Sargent Major Fish in Cozumel Mexico

Can you see the ballyhoo in the pic below? Great camouflage. Click on the picture to make it larger.

Hidden fish

A beer bottle rock?

Sargent Major fish in Cozumel Mexico

After the beach we had no time to pass by Maragritaville, very disappointing on  that but we had a big group so I did not dare to ask the driver for a quick stop and so we went shopping instead. Word of advise, the shops right in front (flea market like) give you free tequila shots when you shop but the prices are a bit high. Just walk a few blocks down and you will get great discounted prices but no free tequila shots. If you are on a budget take my advice if not take the tequila shots, they are included in the price.

shop in Cozumel

All good things must come to an end and so back to the Carnival Victory ship we went. We missed our dinner at the main dinning room but we were surprised with a midnight Mexican buffet (USA Restaurant Style). It was good and the fruit carvings were nice to see.

watermelon Mayan  Watermelon sculpture

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The next morning it was brunch instead of breakfast and for dessert a nice piece of banana cake.

steak and eggs

banana cake

I never had the chocolate melting cake so I ate a piece and it was great. So I brought the recipe with me 🙂

                                        Chocolate Melting Cake

Here is the whole family.

Group Picture 1

I did say you force  yourself to buy the tequila from the “free” Tequila History and Taste Tour. 🙂  And when you go they do sell some $5 a bottle of tequila in the shops by the Welcome Center. Inside the shops they also had some good ones at 2 for $16.50. But “Doña Jose Licor De Membrillo” Tequila Liquor was a winner to my taste buds and the family almost unanimously agreed and bought their own bottles of it. This is not a drink to mix, just a drink to savor each day 1/2 ounce at a time after dinner so we can remember Cozumel Mexico with great taste in our mind.

Doña Jose tequila

Key West February 14th

On this trip I went with family to celebrate my father in law’s 50th wedding anniversary, yep they have been married for 50 years! They were married by church, by law, and now by sea. They say three times is the charm. I wish them many more. On this trip we went to Key West which is normally about 3 to 4 hour car drive from my house in outer Miami. After Key West we were to set sail to Cozumel Mexico where I would go snorkeling. They say that there is nothing to do in Key West except Drink, Fish, Snorkel, Dive, and DRINK, and maybe smoke a cigar. Well in this short visit I just walked, took some pictures with my honey, had one drink, well 2 drinks, and watched others drink some more. The first stop was Sunset Square where it usually it is packed with street entertainers. This day “Valentines Day” it was empty and still looked nice. Too bad we did not stay to watch the famous sunset as we went back to the ship early to get ready for dinner.

Below is Sunset Square Key West, Florida.

Sunset Square Key West

Below are two lovers in Sunset Square.

Lobe Birds

From the docks at Sunset Square.

 Fishing  Birds in Key West

This little fellow just kept walking back and forth.

                               In Key West

The Historical Military Memorial in Sunset Square Key West.

                                       Key West Sunset Square Monument

Lots of birds in the scenery.

In flight

Some of the islands from a far.

                                    In Key West

Below with my valentine sweetheart.

                                   Lovers

After Sunset Square we walked towards Duval Street, what I call the Bar Mile and in the same street as the bars a nice looking church.

In trolley   Church in Key West

We passed by the original Jimmy Buffets Margaritaville and raised a glass of this adopted Margarita tradition.

Margaritavile   Margaritaville

The next stop was fat Tuesday and also passed next to the Flying Monkey and the Lazy Gecko where the drinks are cheaper but we did not take advantage of.

Fat Tuesday    Flying Monkey

Once we finished we got on the trolley and back to the ship we went. On the right we passed by the quiet area of the town.

In trolley   House in Key west

We got back to the ship and took a panoramic pictures of Key West.

Key West Panoramic

We did buy some fine hand rolled Dominican and Nicaraguan cigars.

Island cigar factory   Herbert Hans and a Nicaraguan Cigar

Then it was back inside the ship where I took one more panoramic picture but this time of the shops “The Promenade”.

Carnival Victory Promenade

Below a pic of the much smaller lobby of the Carnival Victory, smaller than any other I have seen so far. There is no dance floor.

                                  Carnival Victory Lobby

And after dinner the usual towel figure was waiting for us in the room. They always surprise you no matter what cruise company you go in.

                                   Towel art Carnival Cruise Lines

As always we had fun. I never imagined going to Key West on a cruise, this is because I live so close to it but this time I did not go fishing there and actually walked the streets and appreciated the old architecture. I did not go to the usual most famous bars like Hog’s Breath bar and Sloppy Joe’s but intend to visit again with my wife.

“St. Thomas Skyride to Paradise Point” 01-2014

Yet another beautiful view awaited us at St. Thomas. We woke up and took some nice pictures with our cell phones and cameras to Carnival Freedom in St Thomasshare with our family and friends on the social websites. The great thing is we had cell reception and not charged international fees since St. Thomas is U.S. territory. Not sure on what to do we decided to enjoy that wonderful view a bit more, we bought tickets to the “St. Thomas Skyride to Paradise Point” and sure did enjoy it. After a short ride on the well-aged equipment which seemed to be well maintained we strolled our way to the shacks as mentioned on many website reviews. I was expecting one shack with straw roof and bushwacker drinks sold along with Asian market goods as described on many reviews over and over. I really dislike when people do not tell the truth about the places they visit grabbing onto the bad and smearing an entire country or place for a single bad experience. There was no shack, what I did find was a well-organized minimarket of about 12 shops on the upper floor one of which had a small bar and the famous parrots next to it which by the way they do let you take pictures of after you have paid for the walking tour ($10), of which I did not take part of. I instead opted to go down one floor to the big bar/restaurant and enjoy a Bushwacker drink and my wife enjoyed another mix slushy drink. We sure did enjoy the view even more while sipping our refreshments watching a rainbow form right in front of our eyes as the rain passed through the mountain area and have pics to tell the story even further. The rain was over and $34.50 later we decided to go back down. I did get to taste a St. John Summer Lager, it was great and was told by the bar tender that there was a mango flavored lager that for some reason was not sold at most bars but I could find it at a gas station or stores outside the tourist area. I did not ask questions about why and proceeded to go to exit.

St Thomas Skyride to Paradise   St Thomas Skyride

St Thomas January 2014   Carnival Freedom in St Thomas

Carnival Freedom in St Thomas Feb 2014

Rainbow over St Thomas   Bushwacker in St Thomas

Lillian in St Thomas 2   Hans in St Thomas

Virgin Islands Beer   Lillian in St Thomas

We met a nice older couple that had been here before and told us we should go to the 99 steps historical place. As we went down the steps a taxi driver was waiting for passengers and offered to take us to downtown shops at $4 each so we took the offer. As soon as we got off the taxi and started to take some pics we were offered tickets for a free gift if we walked into the jewelry shop, I did not go in but my wife did. There really was no free gift as you had to purchase something to get the so called gift. Well as my wife was inside the shop I spoke with the gentleman that gave her the ticket and asked him about the local beer. He recommended Carib and Elephant beer, hmm? I asked him “where are you from?” he said, “well, I’m from Dominica” and he smiled and explained that those beers were brewed there. I told him I had tried Carib and Amstel Bright and did like the Carib much better so I congratulated his country for making a fine refreshing beer.

Lilly   Shops in St Thomas

As we walked the strip recommended in the map by the ship we saw and heard the same offers all over and over again, some offering a gem, a gift, a discount, originality, etc… We decided to venture out of the map and started to walk along the sea docks watching the beautiful waters and island that once housed the Blackbearded pirate. As we were walking we stopped for a few pics and walked some more while being scared by the honking and not so nice hand gestures of locals driving on the docks with their cars? Well, we passed by a fruit stand I smiled at them and instead of being offered with fruits just got stared at? No words from the vendors and so we realized we were to just head back to the tourist area. We carefully crossed the street just to get honked at some more and I understand we were in U.S. territory where they drove on the opposite side of the road, LOL. I sure was not expecting that one of course we were getting honked at we were looking at the wrong side of the road when we crossed and off course I got stared at the stand, where were my manners? I did not say hello or good morning and only looked and so they must have looked back at me. As we kept walking I saw a man feeding chickens and their chicks and so I joked about him fating them up, boy o boy was that the wrong joke. He cursed at me for as far as I could hear, I just did not say anything to him and kept on walking. We passed by the lottery places where people just sat outside hoping their numbers would be called? I don’t know that was a weird thing for me to see I guess they play an ongoing lottery or something, perhaps I should find out more about it. I might be one of those people sitting outside waiting for a number to be called to get rich quick.

docks in St Thomas   St Thomas dock 2014

St Thomas January 2014                                                Street in St Thomas

Back to the tourist area!!! Alright I was back on the hunt for the St. John’s “Virgin Islands Mango” Lager. In between the shops there were small alleys to go back and forth in between the streets as we were walking a man stops us in wonder and says to my wife “Oh my God, I cannot believe you are wearing those sneakers! Opra says that those sneakers have the perfect colors to wear with any jewelry! Please enter our shops and be wondered by our prices”. LOL, it is amazing what they would tell you just for you to get into their shops. We continued and just decided to get to the famous 99 steps. We got there,and saw a bar/rum museum but it was not on the Ships provided map or in the island Visitor’s Center provided map. So we figured it was some sort of a private place. We went up and asked for the local beers, “WHAT? Oh no, we do not sell local beers!” we were told. We were also told that if we took the self-tour to the top of the steps there might be local beers sold at the place. We found the steps and went up, we did it and found a man selling sodas and water; we kept going following the street signs to Black Beard’s castle. A couple was on the way down and just told us “not worth it, what you see from here is what it is” we got closer and realized they might be right and were too lazy to walk upwards again so we skipped the $10 per person entrance and proceeded to go down the steps.

St Thomas 99 Steps                                   99 steps St Thomas

This little fellow was climbing up along with us. Blackbeard’s castle is on the right.

lizard in St Thomas   Blackbeard Castle

This is the view on both ends of the street where the 99 steps end.

view from 99 steps St Thomas   view from 99 steps St Thomas 2

Once we went back down we decided to again go pass the map for a few blocks and found a nice little friendly restaurant. Bingo! They had both of the St. John local beers so I tried them and the Mango Lager was well worth it. The beer was very fruity and very refreshing, one was more than enough for me as I still had to find the Elephant and it happen right next door where a lady from the Middle east was the store attendant, we got the Elephant beer which felt more like a malt at 7.5% or so alcohol content, it was also refreshing. We also purchased a Mabi nonalcoholic refreshment drink which is brewed from a tree and has a taste of bitter sweet honey. It is said that it was brewed by the Taino Indians of the Caribbean. This particular bottle was brewed in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic and did taste almost as good as the hand brewed one we purchased in Puerto Rico but not quite as good as the hand made brew.

Virgin Islands Mango Beer  drinking a pain killer

The bar owner took a pic of us, the background was painted by a local artist whom just happen to be drinking her own concoction of natural juice and soda water right next to my wife

pretending at Jen's bar St thomas                      Jen's bar

To our surprise the walk after that store ended right by a Moravian church which is a church I have also seeing in the Caribbean side of Nicaragua and some of my family members are part of. We took some pics and as we started walking what do we see when we get to the sea wall? Well, we see our ship and the other ships within walking distance and so we walked to the docks in a maze of high end stores and not so high end stores and liquor shops. We stumbled into a Cruzan shop and purchased two of their delicious daiquiris. We continued to walk and decided to stop at a rug shop recommended by some guys selling beer on the side of the road; they had really nice handmade rugs and ceramic items. Right next to it was the good old Señor Frogs, where the balloons resemble private parts and most people can barely walk when they get out. We got some chicken nachos and saw the couples that eat dinner next to us on the ship, it was fun to see them there we wished we could have stayed but were very tired and decided to head back to ship for a nice shower and a well-deserved nap.

Moravian Church St thomas   Monuments honoring the armed forces of the USA

Carnival Freedom in St Thomas and Trucks   Lilly and Carnival Freedom

Iguanas are all over the island, you just have to look closely and you will find them

iguana in St Thomas

One last view on the way back

Carnival Freedom in St Thomas and sailboats

People walking back to the ships, $4 bucks for a Taxi is worth for one way. If you walk you might find the guys on the right selling refreshments along the way.

walking to the ship   chilling in St Thomas

We stopped for a fun pic moment

Hans in St Thomas 2     Lilly in St Thomas

At the Turkish Bazaar

Turkish Bazaar store in St Thomas                     Turkish Grand Bazaar St Thomas

At Señor Frogs

senor frogs St Thomas   Lilly at Senor Frogs St Thomas

Yes the balloons are private parts the lady is wearing a wiener and the man is wearing a hooha. On the right our fun dinner partners.

naughty ballon hats   the rest of our table

Here is a closer look at the pickup trucks converted to passenger trucks, this called my attention so much. I thought it was kewl.

St Thomas passenger truck

pickup for passengers

At dinner time the pair of couples next to us told us that they went to the beach on the other side of the island where they snorkeled and saw so many kinds of tropical fish they could not identify. They had the opposite experience with people as they found many joyful faces and received many nice greetings and also noticed that many people there where from other islands and not natives to Saint Thomas or Saint John. Well, I missed out on this one so if the next itinerary takes us back to Saint Thomas we will skip the local markets and will go straight to the beaches to enjoy the sun and the sea of this magnificent looking set of islands.

Carnival Freedom last dinner dinner help

Carnival Freedom Last Group dinner

I keep saying all good things must come to an end and so it was the same with our vacation. No more exotic destinations, we would now have two days at sea before we headed home. It is now time to just relax at the balcony, do some reading, and sit by the pool enjoying the sun. The night ended with a big bang of fun at the dining room as we saw our waiter Vijay danced off with many others to the beat of Gan Nam Style. We then went for some Karaoke where our dinner table acquaintance Steve took the stage and blew all the singers away with laughs and good music, after that we went to the Electric White Night 70’s club where we danced till we could no longer dance and we called it the night. We woke up the next day just to get ready for the end of our trip “PACKING and to see the damage our wallet took”. All in all Grand Turk “Ultimate Snorkeling Adventure”, Puerto Rico “Canopy Adventure” Ziplining, St. Maarten “Tiki Hut Relax & Snorkel”, and “St. Thomas Skyride to Paradise Point” were all great and amazing in their own form, which would I do again? Puerto Rico Canopy Adventure Ziplining would be the one. It was tons of fun! All of it was fun but the zip lining took the center stage for us.

I snorkeled in two places and was not able to fish because of the winds and the lack of people wanting to do so, but the trip was a total success and absolutely enjoyed it! I can’t wait for my next one.