Monday, November 10, 2008

Finally - Bermuda Cruise Vacation Re-cap Part 1

Ok, as promised, finally here is a re-cap of my cruise vacation to Bermuda that I took a few weeks ago. Was a 5 night cruise from Baltimore to Bermuda on Royal Caribbean. Paid $715.23 (including taxes, fuel service charges, insurance). I really don't think that's a lot of money if you consider if you were to fly to Bermuda, you'd probably pay at least $400 or more for just a round trip plane ticket. Tips for the cabin stewart, waiter and bus boy was an additional $50.

Saturday morning - picked up my sister at the airport, since she was flying down to Baltimore from NY. We had a little bit of time to kill so we went to that big enclosed place that has many stores under one roof which is near the airport. Trying to remember the name.....yes, I remember now. It's called a shopping mall. Arundel Mills Mall to be exact. Bought a clearanced shirt at the Bass outlet for $4.44.

Then had my first experience inside a Costco. Didn't buy anything. But now I can say that I've at least been in a Costco. We're members of BJ's Warehouse but don't have a Costco nearby.

It was a beautiful day in Baltimore, so we headed to the boat. Just look at the gorgeous weather we were having.


People at the muster drill. On the first day on the cruise ship, you have to attend the muster drill, where you put on your life jacket and stand too close to people.

Going under some bridge outside Baltimore:

Here's a picture of our waiter, Reynold Pipe from Trinidad.

The ship was beautiful inside.

When we got on board the ship, they had informational booths set up to tell all about the different programs they had on board. Like if you wanted to do a tuxedo rental. Order flowers for your room. yeah right. Anyhow they had some raffle drawings and both my sister and I won prizes. I won an exclusive Crown & Anchor Society prize. Sounds swanky, doesn't it? I had to go to the Crown & Anchor office on one of the other decks to receive it. It was a mousepad. My sister won Ben & Jerry's ice cream for two. They had a small Ben & Jerry's ice cream parlor on the ship (that you had to pay for).

Monday - a full day at sea. A very rocky sea. It was bad. Really bad. Nearly everyone on the boat was sick. I was very glad I didn't have Jacob with me. I didn't even feel like eating or drinking any of the liquor I had smuggled onboard (nothing major - just a few mini bottles). I tried walking around in the morning and even tried the line dancing class thinking that maybe moving around would help. Saw people vomiting in the restaurant.

In the afternoon we went to an art auction since they were giving away some artwork and we had gotten free raffle tix the previous day. So we found a spot and just relaxed and closed our eye lids and tried not to be sick. My sister ended up winning one of the pieces of artwork, supposedly some $500 value. Art auctions on cruise ships are such a racket. They've been doing them for years and they must be some big money maker for the cruiselines since they keep having them. My sister had to pay $35 to have the artwork shipped to her house. Not original artwork, but a numbered copied of one.

In the evening we did go to the show - the place was nearly empty since everyone was sick. Did see a very entertaining juggling show by Mark and Marlo and also saw a comedian who was pretty good. I give Mark & Marlo credit for their performance, it looked hard enough to do what they did on land, but to do it on a very rocky ship is something else. The following day, I met them both when we were taking a ferry ride in Bermuda. Somehow I managed to turn the conversation to yardsales and ebay. It's doesn't matter who I talk to, somehow I always manage to work "yardsales" into the conversation. I guess it's a talent I have. haha. Mark and Marlo were very nice and later on in the cruise, I went to their juggling class.

Tueday - yeah! We made it to Bermuda. So nice to get off the ship. Kinda weird how immediately you feel better when the ship stops rocking. Ate a huge breakfast (on the ship of course). We bought a 2 day bus/ferry pass for $20, so we didn't use taxis or go on special tours or "excursions".

Took the ferry to Hamilton - the main city in Bermuda. I was hoping to see something, anything, that made me remember my first trip to Bermuda back in 1986, when I spent a week there. But it didn't happen, didn't really recognize anything, except the second day we went to one of the same beaches I had been to before and we also went to an historic church that I had been to before. Of course the look of Bermuda was the same, picturesque pastel colored houses everywhere you went.

We browsed the stores, bought some postcards and went to the Salvation Army. But it was closed. Did peek inside though (since the door was open) but they weren't open to customers.

Salvation Army from above:

We met Bermuda shorts, knee sock wearing Carl, who gave us directions to Fort Hamilton, which had a nice view of the area.

We still got lost, and ended up near some really nice houses that had great views:

Finally found the overlook:

Bermuda is full of beautifully colored houses, churches, etc. You could take pics like this all day long.

I am kind of disappointed in my pictures since I'm using this new camera that I am not totally used to. And the videos from my cellphone are in some weird format that I need to convert to a mpg or avi file, so I may still have some other videos to put on Youtube.

Took a harrowing bus ride to St. George and saw the historic church that I remember seeing back in the 80's. I think all the bus rides are minute you are overlooking a gorgeous harbor, and then the next you are inches away from a wall of rock.

Oh almost forgot to mention some of the stores we browsed were grocery stores. If you think food prices in the USA are high, go live in Bermuda for a while and then you'll realize how cheap prices are here.

The prices are in Bermuda dollars, which equals American dollars. So $5.05 for a package of Oreos in Bermuda, equals $5.05 USA money. I think I would have to kick my diet soda addiction if I lived in Bermuda.

Took the ferry back to the boat in the early evening. Not much nightlife in Bermuda on a Monday night in October. After dinner, we went to the party on the pool deck for a while.

Not the ferry:

Tuesday - Still in Bermuda. Hopped a bus and went to Horseshoe Beach. Beautiful beach with the big rugged rocks in the water. Water was on the cool side. Bermuda is known for the famous pink sand beaches but it's not pink pink like you would think. Just certain granules of the sand are pink. Super super soft sand.

The thing in the sky is a guy who is kite surfing:

Wow - this blog post is taking me longer than I expected it to. So.....I will continue this later.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing your trip. I am enjoying this. I've been wanting to do a cruise to Bermuda from Baltimore since I hate to fly. This gives me a good taste for things.


Anonymous said...

I really enjoy your blog. I check it all the time. It is nice to see how another frugal person vacations!! Elizabeth

zakary said...

How fun! I can't believe the cost of groceries!