On the Carnival Pride
Got up at 8 am so we could grab some breakfast before our excursion in Grand Cayman. This is the excursion that he won during the Shore Excursion show so we were excited. It was a Land and Sea excursion that included a ride on a semi-submersible submarine. Pretty cool.
Off to the tender
In Grand Cayman the ship docks a bit offshore because there is no ship dock in Grand Cayman. Then you ride a small ferry boat to shore. We went down to the A deck to get onto the tender. We were instructed to put masks on before we went to A deck. It only took us a couple of minutes to get onto the tender. And it was only a short ride to shore. Very easy. And no one asked us about our vaccination cards at all.
Checking out the port area
We were about an hour early for our excursion, so we decided to check out the shops. We were only the fifth ship allowed to dock in Grand Cayman since the shutdown, so a lot of shops were not open. Most of the shops in the port were open, along with some of them outside the port area. It was extremely hot but we decided to walk outside the port area along the water front. Hint…I saw some people with cardboard fans with the name Hard Rock on them. That would have come in very handy. The Hard Rock is to the right of the port a ways, across from the waterfront. I had brought a small battery powered fan, and I’m glad that I did.
While we were walking one of the Port Authority agents started talking to us. He was very friendly and we had a nice conversation. After that we crossed the street and shopped a bit, and went into a small church on the waterfront. Very pretty. Also, there is free wi-fi in the port area. There are nice bathrooms also. You know…the important stuff.
Our Excursion…Grand Cayman by Land and Sea
At about 10:35 am we got in line for our excursion. Luckily some clouds had rolled in and it was getting cooler with a breeze. It was a large group, and we were directed to three small busses. These busses don’t have bathrooms, but thankfully, they are nicely air conditioned. Our driver was Marvelette, I’m not sure of the spelling. She was very friendly and knowledgeable about the area. You do need masks as of April 2022.
Our first stop was just down the street at the semi-submersible submarine. I believe that this place was called Nautilus. I’m not sure that this would be a good tour for someone in a wheelchair. You have to step onto the boat and make you way down steep stairs to the bottom of the boat. The top half of this boat is above the water, and the bottom level is under the water. There are many benches that will fit two people, and each bench is beside a waterproof window.
I wasn’t nervous at all, but the guy behind me was afraid, or just trying to scare his mother, because he kept talking about the boat sinking. They have fans on each end of the sub, and you can get a small glass of water if you need it. The boat has a bathroom but you have to go back up the steps to find it. I found that it was kind of hot at the beginning so I turned on my small fan. It seemed to cool down though after a while. Last time I was on a semi submersible I got seasick, so this time I took two Bonine before. I didn’t get sick at all this time.
I don’t think that there were as many fish as I’d thought I’d see. There were a lot of small sergeant major fish, and bigger chubs. I may have seen a shark, and some groupers. That’s about it for the fish. We saw Coral and two shipwrecks, which were cool. And then the captain of the boat dove down with fish food. He swam all the way around the boat and a lot of fish came with him. I enjoyed that. But that was about the extent of what we saw. It was hard to get good pictures through the thick glass.
The bus tour
The description of the tour on our tickets included the water tour, then a bus tour to Seven Mile Beach, Hell, and then shopping. And on the video on the ship’s television it shows you going to a turtle farm.
Marvelette told us all about the area, and how a Mr. Dart owns most of the island. He’s the one who builds all the fancy hotels, etc. Then we stopped at Seven Mile beach beside the Governor’s Mansion. We were given 15 minutes to walk down to the beach to get pictures. It’s a lovely peaceful beach with beautiful clear water. I’d have loved to stay there much longer.
To Hell…and back
Next stop was to Hell, Grand Cayman that is. Hell is a very small place with a few stores and a post office. You can get your passport stamped for a dollar, and all the little stores have postcards two for a dollar. You can even mail one from their post office. Towards the back you can see the limestone formations that gave this tiny town its name. Seems the algae ate the algae and caused strange formations. I believe that there are also cutouts that you can stand behind for pictures. But most importantly, there are restrooms in the back of the building.
A short tour then back to the port
This is kind of where some frustration came in. We all thought that there would be more to the tour than this. We drove through a fancy shopping area but didn’t stop to shop. And then some of the others wanted to know why we weren’t going to the turtle farm. I can certainly understand their frustration. Since we hadn’t paid for the excursion, we didn’t feel so bad. But those who paid good money and thought that they were going to the turtle farm were very disappointed. I’m sure that the Shore Excursion booth on deck two had some disgruntled customers after that. Marvelette didn’t seem to know anything about the turtle farm. She drove us back to port and told us we could shop by the port.
So, I would not recommend this excursion based on the false information given out by Carnival. Or at least know that you may not get what you thought you were getting. Also, you don’t really get a chance to get lunch anywhere so bring something to eat with you. You can buy bottled water in Hell for $2.
Back to the ship
We stood in line to get back on a tender to the ship because it was starting to rain. You will need your mask on. Be sure to bring your picture ID and your ship card with you so you can get back in. Once we got back to the ship we made our way into the area where they scan you in, x-ray your belongings, and confiscate your booze till later in the trip. As you get onto the ship have your ship card ready, and your hat off. Put your belongings, including your hat, onto the x-ray roller. Don’t forget them on the other end. After that you can take the elevators or the stairways up.
Late lunch and time to blog
We freshened up a bit and then had a late lunch while the rain poured. I had a taco bowl and some ice cream. I just love the soft serve that you can get on deck 9 near the buffet. I went back to the room to work on my blog and he went to try and play miniature golf. I have to say that it’s been incredibly windy this trip. It’s really hard to walk on deck 10, and it’s been to windy for the water slides. I haven’t seen anyone on them at all. He came back because it was too windy to putt, but he found another duck buried in the golf balls. It takes me a couple of hours to finish up my blog, and by then it was time to get ready for dinner.
We got down to dinner a little early and our tablemates weren’t there yet. They seem to open the main dining room about 15 minutes early for dinner. I like that we can just walk in and to our seat. We’re at seat 215. It’s a table for 6, but there are only 4 of us.
Last night I had some soup. I won’t even try to spell it, but it was Korean with mushrooms and cocoanut milk. A little spicy but good. Then I had the Rabbit with puff pastry. It wasn’t my favorite, I didn’t like the wine sauce. For a main course I had Prime Rib. It was tender and delicious, and the twice baked potato was delicious too. I wish that it had come with some green vegetables also. For dessert I had a low sugar chocolate/popcorn brownie, which was good, and then I had some sugar free ice cream. Then Rohman brought me some more ice cream. These guys are good. They always have my diet Coke out to me right away without me asking. They have decaf coffee for me at the end of my meal. Make sure you tip your waiters extra, they deserve it.
It was a show night, and I always enjoy show night. There is one waiter who is not my waiter but waits the tables just over from us. And boy, does he love to dance, almost pole dancing. But all I can say is I hope that there are no little kids around when he does. One lady actually got up and put money in his pocket. Not a family friendly show, but the ladies loved it.
There was one show last night, and 80’s song show. It featured the Carnival staff singing the songs and sitting on stools. I do have to say that although it was good, I prefer the song and dance shows that Carnival used to put on. This cruise we only had one show on day two, but not since. There was no comedian so that was about it. And since it was a long day we sat on the Lido deck for awhile enjoying the breeze, then went to our room to relax. Tomorrow’s the saddest day of the cruise, the last day, and we’ll have to organize and figure out debarkation. My next blog will be on Monday after we drive home.