Caribbean Island Exploring on the Family Cruise

Last year, we agreed to spend time with our family on a Caribbean cruise this year during our year of travel. Meeting everyone for the cruise was one of the few times and places we pre-set before we started the trip. Along for the ride were three uncles (plus their significant others), one cousin, my mom and stepdad, and KC’s parents. You can read about our time together as a family and on the ship on my Family Cruising post. Below are a few pictures and stories of our time off the ship on the islands. We stopped on the Islands of Puerto Rico, St Martin, and St Kitts on the cruise.

San Juan

The Castillo San Felipe Del Morro at the entrance to the San Juan Bay in Puerto Rico

The Castillo San Felipe Del Morro at the entrance to the San Juan Bay in Puerto Rico

We arrived in Puerto Rico in the afternoon, not leaving much time for daytime city exploration. As a family, we had dinner in the city of San Juan and afterwards, KC and I explored the city on our own.

Bev and Andy in Puerto Rico

Bev and Andy waiting for dinner in Puerto Rico;

KC and I caught sunset near the dock, snuck around the old fort after dark, saw the capitol building, and generally wandered the streets. San Juan has an old town feel to it, with the narrow cobble streets and old forts around the city. The old town feel took on a enchanted feel at night time as we wandered around at dark, not knowing where we were going or what was around the corner. Some streets were deserted and others filled with people.

Sunset in San Juan

Sunset in San Juan

KC and I wandered the streets of San Juan at night

The streets of Old San Juan at night

The Capitol building on Old San Juan

The Capitol building on Old San Juan

KC was disappointed that the fort was closed by the time we walked up to it, so we tried to sneak into the fort. Sneaking around a 300-yr old fort at night was slightly creepy. Unfortunately, we didn’t make it into the fort.

The Old Fort at night, mostly from the outside as we looked for a way in

No matter where we wandered in Old San Juan, we could see the ship because it was the tallest structure around. We made it back to the ship with little trouble.

The tallest Building in the city is the cruise ship

The tallest structure in the city is the cruise ship

St Martin

The port at St Marteen, Dutch side

The port on St Marteen, Dutch side; the hills remind me of the hills in California

The next day we stopped at the island of St Martin, which I’m pretty sure is my uncle Henry’s favorite island. It’s the only one he talks about when he visits the Caribbean. If St Martin is his favorite island, then Oriental Beach, on the French side of the island, is his favorite beach. He invited the whole family to join him for lunch on the beach, so KC and I spent the majority of our time with him, his girlfriend Nikki, her mother, uncle Carlos, my cousin Mark, and his girlfriend Laura on this beach.

The beach on the french side of St Martins

The beach on the french side of St Martin

When we arrived, I noticed that KC and Mark were wearing matching neon yellow swim shorts.

They match!

And I thought only KC wears brightly colored swim wear

My uncle had reserved a shaded area for the family to hang out in and rented a jet ski for a couple of hours. We all took turns on the jet ski, swimming in the warm Caribbean water while we waited for out turn. Also, the bar at the beach made the best pina coladas I’ve ever had with fresh coconut milk, pineapple juice, and legitimate Caribbean rum, making the afternoon even better.

Hanging out at the beach.

Hanging out at the beach.

In the late afternoon, the older adults headed back to the ship and KC, Mark, Laura, and I wandered around the streets of Philipsburg, trying different types of Caribbean rum.

20150527_164103

Wandering the streets with Mark (my cousin) and Laura

We caught sunset from the water taxi, heading back to the ship.

Sunset on St Marteen

Sunset on St Marteen

St Kitts

Family tour group

Family tour group

The morning after St Martin, KC and I met up with his parents, my uncle Alberto, and tia Carlota at one of the bars before leaving the ship at St Kitts. Since everyone else seemed to have their own plans for St Kitts, the six of us decided to spend the day together and catch a taxi to one of the beaches, where my uncle Henry was supposed to be that day. “Do you want to tour da island?” the taxi driver asked us. Since driving around the whole island took two hours and costed $20 a person, we decided to do it. The first stop on the tour: a historic plantation that now cells artisan cloth designs.

Bright cloth hanging out to dry

Bright cloth hanging out to dry

The six of us enjoyed some beers in the jungle near the historic plantation.

Beers in the jungle

Beers in the jungle

And played in the bell tower

KC in the Bell Tower

KC in the Bell Tower

Inside the Bell Tower

Inside the Bell Tower

The next stop was a beach with lava rocks that reminded me of the coast along Big Sur in California.

The lava rocks along a beach on St Kitts

The lava rocks along a beach on St Kitts

The last stop was the tourist beach. Even though uncle Henry wasn’t there, we decided to stay and order a few buckets of beer to enjoy in the water.

The swimming beach at St Kitts

The swimming beach at St Kitts

Enjoying the water and beer

Enjoying the water and beer

We made it back to the ship before the all aboard. From the top deck, we watched the island disappear into the horizon.

St Kitts as we sailed away

St Kitts as we sailed away

St Kitts was the last stop on the cruise before heading back to Ft Lauderdale.

You can read more about our time with our family on the cruise in our Family Cruise post and you can see more pictures of the island on our Family Caribbean Cruise Photo Journal Page.

2 responses to “Caribbean Island Exploring on the Family Cruise

  1. Pingback: Cruising with the Family | Little Moon Adventures·

  2. Pingback: Exploring Cancun Part 1: Xcaret | Little Moon Adventures·

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s