Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Jan 23 - Dominica


This is our second time to the lovely island of Dominica. The last time we were here Bernie really wanted to on a whale watching trip so on this visit I got to choose something I had wanted to really do. River tubing down one of their many rivers. We knew that Princess offered a river tubing excursion, but we had heard many negative issues with their provider and the river they choose and the crowds. So I searched out www.cruisecritic.com under the port information and found great things about Antours http://dominicacruisesite.com/ and our friends Larry/Amy used them last year and spoke very highly of them .

We arranged for a group booking and as soon as we got off the ship a representative was there with a sign for us and we were quickly ushered to our air conditioned van, along with the reps daughter who acted as the junior tour guide.

We first went to Emerald Falls where we climbed down to the falls and we even went in. It was a little cool but I thought when I ever going to get to do this again, so we went in. Standing under the falls was amazing.

We got back into the van for about a half hour drive to the river we would be tubing down. The guides were there and we all got outfitted in life vests and helmets and were assigned a tube.

The river's was flowing but there were some areas that we would get stuck and the guides would quickly come to our aid to help us on our way.

The entire group couldn't stop laughing as we banged into each other, got stuck, or laid back and enjoyed the experience.

And when the rapids hit it was a real rush

Here is a video I took of the experience

In total I would guess the ride down the river took about a half hour. Many of the guys got a rub burn on the inside of their elbows from trying to paddle out of areas. So my biggest recommendation is to get Vaseline and coat the inside of your elbows ahead of time to prevent friction burns.

Looks like Allan really enjoyed himself.

Our junior tour guide spits our water... she so wanted to go down the river with us

At the end of the trip the cooler comes out and free beverages are provided, soda, beer and water.

A group photo of our gang after a GREAT day

Here is the van that transported us.

We were taken back to the port and on the way we were told that the town was just beginning the festivities for Carnival and the first of many parades was happening today. So we decided to head back on the ship to shower and grab a bite to eat and head back out to check out this parade.
It was hot out, really hot, and the noise was deafening... as many of the floats had music blaring from them.

I can only imagine how hot these guys were

Apparently the key of the parade is to dress the most outlandish

Princesses from each of the towns on the island

We run into Paul who is taking advantage of some amazing shots

This woman was so nice, we gave her some Canadian lanyards and she smiled ear to ear

What was so interesting about this parade was each float was handing out something. Usually it was of some acoholic nature. Cold beer, water, rum, you name it -- it flowed freely. Got to love a parade that hands out beer.

A beer float

Another beer float

A few of us partake in the free beer

Caribe beer handed out this great hats

The parade was just starting but we knew our time was limited and we had to get back on the ship for sailaway. The parade weaved its way throughout town, back and forth with the music blaring from the floats. Even when we got back on board we sat out on our balcony and could hear the music pounding. What a great island.
Tonight we have a reservation for the Crown Grill again. We enjoyed it so much on the Crown Princess the sailing prior so we are really looking forward to this meal too. Sue and Mike and Jerry and Rose are joining us.

Bernie decided to order this huge steak, it took up the whole plate and he couldn't finish it.

I ordered the tenderloin and the lobster. What is really nice is you order your vegetables family style, they bring a large serving dish of the veggie to the table for everyone to share. I can vouch for the asparagus and the garlic fries. Oh and you have to start your meal with the Blue Onion Soup, yummy

And of course for dessert this time I ordered the full order of the chocolate molten cake.

It was a great night, great company, great food, we laughed sharing our experience of the day in port and the lovely people of Dominica.

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