Well, I’ve officially been back in the country for 48 hours now after a whirlwind 8 days on a cruise to the Dutch Lesser Netherlands Antilles. Here are some photos from my trip and a few tips and suggestions if you ever find yourself 50 miles off the coast of Venezuela!
We cruised out of Ft.Lauderdale for 8 days on Holland America’s Westerdam. It was our first time on the cruise line, (though my 16th time on a cruise ship,) which was definitely adequate though not our favorite ever. Highlights were the casino, spa, and daily poolside fajita bar, lowlights were lack of nightlife on-board and no drink specials.
My 88-year-old Grandfather and I enjoying the private island of Half Moon Cay, Bahamas.
Overall, we were a bit underwhelmed by Aruba. The city itself is pretty filthy and not too enjoyable. The beaches, however, did not disappoint. We took a short ride on the #10 public bus ($2.30 roundtrip per person) to the Amsterdam Hotel and walked across the street to their stretch of Eagle Beach. The sand was soft, water warm, chairs free, and drinks flowing- definitely a must! My cousins and I also spent time in the city later at night at a little dive bar which made for extremely interesting people watching.
Curacao was definitely a quaint little town, very clean and pretty. We walked all over the shopping district looking at beautiful jewelry. We also passed through the floating market, a collective of junk boats from Venezuela that commute back and forth selling fresh produce and handicrafts. Definitely walk along the historic footbridge across the channel, or take the ferry :)
Bonaire was probably our favorite port of call. With just over 2,000 citizens, it’s truly an unspoiled paradise full of amazing snorkeling, gorgeous beaches, lush greenery, and colorful native flamingo and donkey populations. The island is quiet and vibrant, and the kindness of the inhabitants is contagious. We took a taxi to the south side of the island to Sorobon Beach, where I sunbathed and my cousins played around in the water and attempted to learn to windsurf. My mom enjoyed visiting the local craft market as well!
Grandpa and I heading to the formal dining room for dinner.
Have you ever been to any of these islands? What did you do? Did you go anywhere else this holiday season? I had so much to catch up on all of your wonderful blogs, tell me how your holiday went! And oh yeah, happy new year too :)