Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Bahamas Cruise for $20.00, Part II

In my last post we were just leaving Miami on our cruise to the Bahamas.
This is a photo of the sunset that evening. I wish it were better as it was a spectacular sunset.

Our travel agent ordered some chocolate covered strawberries and a bottle of merlot to be sent to our room. What a nice way to begin a vacation.

The following morning at 8am we arrive in Freeport. The sun is shining and it looks like it will be a great day.
There are 700 islands in the Bahamas but only 38 are inhabited. Freeport is a very casual quiet little island that supports itself with various goods such as rum and conch (pronounced konk).

This is a view of our ship on the pier in Freeport. We were able to pull up close and walk off the pier.

This is a longshot of the pier from the ship.

We decided to take a tour (on our own) and paid $25.00 each to be taken around the island. This included a stop at the shops, a rum tour and a wonderful commentary of the lifestyle of the islanders by our driver (pictured left taking her fee from the other couple in our tour).

The shopping in Freeport is great. There are lots of people from the island that sell their wares. Many fine sculptures of wood can be found here for a very reasonable price. We bought Justin (our son) a mini motorcycle that was quite detailed for $16. The original price was $20, but Ralph haggled it down. I am not good at that but it is part of their selling just like in Mexico. Once you enter their "area" they will hound you to buy, but there are some great deals.

Another view of the shops.

During our tour our driver took us up close to the mansion occupied by the owner of all the KFC's and Domino's Pizza franchises on the island. They are a couple in their 70's now. The only time anyone else is invited to their home is an annual party they hold for the underprivileged kids from the area.

This is Butler & Sands, the shop where you can go in and taste the various rums they make on the island. We bought a bottle of the Mango Rum. Yummm!

We got back to the ship around 1:00 and went to the main dining room for lunch. Here is a menu to give you an idea of what was available. You will have to click on it so it will enlarge to read it. They have 6 appetizers, 6 entrees and 4 desserts to choose from. If you are like Ralph, you can order 2 of each or more.

Here is Ralph checking out the menu for lunch, but I took this picture for the mural painted on the wall in the back of the main dining room.

This is a longshot of the well-known "Atlantis Resort" in Nassau. We did not go there this time around as we saw it on a tour when it first opened.

After a long day we went to one of the specialty restaurants called "Cagney's Steak House" for dinner. Here is Ralph showing how huge the shrimp were in our appetizer.

It is now Wednesday morning and we arrive in Nassau. This is a view of the indoor shopping just off the pier. Behind this building is a main street with one shop after another. Mostly jewelry.

There was a bit of a walk from the time you got off the ship all the way around the pier to the shops so we stopped and took this picture of me with our ship in the background.
Our room is the 4th one from the right on the 2nd row of balconied rooms just above the NCL logo.

A closer photo of the Festival Place where you can shop indoors.

This is the Govenor's Mansion in the heart of the main street in Nassau. There were about 50 protesters on the opposite side of the street. Not sure what it was about but it had the police keeping an eye out for any problems.

Here is a traffic cop along the busy street of the shops.

This little guy was our greeter when we first entered the Festival Place shops.

A band welcoming the tourists.

I got a shot of Ralph in this getup. He is the 2nd head from the top. lol

This is a view from our dining table in the main seating room. The chandelier was beautiful and the large table below it is the Captain's Table.
There are windows all around the front edges of this room for some great views while eating.

This is the "Stardust Lounge" where all the large production shows are held. We had one night of Broadway shows and one night of a very funny comedian in addition to some variety acts. This is a first-come first-served basis so one night we did get stuck up in the very corner of the balcony.

This little guy is just one of the many animals the room steward makes up each night during the "turn down" service. Ralph put the chocolates on for the eyes. This is made from 2 towels. Too cute.

My last hurrah is in the casino. We were unable to go to the private island owned by the NCL as the weather was poor so we walked around the ship and ended up in the casino. We put one dollar's worth of quarters in the slots and won 5.00. Here I am holding the check.
The slots on the ships don't pay out much so I don't waist my time on them, but we just had to play once.

Ok, it is now time to tell you how we did this lovely cruise for only $20.00.

First of all we have a credit card that is through NCL(Norwegian Cruise Lines) so that all we spend racks up points towards our next cruise and we had enough for 500.00 off.

Second, we booked this cruise during our last cruise and got an additional 100.00 off for pre-booking. You have 2 years from the time you book to actually take a cruise and get the credit.

Third, we were given$80.00 in shipboard credit as a pre-book discount for choosing a balconied room, which we used for our additional fees for the specialty restaurants and a few purchases we made, so that is the same as cash.
We also received a $50.00 shipboard credit from our travel agent because she booked us as one of a group.
The total of credits comes to $730.00 and the cruise cost for two was $750.00, therefore, we paid $20.00 out of pocket. If you include the strawberries and merlot package that cost $30.00 we actually made $10.00 on this trip.



Beautiful photos! Ralph looks good with 2 heads, too--:)

I think you got the bargain of the century, $20.00!!!

Hollyrocks said...

I thoroughly enjoyed looking through your gorgeous photos! Thank you so much for taking the time to share them with us. I can almost feel the warmth of the tropical sun shining on me (oh wait, maybe that's the cold Oklahoma drizzle I'm feeling). And I am SO impressed at how many discounts you managed to get. I'd say your trip was well worth the money, wouldn't you?

maria said...

I loved all the pics as they are very interesting,
and that dog with the green eyes was looking very cute.
I even liked the comment that you wrote under all
bahamas cruise