Bucket List Cruise: 9 Caribbean Islands In 10 Days

Bucket List Cruise: 9 Caribbean Islands In 10 Days

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This. Is the historic, city of San. Juan Puerto Rico the. First of nine great, places in the Caribbean that, we visited, during a 10-day cruise, on, the Viking. Sea one, of five cruise, ships in the Viking ocean cruises, fleet and they've, got 12, more, new ships coming in the, next eight years. Our. Itinerary is, known as the, West Indies, Explorer, and it will take us to the islands, of Puerto, Rico. Tortola. St.. Kitts, st.. Lucia. Barbados. Dominica. Antigua. Saint. Maarten and st.. Thomas. In. This video I'll show you what my wife and I did at each, Island, along the way including, some, wonderful. Shore excursions. At some, pretty great beaches in, the Caribbean, and, also. A couple of the tours that Viking offers at no, additional charge, to all passengers, I, think. You'll enjoy the video which, will give you a sense of what it would have been like if you, had been along with us for the whole thing. The. Journey kicked off on the island, of Puerto Rico, where the Viking sea was docked at the cruise pier, in historic, Old San, Juan the. Ship actually stays overnight, here the first night and all the way until 5 p.m. on, the second day so, that the guests have plenty of time to, explore, San Juan including. Enough time to enjoy the, local nightlife if they want to and the, local restaurants. When. A cruise ship visits, a port of call there, are always numerous. Shore excursions, that you can choose from but, one signature, feature of a Viking ocean, cruise is that, in every port they visit, in addition, to the regular shore, excursions, you can purchase they. Also offer one, shore excursion, at no, additional charge. And evolve. A complimentary shore excursions, on the West Indies Explorer itinerary. The best one is, right here in San, Juan a, knowledgeable. Local guide will, lead you on a tour of Old San Juan including. A historic. Old fort at the entrance, to San Juan Bay known, as El Morro or. Castillo, San Felipe del Morro if you want to use the full name I, have. Toured El Morro on several, different visits, to San Juan and it, is really interesting to. Have a knowledgeable. Guide to, explain what you're seeing and to, tell you some great stories, about.

The History here. Construction. Of El Morro began. In 1539. On, orders. Of the king of Spain and, its, purpose was to protect, San Juan by, controlling, this body of water right here the, entrance, to the harbor, controlled. This strategic, spot and you prevent, an invasion by sea. Puerto. Rico was under the control of Spain, and if you remember your world history, you know that England, and Spain were, bitter, enemies for, a long, long, time in. 1595. There. Was an incredible. Battle right. Here, at this spot. British. Captain Sir Francis Drake, tried. To invade the city of San Juan with. An armada of 27. Ships and, 2,500. Men his. Plan was to ransack, the city and steal, their very large stockpile. Of gold. So. Drake's. Armada, of 27. Shifts boldly. Tried, to sail right through the harbor entrance but. He didn't know that the Spanish had a secret, weapon a submerged. Chain, along, the seabed there, at the Harbor entrance all, the Spanish had to do was, ratchet, up that chain which, stretched all the way from one shore of the harbor to the other and Drake's. Ships, got all blocked, up right, there in front of El Morro and right. About there all, of Elmo Rose cannons, started. Firing, on Drake's, ships, they. Even, put a cannonball right. Thru Drake's cabin, he. Got badly, injured, in the battle and later, as he tried to recuperate from his wounds he came down with dysentery. And died, a couple of months later. It. Is amazing. To walk around El Morro and consider. The history of this place. Drake's. Botched invasion, is just one of the stories that you'll hear about in. 1898. During, the, spanish-american, war. U.s.. Navy warships. Fired, shells, at El Morro for almost a full, day, imagine. What that must have been like, six. Months later that war ended with the Treaty of Paris and Puerto, Rico became, a u.s., territory. Of. Course, the tour of San Juan that Viking provides covers, a lot more than just El Morro you'll. Get a really great walking, tour of Old San Juan taking. You along a beautiful. Walking path along, the edge of the harbor the, very same path where. Visiting, dignitaries. Back in the day would, walk, after, disembarking they're sailing ships and that, path would lead them to the main gate and official. Entrance, to, the walled city. You. Will also see quite a few beautiful, fountains, during, your walking tour of San Juan and, see many beautiful historic. Buildings, and neighborhoods. Out. Of all the, complimentary, shore excursions, the Viking offers on this itinerary there, is no doubt in my mind that this, walking tour of San Juan is, the, best of the bunch.

Here's. A shot from the back of the Viking sea as we sailed away from, Old San Juan at the end of our second day there it, was a beautiful. Sail away right at sunset and. That would pretty much be the routine every day for the rest of the cruise we, would spend the day on one island or another and then just in time for the sunset we'd, sail away the. Ship would cruise all night to our next port of call and by, about 7:00 a.m. the next day we'd, be at some other great Caribbean, island. As. We sailed out of the harbor at San Juan we. Got a pretty great view of El morale at sunset, with, the full moon it was, quite, a sight. Travelling. By cruise ship there, are so many beautiful. Things to see. Our. Second, port of call was, road town on the island of Tortola one, of the British Virgin Islands. Two, other ships had taken the two spaces at the cruise dock there inroad town so, Viking, sea had to anchor offshore and they, used tenders. To get all the passengers ashore. We. Picked an excursion, that would take, us by catamaran. To, the nearby island, of Yost, Van Dyke, this. Is a time-lapse video I shot with my GoPro mounted. On the front of the catamaran we're, gonna get a great look at the Viking sea here, anchored, in the harbour as we, sailed past her, on our way out to Yosef, and I I'm. Gonna skip ahead a bit in the time-lapse here that. Is the island of Tortola, on the right there, look. At that beautiful. Shade of blue that, the water has here, in this, part of the Caribbean. I'll. Speed up the time-lapse a bit until, we get down here. To this point at one, end of Tortola, and as, we sail past that point we'll start to get our first look in the distance there of the island of Yost, Van Dyke. Let's. Speed this up again for a little bit in a, minute you'll see why. A lot of people consider Yost, Van Dyke to, be the Caribbeans, party. Island. Coming. Into white Bay now and it's got a beautiful. Sandy, beach that, we will spend the next several, hours enjoying, as, we. Come ashore off the boat you can see that there are lots, of loungers, many with umbrellas, for shade and lots. Of little bars and, restaurants, up and down the beach the. Most famous of which is the, stuff of vacation. Legend, the, Soggy Dollar Bar. They. Make a great, burger at the Soggy Dollar Bar, but they are most famous, for, a little drink they invented, known. As the, painkiller. The. Water here was right around 80, degrees and, the, whole reason that I like to vacation, in the Caribbean is to enjoy that warm ocean, water so. I spent, quite a bit of my time on Yost Van Dyck out in that water chatting. With other tourists, and enjoying. One, really. Great vacation, day in, the water under the Sun my. Idea, of a, good time. Meanwhile. My wife held, down a beach chair and. Enjoyed. Reading her Kindle her, idea, of a good time while on vacation, and over. At the Soggy Dollar Bar games. Were played. Drinks. Were enjoyed, and, I'm, pretty sure a good, time was, had by all. After. A few wonderful hours on the beach and Yost van Dijk we, got back on our catamaran for, the trip back to Tortola, where. The Viking sea was of course still, at anchor off shore waiting, for us it was. Great to get back on board have, a shower, and cool, down after. A day at the beach we. Had some cocktails. Around five o'clock they, picked up the anchor and we had a beautiful sail. Away at sunset. This. Is the view from the infinity, pool at the back of the ship it's, pretty much my favorite part of the ship a great, place to enjoy the sunset with, a glass of wine or, a cocktail, if. It's a warm night watch, the sunset while swimming in the infinity, pool or the water temperature, is 86. Degrees or, if, that's not quite warm enough for you use, the jacuzzi instead. Water. Temperature. 102. They. Also serve dinner back here at the back end of the ship and you can enjoy your meal alfresco, back, in this area which, i think is a heck of a lot better than dressing, up and eating, inside some fancy, restaurants.

That. Evening we enjoyed a show in the main theatre these, young singers were really, talented. Especially. That girl closest, to the camera she, was amazing. And you, can see that they got a very, enthusiastic. Ovation. At the end of their show. The. Next morning Viking, sea arrived at the island of st. Kitts, this. Was my third visit to st. Kitts and every, time I've been here it has looked just like this, behind. Those clouds I'm told there is a very tall mountain but. I have never seen it it's been clouded over like that three, times in a row. If. You've never been to st. Kitts before, the excursion, you should do is the, st. Kitts Scenic, Railway it's. A fun little train, ride around the island and it gives you a good look at st., Kitts, now. We've done that excursion, before so we, decided to try Vikings. Complimentary. Shore excursion, and st. Kitts but. I have to be honest to say that the free, tour was a disappointment. So I really can't recommend it you, get on a tour bus and you spend quite a lot of time just driving. Up and down the streets of the city and, I'm sorry to say that it is not a beautiful, city. Then. The bus heads into the hills overlooking, st., Kitts for, a very long look at the historic. At Fairview great, house dating. Back 300. Years you. Can tour the house which, has been restored, to give you a glimpse of what it was like back in the day when this was a big sugar plantation. The. Gardens, are, beautiful and. The views are decent, but my, advice is pick a different shore excursion, on st. Kitts. After. The bus tour we headed back to the docks where, we were glad to get back on board Viking sea that. Evening as we sailed away from st. Kitts we. Still couldn't, see the mountain but, it was another great sunset, as seen, from the back of the ship at the infinity, pool, our. Next, port of call was, the island of st. Lucia, where, we had a pretty, amazing shore, excursion, that involved, having lunch at a beautiful. Resort, overlooking. St. Lucia's most iconic, feature, the. Two volcanic. Peaks known, as the Pitons, but. Getting there was, half the fun. We. Boarded a catamaran. And had, a leisurely, sail down the coast of st. Lucia, it. Was a beautiful. Day with, perfect, conditions. For sailing, let's. Take a minute here and enjoy, some of the sights as if, you were right there with us. Eventually. We made it all the way down the coast to where the Pitons are they, dodge the catamaran, put us on a bus for a brief ride up the hill and pretty, soon we were at the, Ladera, resorts. With, incredible. Views of the pitons and the, coast of st. Lucia. We, had cocktails and then, a really, nice lunch. All with, those great views of the, pitons it. Really, was a spectacular, sight. We. Felt like there couldn't, possibly be, any place, anywhere, on st. Lucia with, a better view than this.

By, The way see that woman standing up wearing that gray top that's. Carol. She, joined me in my wife at our table for lunch at the Ladera resort and we quickly, made friends, and for the whole rest of the cruise, we noticed that Carol had the same taste in shore excursions, that we did we, chose almost, all the same excursions, and we, enjoyed chatting with Carol so much during the week I just wanted to give her a little shout out here, as we, continue to look at these amazing views, from, the Ladera Resort on st. Lucia. After. Lunch they let us have a look at one of the hotel rooms and, it had its own swimming. Pool with, this amazing. View, wouldn't. You love to spend a few days here I know, I would. After. Lunch we got back on the catamaran and headed, back up the coast there was plenty of time so they took a very leisurely. Route up the coast showing. Us some, of the interesting, little nooks and crannies of st. Lucia along the way the. Highlight, for me and I'm sorry that I got absolutely no, video, of it was, when the catamaran, stopped, for a while and we, all got to jump in the water off the back of the boat and have, a swim. Back. On board the Viking sea after a great, day, on st. Lucia this. Is the time-lapse video I shot of our sail away from st. Lucia it. Was always so. Beautiful, as the, ship sailed away from a different Island each night at sunset, I watch just, about every, one of those sunsets sail away from this area at the back of the ship and. A funny thing about this particular, time-lapse. Video I had. Forgotten to bring anything with me that evening to, attach, the camera to while. I recorded, our sail away so I just, climbed, into the jacuzzi and, steady, the camera with my hand on the edge of the jacuzzi as it, recorded, this time-lapse video I know. What you're thinking the tough sacrifices I, make in order, to make these videos for you you, don't need to thank me but do, go ahead and click, the thumbs up button if you like the way this video is going so, far. The. Next morning we were docked on the island, of Barbados. The, most southerly point on, our 10-day, cruise we. Were docked at the sugar, pier where that big contraption you see there is used to load up cargo ships with the sugar that they grow here on Barbados, and. We were joined by the carnival fascination. I'm. Kind of surprised, the, carnival hasn't sold off these old dated, fantasy, class ships on their fleets most, of the cabins are either inside, cabins, with no windows at all or, oceanview. Cabins with, just a window but no balcony. Carnivals. Newest, ship, the vista class are really great, but, these old fantasy, class ships are just not, in the same league. Our. Shore excursion, today in Barbados, took, us to the copacabana, beach club, on, a very nice stretch of beach the. Ocean water temperature, was 82. Degrees, we. All had loungers, and beach chairs, and. Hey there's our new friend Carol, who we met at lunch yesterday overlooking. The Pitons and st. Lucia and allow. Me to introduce some, other new friends of mine who we met on this cruise and also, had a fantastic, time with that's. Carol, Ann and McCray, they. Run a travel and lifestyle blog called one, modern couple, calm, and that's. Heidi Larson and her husband shaft, Heidi, writes a blog foodie. Crush calm, it's, all about food, recipes. And photographs. Of lots of delicious, things you'll want to eat so. We just had a wonderful time at the beach in Barbados, the, weather was perfect. My, wife enjoyed, her spot on a lounger, under an umbrella reading. A book on her Kindle and, I spent, quite a bit of time in that 82, degree water a great. Way to spend, a day, back. On the Viking sea it was a lovely, afternoon so. They had the dome open, over the middle and. Out. By the pool they serve a pretty great little Western bacon burger, with barbecue, sauce that. They call the Viking, burger, I liked, it so much I think it probably had three, or four over. The course of our 10 day cruise. At. The end of the day carnival. Fascination. Was the first to leave and, then, it was our turn to literally cruise. Off into, the sunset and, head, north to, our next port of call the, island, of Dominica. We. Actually didn't, get off the ship in Dominica, we, decided to spend a relaxing day, on board. And in the afternoon, we got invited up to the ship's navigational. Bridge for, a tour, which, was pretty cool especially. The fact that the guy giving, us the tour was. None other than the ship's captain. He. Spent a lot of time showing us around the bridge explaining. How things work answering, our questions, and even. Posing for a few photos. The. Next day another Island this time it was Antigua, and we, opted for another, Beach excursion. They. Do offer, other kinds of excursions, of course on a Viking, cruise to the Caribbean but.

I'm All about the beach and enjoying that warm ocean water in the Caribbean I can't. Get enough of it this. Was jolly beach on the west side of Antigua, that's the Caribbean side I heard. That some folks who went on a beach excursion, on the east side the Atlantic, side had, a whole lot of wind and nowhere near as good of a time as we, had at jolly, Beach on, the west side. Once. Again a lot of the same people who had chosen Beach excursions, earlier in the week chose, this excursion, too so, we continued, having fun with a lot of the same folks we had been getting to know over the course of the week I really. Enjoyed that this cruise was, a much more social, cruise, for us than, most of our other cruises have been. Back. Onboard the ship at the end of the day here's, another, time-lapse. From the back of the ship it, was a lovely warm night people, were still using the infinity, pool as the Sun was setting and as. We sailed away from Antigua, it was just another, lovely, sunset and, such, a great vibe back there at the back end of the ship watching, the sail away as, day. Tonight. Our. Next. Port of call was, the island of st. Maarten and carnival. Fascination, was there with us once again as was. This very cool-looking sailing. Ship the. Star flyer, I love. The idea of a Caribbean cruise on, a real, sailing, ship like that but I don't think I would actually do, it because I love the comforts, and amenities of a big cruise ship too, much. We. Took a shared taxi. Van from the cruise port and headed. Over to, Maho, beach on, the Dutch side of the island I am, delighted to say that Maho, beach has, fully, recovered, from the damage caused in 2017. By, Hurricane Emma. We. Rented a couple of loungers and an umbrella and got, a real kick out of watching the, airplanes, coming, in for a landing at. The airport that's, just behind Maho, beach the. Airport, has a fairly, short runway, so, the planes usually, land pretty close to the end of the runway right, next to the beach when, they come in low for that landing, it's, a pretty dramatic view. From Maho beach, it's. Cool to watch even the small planes land, but when, the big planes, land, it's, really, a thrill. It's. Also fun to watch what happens when, the big Jets take off they. Rev up their engines at the end of the runway and it, blows the sand all the way over there at the beach. No. Visit, to Maho, beach would, be complete, without having, lunch at, the sunset, Bar and Grill a st., Maarten legend. The. Food is, surprisingly. Good with, their great location. They could stay in business even if the food was mediocre. We, had some barbecue ribs and barbecue, chicken served, with steak, fries it. Was, fantastic. Back. On board the Viking see people, were really enjoying the midship, pool with, a sliding, dome open on a wonderfully. Warm day in st., Maarten and later. That afternoon here's. A time-lapse, of our sail away from st. Martin on, the right there's, the star flyer sailing, ship I showed you earlier but. On the left you'll, see that there was actually an even larger sailing. Ship docked along with us in st. Maarten the, winds surf from.

Windstar, Cruises. The. Next day our final, port of call for this cruise was, st. Thomas in the US Virgin Islands, we. Took a little tram, from the cruise port and we. Boarded yet another catamaran, for, what turned out to be a fantastic. Excursion. To the island, of st. John, this. Was such a great way to end the cruise on, a real high, note when. We got to st. John we, moored offshore and they, said anybody that wanted to swim ashore could. Jump in and go for it I was, the first one in the water here's. My view of the catamaran right after I jumped in for. Those that didn't, want to swim ashore they had a little dinghy that they used to, tender people ashore I actually, was able to swim ashore and, be there before anybody, else. Get this video of the first load of passengers coming. Ashore in, the dinghy, pardon. The water drops on the lens of the GoPro from my swim I, wasn't. The only one that chose to swim ashore, here's, to other adventurous, ones and there, actually were a surprisingly. Large number of other people that chose to, swim ashore I thoroughly, enjoyed, it and I, don't think that I'll soon forget, that experience, on st., John, here's. My new friend Leslie enjoying, her time on honeymoon, beach on st. John and there. Were a lot of fish in the water here and for, some reason, they liked to swim around, people's, Beach. Much. Of st. John is a US, National Park, very. Undeveloped. And in its natural state I, loved. It. Eventually. We had enough beach time and everybody. Got back on board the catamaran for, the trip back to st. Thomas where. The Viking sea was docked for. This leg of the catamaran ride we were going downwind, so, they were able to hoist the sails and because. We had finished swimming, they opened, up the bar, rum. Was flowing freely rum, punch rum, and cokes and even. Mimosas. Let. Me just say that after a great, time on the beach at st. John sailing. With the wind on a catamaran, with her sails up on, a perfect, day in the Caribbean, and plenty, of rum we. Were all having a pretty great time. Our. Last excursion. On our 10-day cruise was. A huge, success. The. Excursion, was called the, st. John National, Park champagne, catamaran, sail and, if, you ever get the chance to do this one you, should. Well. We had a pretty great time on the Viking sea and I, still have one more video that I'm going to be working on about, how a Viking, ocean, cruise is completely.

Different Than, any other kind of cruise you may have been on I'm. Gonna need another week or so to edit that one together it's a big project if you don't want to miss it subscribe, to my channel, and click the little bell icon to. Turn notifications, on. That. Way you'll get a little notification for, me when, I finally, post that new video. This. Is Jim Zim closing out this video if you enjoyed it the, biggest favor you can do for me is to hit the thumbs up button that, lets YouTube, know that it's a good video which, causes them to recommend, it to other people and. If. You're interested in booking a cruise on Viking, or any of the cruise lines you, are welcome, to use my, travel, agent Katelyn. Gallagher, of amber, and travel, there's. No cost to you and it's great to have a knowledgeable. Agent taking care of all, the details for, you. You.

2019-02-05 05:30

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That looks like a tough task Jim but someone has to do it! Really looking forward to learning more about the brand and the ship looks really amazing. Notable by their absence were large groups of people during your sailaways. Obviously a very different experience.

TY! Speaking of cameras and holders, what do you use? Hero? SLR camera? Do you use a chest/head mount or handheld or? Regardless, it is quite beautiful.

+Jim Zimmerlin TY! It works very well!

GoPro Hero 7 Black... sometimes mounted on a simple selfie stick, sometimes on a gimbal. For the time lapses, sometimes I secure it with a clamp, or other times mount it on a tripod.

You mentioned GoPro but what model? A lot of the action-sports sort of mounts seem a bit ostentatious for non-action tourist me to be walking around in.

Great video. Enjoyable watch . Was at maho beach last year and it was loads of fun. Shame the very big jets are not back yet due to the airport damage but will have to go back one day when they are

Jim you are awesome. I continue to love your videos and looks like you had the best time! keep it up!

Please do the worst cruise ships you've been on jim,please.

Go watch the video on the MSC Seaside and you will probably have the number 1.. or at least on the list

loved it! Viking looks like it's stepped up its game.

I love your videos because you tell it the way it is, both the good and the bad. Also, you have such a great talking voice!

I live next to St.Kitts on another island called St.Eustatius

Since I have family who live in most of those islands, My shore excursion would let me experiencel the real island not does plan excursion . These family member are though marriage. And love to show off their island. Great video overall.

Glad you enjoyed my island St.lucia

Just did 8 ports in 14 days on ncl escape

6:27 Great shot Jim

Thanks! Yeah, that was the Canon 80D camera, not the GoPro.

What an amazing video Jim! I enjoyed it very much. We’re headed to Puerto Rico in April for a Celebrity cruise.

Loved the tour of all the Islands and the subtle music behind your great voice. Keep up the wonderful work. :)

Love this video! ❤️

Thanks Jim. Great video and review of the Viking cruise and excursions. We love the Caribbean too. Looking forward to the next video project... once you get through the monster edit. Tim.

Brilliant Jim! We’re heading to the Caribbean very soon but this time (we went last year too), we’re heading further South to Cuba! By the way I noticed the lovely lady at 14:28 on the left of the picture!!

Best port San Juan PR

I can’t imagine staying for an extended period at Maho Beach. It’s fun to watch a couple planes but there are so many better beaches all over the island.

We had ten days of great beaches. It was fun to spend a few hours at Maho and watch the planes land. Plus, I totally loved the barbecue lunch we had at the Sunset Bar & Grill. It was my second time to Maho Beach... won't be my last! It's a unique destination.

Did you have a favorite island?

I like St John a lot... I usually try to take an excursion over to it whenever we're in St Thomas. I like St Maarten a lot, too... it's one of those islands where you don't need to go on an expensive ship-sponsored shore excursion, because it's easy to get to a good beach with either a short ferry ride, or a taxi. But really, I like visiting multiple islands on a long Caribbean cruise! 10 days was great... 14 would have been better! 7 would be too few.

This video was so relaxing!!! Man a miss Viking and the sun... And everything.

Yeah, the sun is pretty great, isn't it? 10 days of it, and beaches with warm water... in JANUARY, to boot... that's hard to beat!

Jim: Thank you for yet another great video. I have followed your reportages with interest. We seem to like and appreciate the same things in life. Cheers,

Outstanding video Sir. We cannot wait to try Viking cruises.

This vlog is fantastic. The ocean is beautiful. I’d love to sail on a Viking cruise one day.

Jim. In San Juan, you can actually do the walking tour by yourself. There is a detailed guide with photos of locations online. Also, you can get the yearly pass or lifetime pass if you are senior, then the entry to the forts will be cover for you and three other people in your group. You chose the best beaches I think

Yes, that would be great if you are in San Juan with some other Cruise line. If you're on a Viking Cruise, you might as well take their tour... since they pay for your entry to the fort!

Great job on the video Jim! I really enjoyed it. Looking forward to the Viking video you are working on!

Great video Jim!

Great video! Looking forward to seeing the next one on the ship itself.

Great video Jim, nice to see so many ports. Note to self, next cruise has to make a stop in St Lucia, so beautiful

What a video. What a vacation. That truly looks like a dream vacation. Unbelieveable, my eyes were glued for the whole video.

Thanks! That's nice of you to say. I really do think this was one of my best videos. It's actually the first time that I did a video just about all the shore excursions. They say that a Viking cruise is "destination focused"... as opposed to a cruise on Royal Caribbean's Oasis-class ships, where the focus of the cruise is the ship itself. I think the video does a good job of showing how fun a "destination focused" cruise can be!

Thanks Jim for sharing I really enjoyed your video.


Thank you for posting these Jim! I have never cruised and never will because I am too afraid of getting seasick ( I’ve gotten seasickness with Dramamine in reg boats). Imagining my self on these cruises as I watch ♥️

I, too, get seasick a lot, but am able to go on cruises by taking Meclizine.

Speaking of tearing up... The first time I went to Maho Beach, I actually got emotionally overwhelmed and had a few tears. I had seen lots and lots of videos on YouTube of the planes landing there, right above people's heads, at Maho Beach. But when I actually went there myself for the first time, it was SO MUCH BETTER in person than what I had seen on the videos... it just overcame me for a moment. Such a weird thing to shed tears over! But I had dreamed of going there for a long time, and then one day, I was finally there. It overwhelmed me for a minute!

Just wanted to add that some of these views made me tear up... have never seen anything so beautiful ( I live in nj and have a view of the N.Y. skyline. This doesn’t compare)

Great video review, one of the best I have seen on youtube, its refreshing to see a cruise review video without the filmmaker sticking his/her face on every shot. I really enjoyed your video.

Yeah, at 61 years of age, my face is better suited for radio! So, I stick mainly to voice-overs on my videos.

Ok.....Jim. My friend. Thank you! For this video, we have been looking at this cruise area I think this video sealed the deal for my wife and I.

Excellent video Jim !!! The quality of the video is fantastic ! Very informative Thanks

Great video Jim! It did seems to me like I was really there in those beautiful islands. What time of year was your trip? And how come there was no one using the aft pool of the ship?

+Jim Zimmerlin Thank you, that makes sense. Hopefully the cruise line can fix that issue in the future. The itinerary sounds amazing though.

This trip just concluded a week ago. A couple of reasons that you don't see many people using the aft pool... 1. Most of the videos you saw of that pool were taken at sunset, around 5:30 PM. People were not in pool mode at that hour, they were getting ready for dinner. 2. The aft pool has no shallow end. It is too deep to stand up in and breathe. So, you have to swim, or tread water, or cling on to the side. Most people find that uncomfortable, and don't stay in long. If the pool had been made a little less deep, so you could stand up in it with your head above water, I bet it would get used more. The ship's two other pools are more popular... they aren't as deep, and you can stand up in them with your head above water.

Loved this video and seeing many excellent Caribbean islands!! I always enjoy your videos Jim, thank you for sharing!!

Excellent Jim. We are headed out on cruise #8 on the Getaway. First time on NCL. Then RC Freedom again in August. We prefer cruising out of San Juan..love the city...and the Southern islands. I'm considering going upgrading to The Haven...your review of Viking is fantastic..once the kids are out of college...one day..

Ah yes, once our kids were off on their own, that's when we started being able to devote all of our discretionary income to cruising. Once that happens to you, you'll start having lots more amazing adventures!

Try to go on the carnival horizon class ships

Jim Zimmerlin ah yes I am wrong. I meant the vista class but the only ship I remembered was horizon. Thanks for the clarification

I think you mean the Vista class. Of my next three cruises, two will be on the Vista class. Also, I did already sail on the Carnival Vista itself, and made a couple of videos about it. For example, take a look at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-KA89LvnBsg

Beautiful Cruise Jim thank you for sharing.

Hi Jim, I really enjoy your videos. Both myself and my wife are ‘cruisers’ and we are based in the UK. We find your videos very informative and useful when we are planning our next cruise. Mark & Jill

Thanks, Mark! That's nice of you to say. Right now, I still have a "real job" that takes up 40 hours of my time each week. Just think of all the cool videos I'll be able to make when I finally retire!

Jim, that was so enjoyable to watch! One not-so-great excursion out of that trip isn't so bad. You sure are living life, and I appreciate you taking us along! I look forward to the Viking/other cruise line comparison video.

And that one bus tour, which was a dud, was only about two and a half hours... so it was not a huge amount of time wasted. I think the bus tours like those are good for the more senior passengers, who want to do SOMETHING ashore, but not something involving much sun or exercise.

Do you will go on the Symphony of the Seas?

I don't think so. I've been on the Oasis-class ships several times already. I feel like I've been there and done that. Plus, I like a good buffet and my experience on the Oasis-class has been that the buffets were the worst of all the cruise ships I've been on. I really love the entertainment on Royal Caribbean, and their high-speed Internet is the best at sea... but I'm not willing to put up with a bad buffet one more time. So, I think I'm done with the Oasis class. Oddly, the other ships in their fleet have had excellent buffets! I'm much more likely to sail on Anthem Of The Seas again, than on any of the Oasis-class ships. But with all that said, I do think that the Oasis-class ships are amazing in their own right, and do suggest that people who love cruising should cruise on one of those ships at least once, since they are so unique.

Great video!

This was so pleasant. Thank you!

Jim, how do feel the premium Viking charges compare to the dollar value of the inclusives offered with Viking?

+Jim Zimmerlin Thank you Jim. I respect your experience. My wife and I married fairly late in life. The few trips we will be able to take are very valuable.

It seems like it's priced right to me. Viking's Caribbean cruises are priced just a little bit lower (per day) than the lowest priced cabins in The Haven on NCL. I still feel the same way that I did two years ago, when I did my first Viking Ocean cruise... that the overall experience on Viking is very similar in a lot of ways to cruising in The Haven on NCL. Each one has their own advantages, so it's a matter of what's most important to you. On Viking, you'll visit a LOT more islands... 9 in a 10 day cruise. On NCL, it would typically be 3 in a 7 day cruise. And on Viking, the ENTIRE ship is uncrowded. On NCL, The Haven is uncrowded. On Viking, no matter what kind of cabin you book, you have access to the Thermal Suite in the spa. On NCL, only the folks in spa suites have access to the thermal suite, without paying an extra fee. On the other hand, the entertainment and the number of dining options is better on NCL. And you would have a butler on NCL. So, you have to weigh things like that to decide between Viking, or The Haven on NCL. Anything the other major cruise lines offer would be a step down. But then again, anything on the other major cruise lines would be less expensive! So, you just have to figure out what the most important factors are for you. For me, give me The Haven, or a Viking Ocean Cruise, or to save a little money the Havana area on Carnival's Vista class.

Fantastic. So far the only video without selfie I've ever seen. I realy enjoyed it.

We also found Dominica a good day to stay on board. Not a whole lot to do there.

I live in Dominica

Did I pronounce it right? I hope I did!

This was great. Thanks for posting.

I think the people who disliked were so excited to like it that they missed and hit dislike. orrrr They're jealous because of all the nice places you got to go to

Wow, we re at St John's that same day with a different catamaran. Some of the best snorkeling I have experienced.

Hi Jim. What was the name of the beach you went to in st Thomas ?

Ok thank you we are going on ncl bliss next week and one of our excursions is snorkeling and then honeymoon beach but I’m not sure which one

We didn't go to a beach on St Thomas. We took a catamaran over to a beach on the island of St John, and that beach on St John is called honeymoon beach. Be careful not to confuse it with honeymoon beach on St Thomas... which is entirely different! The two islands each have a honeymoon beach. We went to the one on St John.

Love your videos! At the beginning of your video there is a shot for a few seconds of a beach with white sand and very blue water...which beach was that?! Thanks! It’s right at about 54-55 seconds.

That was Jolly Beach in Antigua. Go to the 19:37 point of the video to find out more about it.

How far was it from the cruise ship

There is a beach very near the cruise ship terminal in St Maarten. (Not Maho, which is at the other end of the island.) The easy way to get to the nearby beach is to walk off your cruise ship and follow the sign to the ferry boats. Purchase a round trip ferry ticket, so you can get back! The ferry takes you accross the bay to the nearby beach. It's about a 10 minute ferry ride.

Thanks Jim for your high quality video of the actual cruise ports of call and the beautiful scenery, much better than most cruise vloggers who just tell you about it or give snapshots! Looking forward to more!

How can I love this 1000 times, Jim? What a fantastic video you created here. Historically informative, beautiful to watch, inclusive of really useful information, fantastic editing skills and a perfect use of music. Geez. You’re really talented.

Thank you, Laura! The answer to your question is... You could share it with your friends on social media.

wow might do this cruise, love the idea of a ship staying over night at an island, so far this vid beats RC cruise vids. You make it look so relaxing

hi, Jim. We are a cruise enthusiastic family from Argentina and we have followed your advice on where to eat during our last two cruises: no more formal dinner for us!. We love your videos and my husband and I want to be just like you and your wife in a couple of years: he enjoys the sea (so does our daughter) while I read books under an umbrella.

Hello, Argentina! Trivia fact about the Zim family: for 15 years, our hobby was American Cocker Spaniel dogs. We bred over a hundred puppies over those 15 years. The reason I mention it is that one of our dogs was actually born in Argentina to a very successful breeder there, and we imported him in to the United States to join our breeding program. So, that's what immediately comes to mind when I think of Argentina. For a lot of other Americans, I suspect it might be Evita! Anyway, that's funny that you like to sit under an umbrella reading a book, just like my wife does! To each his own, and one of the great things about cruising is that all members of the family can find different things to do on a cruise and everyone can be happy.

Good video!! Have cruised the Caribbean many times. Getting tired of all the poverty and crime there. Also you are attacked by everyone trying to sell you something. Very sad. It’s much better to tour in affluent countries where you are treated like a person rather than a meal ticket. Cruise companies are making their own islands to get around all these problems.

Yeah, there is a lot to be said for the private destinations that a lot of the cruise lines have made in the Caribbean.

Jim Zimmerlin my husband was looking forward to your response. He will be so excited (he is already sleeping). You are right: no one has ever mentioned dogs when we say we are Argentinian. We are used to hearing tango, Messi or Maradona (soccer players) and of course most people sing “don’t cry for me, Argentina”... Thank you very much for taking the time to tell us about your family trivia. Best regards for you and your wife from Diego (husband), Giovanna (10-year-old daughter) and Roxana (that’s me, of course)

+Jack Campbell Please feel free to reach out to me. I am Jim's travel agent and would love to help you and your wife plan the most memorable vacations. caitlin@ambrentravel.com

9 islands! wow!

AMAZING!!! We need one out of NYC!!!

Did this cruise last January, so glad to relive an awesome trip.

Loved the video and comments but not getting any comments on Dominica was very disappointing.

@Jack Campbell Please feel free to reach out to me. I am Jim's travel agent and would love to help you and your wife plan the most memorable vacations. caitlin@ambrentravel.com

@Jim Zimmerlin Thank you Jim. I respect your experience. My wife and I married fairly late in life. The few trips we will be able to take are very valuable.

@Jim Zimmerlin TY! It works very well!

@Jim Zimmerlin Thank you, that makes sense. Hopefully the cruise line can fix that issue in the future. The itinerary sounds amazing though.

jim i love your vids good job hope to meet you some day

Jim: Thank you for the excellent review.

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