Category Archives: Roatan Island

Weekly Photo Challenge: Surprise


This was taken on Roatan Island in the Honduras.  Monkeys make nice hats, very warm and they can be trained to wipe your glasses and hold your ball hat.

Monkey Hat

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Trip Summary – New Orleans and Western Caribbean


Safely back in Calgary it is time to summarize, review, price and recommend.  First the beginning, the flight from Calgary to New Orleans.

Continental Airlines

We flew via Continental Airlines, with a connecting flight in Houston in both directions.  We chose Continental for a couple of main reasons.  First, they had the flights that fit our need, second, they are connected with Air Canada, which allowed us to earn Aeroplan.  Total cost for flights was approximately 650 each, return including luggage fees.  The flights were on time (early on the return to Calgary).  I had two issues.  On the way down they ran out of hot food for purchase, which was a downer on a flight that I had to at the airport for at % in the morning.  Second, in-flight entertainment did not have a free option, only pay.  Overall, I would easily fly with them again, especially knowing what to expect.

http://www.continental.com/web/en-US/default.aspx

There is an app for Iphone as well.

New Orleans

Lots to see and do in New Orleans.  we spent 3 night at Garlands Guest House and Creole Cottages.

1129 Rue St. Philip
New Orleans LA 70116
(504) 523-1372
(800) 523-1060

http://www.garlandsguesthouse.com/

This is a bed and breakfast about 100 feet off of Rampart Ave, right beside Louis Armstrong Park.  We paid about 150 per night and the accommodations and breakfast were very good.  I would rate it 4 of 5.  I would double-check the rates etc. as the place had been sold, with new owner operators taking over on April 1.  We were there on the 27th of March for our last night.

We ate at the following establishments

Eat

http://www.eatnola.com/

Great little restaurant. Easy 4 out of 5.  Reasonably priced and bring your own booze.

900 Dumaine Street
New Orleans, Louisiana 70116

phone
504 522 7222

hours
tuesday – friday: 11am – 2pm + 5:30pm – 10pm
saturday: 9am – 2pm + 5:30pm – 10pm
sunday brunch: 9am – 2pm
closed monday

Muriels Jackson Square Restaurant

http://www.muriels.com/


801 Chartres Street
New Orleans, Louisiana 70116
Phone: 504.568.1885
Fax: 504.568.9795
Email:
info@muriels.com

we highly recommend this place.  The service was great, the food reasonably priced and very well prepared.  If in New Orleans, you have to go here for at least one meal.  At least 4.5 of 5 stars.

Riverfront Restaurant

Average place, a little pricey for the quality, but a nice place to sit if you can get balcony seating.  Pleasant staff.

http://www.riverfrontrestaurantneworleans.com/

River’s Edge Restaurant

RUN AWAY.  DO NOT EVEN THINK ABOUT EATING HERE.

Other Places

We popped in and out of several other places, but these stand out.  Bourbon Street is full of bars and music, we enjoyed the House of Blues, with Rafael Saadiq and the Funky Pirate with Mark Penton and the Pentones.  I look forward to maybe getting back here again some day.

The Cruise

We cruised on the NCL Spirit (Norwegian Cruise Lines).  This particular cruise line does free style cruising, meaning that there were no set dinner times and tables and dress was casual.  The service was what you would expect, top-notch.  If we had any issues, it was with the entertainment.  Very low quality and we did not enjoy it.  We tended to ignore it.  Other than that, there were lots of activities on board to keep us occupied.  I can easily recommend this cruise company.  Overall cost was about 1200 per person after  excursions and extras, and we didn’t feel ripped off at all.

http://www2.ncl.com/

The Excursions

Costa Maya, Mexico

Boat Blast and Snorkel.  This was entertaining, driving a 2 seater out into the ocean to a portable dock and then snorkelling the Belize Reef.  This was a good excursion as it was not to strenuous and involved a 40 minute bus ride, which gave us a view of the area.  I would recommend this as suitable for most as you do have to snorkel and there is a beautiful beach to spend some time relaxing on.

Belize

A 37-mile drive along the Western Highway brings you to the Caves Branch River and its winding path, through the Maya Mountains and numerous ancient caves once inhabited by the Maya. Upon arrival at Caves Branch National Park, you head out for the caves with your equipment.  This excursion was the most interesting part of our trip.  The drive was good as again we had the opportunity to see the countryside and a bit of Belize City as well.  Suitable for all, you can get wet, so protect your camera.

Roatan Island, Honduras

Tabyana Beach & Gumbalimba Park was the excursion we picked.  A great day, suitable for all,  The park was fun, with parrots and monkeys o interact with and many picture opportunities.  the Pirate cave was a bit lame.  Tabyana Beach beach is spectacular.  The nicest spot on the whole cruise was Roatan, and we will be back for sure.

Cozumel

Cozumel by Jeep and Snorkel was the tour we chose.  Awesome tour guides.  I would say that this was the fullest day we had.  We drove to Punta Sur Eco Park, Cozumel’s unique Ecological Reserve.  We saw salt water crocodiles close up, a lighthouse, Mayan ruins and a spectacular Corona commercial beach with awesome snorkelling.  The snorkelling was strenuous but the rest of the tour was suitable for all, and if you didn’t snorkel, the beach was there.

The link for all NCL excursions is here’

http://www.ncl.com/nclweb/staticPage.html?pageId=ShorexPDFs&destCode=CARIBBEAN

And that was our trip.  We enjoyed the company, and we enjoyed the cruise.  I was skeptical, but would do one again.

Roatan Island – March 24, 2011 – Seeing and Touching Monkeys


Another day, another new country, this time Honduras and the spectacular island of Roatan. For the first time on this cruise, we saw something that was actually close to what we imagined. Lush green scenery, hills and valleys and pristine beaches. The excursion we picked was a combo, beach and park tour. First up was Gumbalimba Park, where we excited to have the opportunity to see and touch monkeys. I have included a link to their site.

http://www.gumbalimbapark.com/index.html

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