Carnival Cruise – Day 6 – Orcho Rios

Welcome to Jamaica. It’s our final port on our 7 nights cruise. Oh.. I couldn’t believe that we had been on this big, huge ship for over 6 days already. We took the Jamican Irie attitude to heart. We woke up late and grapped our breakfast. No rush here.. We booked the Bamboo Club excursion which basically a beach club. I knew from some of the cruise forum that the beach club is just a stone throw from the pier. So we weren’t that worry about being the first one off the ship.

:: Getting Around ::

We knew that first thing we had to do was to get my Hard Rock Cafe pin. We missed it in Grand Cayman and I wouldn’t want to miss it again here. We got off the ship and checked out the excursion tent to find out what we need to do. The lady there from Bamboo club told us that she would prefer us to go directly to the beach club. But after we insisted that we really wanted to walk around first she said she will wait for us. We headed out the pier area and walked to Hard Rock Cafe. I have heard about how Jamaicans are very persistent in offering you their service. I can totally understand that. It’s their livelihoods. I have no problem with that.. A big smile and a polite ‘no’ will do. We walked a good 10 minutes to the cafe and picked my pin. Mr. Rojo got a teddy bear. Yes.. that’s right.. Teddy bear but he is so cute.

:: Things To Do ::

Then we walked back and checked out the Island Village. Basically, it’s a compound with a lot of stores in a nice setting. We walked around and got a few more shopping here. I think we made the most damage here than any other ports. :) I guess it was the last port and we missed out on the shopping in Grand Cayman so we felt obligated to shop to make up for the missing opportunity. We were also looking for a place to get Miss J hair braid. But believe it or not, we couldn’t see one. We got approached by one lady but she wanted us to follow her to her place.. Ehhh.. No. Thank you! Guess she will be one of a few kids who didn’t get her hair braid in the Carribean. Well, we can’t get everything we want in life. Good lesson here, heh?

After about an hour and a flat wallet, it’s time to head to the beach. When we got back to the excursion tent there wasn’t that many people left and the lady from Bamboo beach wasn’t anywhere to be found. No problem… Another lady showed us how to get there. It was really easy. We signed in and they quickly found us a host to take care of us. The food and the drink weren’t as good as what I expected. Basically, you had 2 choices of drinks (lemonade and rum punch) If you want something else then you would have to buy it from the bar including soft drink. Doesn’t make sense too me.. I would think soda is cheaper than alcoholic drink. Maybe not. Food was some chicken and pasta.. It wasn’t that great.

No worry.. The staffs were so friendly and nice. So food wasn’t a big deal for us. Plus we weren’t that hungry anyway.. I mean.. come on.. After 6 days of all-you-can-stuff-in-your-face food.. we could possibly stay for a small meal for one day. The entertainment throughout the day was great. The DJ had the music on pretty much all day. I think if you love to party, this is the place. Also if you love to watch people dance and do funny things, this is the place as well. But some of the dance move could be non-kid friendly. Luckily Miss J was spending much of her time in the water and Mr. Z was busy building his sand castle.

I have said this before and I will say it again that I won’t judge Jamaica with just my one small trip to a beach next to a pier. I know I can’t expect much from that. And I’m glad I didn’t. The water was murky and had a lot of algae in there. It’s hard to not compare with Grand Cayman or even Cozumel. How could I not.. Either way, the kids still enjoyed the day there. We also enjoyed the music and had fun watching other groups danced. We spent a few hours there before heading back to the ship.

:: Back on The Ship ::

We went up to our regular hang out in the Lido Deck after we took a quick shower. Soft serve yogurt couldn’t taste better. We sat at the back of the ship with the view as the ship pulled away from Ocho Rios. It was a nice day and certainly a place we need to come back. I know there are more that this place has to offer but right now our kids are too young to do any adventure activities. But next time we might leave them on the ship.. Well, not in our room of course. This is one of the benefit with cruising. You can drop your kids at the Camp Carnival and enjoy a day at port for any adults activities.

It was a formal night and this time we were smarter. We just realized that there were several photo session setup throughout the ship on Promenade and Lobby decks. Mr. Z was so hyper that he almost pulled down one of the background. Boy! I thought the guy was gonna throw him out. hehe.. We took only 2 sessions. I’m glad we just only did that two. I thought we migh have to take a loan to get those pictures.. Gosh!!! $20 for an 8×10 picture. Come on!!!

After walking in the high heel for a while, it was time to change to my comfy outfit. We headed back to our cabin and was greeted by our lovely monkey. We changed and dropped them off at the Camp Carnival. They had face painting and color bookbag. I got to do some laundry. I know.. I know.. I’m crazy that way. I like to get my laundry done on the ship. This way it won’t be too smelly. Plus it wasn’t as much as what I had waited for me at home.

This was the night I was looking forward to. The Midnight Gala Buffet. I wasn’t sure if *WE* will be up at that time. Well, I sure did. But after stuffed ourselves for the past 6 days, even the most tempting chocolate and cake couldn’t even get Mr. Rojo to eat after midnight. I was able to get in line to take pictures just to show that I was up! Maybe next trip we will eat less (yeah.. right..) and can enjoy the midnight buffet. ;)

Last port on our list – Orcho Rios

Orcho Rios in Jamaica is the last port on our trip. I have heard both good and bad things about Jamaica so I am still undecided as to what to do. One thing for sure is that we will book our excursion with the cruise on this trip. In reality, there are not that many choices we can do with small kids here. Majority of excursions involve a lot of activities and sometimes are not suitable for small children. I will be happy just to see the country and visit the beach. After all, that’s what this country is all about. Beautiful beach, laid back people and good food.

The most talk about place to visit is of course the Dunn’s River Falls. But I don’t know if I want to do that since the kids are too small to walk up the fall anyway. Then again, how often we will get to go to Jamaica.

Another option is to buy an admission to one of the all-inclusive resort by the beach and enjoy another nice and relaxing day on the beach.

Thanks to various resources on the web. I have a lot of homeworks to do for Orcho Rios.