Walt Disney World 2016 Vacations

As I have mentioned many many times here on my blog, Disney vacations are my favorite. I have some amazing memories as a child and an adult with my family and friends thanks to the mouse. In 2010 I went on my first Disney Cruise Line cruise (not just for kids, I promise!) and am hooked.

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In 2012 I ventured to the west coast for my first trip to where the magic all started, Disneyland.

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These three vacation spots mean a lot to me, but Walt Disney World will always hold a special place simply because it was my first and most frequent Disney destination.

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Why am I telling you all of this? Because prices and packages for 2016 are coming out JUNE 22 for Walt Disney World and I cannot wait to start booking clients!!!! I have been a Disney travel planner for over five years now, and this is always a crazy but rewarding time of year for me. If you are interested in vacationing to WDW in 2016, email me at [email protected] for a free no obligation quote (my services are FREE!) Pricing for Disney cruise line for 2016 has been out for awhile, so I would love to give you a quote for that as well.

I can book your hotel and tickets

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Help you decide where to eat

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and even help you with those special extra activities while you are there, like spa treatments

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or a round of golf.

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Don’t forget about the waterparks, too!

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There is so much to do in WDW besides just ride rides, and I would love to tell you more about it!

Shoot me an email at [email protected] so we can start planning your family vacation.

QOTD: When is your next vacation? Where did you stay the last time you were in WDW?

Traveling Again

Today I am hopping on a plane to Miami! I am so excited, I have never been to Miami before. I will be spending the night there before sailing out on the newly re-imagined Disney Magic on Friday morning for a two night cruise.

I have sailed on the Magic several times, and cannot wait to see all of the improvements to the ship. We first heard about these improvements at the Press Event I attended back in April. Since then, we have been teased with videos and photos of the ship being transformed, and I can’t wait to see it in person!

Some of the things I am RELLY excited about are the Aqua Dunk, the new water slide:

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The revamping of the buffet to make it Cabanas:

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The all new restaurant taking the place of Parrot Cay:

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I will be posting live updates on Friday with photos of the ship (until we sail then the phone will be turned off!) So be sure you are following my social media accounts (check the right sidebar) to follow along with the fun!

I would love to help you plan your family’s magical Disney cruise! email [email protected] or request a quote and be sure to add in my name!

QOTD: Have you sailed on Disney Cruise line? Do you want to?

Disney Fantasy Part 6: April 2013

We left off with a great day in Cozumel on my last installment. The next day, was a sea day, and had big plans to do a lot of nothing. We slept in, ate breakfast, and headed to the pool where we parked all morning with our books. We ate lunch and then played goofy golf! Look who even made an appearance. I was VERY excited.

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The wind had started to pick up making it very hard to play. After we ate a buffet lunch, the clouds started to roll in.

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I want to say at some time during the day we say Oz the Great and Powerful in 3D, and I’m sure we took a nap at some point. Honestly it was just a lazy day and so wonderful! (I think we made it to the gym, too?)

By evening, the rain had started and the boat was doing a little rocking which made me nervous, but wasn’t too bad. They closed off some of the decks for a little while because it was so dangerous with the wind.

It was semi formal night, so we got all gussied up to go to dinner at the Royal Court.

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This is Bobby’s favorite night of the cruise, because it’s lobster night! He had four or five…I can’t remember.

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He was a happy boy.

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After dinner we headed back to the adults area to watch a comedian before calling it a night.

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Up next week: Our last day. Castaway Cay!

QOTD: What would be your ideal sea day?

Disney Fantasy: Palo Dinner

I cut part 4 short because I wanted Palo dinner to have it’s own post.

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I am glad I am writing this one after dinner, or I would be dying to eat all of the delicious food! If you have been on a Disney cruise and have not dined at Palo you are missing out on a great experience. I can’t believe we waited this long to do it!

We checked in and waited in the waiting area for only about 3-4 minutes, when Ivan, the server we had for Palo brunch appeared! I was so happy we had him again, it felt more comfortable since we had already seen him before and he knew what we liked.

We had a great table facing outward towards the ocean, it was nice and cozy. Just like at brunch, I loved how we didn’t feel rushed at all. We ordered our drinks and enjoyed the view while Ivan brought us some antipasti (I have no idea why I don’t have photos of this!) Ivan did a great job of explaining everything, and I tried some things I have never had before.

Ivan also did a great job of explaining everything on the menu to us. After appetizers we were also brought a lemon sorbet palate cleanser.

Bobby ordered some kind of shrimp

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Veal

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tuna

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I had white bean soup (not pictured) and  Beef tenderloin. I can only speak for what I ordered, but the soup and beef were both excellent! There were two sauces for the beef and I liked them both, so delicious!

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Of course soufflé with vanilla gelato and chocolate and vanilla sauce. Holy yum. So rich but so delicious.

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Ivan prepared mine for me. It was amazing. I am so glad I left room for this dessert. My hands down favorite of the whole week.

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Again, we were never rushed, and loved how our waiter only had one maybe two other tables so we got taken care of very well. We will definitely be back!

Here are a few things to remember about Palo:

– Palo is an adults only restaurant. That’s why God made kid’s clubs. Smile

-Reservations for Palo can be made online for cruise guests:   Concierge Guests: 120 days in advance
Platinum Castaways: 120 days in advance
Gold Castaways: 105 days in advance
Silver Castaways: 90 days in advance
First Time Cruiser: 75 days in advance

-It costs a little extra to eat at Palo, but SO worth it! Brunch and dinner are both $20* per person.

(*price has since gone up to $30 per person but still worth it!)

– There is a dress code to dine at Palo. We like to dress up anyway so it was no problem, but make sure you pack something appropriate if you plan to dine here!

-Palo holds back some reservations on the boat for when you embark, so if you couldn’t get a reservation online be sure to visit Palo asap to try to snag a reservation once you get on the ship.

QOTD: Are you more likely to try a food you have never liked before at home or at a restaurant, like me?

*I would love to get you a cruise quote! Email [email protected] for details

Disney Fantasy April 2013: Part 4

I last left off on part 3 with Bobby wearing my bra. Smile

Did I get your attention? Hehe. The next day, we docked in Costa Maya. We decided to not get off the ship and spend the day taking advantage of the ship with less people. When we sailed here in October, we did the jeep excursion with my parents and had a BLAST, but really there was nothing else on the island we “had” to do and didn’t want to pay for an excursion. We ate breakfast at the buffet then went to the adult pool area/Satellite falls and found some chairs to relax and read in.

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We stayed here all morning, and even got to ride the Aqua Duck with about a 10 minute wait. We ate lunch at the buffet and headed back to our chairs for a nice nap. It was a glorious morning!

In the afternoon, we went on the top deck with my stalker camera lens to get some photos of Costa Maya

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We then went to the gym for the second time of the trip. We grabbed a snack around 6:00, then relaxed in our room watching movies before getting ready for dinner at PALO! We have done brunch several times but never dinner so we were very excited.

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I know this is a short post, but I want to stop here because Palo deserves it’s own post!

QOTD: Thoughts on staying on the ship when it’s in port?

* Don’t forget I can book your cruise for you at NO EXTRA COST! email [email protected] for a free quote!

Disney Fantasy April 2013: Part 3

I left off my trip report with Palo brunch on our first full day onboard the Disney Fantasy. We were stuffed, and decided to head back to the room for a glorious nap. We ended up staying in the room for most of the afternoon reading, watching movies and just lounging around. It was the best way to relax on vacation! Around 6:00 we got hungry (go figure!) and sat up by the adult pool area and had a snack. We relaxed some more then got ready for Dinner. It was formal night!

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Dinner was at the fanciest restaurant on the ship, the Royal Court.

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We went back to the Tube for some fun adult entertainment before calling it a night, and found this guy waiting for us in our cabin.

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The next morning, we woke up in beautiful Grand Cayman.

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We ate the buffet breakfast, and then got in line for a tender boat to get off of the ship. We made it to land, and went to find a taxi.

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Funniest thing, I went to grab a driver and saw the SAME GUY that drove us back in October. Hilarious. He got a kick out of the fact that we remembered him (he prays with his passengers before they get off of the van) and he took us to the public beach.

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We rented a beach chair and umbrella, and I spent my time reading while Bobby swam and snorkeled.

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We stayed about five hours, and I was starving. We didn’t want to pay for the expensive food on the beach so we headed back to the ship where the food was included, of course!

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We caught a tender boat and were back on the Fantasy in no time. The ship looks SO MASSIVE from the little tender boat.

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We grabbed some food and headed back to the room. That’s when I realized we were BOTH sunburned! I forgot to reapply and Bobby must have washed his off in the water. Ug. Not a good day to burn, at the beginning of a seven night cruise. We aloed up and headed to dinner.

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We were in Animator’s Palate which is super cute.

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Crush came and talked to us. Dddduuuuddddeeee!

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Dinner was delicious, and after we headed back to the tube for Magic quest. This is SO MUCH FUN. It’s an adult scavenger hunt, I always end up laughing until I cry, and I ended up having to give Bobby my bra…again.

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We had a blast and enjoy this game show so much. Our team won, but sadly we didn’t get a prize like I have seen on past cruises.

We were exhausted after a day in the sun, so we turned in ready to dock in Costa Maya the next day.

QOTD: When was the time you got sunburned the worst? Do you remember?

Disney Fantasy Part 1

Back in April, Bobby and I boarded the Disney Fantasy for a much needed week of relaxing, just the two of us. We had an amazing time, and I wanted to share some of our trip with you! I won’t be doing a detailed report but will be sharing tidbits and photos! Remember, if you would like me to book your cruise at no extra coast to you I can help! [email protected]

We had a car from Southern Elegance Limousine bring us to the port. The car was beautiful, they were on time, and were so easy to work with. Highly recommended! We checked in and waited to get onboard the beautiful Disney Fantasy. We booked a category 4C, and once we got onboard and ate lunch, our room was ready.

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We spent some time walking around and exploring the deck while we waited to sail away

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Check out the beautiful couples villa at the spa!

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We had a good time relaxing and hanging out but then it was time for dinner

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Dinner was at Enchanted Garden and I absolutely love the theming!

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We were lucky to get a table to ourselves, and we met our servers for the week, who we really enjoyed! After dinner, we went to the adult area for some fun game shows. I LOVE match you mate. Hilarious every time. If you cruise with Disney, don’t miss this! We turned in around 11:30, ready for Palo brunch reservations the next day!

QOTD: DO you like game shows? I like to watch and laugh at other peoples expense. Smile

Mickey Boat Time

Fun news, Bobby and I are going on a CRUISE in two weeks! Yup, two weeks from today we will be setting sail on the Disney Fantasy for seven amazing nights in the Western Caribbean. We NEVER do anything last minute like this, but due to a few circumstances in our lives decided we needed to get away just the two of us. This week was the only one that worked for us, so yup, two weeks away, ah! I have been on the fantasy for a quick 3 night preview cruise, but Bobby has never been.

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We will be staying in a Deluxe family oceanview stateroom with verandah.

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We will be visiting Grand Cayman, Costa Maya, Cozumel, and Disney’s private island Castaway Cay.

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Grand Cayman

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Costa Maya

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Cozumel

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Castaway Cay

We have no big plans, no excursions, just a week of relaxing and hanging out, getting away from some crazy things going on.

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Our awesome neighbors will be watching the house and the dogs, so all is taken care of. Don’t worry, I will have lots of great posts scheduled while I am gone so Through Heather’s Looking Glass will still be up and running!

Remember if you need help planning YOUR cruise on most cruise lines, contact me at [email protected] for information and a free quote!

QOTD: Do you plan out vacations well in advance or with short notice?

Disney Cruise From Galveston Part 3

 

Hey everyone! Sorry I don’t have my Woman’s half marathon race recap up yet, I am waiting to get my photos uploaded and ready to go so hopefully tomorrow!

It’s time to announce the winner of my Under Armour giveaway!

I had over 300 entries into the giveaway, so thank you all for making it a huge success! The winner of the Armour bra is Jess from Run With Jess! (comment 10) Thanks so much to everyone for entering! Jess please e mail me at [email protected]

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Today will be the last installment of my Disney Cruise from Galveston. You can check out parts one and two before reading this one.

Our last port day was Cozumel. Bobby and I have been here twice before, and were excited to show it to my parents.

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We headed to our favorite spot, Paradise Beach. We hadn’t been here since they put in their huge amazing pool, and it looks great. We headed to the beach and got some lounge chairs and ordered some drinks.

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oh, dad.

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After awhile, my mom paid for Bobby to have a wristband to go use the inflatable trampolines and climbing toys in the water, and he headed straight for the trampoline.

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He did some flips, then decided to canon ball into the water.

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If you look really closely, you can see the big mistake he made…Bobby jumped in wearing his Oakley sunglasses. I knew as soon as he came up. he started looking around, going underwater, and my stomach dropped. Money doesn’t exactly grow on trees around here, and those were expensive sunglasses I got him for our anniversary and they weren’t even a year old. He stayed out about 20 minutes, then came in and got some snorkel gear and went back out there. We watched from the beach, praying the whole time that he would find them. Poor Bobby spent almost an hour out there, and I finally had to make him stop, I knew they were long gone. I convinced him to go enjoy the other stuff out in the water, and not let it ruin his day.

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After awhile, we got hot and hungry, and decided to go up to the pool area and eat lunch in the shade by the pool.

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Gorgeous view from our table

They had a cool fan, too

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I had some really yummy quesadillas

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We enjoyed our lunch then decided to relax in the pool for a bit. It was so nice and refreshing. After awhile we decided to take a cab back to the port, we were beat!

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beautiful landscaping by the pool.

I let Bobby borrow my sunglasses because his blue eyes are way more sensitive than mine.

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When we got back on the boat, my mom wanted to go straight to the hot tub because her shoulders were hurting from being so tense on our jeep ride in Costa Maya. We almost didn’t go, but decided to go for a few minutes. We headed to the adult pool and jumped in the hot tub. Then we relaxed in some chairs and a couple about my parents age came and sat next to her. (I promise I am going somewhere with this, keep reading…)

We struck up a conversation with them because my dad and Bobby went and got us ice cream cones and my dad got one for the lady because her husband had gotten one and didn’t get one for his wife so my dad being the nice guy he is, got the lady an ice cream cone.

So, we all start talking, and come to find out they were at Paradise beach as well that day. Out of the blue, the man starts talking about how him and his wife were on a kayak way out past the far buoy, and they found a pair of sunglasses floating in the water. My mom and dad immediately jump up and scream and ask if they were black Oakleys.

YYYYYEEESSSS!!! THEY HAD FOUND BOBBY’S SUNGLASSES!!!! We could NOT believe it. the lady had them in her backpack and gave them back to us, what a miracle! We were in utter disbelief, we thought they were long gone. Scroll up tot eh photo of Bobby jumping on the trampoline…see the couple in the foreground on the kayak? THAT’S THEM! What are the odds. Seriously. We all (the couple included) said a prayer of thanks, it was DEFINITELY a God thing, and a good reminder to us that even when things are out of our power and control, HE is still able to do things that we can’t. It was so cool, we were on a high the rest of the day. We ended up chatting with the couple and this grown son for a long time, it was just a great day!

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It was semiformal night at dinner, which also meant lobster night.

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The next day was out last day, a day at sea.

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We went to the movie theater and saw a movie, went to the gym, took naps, watched movies in our stateroom, and just enjoyed the ship.

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We enjoyed our last dinner, and said farewell to the Disney Magic.

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Until next time, see ya real soon!

Thanks for reading and looking at my photos. Next I will recap my November WDW trip leading up to the Wine and Dine half marathon.

Disney Cruise From Galveston Part 2

 

Part one of my Disney cruise photos can be found here.

I left off after our first port day, Grand Cayman. That night, was pirate night, arrrgghh!

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After dinner we went up on deck for the pirate party and fireworks at sea. Pretty cool stuff.

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Followed by the pirate buffet. I was so full from dinner I couldn’t eat much, but that didn’t stop Bobby.

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The next morning, we docked in Costa Maya. For those who aren’t familiar, Costa Maya is very….errr…primitive compared to places like Grand Cayman or Cozumel. Most of the area doesn’t have electricity, and it’s a very, very poor place. We decided to do a jeep excursion, and it ended up being quite the crazy day.

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Rain clouds threatened, but at the time we had no clue how much it would impact our day

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There were six jeeps total following the two guides in their jeep, and ours was right behind the guides, we we had the fun task of trying to keep up with them…with a broken speedometer. Yes, it read zero the entire time.

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We drove out of he tourist area down some roads and to another little town.

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It was quite sad. They told us the school doesn’t have a teacher and the kids watch a TV to learn then walk home. We walked around the village for a few minutes and then got back in the Jeeps to head through the jungle, off road to a beach where we could swim and would have lunch prepared for us.

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We drove on the main road for a few minutes then took an abrupt left into the jungle. Seriously.

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After about fifteen minutes of laughing hysterically, trying to keep up, going through huge holes and having trees whacking us, it started to POUR. Everyone stopped and we put the tops up, except there were NO SIDES to the jeep in the back so my parents still got soaked.

We actually passed one vehicle on this “road”, it was a very nice new looking camouflaged truck, and inside it were about 25 soldiers…with giant guns. Not going to lie it was kind of creepy. Where did they come from? We were literally in the middle of nowhere a good 20-25 minutes off the road. It surely reminded me we were not in America and we needed to be mindful and observant.

We finally made it to the beach, still pouring rain.

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It looked like it would be beautiful on a nice sunny day. SmileThis place was really cool, and about as authentic as it gets.

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They had a “buffet” for us (which I was slightly hesitant to eat)

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The rain turned to a drizzle and we were able to go walk outside, and some of the kids even got in the water.

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Soon we were told it was time to start heading back. I snapped a few photos before heading to the jeep.

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Luckily we had brought some beach towels and were able to dry off and use them to help us from getting soaked. It was still raining a bit, but we had to get back to the boat! Little did we know….

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We took a different way back than the way we came, all dirt, well, now, all RIVER. The road was washed out and what remained were gigantic “pot holes” stretching the entire length of the road. We were the lead car and HAD to keep up with the guides who were flying through them, and since it was a manual jeep, Bobby couldn’t slow down too much or we would stall, so we had to fly through these bad boys and it was insane. Photos don’t do it justice. My mom and I got SOAKED in the back seat, covered with mud. Mud went flying up over the top of the jeep, as we bounced along. Oh, and the windshield wiper only worked if you held it down, so my dad had to keep leaning over and hitting it for Bobby. We were cracking up laughing the whole time, my stomach was aching. This went on for about 30-40 minutes, all the way back into town. Hilarious. I have a short video of part of the wild ride, please ignore me laughing hysterically in the background, but it is worth watching. Check out my mom’s face at the very end!

We finally made it back to the main road and into town.

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We were taken to a souvenir store and given free tequila. We stood in a little group as he talked to us about the “Mexican medicine” and then he called me out of the crowd to take a shot in front of everyone. Great. Those pictures are on my mom’s camera and I will probably never see them. The most hilarious part as when he tried to give a shot to a seven year old girl. Her mom freaked out, it was quite funny.

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Dad’s turn. We shopped a bit then drove the rest of the way back to drop off the jeeps. Whew! When we set out on this adventure I had no idea what to expect, and it was a little out of my comfort zone but I am so glad we did it, and I don’t think it would have been near as much fun without the rain. Smile

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After we got cleaned up, I went back on deck to take some photos with my stalker zoom lens. We were in port until 11:00 pm, so I went back again to see how little of this huge area had electricity.

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The hurricane back in 2006 knocked a LOT of this area out. I remember going on a cruise in 2007 that was rerouted from here because there was so much damage.

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We had a great day in Costa Maya. Everyone was so friendly with the jeep rentals and at the beach/restaurant we went to, and I would highly recommend this to anyone looking for something fun and family friendly to do here.

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dinner.

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bed.

Next up, Cozumel!

QOTD: Have you ever done a ship excursion? Any favorites?