Cruise 2006
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Cruise of Southern Caribbean - May 2006

In May of 2006, we cruised through the Southern Caribbean. We stopped at 5 islands: St. Thomas, St. Maarten, Antigua, St. Lucia and Barbados.

We flew into San Juan, Puerto Rico and stayed overnight at a Hilton hotel close to the dock. In the morning, we arrived early at the dock, and the ship was not yet ready to board. So, we waited for quite a while. It was hot and humid and we had to strip Stefan slowly down to his diaper - although he didn't seem to mind that part too much.

View from our room at the Caribe Hilton - an old Spanish fort.

Stefan is enjoying the view from inside the room


Excited to go on such a great vacation...

...but could do without the waiting, heat and humidity

Our "hotel" for the next 7 days - the "Adventures of the Sea"

Then we set sail on the fabulous "Adventures of the Sea". Our first stop was St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands. We took an organized 4-hour tour, which took us to some amazing scenic lookouts and ended in a walking-tour of the Blackbeard Castle and other historic houses. Although it was very hot, Stefan did remarkably well. But it was the last organized tour we took on the cruise. In all the other spots we just rented a taxi and had the driver take us around the island to get an impression.

In our opinion, St. Thomas was quite commercialized. In many cases we felt like we were in a reasonably large U.S. city. Given that this is the U.S. Virgin Islands it is not surprising, but it was still a little more touristy than we tend to like.

After we returned from dinner we were introduced to a "tradition" on a cruise ship - folded towels that looked like animals. Each night we found such a creation on our bed.

The U.S. Virgin Islands

Our tour bus

The harbor in St. Thomas were the ship docked

Blackbeard's Castle

Governor's House

A St. Thomas native

Another view of the harbor with the cruise ships that were docked that day

"The Dog"

The second island was St. Maarten. This was an island we really liked. Our taxi driver showed us in a couple of hours the Dutch and the French side of the island. It was a lush island that did not seem too crowded. The two sides of the island have a very distinct flavor that was apparent even in the short time that we were there.

Harbor on the Dutch side

Beach on the French side

Vacation club on the French side

"The Turtle"


The third island we visited was Antigua. Although quite colorful, Antigua seemed to he be poorest and most run-down island of all the ones we visited. Stefan, however, had a blast. We decided to beat the heat and spend an hour on a beach, where Stefan got to take his first dip in the ocean. At first he wasn't quite sure what to think of the waves splashing all around him, but then he just chilled and enjoyed the time with Mommy and Daddy.

Stefan's a little skeptical...

...but also curious about the warm water

Chilling with Daddy

Not wanting to leave Mommy

Farewell band

Harbor in Antigua

Glued to the scenery

"The Rabbit"


Our fourth island was St. Lucia. It was definitely the prettiest of all the islands. Tall mountains, lots of vegetations and nice people make up the island. We had a very nice driver who showed us around the island. The weather was constantly changing. We had rain and sunshine in competition throughout our time on the island.

Harbor in St. Lucia

Remote beach

Diving in a remote bay

Pirate ship returning with its "bounty" (the spendings of the many tourists)

"The Elephant"


The last island on our cruise was Barbados. For some reason, we did not like Barbados very much. It seemed like a very dry, dirty and somewhat industrialized island. Maybe our driver did not take us to some of the fabled spots that are supposed to exist here. But as you can see, we did not take many pictures in Barbados.

"The Monkey"


Our last day was at sea, which gave us an opportunity to discover the ship a little bit more. Stefan played when the kid's program was in session. The wonderful staff of the playgroup gave us toys to take home, which Stefan promptly used to practice his walking in Dallas airport.


All in all, we are very happy that we took this cruise. Although we did not get to enjoy as much as we would have liked, we now know which islands we want to visit again in the (hopefully near) future.