Thursday, December 31, 2009

Caribbean Vacation Part II

On Saturday, we docked in Cozumel. This place, though poor, was gorgeous. I have never seen beaches so pretty and water so blue! Check out some of the highlights below.

This was us getting in a taxi in Cozumel. (Though seemingly petty, it was only our second cab ride EVER, with the first being in Tampa just before the cruise.)
Isn't this the most beautiful little cove you've ever seen? Loving that water! We could see clear through it and watch the tropical fish swim up to the reef.
It's hard to believe by looking at these photos that it was actually December.
We enjoyed eating at this little snack shop. The manager was so nice...and he even tried to teach us a little Spanish.
Click on this photo above to see the iguana we caught sunbathing near the beach. It was so cool to see these in the wild. Just as we got out of the taxi, a man approached the boys with a tame one, and he placed it on Jonathan's shoulder, asking if we wanted to pay to have a photo taken with it. We said no thanks. He even wanted to charge $5 for us to take it with OUR camera!
We were in a state park most of the day. One of the things we did was tour the "replicas" of the Mayan ruins. It was pretty cool.
This is our EXTREME child! Matthew got on this, which was basically bungee cords holding up a safety harness over a trampoline. He did flip after flip after flip...and just loved it!
This was where we swam with the a fenced off portion of the ocean. There was a pier running all the way around it. You can't tell from the photos, but the waves were pretty rough that day, and poor little Matthew was getting slapped all about by the water. But once he got used to it, he did everything we did. The life guard helped him get out to where he needed to swim, and then of course back to the fence. He did great!
Then of course, Jonathan did it like a pro. This is him "hugging" the 18 year old dolphin, Pegassos (think I spelled it right). We just put our arms out under the water, and the dolphin would swim up and lay right in our arms like a baby! SO cool!
We also let the dolphin kiss us on the cheek. The coolest thing was getting to ride on his belly. We swam out and gave a signal with our arms, and the dolphin swam under us on his back. When we grabbed his bottom fins, he took us for a ride! It was amazing that he knew exactly what we wanted him to do. We also swam out to the middle on a boogie board, and then at the trainer's signal, the dolphin would come up behind us and push us on the bottom of our feet with his snout, giving us a fast ride back to the fence! Needless to say, it was a day I will never forget. (I won't go in to details about how I cried from being so scared at the beginning! But I DID IT! :)
Then we headed back to our ship (the one on the left).
We got our picture taken with the ship's captain on the final night of the cruise.
This was Ed and me on formal night at dinner. Truly enjoyed that!
When we docked back in Tampa, we had several hours to spend before our train left to go back home, so we went ahead and checked in our luggage early and headed for Channelside to see the sites. We went to the Florida aquarium, some cool shops, and even saw Jim Carrey's "A Christmas Carol" in 3D while there.
All in all, despite the clouds, I can't say enough about how much fun we had. Now I want to do another cruise in the future!

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