I just spent a week on the cruise ship Carnival Miracle that left out of Long Beach, CA. The itinerary was for us to stop at Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlán and Puerto Vallarta. It sounded like a good plan, right?
Well, Hurricane Carlos had different plans for my cruise ship when it decided to head toward two of my ports of call.
We left port last Saturday afternoon and by Sunday the cruise director made an announcement about a change in the itinerary. Our first stop was supposed to be at Cabo San Lucas on Monday morning, but that was all up in the air until they could figure out if we could divert to a different port.
By Monday afternoon, we were headed to Puerto De Pichilingue in the City of La Paz, Mexico.
I didn’t even know where La Paz was until I saw it on a map before we docked. At that point anything was good because we had been on the ship for two and a half days.
When we docked, the skies were a rich blue without a cloud in sight. It was warm and the hills around the port looked like a barren desert. I was a little skeptical when I got on a tour bus to head into the “city,” which was about thirty minutes away.
Along the way there were beautiful beaches, which were untouched by development. Once we got to La Paz, I could tell this area had a lot of potential and was rich in history. All it needed was a few resorts and it would be a place where people would want to visit.
Our next stop was Cabo San Lucas, which was everything it was supposed to be. If you’ve never been there it should be on your bucket list. It was hot and the water was perfect for our snorkeling excursion. One day is Cabo wasn’t enough.
A stop in Cabo wouldn’t be complete without some bargaining in the tourist area. My wife wanted a bracelet that was $25. I offered $10. The vender went down to $13 and then $12, but I held firm at $10.
Apparently my wife wasn’t paying attention to my bargaining skills because she said, “Thirteen dollars sounds good.”
The vendor smiled and acted like he won. I gave him a brake check and said, “Twelve dollars.” He finally gave up accepted my money. That was the funniest part of the trip.
The last stop was in Ensenada, which the cruise director said was his favorite port in the whole world. Of course, he said it as a joke. Ensenada is Ensenada. There’s not much to say about it. I went there 15 years ago on a 3-day cruise with a couple of friends. We only made it to the bar Papas and Beer on that trip. Yesterday the drive in Ensenada showed the city is still torn up from the floor up.
As we left port yesterday, I reflected on my trip as my son and I looked across the bay from the Lido Deck (9th floor). It wasn’t the perfect vacation, but it was still nice to get away.
Hopefully there won’t be any hurricanes on my next vacation.