Carribean Cruise 2007 Part 1: The plans

It is just a week now before I leave to fly to Barbados to meet up with the P&O ship Arcadia or what I am sure is going to be a glorious 2 weeks of sailing vacation.

The ship is doing a “repositioning” cruise which means that it is leaving the Caribbean where it has been for all of the European Winter and heading back to the UK to begin its summer schedules based out of Southampton.

If you like sea days these are great cruises as they are always much cheaper then normal cruises as less people like the sea days than visiting lots of ports so you can often get great deals. This 2-week cruise is costing us about 60% of a 2-week cruise we did in the summer on the ship last year!

The cruise is a mix of roughly a week doing some islands (sailing from Barbados then visiting Grenada, St Lucia, St Kitts, Antigua) then at sea for 5 days until Madeira then 3 days to get to Southampton.

This for me is an ideal mix as I love the long days in the middle of the Ocean as it feels so relaxing yet exhilarating at the same time.

The cruise is called “Caribbean Taster” (J706) and the P&O Website describes it as follows:
“Arcadia’s homecoming Caribbean cruise and transatlantic crossing from Barbados to Southampton takes you first to the beautiful St George’s Harbour on the fragrant island of Grenada, which has more spices growing per square mile than anywhere else on earth. Scenic St Lucia is home to the world’s only drive-in volcano (Soufrière) and to another pretty harbour (Marigot Bay) while lush rainforests, sugar-white beaches and historic sites like the towering Brimstone Hill Fortress create an equally magical mix on St Kitts.

Say farewell to the Caribbean in Antigua where, if you plan to spend the day at the beach, you will be spoilt for choice, as there are 366 of them – enough for every day of a leap year.
Then be prepared for one of the great travel experiences – a transatlantic crossing. Your journey ends in Southampton but Arcadia does make one welcome pause along the way: at the stylish Garden Island of Madeira. Here you can take tea at the gloriously colonial Reids’ Hotel or try a thrilling wicker sled ride down steep cobbled tracks to the delightful capital, Funchal – another unforgettable experience, just like the whole cruise.”

As I mentioned above, this will be the 2nd time that I have been on the Arcadia. The last was last year when the ship was still just a few months old (it started sailing in April 2006). We are staying in a similar level of cabin as last time and here is a video of the cabin we had last time – which was huge and very, very pleasant indeed!

For more photos of Arcdaia and that trip: click here

Gary Bembridge

I grew up in Zimbabwe, but I have been based in London since 1987. My travel life spans more than three decades and that includes more than 95 cruises. In 2005, I launched Tips for Travellers to make it easy and fun for people to discover, plan and enjoy incredible cruise vacations. And the rest, as they say, is history. I have the largest cruise vlogger channel currently on YouTube, with more than 3 million video views per month.

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