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Old 30-03-2023, 16:26   #1
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Bimini: Virgin Voyages cruise ship Crew Tour, in Bimini. Bahamian lunch, island tour!

Hello to you all.
I'm not sure exactly where to post this message. But, figured here is a good spot?
'Cuz, I started my "cruising life" as a kid in the Bahamas, and late last year one of my brothers gave me an old photo (see below) of myself holding up a big Barracuda that I caught there in Bimini, in early 1966! (where my sunglasses were, I don't know!)

(While I've never been on a Cruise Ship, if I were ever to do so, it's little things that might be important)

I'm just sharing this as a way of showing that there are still some out there in our world that do care about each other, enjoy learning about others / other cultures, etc...(and, even though we ocean sailors / cruisers like to think we are some of the last bastion, there are others out here too.)

Virgin Voyages Cruise Line does things a bit different. They don't own a "private island", like other cruise lines, but rather contract a nice "beach club" on Bimini Island, in the Bahamas..BUT...

But, they also encourage their passengers AND crew to learn about real local culture and engage / befriend many local Bahamians!

This video of a short "crew tour", was filmed/produced by a friend of mine who works as crew on Virgin Voyages "Scarlet Lady". Showing her touring the island and learning a bit about their history, etc., and eating fresh conch salad (for the first time), fresh caught local fish (snapper?) and some sweet home-made pineapple juice.
All wonderfully prepared by Miss Antoinette (a long-time fixture in Bimini)!

This is just Lucy's own video, from her personal Youtube channel....and, it is not in anyway affiliated with Virgin Voyages Cruise Lines!

As I wrote, I've never been on a Cruise Ship (doubt I ever will), and I assume neither have most here (nor most that watch my sailing / maritime-radio videos)...but, if you ever do desire to "take a cruise" (or have friends looking at doing so), my advice is to look seriously at Virgin Voyages.
They are "adults only" (no one under 18 allowed), all up-scale restaurants included, are very conscience of "leaving a clean wake", etc.....and, aren't like the "big corporate cruise lines" that act like bull-dozers / 800lb gorilla's!

BTW, if you all are curious about how far back my connection to the Bahamas go....have a look here....that's a pic of me holding one of the barracuda's I caught fishing with my Dad (he's also in the pic, with his back to us) and my brother and sister, in Bimini...
This was early 1966....just before I turned 5 years old....this was the start of over 55 years of wonderful times in the Bahamas!

And, hey....if you also wish to see a Life Boat Tour (on a Cruise Ship), have a look at Lucy's wonderfully fun life-boat-tour video! (I've been in the pool, doing life-raft training, and I've done MOB drills, etc....but, I admit I've never seen inside a big commercial lifeboat! And, I found it darn interesting!)

Also, if you care to help a young explorer out, subscribe to her Youtube channel.
(remember the pay on-board Cruise Ships is USA standards, it's below minimum wage, even taking into account free room/, some of the "western" workers on-board have Youtube)

I hope some of you not only enjoy the above, but also don't look too far down your nose at Virgin Voyages ships, 'cuz they do seem to be doing things a bit differently than the rest of them!

Fair winds to all.

s/v Annie Laurie, WDB6927
MMSI# 366933110
John, KA4WJA
s/v Annie Laurie, WDB6927
MMSI# 366933110
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Old 30-03-2023, 16:56   #2
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Re: Bimini: Virgin Voyages cruise ship Crew Tour, in Bimini. Bahamian lunch, island t

I love the cruise ships and have been on at least a dozen or more, Carnival, Norwegian, Royal Caribbean, etc. Their itinerary is all over the map, depending on which cruise line and port of departure. While some have their own private island, many do not, but offer a variety of shoreside excursion at each stop. The private island thing is a bit overrated, fun and enjoyable, yes, but usually little more than a beach or large pool with a bar.

All the cruise ships I have been on, all left out of Florida.
Cruises vary from 3-10 days. I have been to the B'mas off course, and to both east and west Caribbean.

My wife loves them. I don't think you can get a better bang for your buck than going on a cruise. It's 5 star living from day one. The crew takes care of your every need.

The shoreside excursions are also well organized, and I have done several of those.

To put some of this in perspective I've seen a lot of these places on my sailboat. Cruising on your own boat is a completely different animal.

Some people love the cruise ships, others don't. From my perspective it's a great and relaxing way to see new places, make new friends, etc.

Crew on cruise ships come from all over the world. They all wear name tags including their country of origin. They serve for a certain period of time based on their contract. My understanding is that while the pay scale is low, your room and board is free. Many crew opt to renew their contract and serve on these ships year after year. I've talked to many of them. If nothing else it provides a new and wonderful adventure. I'm told that the crew have a raucous time in their crew quarters so it's not all work and no play.
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