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Sailing in the shadow of the pirates: planning the ultimate Caribbean tour

Posted by on Sep 4, 2014 in Adventure | Comments Off on Sailing in the shadow of the pirates: planning the ultimate Caribbean tour

It might just be possible that a regular cruise goer has never set sail on a ship that has toured the Caribbean, yet there are plenty of reasons why this area of the world is one of the most popular cruise ship destinations.

The Caribbean

Crystal clear blue waters, white sand beaches, and trees that make a visitor feel as if they have stepped into paradise – that is what the Caribbean is. However, there is more to the islands than just sun, sand, and sea. The islands have a rich history, with visitors stumbling upon ancient Mayan ruins and 18th century plantations, and a heritage that includes daring pirate raids and hidden treasure.

When planning a Caribbean tour, it is necessary to check a few things to make sure the trip is all it needs to be. The first is to decide when the best time to sail to the Caribbean is. The low season is between mid-April and mid-December, and prices fall dramatically during this period. However, the winds lessen at this time and so the weather may feel oppressive. The summer is known as the hurricane season, but very few ships encounter weather of this kind, so do not avoid sailing in the summer purely for this reason. Always check the weather before sailing.

The second thing to work out is exactly which of the Caribbean islands to visit. There are certainly plenty to choose from, with some of the most popular ones being Jamaica, Cancun, Barbados, and St. Lucia. For those wanting to enjoy sailing events, Antigua hosts two major events, Sailing Week and the Classic Yacht Regatta, while the British Virgin Islands have 10-25 knot trade winds that make sailing an absolute delight, especially for those who want to visit a variety of islands in the space of a few hours.

It will also be necessary to find out if a flight to a port is required or whether immediate embarkation upon a ship is necessary. For many cruises and sailing expeditions in the Caribbean, an air flight with a well-known company, such as American Airlines , leaving from Miami and a variety of cities, is inevitable, and even preferable, as it means the vacation can begin that much earlier.

As with any trip, it is necessary to be safe while sailing in the Caribbean, and just like in the olden days, there are tales of ships being attacked and boarded by pirates. While there have been incidents of this nature, modern-day pirates can attack anywhere, and the Caribbean is no more, nor necessarily less safe than any other sailing destination. To stay safe on the water, pay attention to the drill that occurs at the beginning of any trip. Find out where to congregate in the event of danger, and how to use the lifejackets. When onshore, do not flash wallets or money around, as this may attract the attention of thieves.

The Caribbean has so much to offer the visitor, including fantastic weather and beautiful vistas, and so it should be a destination on every sailor’s to-do list.