SHORE EXCURSION INFORMATION
Welcome to Shore Excursion Information where you'll find
shore excursion reviews and prices for most cruise line tours.
Find out our picks for the:
BEST ICY STRAIT POINT SHORE EXCURSIONS
BEST KETCHIKAN SHORE EXCURSIONS
BEST JUNEAU SHORE EXCURSIONS.
This month we're featuring a full review of Levi Baron's Bumping
Tours in Dominica.
BUMPIING TOURS DOMINICA REVIEW
by Paula Hughes Court
We recently returned from a cruise to Dominica where we had
the good fortune to spend the day with Levi Baron, the owner of
Bumpiing Tours. My family absolutely loved Levi and considered
his tour to be one of the very best we've ever taken. Levi is a
sweetheart and goes out of his way to make sure everyone has
a good time on his tour.
More About the Roseau Valley Treasures Tour
We've recently added sections for Aruba, Bahamas, Cozumel,
Costa Maya, , Curacao, Dominica, Grand Cayman, St Maarten
and St Thomas shore excursions. This month we're featuring
the best Alaska shore excursions.
Find out our picks for the BEST ICY STRAIT POINT SHORE
EXCURSIONS and BEST JUNEAU SHORE EXCURSIONS
BEST ALASKA SHORE EXCURSIONS
Icy Strait Point Excursions
Juneau Alaska Shore Excursions
Ketchikan Shore Excursions
Seward Shore Excursions
Sitka Shore Excursions
Skagway Shore Excursions
Talkeetna Shore Excursions
CRUISE SHIP SHORE EXCURSION OR PRIVATE TOUR?
by Paula Hughes Court
This is the number one question asked about cruise shore
excursions. As a general rule, cruise ship sponsored shore
excursions are more expensive and crowded. What you may not
know is that cruise ships use private companies for their shore
excursions, maybe even the same ones offering the exact tour
for less money. After 15+ cruises, I'm a fan of privately booked
shore excursions because they're almost always cheaper and
just as good, if not better, than ship sponsored tours. Plus, the
group size is smaller so you don't have the feeling of being
herded around like cattle.
WHAT IF SOMETHING GOES WRONG?
One thing you must know is if something goes wrong to delay
your return on a private shore excursion, the ship will leave you
behind. If something goes wrong on a ship sponsored shore
excursion, the ship will wait for you. Most private excursion
companies make their living on cruise ship passengers so they
will do everything they can to get you back to the ship on time.
For example, an Alaska flightseeing company keeps a speed
boat on hand in case the need ever arises to shuttle delayed
passengers straight out to the ship.
WHEN TO BOOK CRUISE SHIP SHORE EXCURSIONS
There are several instances where you should book only ship
sponsored shore excursions. If time seems tight or if you're
relying on loose ferry schedules to take you from one island to
another, go with the ship's tour. While we've used ferries with
great success going from Tortola to visit The Baths in Virgin
Gorda, I wouldn't recommend relying on ferries in Cozumel to
visit Xcaret Park for instance. Usually short tours (2-3 hours)
can always be booked through a private company without
Before booking a private excursion, weigh out the factors of
price, group size, and extra amenities against the security of
knowing you won't be left behind if you book the ship's tour
WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT CRUISE SHORE
Most cruisers do not know that 99% of all cruise ship shore
excursions are contracted through private tour companies
located in the port. Many of these shore excursions can be
booked directly through the tour company for a better rate and
with usually smaller crowds.
For example, Royal Caribbean offers one of my top ten favorite
shore excursions Sail, Snorkel, Swim & Swing in Aruba for
$45. This tour lasts for 4 hours and includes an open bar after
snorkeling. What RCCL doesn't tell you is that this tour is
contracted through the fun group of guys at Jolly Pirates. You
can book this same excursion directly through Jolly Pirates for
Another thing to know: Unless it's a scuba diving excursion it's
rare to see any cruise line personnel on the cruise ship shore
excursions (with the exception of an occasional photographer).
On cruise ship sponsored shore excursions your group will
usually be met at the dock by an employee of the private tour
company. Cruise lines like to make you believe you are safer on
their tours when usually they are the same "shore excursions"
you can book on your own.
Last, before you book a shore excursion it's always best to
compare prices, tour details and times between a private
company tour and the cruise line shore excursion. If there's any
doubt the private tour won't get you back in time for sailaway,
don't book it!
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