Hot and Tired but Glad to be Home

by on July 12, 2007
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Carnival Fantasy at Cozumel

Whew! I’m still tired! Thanks to the generosity of my parents, we’ve just returned from a whirlwind cruise to Cozumel, Mexico, with my mom and dad, my sister and her family, and my brother and his wife. There were 12 of us in all, and I think I’m safe in saying that we all had a great time, especially the kids, who quickly learned where everything was on the huge Carnival Fantasy ship.

Mayan Ruins at Tulum

Though cruising on the Gulf was fun, the highlight for D. and me was our short excursion to the Mayan ruins of Tulum….

Iguana at Tulum, Mexico

…where the iguanas outnumbered the tourists. This guy was very happy to stand still for his photo op.

Beach at Tulum

The beauty of the Tulum ruins is that they stand overlooking a gorgeous beach on the Caribbean Sea. The view alone made up for the long, dusty walk down a blazing hot road at noon. Since most of our time was spent getting to Tulum and back, we really only had time to snap a few photos, sample the chips and habanero salsa at a local restaurant, and get back on the bus for the long drive to the ferry that would take us back to the ship.

The rest of the cruise is a blur of food and sun and (cheesy) entertainment, but what I’ll remember most is the time spent with my family. (Curious about the food? See my comments below.)

I may be home in body, but in spirit I’m still in vacation mode, so please bear with me as I slowly get around to answering email and blog comments and, eventually, posting a new recipe.

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 SusanV October 12, 2010 at 3:16 pm

In May of 2010, all of the old comments were lost when the blog moved to Wordpress. Since there were a lot of helpful comments about cruises, I’m copying them here:

15 Comments:

Selina said…

Awesome! Looks like a great time! Can’t wait for a new recipe.
10:49 AM, July 12, 2007

Veg-a-Nut said…

Looks like and sounds like you had a wonderful time. Memories are wonderful. Welcome home!
11:06 AM, July 12, 2007

Kalyn said…

What a great trip, and what a wonderful thing to do with your family. I haven’t been anywhere in that part of the world, but it looks fascinating.
12:33 PM, July 12, 2007

Anonymous said…

curious what your vegan options were on the cruise. I was considering taking one to Europe (someday!)

-rachael
(no blogger account but I watch your blog all the time!)
2:01 PM, July 12, 2007
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Kim said…

Sounds like a good time!
I also would like to know what the vegan options are on a cruise ship.
4:12 PM, July 12, 2007

Jim said…

Amazing photos, and I hope you had an amazing time! What did you think of the cruise ship food?
4:22 PM, July 12, 2007

SusanV said…

I should probably have done a whole post about the food, but I didn’t take one food photo during the entire trip. All in all, it’s pretty easy to eat vegan on Carnival ships. We ate most of our meals in the dining room, where you order off a menu. For breakfast, there was fresh fruit, toast, and oatmeal. Lunch was more difficult, but there were salads and veggie burgers, if you asked. On their dinner menu, there is always one vegetarian entree. The first 2 nights the dish was vegan, but the other 2 nights it was made with cheese, so they prepared something different for us. The last night of the cruise we had pasta with a great tomato sauce and these incredible stuffed tomatoes that they made up specially for us.

There were always salads and appetizers (usually fruit) that we could eat, though the portion sizes were tiny. The only uncomfortable time was dessert. While everyone else was choosing from about 8 decadent desserts, we either ate a tiny plate of slivered fruit or nothing at all. It makes you feel pretty left out. One night I had the cherries jubilee without the ice cream (just cherries and sauce) just to feel like I’d gotten a real dessert.

You can also eat in the buffet, which makes it easy to get as much salad and fruit as you want. The first day I had a Caribbean beans and rice that was good, but other than that, I stuck to the salad and fruit bars while in the buffet.

PCRM did a comparison of cruise lines that might be helpful. But they mention a Jamaican Red Bean Soup that I would not trust–we were told that all soups on the cruise were made with chicken stock. Pity, because some of them sounded very good and easily veganized.
5:08 PM, July 12, 2007

VeggieGirl said…

gorgeous pictures!! sounds/looks like a great trip :0)
8:06 PM, July 12, 2007

maybepigscanfly said…

The photos are great! Wow, I would love to see and visit the ruins of Tulum. I’m glad to hear that it was a fun trip, although I understand your happiness at being home. Thanks for the cruise food info- I had kind of assumed that if I ever go on a cruise that I would have to bring all my food.

-Teresa
9:31 AM, July 13, 2007

Blogger bazu said…

Wow, what gorgeous photos! It seems like you guys had a really good and relaxing time. I love large group vacations like yours. After graduation, a group of 7 of us spent a week in New Orleans, and it was such a blast. I’m wondering if I can ever get a group that big together in one place again!
9:40 AM, July 13, 2007

Holler said…

Sounds like a great trip! The photo of the iguana, was amazing! i have never thought of a cruise before!
6:39 PM, July 13, 2007
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Anonymous said…

If you are ever interested in taking another cruise, I have the one for you! I went on a cruise this spring that catered to the Vegan and Macrobiotic lifestyle. It is called a Holistic Holiday at Sea. Vegetarian Times is one of their sponsers. It was a wonderful experience. The food was amazing!!!! They have even published cookbooks from each cruise. More detailed info at http://www.atasteofhealth.org/.

Love your blog,
Tracie
7:42 AM, July 14, 2007

Webly said…

Crazy, I was just in Tulum on a Carnival cruise on Friday. We did a 7 day cruise. I will be making a big blog post about all the food we had soon. Carnival had a full 7 day menu planned out for us and let us approve and shift things around if we wanted. Looks like you just went off their menu?
2:33 PM, July 16, 2007

SusanV said…

Webly, I can’t wait to see your post. We started off going by the menu, but the last couple of nights they made special meals for us. They certainly didn’t have a whole menu planned out for us, even though we booked months ago and told them we were vegan. It sounds like they really made an extra effort for you.
3:50 PM, July 16, 2007

urban vegan said…

Glad you had such a fab time!

I love the Mayan Riviera…especially Playa del Carmen.

http://urbanvegan.blogspot.com/2006/11/playa-del-carmen-photo-essay.html

Now that I am into diving, I want to go back to Cozumel.

I’ve been meaning to tell you how much I admire your food photography! Amazing–well composed and well-lit. Makes realize I need to vamp up my photos.
12:18 PM, July 18, 2007

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