"" Writer's Wanderings: Road Trip--Cruise--Key Largo

Thursday, January 12, 2023

Road Trip--Cruise--Key Largo

The Zuiderdam docked early in Amber Cove in the Dominican Republic. The first time we were at a port in the DR, we got off the ship and turned around after walking a block and got right back on the ship. I don't remember the name of the port but we didn't feel comfortable and we always go with our gut in unchartered territory. The second time our cruise port was Santa Domingo and it was a much nicer visit. I was eager to explore Amber Cove since it was specifically built as a cruise port. 

Breakfast in the dining room and a stop to collect our things from our room and we were on our way. It was a nice walk on the dock to the entrance of the port's shopping area. There were more than a dozen bicycle taxis for those who couldn't or didn't want to make the 3-4 minute walk or just wanted the fun of riding in one. We felt we needed the exercise.

Once we passed through the area that looked like a duty free spot in an international airport terminal, we started to walk around the shopping area. Most shops were open minutes after the ship docked. The stores were all in a giant circle for the most part and we walked around it stopping to read some of the fascinating information about the island. Parts of the 1993 Jurassic Park movie were filmed here. The piece of amber with the mosquito inside came from a fictional mine. The amber actually mined here is only about 25 million to 40 million years old, not old enough to be from the dinosaur era. Also, there have never been any fossils found that date back to the dinosaurs.

Up on a hill sat a place called the Sky Bar. It looked to offer a great view of the port so we followed the path up that had some steps. Steps aren't bad if you stop often to take pictures (smile), At the top we found a very nice open air bar and restaurant with some interesting food options but it was too early for lunch. We took some pictures from up top and then found a path to where the zip line started. The line went all the way down to the bottom, passing over the swimming pool. There were a couple of teens we met on our way down a path without steps who were coming back up for a second ride.

There were some cabanas on a dock area that also had another deli style open air bar/restaurant. We checked it out and then continued around the large pool area. Everything was available to the ship. I'm not sure if the zip line was free or not but judging from the excitement of the teens, I'm guessing it was. Had we not booked an excursion, it would have been a relaxing time in or next to the pool. 

We returned to the ship after our morning of exploring to have lunch and gather our hats for the excursion in the afternoon. I was looking forward to "monkeying" around.

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