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brneyes

Sapphire Princess - Mexican Riviera

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We are planning on cruising on the Sapphire in April. If you have been on the Sapphire within the past year, would you give me your pros/cons of the ship?

We will be going to the Mexican Riviera ports. We are not into snorkling, but if you have been there, what beach would you recommend that we visit, and also is there a "must see/do" at any of these ports? Also, we like to "bargain", is there any of this going on at any of these ports?

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We haven't been on the Sapphire but have been on the Diamond and we loved everything about that ship!! Enjoy......

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We've been on the Caribbean and loved it as well.

Been to Mexican Riviera 3 or 4 times. In Puerta Vallarta, we have rented a car and did our own thing. And we have also rented a taxi driver and asked him to take us to the non-tourist places. Puerta Vallarta was very safe, clean, etc.

In Cabo San Lucas, the best thing we did was whale watching. April might not have quite as many whales, but you should be able to spot a few. It is a very easy port to walk around. I believe you will be tendered.

Mazatlan is more of a beachy/touristy place (in my opinion). Not as clean and pristine as PV. I remember going to the center of town. Beautiful architecture, missions. Also an outdoor farmer's type market.

Just remember that you are in Mexico. Don't drink the water! Make sure that if you eat in a restaurant, the food that is supposed to be hot is hot. Also remember to bring small money ($1/$5) for bargaining on the streets. You don't want to come back to the states with pesos. The purser's desk will give you change.

Have a blast. Report back, okay?

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We've been on the Caribbean and loved it as well.

Been to Mexican Riviera 3 or 4 times. In Puerta Vallarta, we have rented a car and did our own thing. And we have also rented a taxi driver and asked him to take us to the non-tourist places. Puerta Vallarta was very safe, clean, etc.

In Cabo San Lucas, the best thing we did was whale watching. April might not have quite as many whales, but you should be able to spot a few. It is a very easy port to walk around. I believe you will be tendered.

Mazatlan is more of a beachy/touristy place (in my opinion). Not as clean and pristine as PV. I remember going to the center of town. Beautiful architecture, missions. Also an outdoor farmer's type market.

Just remember that you are in Mexico. Don't drink the water! Make sure that if you eat in a restaurant, the food that is supposed to be hot is hot. Also remember to bring small money ($1/$5) for bargaining on the streets. You don't want to come back to the states with pesos. The purser's desk will give you change.

Have a blast. Report back, okay?

I don't know if I am to "reply" after what you wrote, or not, but here it goes. Whether you get it or it makes sense, I don't know. I'm use to reply on other forums with a "blank" space, so here it goes.

Thank you for replying back.

I do have a few questions.

In PV, you mentioned about renting a car or using a Taxi. If we wanted to do the Taxi, do we tell them where we (like what you mentioned) want to go, and then have them give us a price before we get in?

Yes, I don't want to take any Pesos home with me, and will bring small bills.

In regard to the "bargaining", can that be done at any of these 3 stops, or just at one of them? How do we know where the area is to go at these stops, to look for bargaining with the people?

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When we rented the taxi driver in PV, we asked him, what will you charge us to drive us around and show us (and then we named the things we liked and the things we looked up)? He replied, xx$ for 4 hours. We then said, xx$ for 6 hours (the ship will help you get an idea of what you should offer). There were 2 couples and we split the charge. We paid him AFTER her brought us back to the pier. In PV we stopped at a place in the "jungle" where there was a restaurant and river. We kinda walked around the river a little bit but then told him we really didn't want to eat or get anything to drink. I really don't remember all the places we stopped at but I do remember safe, clean and fun.

You barter in all of Mexico. That is what they do best. Some of the shops are ship recommended which means the ship gets a kick back. I really doubt a lot of bargaining will take place there.

Mexico is known for vanilla (the real stuff); pottery (just make sure it's not lead paint); blankets (remember that you have to pack them); liquor (customs has it's limits); leather products and silver. Genuine silver and not silver plated will have a stamp on it. Again, the ship will have that information for you.

These ports rely on the tourist. Every driver that you encounter will take you to "their family's shops". You will also see children and pregnant women trying to sell you stuff on the street or on the beach. Use your best judgement as to what you want to buy. The ship will give you information about the stores, the areas to shop in, etc.

One of my favorite places was the outdoor market in downtown Mazatlan. Fish, pork, beef sold right there on the street. Shellfish in buckets on the curb waiting for you to pick out "your dinner". I didn't buy anything, but I certainly took my time taking in the way other cultures live.

We were walking to the mission in Mazatlan and a woman was sweeping her porch. I asked her in Spanish if I could look inside her house. Total adobe, no airconditioning (it was hot as blazes outside). No screens or screen door. A very modest home that was beautiful.

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In Mexico you can Bargain almost anything and anywhere! Just walk away from someone after they tell you the price of something and you will experience it immediately. Our Family have been there a few times and the dolphin experience near the dock in Cabo is fabulous. Walk on the pier afterwards and they have great little shops and restaurants! Keep in mind on the way to Cabo or leaving, if you stay near the railing on the ship, you might see some dolphins swimming along with the Ship!! (we did!! it was so neat!!)

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The SAPPHIRE is one of those ships that is just the right size. Easy to find your way around. Enjoy!!!!

We found it to be rather quiet but it was the Alaska run so not as much on deck or pool time, more relaxing.

We went horseback riding on the beach in Mazatlan with Randy's Happy Horses. It was the hilight of that cruise for sure.

Edited by hazelson

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When we rented the taxi driver in PV, we asked him, what will you charge us to drive us around and show us (and then we named the things we liked and the things we looked up)? He replied, xx$ for 4 hours. We then said, xx$ for 6 hours (the ship will help you get an idea of what you should offer). There were 2 couples and we split the charge. We paid him AFTER her brought us back to the pier. In PV we stopped at a place in the "jungle" where there was a restaurant and river. We kinda walked around the river a little bit but then told him we really didn't want to eat or get anything to drink. I really don't remember all the places we stopped at but I do remember safe, clean and fun.

You barter in all of Mexico. That is what they do best. Some of the shops are ship recommended which means the ship gets a kick back. I really doubt a lot of bargaining will take place there.

Mexico is known for vanilla (the real stuff); pottery (just make sure it's not lead paint); blankets (remember that you have to pack them); liquor (customs has it's limits); leather products and silver. Genuine silver and not silver plated will have a stamp on it. Again, the ship will have that information for you.

These ports rely on the tourist. Every driver that you encounter will take you to "their family's shops". You will also see children and pregnant women trying to sell you stuff on the street or on the beach. Use your best judgement as to what you want to buy. The ship will give you information about the stores, the areas to shop in, etc.

One of my favorite places was the outdoor market in downtown Mazatlan. Fish, pork, beef sold right there on the street. Shellfish in buckets on the curb waiting for you to pick out "your dinner". I didn't buy anything, but I certainly took my time taking in the way other cultures live.

We were walking to the mission in Mazatlan and a woman was sweeping her porch. I asked her in Spanish if I could look inside her house. Total adobe, no airconditioning (it was hot as blazes outside). No screens or screen door. A very modest home that was beautiful.

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When we rented the taxi driver in PV, we asked him, what will you charge us to drive us around and show us (and then we named the things we liked and the things we looked up)? He replied, xx$ for 4 hours. We then said, xx$ for 6 hours (the ship will help you get an idea of what you should offer). There were 2 couples and we split the charge. We paid him AFTER her brought us back to the pier. In PV we stopped at a place in the "jungle" where there was a restaurant and river. We kinda walked around the river a little bit but then told him we really didn't want to eat or get anything to drink. I really don't remember all the places we stopped at but I do remember safe, clean and fun.

You barter in all of Mexico. That is what they do best. Some of the shops are ship recommended which means the ship gets a kick back. I really doubt a lot of bargaining will take place there.

Mexico is known for vanilla (the real stuff); pottery (just make sure it's not lead paint); blankets (remember that you have to pack them); liquor (customs has it's limits); leather products and silver. Genuine silver and not silver plated will have a stamp on it. Again, the ship will have that information for you.

These ports rely on the tourist. Every driver that you encounter will take you to "their family's shops". You will also see children and pregnant women trying to sell you stuff on the street or on the beach. Use your best judgement as to what you want to buy. The ship will give you information about the stores, the areas to shop in, etc.

One of my favorite places was the outdoor market in downtown Mazatlan. Fish, pork, beef sold right there on the street. Shellfish in buckets on the curb waiting for you to pick out "your dinner". I didn't buy anything, but I certainly took my time taking in the way other cultures live.

We were walking to the mission in Mazatlan and a woman was sweeping her porch. I asked her in Spanish if I could look inside her house. Total adobe, no airconditioning (it was hot as blazes outside). No screens or screen door. A very modest home that was beautiful.

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