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Paradise Beach Club/Cruise Ships

hamilton ontario
Level Contributor
390 posts
22 reviews
Paradise Beach Club/Cruise Ships

Thinking of Paradise Beach Club for next Feb. How much of an impact do the cruise ships have on the beach/snorkelling area? Would it be very crowded at that end of the beach, or just minimal extra traffic? Also, is Feb. a better time to go than Jan. or is beginning of March better? It seemed to be very rainy this year according to weather reports. Thanks in advance for any input we can get on these questions?

Minnesota
Level Contributor
384 posts
10 reviews
1. Re: Paradise Beach Club/Cruise Ships

We have been here a week, now, at IB, so I can speak to this to some degree.

Impact of cruise ships: The days that there are cruise ships in, about an hour or so after the cruise ship docks, (around 10ish), there will be two large groups of people (maybe 20-30 in each?) on the beach all sporting snorkel gear of various types, and yellow snorkel vests with the name of the cruise line on them. Someone will stand in the water in front of each group and give them careful instructions, while they nod vigorously in unison. Meanwhile, several kayakers will move in offshore, lying in wait. At the instructor's signal, these cruising snorkelers will head off into the water, resembling little penquins with yellow lifevests (or the dock scene from the show "Mama Mia", only without the choreography), and quickly snorkel out, trying to get to the "best" spots. The kayakers will herd them out for awhile, and when they eventually settle down and start to observe what's below them, the kayakers will tether themselves to floats in the shallower part of the reef, so as to keep the snorkelers away from areas that would tempt them to touch or stand on the coral. After about an hour, the vast majority of snorkelers are out of the water sunning themselves contentedly, using facilities provided by the resort. After that, maybe 10-20 snorkelers can be seen in various parts of the 1/2 mile of reef. By 1:30, most of the snorkelers are headed back to the cruise ship, but some stay until about 3:00. Of course, there are more "hawkers" plying their wares, as well. The best parts of the reef are very accessible, although the kayakers will keep you away from the shallower parts of the reef, as well, although that's not such a bad thing, really.

Weather: According to the owner we're renting from here, Rainy season tapers off and ends toward the end of January - mid February. After that, it is great weather (meaning sunny) through March. It has rained while we were here, but never for more than an hour, and it hasn't affected our activities in the least. Some days have been windy, but it is in the "trades", so that's to be expected. IMHO, the weather here is fabulous, but I'm from Minnesota, and we just got 12" of snow back home : )

hamilton ontario
Level Contributor
390 posts
22 reviews
2. Re: Paradise Beach Club/Cruise Ships

Thanks for your response and the amount of detail. Clearly the cruisers are more comical than an interferance. Now it is easy to make the choice to book for next Feb. Thanks again for all your input.

Minneapolis...
Level Contributor
4,540 posts
138 reviews
3. Re: Paradise Beach Club/Cruise Ships

The amazing thing about staying on West Bay Beach is the opportunity to get up early... sun is up around 6... so it is easy to be snorkeling at 8 and return home for a nice breakfast, all before any cruise folks show up. You can then do anthropological surveys like cd on the cruisers as much as you like. We snorkeled last week on a heavy cruise ship day and found few snorkelers in the water by about 1 o'clock... and the Tabayana chairs were almost empty... so, anyway, there are a couple of days you will adjust your behavior, but mostly - you just say "I'm going to the busiest beach on Roatan because it is a great beach with great shore snorkeling..." and accept the busier conditions...

4. Re: Paradise Beach Club/Cruise Ships

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