The Turn Up: Labadee, Haiti & Ochos Rios, Jamaica (Birthday Cruise Days 3-5)

Day 3 of the cruise we landed at our first port in Labadee, Haiti. I woke up that morning to the amazing view of tropical forests and insanely blue water. I don’t know what I thought Haiti would look like but it was 100x prettier than anything I could have imagined. Labadee is owned by Royal Caribbean so we didn’t have to deal with any huge crowds or lots of other tourists, just the ones from our ship. Alicia and I started by exploring the “Town Square” village area of Labadee where local artisans had shops to sell their goods. The vendors were a little aggressive for my taste but I think that’s pretty common in most areas with high tourist traffic. We then found a nice spot on the beach and spent the rest of the day tanning and frolicking in the ocean. I don’t think I have ever felt so relaxed in my life. I would love to take another trip to Haiti to visit some of less “touristy” areas because the island and the people there were great. 

Day 4 we landed in Ochos Rios, Jamaica. To be honest I felt like crap this day, I don’t know if being “land sick” is a thing but thats definitely how I felt, dizzy and unsteady even though we were on land. Regardless, I pushed through the dizziness and walked around to a few of the shops in the area near the port to buy some souvenirs for my family. I’m not sure why but the taxi drivers in Ochos Rios were EVERYWHERE. I don’t think I’ve ever been offered so many cab rides but we chose to stay close to the ship and relax at Margaritaville on the beach for lunch. After lunch on the beach we cut the day short and headed back to the boat because I felt entirely too sick for all of the hustle and bustle of the area. 
Day 5 was our final day at sea en route back to Ft. Lauderdale. The sun was perfect that day so I spent the morning tanning while listening to the final episode of Serial (yes I’m obsessed). Alicia and I watched a great ice show at the ice skating rink on the Liberty of the Seas. I don’t know how they manage all those flips and spins on that small of a rink but the skaters but on a great performance. Pretty much my only bummer during the trip is that I only got to see the first 15 minutes of the “Penguins of Madagascar” 3D movie because there were tech difficulties in the theatre. 🙁 
I would definitely say that this experience is one of the coolest things that I’ve ever done for my birthday. I had a great vacation with my best friend and it was nice to be able to unwind after a tough semester. I definitely plan on taking another cruise in the future because they are just so easy! The whole agenda is laid out for you, you just have to pick what you want to do. I think this would be the perfect vacation for a large group of friends or family because there was something for everyone.