We knew we would have 3 days to explore San Juan after our cruise, so when we arrived at SJU, we went straight to the boat and settled in. Our boat was Royal Caribbean's Serenade of the Seas and the itinerary for our Southern Caribbean Cruise was:
Day 1 - San Juan, Puerto Rico
Day 2 - Day at Sea
Day 3 - Bridgetown, Barbados
Day 4 - Castries, St. Lucia
Day 5 - St. John's, Antigua
Day 6 - Phillipsburg, St. Maarten
Day 7 - St. Croix, US Virgin Islands
Day 8 - San Juan, Puerto Rico
Honestly, the schedule was a little too packed for me. It would have been nice to have that "at sea" day later on in the trip, but it worked out alright. The first day, we were able to lay out on deck, explore the ship and enjoy our meals at a leisurely pace. It was a formal night, so we took lots of pictures. The welcome reception included free drinks, so you can bet we attended that as well!
The next morning, we arrived at our first stop - Barbados. We did a tour that was organized through Royal Caribbean - the Tiami Five Star Catamaran & Turtles. We took a catamaran out and were given snorkels to swim with wild green sea turtles.
This was honestly my favorite experience of the entire cruise. We were so close to the turtles - I even got "slapped" in the face by the fins of one. We anchored up later along a beach and were able to lay out and swim some more. The water here was absolutely stunning!
After we got back to the ship, we had time to get ready for dinner, grab some drinks and enjoy some of the entertainment on board. What a good start to our vacation!
Next up: Our day in St. Lucia!