Traffic Jam in the Caribbean – Allure of the Seas, Part Two

Short on time? Just browse the images.         There are six in this post.         Click on any to show its full resolution. 

 Morning, a few years back, we were  approaching our slip assignment for Saint Martin, closely followed by… traffic.1-27-11     St. Maartens, Allure Vac., Day 9 (10)_edited-1

 No, wait! There’s MORE! Five cruse ships in total!1-27-11     St. Maartens, Allure Vac., Day 9 (9)_edited-1

We were on Royal Caribbean’s “Allure of the Seas,” first to dock in Philipsburg, closely followed by a Celebrity, and last, this MSC Italian ship.1-27-11     St. Maartens, Allure Vac., Day 9 (17)_edited-1

 From our ships vantage,  the town looks like a dream…1-27-11     St. Maartens, Allure Vac., Day 9 (19)_edited-1

A short while later we were walking among the beach bars and restaurants, “Two beach lounges, one umbrella and 4 beers: $24.” 1-27-11     St. Maartens, Allure Vac., Day 9 (39)_edited-1

Considering about 15,000 people were on those five ships, this  beautiful beach front was not crowded.1-27-11     St. Maartens, Allure Vac., Day 9 (33)_edited-1

 

Thanks for visiting, and as usual comments are always welcome.

Aboard the Largest Cruise Ship in the World: The Allure of the Seas

Short on time? Just browse the images.  There are fifteen in this post.         Click on any to show its full resolution. 

In 2011, we had the privilege of spending a week on this newly commissioned Royal Caribbean mega-ship as a few tropical islands sailed by….or at least it seemed that way. It was difficult to tell that we were in fact the ones moving.                                            Here are some images from that cruise.

At 1,187’ (362m) long;     up to 198’ (60m) wide;       and 236’ (72m) high,   the Allure of the Seas dwarfs conventional cruise ships, as seen here in St Thomas.1-26-11     St. Thomas, Allure Vac., Day 8 (25)_edited-1 - 2011-01-26 at 10-58-08

 

 Below: The exclusive adults only solarium was one of our favorites, with its own pools, bars, café, palm trees (?) and, (not shown,) cantilevered whirlpools actually hanging over the ocean. Nice!1-28-11     At Sea, Allure Vac., Day 10 L (3)_edited-1 - 2011-01-28 at 12-41-49

.

With the “Boardwalk” and “Central Park” below, the center of the ship is lined with unique inside cabins.1-23-11     Ft. Lauderdale, Allure Vac, Day 5 (17)_edited-1 - 2011-01-23 at 20-16-58

 

And overhead – the zip line, with me, …9 decks above!1-28-11     At Sea, Allure Vac., Day 10 (56)_edited-1 - 2011-01-28 at 14-55-16

.

There are two, 10m climbing walls overlooking the stern, and Aqua Theater.1-25-11     At Sea, Allure Vac. Day 7 L (32)_edited-1 - 2011-01-25 at 13-09-45

.

Our friend Judy is winning the challenge.1-29-11     At Sea, Allure Vac. Day 11 (37)_edited-1 - 2011-01-29 at 21-25-08

.

The sun is no different from this ship than from other ships, except maybe it SETS a few seconds later from this height!!! Rich, Ray and Fred join me with recording the event.1-29-11     At Sea, Allure Vac. Day 11 (48)_edited-1 - 2011-01-29 at 22-43-481-29-11     At Sea, Allure Vac. Day 11 (49)_edited-1 - 2011-01-29 at 22-44-07

 .

“Central Park” is a meandering outdoor garden lined with bars, and shops – really awesome.1-29-11     At Sea, Allure Vac. Day 11 (77)_edited-1 - 2011-01-30 at 01-13-38

.

On the same level, the Boardwalk features more informal shops and eateries, and a carousel!
1-24-11     Nassau, Bahamas, Allure Vac., Day 6 (80)_edited-1 - 2011-01-25 at 01-49-07

1-24-11     Nassau, Bahamas, Allure Vac., Day 6 (75)_edited-1 - 2011-01-25 at 01-40-53

.

One deck down is the Royal Promenade with more shops, restaurants, a jazz club and other diversions. Between the two is the Tide Bar, shown here, (center about 10′  (3m) up and rising, bartender in center) which like an elevator moves between these two decks… with the bar, patrons and their drinks, up and down, up and down.1-25-11     At Sea, Allure Vac., Day 7 (28)_edited-1 - 2011-01-26 at 04-04-26 (1)

.

Of course there is a 1,380 seat theater –  the Broadway play “Chicago” on stage during our cruise. In addition there is an ice skating rink, clubs, etc., etc.1-26-11     St. Thomas, Allure Vac., Day 8 (44)_edited-1 - 2011-01-27 at 01-10-12

 

The enormous smokestacks of this ship were built to telescope down to clear a suspension bridge in Amsterdam, where the ship was built. For perspective, it would need to do this to pass under the George Washington Bridge!1-28-11     At Sea, Allure Vac., Day 10 (17)_edited-1 - 2011-01-28 at 11-10-27

 

Sunrise at sea, heading back from St. Maarten to Fort Lauderdale on an itinerary which besides St. Thomas, also included Nassau in the Bahamas.1-28-11     At Sea, Allure Vac., Day 10 (8)_edited-1 - 2011-01-28 at 11-07-06

Thanks for visiting, and as usual comments are always welcome.

Summertime at the Jersey Shore: TICES SHOAL – boater’s playground

Short on time? Just view the images, and click for increased resolution.

The satellite image below covers about 4 miles (6.4 km) across, showing the community of Sunrise Beach on Barnegat Bay and Island Beach State Park, a pristine  part of  barrier peninsula separating the bay from the Atlantic Ocean at the right.

Screen Shot 2014-06-29 at 8.07.39 PM
On a typical summers morning, boats from miles around cruise to Tices Shoal on the New Jersey coast. The US Inter-Coastal Waterway  is indicated by the North-South boat traffic on the left.
Screen Shot 2014-06-29 at 8.08.22 PM
In this closer rendering, about 35 boats can be seen gathered in this desirably sandy shoal inside the beaches.

On a good day, the numbers can reach several hundred boats, jockeying for space and visibility;  for sun seeking celebratory fun; for relaxing, drinks, food, swimming, and just being there.

Screen Shot 2014-06-29 at 8.09.27 PM
A small dock and access-way leads to the ocean,  (right, ) less than 1/4 mile away.

Below are photos and captions from Tices Shoal, followed by the treasure that is, on the ocean side…

P1010570_edited-1 - Version 2
Many arrive early to get favored “spots” near the access path, or sandy shoals.
DSC_0832 - Version 2
All sorts of boats, kayaks, PWC’s, inflatable toys – pets, families, revelers… join the bay-side community.
807  7-19-08 Tices with 500 boats, WJRZ, Aquapolooza (3)_edited-1 - Version 2
Frequently, raft-ups grow to dozens of watercraft.
DSC_0752
And there’s the ever-popular ice cream, cheeseburger and hot dog boats.
P1010691_edited-2
Some cook and serve imaginative creations – food and drinks  – on board; others set-up their grills and cold ice chests right in the water.
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Go-Fast boats come and go with unmistakable thundering power-plants, while awesome sailboats glide in silently.
Rock and Roll on Barnegat Bay 9/3/05
Several times a season, local radio stations add live music and give-aways to the party.
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Cloudy days are no exception,. As long as the seas are reasonably calm, they come.
907     7-15-09     Tices, and Is Beach, Jeanne, Sandy and I, a beautiful weekday_edited-1
But it’s the bright sunny days that really beckon, and that short walk across the dunes to the ocean… promises some of the best beaches on the East Coast.
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
The sand is fine and soft on the feet; the natural fauna, birds and other wildlife, enjoy a protected and balanced habitat.
910     10-20-09     Is. Beach State Park trip, Marty and Sandy (11)_edited-1
For those who love the treasures of the beach, and the allure of the sea without massive crowds, Tices Shoal provides the key to the gateway.
P1010623_edited-1
And as a rarity in New Jersey, our favorite pets are welcome, as this image of Jeanne and Sandy Paws the dog will attest.
DSC_0406
We all try to be environmentally conscious, and there is no better way to practice this than during and after a day at this very special place. (That’s a kite hanging on the line!…)
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
At the end of a beautiful summer day down the shore….
DSC_0418
…a sailor, perhaps here overnight, bids farewell to the setting sun.

 

 As usual, comments are always welcome, and…thanks for viewing! 🙂

More information can be found at the official Tices Shoal website.