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Old 07-19-2008, 04:13 PM   #1
nextcruz
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Want to do Atlantis on your own? We did it!

After reading the DISBoards for months and PMing some DISers, I finally got the courage to give this a try on our 2nd trip to Nassau.

Here's our story:
We were on the June 1, 2008 Wonder.
I booked 2 Comfort Suites rooms with a AAA rate of $152 each for my family and a cousin's family - both families of 4. I reserved the room for the night beginning the date of our arrival in port - even though we would not be staying the night. As we left the ship around 10am, we ran into another family of 4, also headed to Comfort Suites. The night before, I went to the Shore Excursions desk and got a map of Atlantis. DCL's shore excursions personnel suggested we take a cab instead of the water taxi due to distance from the Comfort Suites.

As you enter Nassau, there will literally be 100s of people standing around offering to take you to Paradise Island, Atlantis, etc. We chose a man that had a sign saying "$4 cab ride to Atlantis". We told him we had 12 in our party, and he took us around to an older model toyota van that seated 12 and even had A/C. (even though the sign had a price, be sure to agree on a price before you ever step foot in the cab!) Be prepared to pay $1 for a token for the toll bridge over to Paradise Island. Our ride cost us $4 per person, and we exited at the door to the Comfort Suites.

We arrived at the Comfort Suites at 10:30am, told the desk clerk that we wanted to check in and out at the same time, and we were ready to go in about 5 minutes. Our $152 rate, ended up at a total of $194. (When you book there is notation for extra $8/pp additional resort fee, plus tax, so I knew it would be close to $200.)

I asked the clerk how many reservations she handled with a check-in and out the same day, and she said there were 60 arrivals like ours just on that day. So, do not be afraid to book this way - they are VERY familiar with the cruise ship visitors.

The clerk gave us a card for each adult with a "paid" stamp. This gets you an armband for the Atlantis activities. With our cards in hand, we headed directly across the street to Atlantis. As you enter the resort, you are on the Beach Towers side. You will head through the lobby and down some stairs to enter the outdoors area of the property. At the Coral Towers Beach hut, (we had to ask directions a couple of times) you will pick up your beach towels and wrist bands.

Even though Atlantis is "across the street" from the Comfort Suites - it is still a 15 minute walk within the resort to get to the Aquaventure, Dig, and Casino areas. The walk is pleasant - with fish exhibits, pool areas, a beach and beautiful landscaping - so it isn't too bad. It was 11:15 when we arrived at the aquaventure area and we headed straight to the popular water slides. They were great! But, the line gets much longer after noon. The kids and the adults loved the slides (ages 14,13,12,10,8) and the youngest, age 6, was only able to ride a small kiddie slide. You must be 48in to ride, and they do measure and enforce this rule.

The pools are beautiful and 2 of the largest are in the waterpark area. Everyone's favorite, though, was the lazy river - a mile ride around the resort - which isn't really all that "lazy". There are some fun rapids, too, but no big drops.

We brought our own bottled water in a small six-pack sized cooler. We shared snack food - $6 nachos, $7 chicken fingers, $4 fries, $4 soda(free refills) and each family spent about $25. They DO NOT TAKE CASH at the food area, so be sure to bring a credit card!

We changed into street clothes and left the resort about 3:20pm. Walked the opposite way of our arrival, to the main Royal Towers resort lobby (much closer) to catch a cab back. Prices are posted and concierge is standing out front and will direct you to a cab - much less intimidating than the ride over!!

Traffic was VERY HEAVY - and we arrived back at the dock area about 3:55pm. Customs agents check your ID and KTTW card - they were quick and pleasant. Once back on board, we headed to Goofy's Galley and the Pizzaria for a real lunch. (perfect timing for us, because we had 8:15 dinner).

We had a great time, made some nice new friends - we actually all stayed together for the entire day - and will definitely do it again!!

Comparison:
Atlantis -on your own
$194 for 2 adults/2 children ages 10 & 14 + $40 2 cabs rides with tip + $25 snacks = $259.

VS

DCL Aquaventure
$165 per person x 4 = $660!

a total savings of $400!!


Just a side note: I would not recommend keeping the room to go back and shower, etc because it is such a long walk. Even if you reserved a room at the Atlantis beach towers (least expensive) the walk will be equally far. Also, the line to check in at the Atlantis Beach towers was EXTREMELY long - there had to be at least 30 people in line. We were the only ones checking in at the Comfort Suites.

Also, next time, we will bring some bagged chips and snacks along . Your bags are not checked at Atlantis.

We did not bring our cameras along - I didn't want to worry about them getting wet and/or stolen. So, we dont' have any photos - sorry!
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Old 07-19-2008, 05:09 PM   #2
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thanks for the info! it's very helpful - we have been considering doing this on our own as well... i hope you don't mind a couple of questions... do they have lockers for rent at atlantis? if so, do you pay on a credit card as well? we will have a 4yo with us - did you notice if there is a kiddie slide or pool area for him? is he allowed on the lazy river with an adult? any info would be appreciated
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Old 07-19-2008, 05:11 PM   #3
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Thanks for the detailed information. This is a perfect report for the rest of us comtemplating it.
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Old 07-19-2008, 05:12 PM   #4
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Incredible post

Thank you so much for posting al this we are doing this for our SEpt 1st cruise and have been trying to figure it all out. This helps us so much. Thanks again this is the kind of info that helps make everyones cruise and excursions go so smoothly.

Thanks T
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Old 07-19-2008, 05:54 PM   #5
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Thanks for the awesome detailed report! This will help us immensely for our December trip. You rock!
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Old 07-19-2008, 06:47 PM   #6
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Smile

Thanks for the report. I have a room booked at the CS for my sept cruise.
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Old 07-19-2008, 06:59 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by samily View Post
thanks for the info! it's very helpful - we have been considering doing this on our own as well... i hope you don't mind a couple of questions...
do they have lockers for rent at atlantis? Look at the map for "comfort stations". there are two - with lockers, showers, changing facilities - free
if so, do you pay on a credit card as well? everything with a charge is with a credit card
we will have a 4yo with us - did you notice if there is a kiddie slide or pool area for him? there is a very cool smaller kid activity area
is he allowed on the lazy river with an adult?my 5 year old went with my husband and had a great time. I thought the 3 year old was too young.

any info would be appreciated
Best wishes!
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Old 07-19-2008, 07:39 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dental01 View Post
Thank you so much for posting al this we are doing this for our SEpt 1st cruise and have been trying to figure it all out. This helps us so much. Thanks again this is the kind of info that helps make everyones cruise and excursions go so smoothly.

Thanks T
I think we are on the same cruise!

Thanks for posting, OP. We have 2 rooms booked for our cruise as well. Did they charge you $40 pp for the ones over 12? I had heard that they did.
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Old 07-19-2008, 07:57 PM   #9
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I think we are on the same cruise!

Thanks for posting, OP. We have 2 rooms booked for our cruise as well. Did they charge you $40 pp for the ones over 12? I had heard that they did.

Me too, Me too, and we have our Comfort Suites already booked.
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Old 07-19-2008, 08:56 PM   #10
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Thanks so much for the "play by play" as I did Atlantis through RCCL and paid $159.00 pp and now i am taking my husband and kids with DCL and want to do it on our own. Your post was VERY helpful!! Thanks again!
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Old 07-19-2008, 09:09 PM   #11
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I have a 2 year old and will need the room for nap time. Is there an express check out if you do use the room? We are on the 9/1 cruise as well.
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Old 07-19-2008, 10:57 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by samily View Post
do they have lockers for rent at atlantis? if so, do you pay on a credit card as well? we will have a 4yo with us - did you notice if there is a kiddie slide or pool area for him? is he allowed on the lazy river with an adult? any info would be appreciated
Yes, they have nice locker areas - one with a changing area is located by the infinity pool and lazy river. Sorry, we just left our bags and towels on a single recliner at the pool for the entire day - so I don't know if they take cash. Your 4 yr old can play in the water area, infinity pool and even a small kiddie slide into one of the pools. The lazy river is for everyone!! There are single and double tubes - both are fun on the river!
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Old 07-19-2008, 11:00 PM   #13
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Did they charge you $40 pp for the ones over 12? I had heard that they did.
Interesting question. We had no charge. But, the agent next to us started to charge my cousin for both her kids. Our agent leaned over and said quietly "we're not doing that charge if they're not overnight guests."
So, for all of us - no there were no additional charges and we 3 of the kids with us were 12 or over.
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Old 07-21-2008, 12:24 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by nextcruz View Post
Yes, they have nice locker areas - one with a changing area is located by the infinity pool and lazy river. Sorry, we just left our bags and towels on a single recliner at the pool for the entire day - so I don't know if they take cash. Your 4 yr old can play in the water area, infinity pool and even a small kiddie slide into one of the pools. The lazy river is for everyone!! There are single and double tubes - both are fun on the river!

did you leave your bags unattended? and if so, i assume you felt comfortable doing this? did you carry your KTTW and ID with you? i am just wondering what to do with my beach bag(sunscreen, etc) when all 4 of us are on the slides and so forth...

sorry for so many ?????


thanks
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Old 07-21-2008, 12:40 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by bawsmom View Post
did you leave your bags unattended? and if so, i assume you felt comfortable doing this? did you carry your KTTW and ID with you? i am just wondering what to do with my beach bag(sunscreen, etc) when all 4 of us are on the slides and so forth...
I've been to Atlantis twice and both times I kept our KTTW and ID's with me (in a waterproof pouch) and we left the beach bag on a lounge chair in the general area we were using the slides/pools. I did leave my camera in the bag but I tried to be very discreet about it (I would bury it in the bottom of the bag while we were walking and well before we got to a lounge chair).
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