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Old 09-15-2013, 07:56 PM   #31
n8nally
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Our goal was to run the Castaway Cay 5K since we enjoy running even though we are not hard core, lol! I ran the Wine and Dine Half marathon with my BFF last year and the kids and I have done several 5Ks locally as well.

So we set out the Room Service breakfast order on the door knob and had it delivered at 6:30am. (On vacation! I know, I'm nuts!) We had hoped to have some time in the morning to ease into things, but that didn't really happen due to us all oversleeping despite the room service delivery, lol! So at 8:15 we headed to Evolutions to sign up for the race. We got our bibs, towels and instructions and we were off. Again the line to leave was longish, but we managed to get off by 8:45.



We got off and they were selling cold bottles of water for $1.75 and I bought one, mostly for the plastic bottle. We had forgotten to bring our reusable water bottles from home, but I knew there would be water on the race route, so I figured we could just refill the one bottle several times.

We walked pretty briskly to the starting point, about 10 min.



They had a big crate with a lid that we could place all our belongings in and a cast member would be hanging around watching it. It was near the Start/Finish. We snapped a quick pic and were on our way.



There were plenty of water stops along the route and a wide variety of people running or walking the race. We saw young, fit runner types, as well as grandparents, families and other chubby Moms like me We were not last and made it across the finish in 38:47.



We got our Mickey medals and then rewarded ourselves at the very conveniently located smoothie stand with a strawberry smoothie and a virgin pina colada!



After resting for a little bit on a nearby bench, we walked back to the finish line area which is right by the bicycle rental stand and rented bikes. That had been an activity my DD really wanted us to do on the island. The bikes were plentiful (we did not have reservations) and in good repair. We picked the bikes and headed off. It was sweltering hot, but there was lots of breeze and the
water stops were still full and cold. The route for the bikes overlaps with the 5K route, so most of it we had already seen. We didn't make it all the way to the tower, and I didn't take any pics, but we had a great time!

We were done with that with just enough time to change into our suits and take a quick rinse/shower in one of the many outdoor shower stands to cool off. We then headed to the nearby tram stop to get the tram back to the front of the island to go to our Stingray excursion at 12.



At the Stingray check in area we got our snorkel gear and walked to a covered pavilion where we were given an instructional talk about stingrays, safety info and a how-to-snorkel briefing. We were able to leave our things in the pavilion and headed down to the beach.

They had about four stingray ramps set up with cast members leading groups of about 6. We were instructed how to feed the stingrays and given lots of shrimp and stingray feed (long rectangular gelatinous sticks of fish pieces and vitamins for the stingrays) to use. It was a weird sensation and honestly, I was a little freaked out. I did not expect to be so it was a surprise, lol! My DS did the best and fed them several times, while my DD and I mostly threw food at the stingrays and stood back while they gulped it up,







After the feeding session we were allowed to snorkel right there in the stingray pool for a while. This was my kids first time snorkeling and they fell in love! We got to see TONS of stingrays, and a variety of fish. The water was never very deep and it was perfect for beginners.









We had a wonderful time and never felt rushed to leave. When we were done we gathered our stuff and headed to find LUNCH!

TBC
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Old 09-15-2013, 09:01 PM   #32
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Your report makes me feel like I am there with you guys!! Love the detail

Do you know if the stingrays on CC have had their barbs removed? I would be worried swimming with them if they still had their barbs that's all (after the Steve Irwin thing & all). Lol

Can't wait to hear more.
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Old 09-15-2013, 09:03 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AustralianJetsetter View Post
Your report makes me feel like I am there with you guys!! Love the detail

Do you know if the stingrays on CC have had their barbs removed? I would be worried swimming with them if they still had their barbs that's all (after the Steve Irwin thing & all). Lol

Can't wait to hear more.
Yes. They get their barbs cut all the way short every three months
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Old 09-15-2013, 09:06 PM   #34
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Yes. They get their barbs cut all the way short every three months
Haha I'm paranoid That's great news. Might look into doing this then. Cheers!
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Old 09-15-2013, 09:19 PM   #35
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Following along.

GREAT trip report. Love the pics and your kids are such cuties!
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Old 09-16-2013, 10:28 AM   #36
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Loving your report so far. Getting me excited for my trip in May.
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Old 09-17-2013, 04:08 PM   #37
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Joining in. I'm loving your report!
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Old 09-17-2013, 06:13 PM   #38
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Awesome trip report! So glad you were able to enjoy this with you kids!
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Old 09-18-2013, 11:51 AM   #39
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Enjoying your report! Your kids look like they get along very well!
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Old 09-20-2013, 11:01 PM   #40
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Finally have some time to try to wrap this baby up!

We were so hungry when we got over to Cookie's! We were supposed to go there, as opposed to Cookie's Too, because that was where our head server told us to go pick up our special allergy meal. He had requested gluten-free chicken tenders and fries and almond milk along with gluten free cookies and donuts for dessert! YUM! We made our way through the buffet and they actually came to find us and carry our special food to the table! Such awesome service



No pic of the allergy food (sorry), but here are some goodies from the regular choices. Everything was SO good! We must have eaten out weight in ribs that day!



And of course, I had to try a Konk Cooler!



After lunch we headed to the beach to relax in hammocks in the shade. There were plenty available!





This is my attempt at a selfie, lol! Notice all the sand on my shoulder? Yeah, that's because I had a lot of trouble getting into the hammock and ended up flipping over and landing on my head! (While the kids laughed and my DS lamented not having videotaped it!) Fortunately I figured it out without major spinal damage!!



Next, on to build some sand castles and swim in the beautiful ocean water with the fish!





When we were good and tired, we decided to take quick showers and do some shopping. (For all you first-timers, please note: Castaway Cay merchandise can only be purchased on Castaway Cay! Except for a pin or two, you will have to do all your CC purchases on the island!)





It was then time to head back to the ship, stopping for a few photo ops.





The post office



I thought this was neat: foot washing stations and showers to get rid of the sand before boarding the ship!



Next up: Pirate Night!!!
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Old 09-22-2013, 09:13 PM   #41
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Great Trip Report

Thank you for sharing! I love your trip report! I have so much to learn before our first cruise in May. I want to do the 5k at CC! I didn't even know about it until I read about it on the disboards.

You have a beautiful family ... what wonderful memories your children will have.
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Old 09-29-2013, 09:12 AM   #42
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Enjoyed your trip report, thanks for taking the time to share your experiences. It really helps others plan for their own cruise!
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Old 09-30-2013, 08:23 PM   #43
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What a great trip report. You have a beautiful family.

I am in awe of how much you accomplished on Castaway Cay!
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Old 12-29-2013, 09:37 PM   #44
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Totally enjoyed your TR! We are taking our Granddaughters in May!! Can't wait!
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Old 01-03-2014, 12:01 PM   #45
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Very detailed report with some invaluable tips! Thank you! I am going on our first cruise ever - on the Dream end of Jan with my 2 kids ages 7 and 11. Glad to hear you had a great time on the cruise! Thanks for sharing!
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