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Raggamuffin Tours - Overnight Sailing

London
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Raggamuffin Tours - Overnight Sailing

I recently did the overnight sailing trip to Placencia and had a fantastic time. The crew were professional and great fun too and made sure that everyone felt included and kept us entertained both on the boat and in the evenings. We visited some really beautiful islands and the snorkelling stops were a real highlight in the day. I would definitely recommend the 3 day trip and if I ever go back to Belize I will be going on the trip again!!

Round Rock
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11 posts
16 reviews
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11. Re: Raggamuffin Tours - Overnight Sailing

Setting correct expectations has everything to do with whether or not you will enjoy this tour - know what you are signing up for. On a scale of 10 with 1 being the worst, here's our feedback from a family of 4:

- Snorkeling: 5 rating average (9-year old rated it 1, 13-yr old rated it 9, parent scuba divers rated it a 4.5) . If you are a scuba diver or experienced snorkeler in other top reefs, you might be disappointed. First timers will probably be thrilled assuming they don't mind their first experience beginning with a jump into deep water - ability to swim is a must. Each day, there were 1-2 snorkeling stops of 30 to 50 minute duration and/or off the Caye (island) beaches where you camp.

- Sailing: 5 rating. (Note: our perspective of not being "sailors") While the sails were up the majority of time, the boat engine was constantly in gear and is what got us from point A to B, not the wind in the sails.

- Fishing: 2 rating. The fishing is merely a past time to kill the many hours between snorkeling stops. It consists of 2 trolling lines (everyone takes turns), first day with live bait but only lures thereafter. Fishing was definitely not a priority of the crew. If fishing is a priority, this won't live up to expectations.

- Food & beverage: 7 rating. Since "eat what you catch" is not a realistic expectation, they bring a full menu. There was enough food to satisfy everyone's appetite and it was good to very good. Beverages consisted of water, Coke or Sprite, and rum punch with dinner.

- Camping: rating 9. It is definitely a unique "camping" experience, but if camping in a 2-person tent isn't your thing, you won't like this. First night is on Rendeveau Caye only 30 x 50 yards big, literally, with all of 5-6 palm trees! Toilets are the barest of necessities. The second night was on Tobacco Caye where you can walk across the island in 3 minutes - it had a bar, toilets and rooms to rent if you can't take another night in a tent or day without a shower.

- Other things to know: Check your shoes at water's edge at Caye Caulker and get them back at the end of the trip! Bring a small backpack - you will be asked to pack only your essentials for 3 days including towel, sunscreen, soap/towelettes/sanitizer - everything else stays in your luggage in the cargo hold. Bring a windbreaker/poncho - even though it's tropicial, wind or rain can be chilling on the boat or at night on the Cayes. There are long periods between snorkeling stops - bring a book or simply nap. **Raggamuffin will not allow you to pay in advance and when you get there, you will find they only accept VISA/MasterCard with an unexpected 5% service charge fee - bring cash. Bring your kids at your own risk - drinking is encouraged along with a warning about bad behavior - our group was well-behaved; unless your kids are either socializers or can keep themselves occupied for hours at a time, they may not enjoy it - ours could do both and had a great time. The people dynamics will make or break this trip - interact with them and you will have a good time, even a blast.

Washington DC...
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2 posts
9 reviews
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12. Re: Raggamuffin Tours - Overnight Sailing

I did this trip with my boyfriend back in March 2011. Most of the old reviews I've seen were unfavorable but we took a chance and LOVED it! It was an awesome crew, good people, unbelievable food and drinks, amazing scenery, and fantastic snorkeling. I couldn't recommend it more and plan to return again next year. The group that took the trip with us were a bunch of backpackers and it was a lot of fun exchanging stories across a camp fire. If you come with an open mind and ready for adventure, I doubt you will be sorry you took the trip. Hope this helps! I am happy to give you more explicit details should you need them!

San Jose, California
9 posts
1 review
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13. Re: Raggamuffin Tours - Overnight Sailing

We plan to take the Raggamuffin overnight sail in November.

Any specific advice? Some comments have downplayed the fishing aspect of the trip. Are there just a few lines? How about what to carry in your backpack? If water is in short supply, we'll be weighed down with water.

I am most concerned with the moderate opinion of the snorkeling. We are very experienced snokelers/free divers and would be very disappointed if the snorkeling did not offer experience not elsewhere found in the Cayes.

Round Rock
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11 posts
16 reviews
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14. Re: Raggamuffin Tours - Overnight Sailing

Raggamuffin Tours IS NOT a fishing trip! It is a past time between snorkeling reefs. Only 2 poles/lines and everyone takes turn watching the lines are they troll behind the boat and only a few hours per day. One day a line broke and they didn't even fix it until that night so we all shared one line among 16 people. The third day they didn't even cast as line even though they promised to do it. We knew fishing was not a priority when we saw the bait lying on the sea floor at the dock the next morning - they had dumped whatever bait they had leaving only lures for the remaining 2 days. Oh, and of course, with those odds we didn't catch any fish.

If you're going on Raggamuffin, you're going for the fun international social/party, average snorkeling and unique camping experience - but not fishing!

chicago
8 posts
1 review
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15. Re: Raggamuffin Tours - Overnight Sailing

Hi!

It sounds like Raggamuffin was not the best experience. Do you meet anyone or see any other similar tours offered while you were in Belize that sail around the cayes?

London, United...
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870 posts
86 reviews
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16. Re: Raggamuffin Tours - Overnight Sailing

I loved the trip but it depends on the people you go with and the weather you get - you stay in tents so if it rains the likelihood is that you'll get wet! If you're stuck on a boat/deserted island for 3 days with people you hate, then the chances are you'll have a pretty terrible time!

The islands are stunning, that's not in question. The snorkeling isn't bad - not brilliant but the fish life was good - it might depend on the time of year you go on the trip - visibility was good when I went in June/July.

I'd advise anyone to go on the trip but go with a friendly smile, happy-go-lucky attitude and have a laugh - it's not 5 star but you'll see some immense islands.

Free booze is always a bonus!!

We had lovely food - freshly caught fish and lobster (lobster depends on the season). We had a great group of people, it didn't rain, we all had a great time!

Hope you have as good a time as we had!

Los Angeles...
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2 posts
5 reviews
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17. Re: Raggamuffin Tours - Overnight Sailing

I just returned from Belize and my partner and I took the Raggamuffin overnight cruise. I have to agree with some of the reviewers: It was the worse and best part of our trip to Belize.

Best:

1, We met fantastic people from all over the world on this boat - Germans, Norwegians, Dutch, Canadians, French and Americans. Many we'll continue to communicate with and hope to join again in a future adventure. 2. The snorkeling was great, not as great as 20 years ago, but that's not the fault of the cruise. Not a snorkeler, just swimming in the gorgeous Carribean is amazing.

3. The detachment from all things home and work. Hours of down time to read, chat, sunbathe and take naps on the upper deck, fish and listen to music, whether on the boats system or your ipod.

4. Beautiful sunrises and sunsets.

5. Amazing Stargazing

6. Fresh Fish - We caught barracuda and grouper, the crew dived for conch and other shellfish. Fresh seafood was good.

WORSE:

1. Sleeping in pup tents with thin matresses. We're in our late 50's and it was painful. Bring a cheap pool air matress.

2. Food was dissapointing. What's with the Belizean sides? Rice, coleslaw and potatoes? Need more fresh fruits and veggies.

3. I felt they were stingy with the rum. Happy Hour started at 3:00pm? We didn't have crazy drunks on board. I just felt they needed to have it more accessible. The rum punch they did make tasted like Kool-Aide and rum. Not good. Bring your own juices or mixes.

Summary: I was very happy we did this trip, however, not sure if I'd do it again if I had the chance. I don't think I'd meet the same kind of people and I'd dread the sleeping arrangements.

Calgary, Canada
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18. Re: Raggamuffin Tours - Overnight Sailing

Before you go, check the weath forecast yourself. Do not go if it is going to be cool, rainy, or windy. Ever. Do not trust what Charlie tells you about the weather- she will say anything to get you to go on the trip.

The planned day of departure was delayed, supposedly due to cool weather, but really it was only because the boat hadn't returned from its last trip. In fact, we learned that the previous trip had been cut short due to the very weather we were setting off in. The next day we were told the weather forecast was looking much better and the trip would go ahead. However, it was cold, rainy, and extremely windy for the 3 days, which is exactly what was forecast on the weather network. Everyone's tents were filled with sand in the morning. In addition, the sleeping mats were soaked. making for a wet, sandy, sleepless night. The second night on Tobacco Caye was less windy, but equally sleepless due to the horrible drumming, screaming and drunken partying, which was impossible to escape giving the tiny size of the island.

The trip would be awesome in great weather, but is terrible in bad weather. Check the forecast yourself, don't believe Charlie, and cancel if it looks even remotely bad.

chicago
8 posts
1 review
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19. Re: Raggamuffin Tours - Overnight Sailing

I did the trip about a year or so ago. Before the trip, my friends and I had the same hesitations but decided to go for it! It was hands down the best part of the trip! The food was excellent, the staff was great and we met a lot of fun people. Both nights on the trip some people stayed up to drink and others went to bed. The snorkeling was good and staying on deserted or nearly deserted islands was a cool experience. It was my first foray into camping so I can't speak too much about the gear but it rained both nights and we stayed dry! Have fun if you decide to do it!

20. Re: Raggamuffin Tours - Overnight Sailing

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