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“Great Island Full of Activities”
Review of Labadee

Labadee
Ranked #2 of 69 things to do in Haiti
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: An area located in northern Haiti that is famous for its striking natural beauty and great beaches.
Useful Information: Activities for older children
Reviewed 22 August 2009

Just got back from RC Liberty of the Seas.. one of the stops was their private island Labadee. Right now they are using tenders to take you onshore because the pier is currently under construction... Once on shore there are plenty of beach chairs to lounge, but we booked 2 activities which included: Jet-Ski Adventure and Flight Line (Dragon's Breath) ... The jet-ski adventure was basically a high speed tour of Labadee, the tour guide makes 4 stops to let everyone get a chance to catch up. You will be assigned numbers from which to depart and follow.. you cannot jump ahead during the travel time, only once you stop.. you can either go faster (in front of the line) or slower... The guide tells you a little history of Haiti .. The funnest part is "wave-jumping"... basically catching a wave and jumping over... not recommended for people with back problems or that are afraid to go fast... this is no leisure activity... Zip-lining was ok.. first they take you to the "baby" line for practice, and than you go on a jeep tour up the mountain for the big flight line decent.. beautiful scenery, but not worth the money. Next time I will try snorkeling.

12  Thank lunchbox_hero
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 19 August 2009

I went on a cruise with RCCL on Freedom of the Seas in June '09. This was my first cruise, so although I wasn't overly impressed with Labadee on the whole, it was a good experience. The only thing I wish I had are beach shoes. The beach is sandy where you sit, but under water there are these concrete/coral things that seem to be arranged in the most painful configuration possible. TAKE BEACH/WATER SHOES. Flip-flops won't work and your bare feet will thank you later.

It was also good experience to sample what its like haggling with locals, especially as this was my first cruise and the next stops included Jamaica (where a hard sale is an art form) and Mexico where haggling over prices is the norm. By the time I got to Jamaica, I at least felt like a pro at getting a good deal, whether I actually did or not.

My advice? Tender to the beach EARLY, get some sun, get your feet wet with bargaining with the locals, be first at the buffet and then tender back. It took an hour to get back to the ship when I left because I waited until almost the last minute and by then, its HOT.

Overall good experience for first-time cruisers, but I can see where more seasoned cruisers would feel indifferent about Labadee. BTW, I totally fell in love with Royal Caribbean. I will NEVER even think about trying another cruise line! They're fantastic.

Enjoy your cruise!!

7  Thank ATLOceanTravel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 August 2009

Back in September of 2004, my mates and I were scheduled to take a Royal Caribbean cruise with a western Caribbean itinerary. Unfortunately, we were set to depart during the dying days of Hurricane Ivan. Having to forge through tough seas and terrible weather to keep the itinerary intact, the captain opted to take us to Labadee, Royal Caribbean's private area connected to Haiti. Of course, we were quite miffed that our entire vacation was changed, but the alternative was just as enticing.

While we only spent one day on the island, we had enough time to take part in several excursions. Oddly, the excursions on Labadee were more reasonably priced than those in other ports. We did the ocean kayaking and jet-skiing, both of which were more than covered by the money we paid for the couple of previously-scheduled excursions in Key West and Cozumel.

The only complaint I have with Labadee is the high-pressure tactics of the local merchants. Experienced first-hand when we landed halfway through our ocean kayaking excursion, many feigned poor English during the sale and spoke rather fluently after a price had been agreed any money had changed hands. If you speak competent French, I would recommend using that language rather than English just to avoid any "lost in translation" issues. Closer to the mooring, the merchants seemed to be more relaxed, but then again they also seemed to have a good deal of customers.

The Labadee area is completely designed from the ground-up to be an area allowing RC's passengers to wander around in, let's be honest, a controlled environment. This leads to a bit of a resort-ish, contrived and constructed feeling sometimes. However, what little it lacks in authenticity is made up for in spades by the slow, laid-back, leisurely pace (does not apply to waitstaff and customer service personal, who will solve any and all problems as quickly as humanly possible), friendly locals and resident RC personnel, and the irreplaceable Caribbean environment.

Our next Royal Caribbean itinerary will have to include another stop in Labadee...intentionally, this time.

10  Thank YCard14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 July 2009

My husband and I visited Labadee on our first stop of our Royal Caribbean honeymoon cruise on July 7th 2009. We had an absolute blast!! We decided to get to the beach early, which was a great idea since we found a perfect lounging spot under two huge beautiful palm trees. There are plenty of beach chairs and hammocks for everyone and plenty of shade and room to relax all over the island. We really enjoyed the atmosphere and had plenty of time to walk all around the island...checking out the flight line and Dragon's Breath Point. The buffet lunch was provided by Royal Caribbean and there were many options for no additional cost. Everything was delicious! Any bottled water, soda or alcohol could also be charged on your SeaPass account which was so convenient! We opted not to check out the markets since we chose just to be lazy.

We definitely enjoyed Labadee and everything it had to offer! We hope to go back someday!!

7  Thank yasuyo78
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 July 2009

The GOOD: Just got back from a RCCL Freedom of the Seas, July 5 trip. Labadee was the first stop. Of our four excursion in the eight day trip to the caribbean, the off boat snorkling trip, booked through RC was the most professional of them all. The crew bent over backwards in helping the participants of all ages. (Took our flippers off of us when we came back to the boat. May not seem like much, but it wowed me.) The equipment was all new. The boat was very clean. Complimentary rum or virgin punch and good cold water. Lots of commentary to and from the sight. Great instruction. And a lot of description of what we were seeing in the water. Tips were welcome but not "begged" for like on a number of tours. RC did a great job hooking up with this team. 5 CIrcles!
The food taken on shore was a good picnic style affair.
"Dragon's Breath" is worth hearing. Not well marked though.
On the negative sight of Labadee: Dust from constuction.
Long walks on dirty roads shared with commercial traffic.
VERY pushy venders. Many would pull on you and get in your face. Made my whole family uncomfortable. One asked if we had something against black people. Where did that come from??
Another negative. The native kids would congregate on the other side of the fence and beg for food from the passengers. I am charitable but good grief.
Very crowded with 3000 cruisers on shore. Maybe when they finish construction that will help.
Also, a number of people cut their feet in the water off the beaches. Wear water shoes.
My advice: Do an early snorkling trip, eat, go to dragons breath then go back to the boat.

13  Thank Fort_Myers_Cruiser
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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