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In my journal today, I almost wrote “July” instead of “January” 19th. Both Justin and I agreed that it definitely felt like summer – a far cry from the harsh wintery conditions that we left back at home in Toronto. Today, we woke up super early (well, for us, anyway!) because we had a morning excursion booked for right after the Emerald Princess docked in Nassau, New Providence, Bahamas. Our cruise ship arrived at approximately 7:00am, so we were awake at 6:30am to catch a view from our balcony as we traveled closer to the port. We could see Atlantis and Paradise Island directly across from the ship, although we never did visit the resort itself. We had other plans – a Segway tour in Nassau!
After getting ready and grabbing a bite to eat the Horizon Court buffet on board, we ventured out to meet our tour operator. We booked with an independent tour operator outside of the cruise line called Caribbean Segway Tours. Once we walked through Festival Place (and survived passing by an absolute ton of people asking if we wanted to take a taxi or a tour), we met up with Reggie by a large fountain just outside of the gates beyond the pier. We were supposed to take the segway tour with another unknown couple from our cruise ship, but they never showed up. I felt bad for our tour guides since they were unable to collect their payment from that couple, but Justin and I ended up getting a private segway tour for just the two of us!
Reggie drove us from our meeting place for about five minutes down the road to the company’s location along the beach, which was a large trailer filled with segways. For those who aren’t familiar with how to operate a segway, you basically stand on a platform that is above two large wheels while holding onto the handle bar. By slightly shifting your body weight around, the segway will move forward, sideways, or backwards. With a little bit of practice, riding around on the segway is fun and easy! They were supposed to be the “vehicles of the future”, but never really caught on due to how expensive they are to purchase (around $5000 each). However, they’re really fun to rent while on holidays and they’re a different way to explore the sights. Our first time riding segways was on our summer trip to Put-in-Bay in July 2013, and we had so much fun that we vowed to do it again!
Disclaimer: Do not try this at home! Keep your hands and feet on the vehicle at all times!
Our guide for the day was a very nice young lady named Mona, who rode in front of us on her segway to navigate the tour. Along with Mona was another young man who rode up farther ahead to seek out the routes. It was pretty entertaining as he often poked fun at Mona throughout our journey. It seemed like the two of them had a lot of fun at work, taking tourists around Nassau! There was an unexpected marathon on the island that day that ended up closing down one of the main roads. The event slightly altered our route for the morning from what it normally may have been. This made for an even better experience as we went off the beaten path for some of the ride! We drove through the sandy beach, on grass, on slightly uneven terrain, up and down big hills – as Justin and I later called it, “off-roading”. It was really exciting and a whole lot of fun!
We made several stops on our adventure to learn about the history and sights of the island. Our tour guides were very informative and answered any questions that we had! We rode along one of the main streets with some famous restaurants. Apparently some celebrities, including Oprah and Tyler Perry have dined at some of the restaurants and have made them famous in the region. We were told about the local beer, too, which we’ll have to save for next time since it was way too early in the morning for that!
We rode our segways up to a fort on top of the hill that was carved out of the natural limestone. It protected the island from invasions back in the day, and it even had cannons on it! We also rod to a stone building by the athletic fields where we climbed up to the top for a great view of the beach, ocean, and the ships in port that day. Next, we had some free time to ride the segways around the sports field. Justin and I raced each other from one end to the other, zig-zagging all over the place.
It was also entertaining to drive the segways near the marathon runners. We did have to cross the road where the race was happening a couple of times. One time, a runner joked that she wanted to get on the segway and ride to the finish line. Another time, someone who was handing out water to the runners offered us a beverage!
Our tour guides
Our tour was a few hours long and we got to visit many places around town. It was just fun cruising around on the segways with the ocean breeze in our faces and the sun overhead. The tour itself was $75/pp and we had placed a $15/pp reservation down payment in advance. This was easy to do and the company provided quick replies to emails. All in all, we were really impressed and happy with our segway tour with Caribbean Segway Tours in Nassau! I would highly recommend the adventure to all people no matter your age or your experience with riding a segway. This company offers tours for anyone on the island, so you don’t have to be visiting by means of a cruise ship to attend. If you find yourself in Nassau, be sure to give it a shot!
One thing I forgot to mention in previous blog posts…we discovered that a friend of Justin’s from school works on board the Emerald! His name is Mike and he is a photographer. If you cruise aboard the Emerald and you see Mike (from Canada), be sure to say hello and ask him to take your picture at one of the various photo opportunities on the ship! That morning when we exited the ship, Mike was taking pictures on the pier all dressed up as a pirate! That was a pretty funny sight to see….oh, the perks of working on board a ship!