Secrets to a successful sunset cruise

One of my favorite things to do in Tamarindo is go on the sunset cruises. We have 3 great providers in town: Antares, Blue Dolphin, and Marlin Del Rey.

I’ve been on all 3, and consider myself somewhat of a seasoned veteran when it comes to sunset booze cruising. If drinking on a boat, snorkeling at a private beach, and taking in one of the most beautiful sunsets of the Pacific were an olympic sport, you could put money down that I would win gold every time.

Here are a few tips to make sure your sunset cruise is a success.

1. The first step is the most dangerous. 

To get you on the sailing vessel, most of the tour operators will pick you up in a panga boat from the beach. Be careful when boarding these boats and make sure to get on when there are no waves going under the boat. Also, don’t put your feet anywhere near the bottom edge of the boat. I’ve seen a guy get his ankle crushed once doing this and it scarred me for life! Get in the panga as quickly as possible.

2. Don’t turn into a lobster

The sun is hot down here. Most trips depart at 1:00pm. I know that spot on the net looks like a tempting place to hang out on as the cruise departs, but you’ll be toast by 3:00pm if you hang out in the sun too much, too soon. Hang out in the shade, plus it’s closer to the open bar which brings me to my next point.

3. The art of the open bar

Yes, I realize you paid $85 for this cruise and you’re going to get your money’s worth in rum and tequila. Take it slow sailor! There’s nothing worse than getting to the snorkeling stop and being drunk. It’s also dangerous! Did you know sharks can smell a drop of vodka from a mile away? They can’t, but I’m just trying to scare you from over-consuming before you snorkel. You might think drowning on a sunset cruise in paradise is a great way to leave this world, but with extra baggage fees as high as they are you don’t want to leave your family with that kind of bill.

4. Focus on the land

If you’re at all afraid of getting sea-sick, just remember to look at the land. Having a point of reference will calm your seasickness. If that still doesn’t work, most boats will have anti-seasickness pills for you to take. If that still doesn’t work, perhaps dancing salsa with one of the boat workers will cure your sickness.

5. Know what boat is best for your crew

All 3 sailing companies in town are great. But like all tours, the best boat depends on what kind of group you have. I recommend the Antares for more of the honeymoon crowd. This ship can’t be beat in terms of service and food. The meals they serve on board rival some of the top restaurants in Tamarindo. If you have a large group of your own I recommend the Blue Dolphin. It’s one of the smaller catamarans which means you’ll likely make up the majority of the boat. The Marlin Del Rey is a perfect boat for a mixed group of young and old, plus since it’s one of the largest catamarans it’s good for people who tend to get seasick since it’s more stable.

6. Tip the crew

These guys work hard so you can have a good time on your vacation. If they’re attentive to you needs, fill your drink up quickly, and do a good job, leave a tip. They’ll certainly appreciate it.

If you have any other tips add them in the comments below. Bon Voyage!

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