In the 2nd Kate on Vacation novella, Cruel Capers on the Caribbean, Kate, Skip and the Franklins take a Caribbean cruise. Their fictional cruise ship has an itinerary that would probably not happen in real life, but it was necessary to make the plot work. They leave from Tampa, Florida ( a common departure port) after having deposited the kids, Edie and Billy, with Kate’s parents.
(Note: Many of these photos are from my own cruise with my husband in the Caribbean, which took a similar route.)
First stop, after a Fun Day at Sea, is Cozumel, Mexico, and the nearby Mayan ruins at Tulum:
The next port of call is New Orleans. (In the real world, this used to be a cruise ship port of call; now some ships depart from New Orleans but I couldn’t find any that stopped there.) Kate is a bit preoccupied at this stop because the woman she and Liz befriended onboard the ship has been killed.
First stop in New Orleans’ French Quarter:
On Kate’s fictional cruise, the ship diverts from its original itinerary to go back to the Cayman Islands, since they were unable to stop there due to rough seas earlier in the voyage. In real life, if a ship has to bypass the Caymans, it doesn’t return. Again, I took literary license here for the sake of the story. And so I could entertain you all with tidbits about this port of call.
Kate and the gang go out to Stingray City to pet the stingrays. They feed them pieces of squid from their hands, and Skip actually rubs the bellies of a couple of the rays.
The last stop on Kate’s fictional cruise is Key West, Florida. Key West is a common port of call for cruise ships. But it’s doubtful that a real cruise itinerary would include two U.S. ports. Again, this was necessary for the story to work.
One cannot go to Key West without having your picture taken at Mile O, the southernmost point in the U.S.
I’m assuming the little houses are for the cats. (photo by Abujoy, CC-BY 3.0, Wikimedia Commons)
And here it is… Sunset at Key West!