Trekking with the Dead: Our First (Zombie) Themed-Cruise to the Caribbean 2016 Walker Stalker Cruise to Grand Bahamas

What happens when you put two Caribbean Soul Trekkers on a 2,000 passenger ship infested with zombies and headed straight for Grand Bahama Island?

Madness, music and fun!

Read on as we share highlights from our adventures aboard the maiden voyage of the Walker Stalker Cruise, share our opinions about theme cruising and offer tips for those embarking on their first cruise.

Rum and zombies. A perfect pairing.

How We Knew We'd FOund the Right Voyage for Our First Theme Cruise And Tips For Choosing Your First Cruise

Setting sail for Grand Bahamas with the Miami skyline in the distance

Even though the idea of a zombie-themed cruise seemed irresistible (we are huge fans of AMC's The Walking Dead, after all), we still did our usual research to make sure this voyage, sponsored by The Walker Stalkers and Sixthman, would be right for us.

First, we considered the trip duration. This being our first theme cruise, we thought a three night itinerary would be perfect. That way, if we started to feel creepy about (or bored with) being trapped on a ship with the undead, we could rest assured knowing the trip would soon be over. Of course, it also meant that we'd have to settle for only one cruise port and the idea that we might feel cheated if we were having a great time when the trip ended on day three.

Trek tip: We recommend that anyone uncertain about cruising try out a short three or foUr daY ItInerary For their first cruise.

Next, we considered the ship and schedule of events. Because it was only a three day cruise, we wanted our time to be well spent. A scan through Norwegian Cruise Line's website pointed out Pearl's amenities including 12 free-style restaurants, 11 bars and lounges, two pools, a bowling alley, a rock-climbing wall, a casino and a spa. If these were enough to win the ship awards for "best short-duration cruise" and "best for first-time cruisers", they would certainly be good enough for us.

And as far as the schedule of events, this was probably the biggest unknown leading up to this theme cruise. With no prior reviews to go by (remember, this was Walker Stalker Cruise's maiden voyage), we had to take a leap of faith that the line-up of zombie-themed activities (movies, celebrity panels, live musical entertainment, zombie costume party, karaoke, etc.) would keep us satisfied for three days, two of which would be at sea.

Trek tip: If you're worried that cookie cutter cruises won't do the trick, consider a theme cruise to enhance your chances of finding activities and shipmates specifically suited to your interests.

And now without further adieu, let's recap...

The Five Things We Enjoyed Most Aboard a Three Day Zombie Cruise

1. TAKING ADVANTAGE of the Ship's Amenities

From lounging on the sun deck, to sampling the restaurants and bars, to shopping duty-free, to partying at nightclubs, we found plenty of ways to pass the time aboard this cruise.

At the Sky High Bar we watched Bartender Kurt whipped up one mouth-watering drink after another...
...like this pineapple mojito!
Just a few feet away, Mango Eddie's rum tried its best to hide from the impending zombie invasion.
Chillin' at the Sky High Bar
Perfecting my zombie snarl with a golden dragon at Bliss Ultra Lounge & Night Club
Showing off duty-free purchases from the cruise ship

2. PartyinG With Zombies at Theme Events

One of the best things about the Walker Stalker Cruise...
...was the anticipation of a chance encounter with a zombie.
Like at Karaoke...
...at Silent Disco...
...and at the Bar Crawl.
Turns out zombies are pretty fun to party with!

Eighties Throwback Band, Electric Avenue

After a zombie transformation, the band got into the groove!
Joining dozens who Came OUT TO PRACTICE ONE OF THE MOST ICONIC ZOMBIE SCENES OF ALL TIME - MICHAEL JACKSON'S THRILLER.
Scenes from the Bar Crawl (including zombie cameos)

3. Making Some Amazing New Friends

Nothing brings people together like a zombie apocalypse at sea. Ain't no party like a zombie party cause a zombie party don't stop!

For example, we entered Sparky's Bar in Port Lucaya as a couple. Thirty minutes later, we walked away as a lively group of amazing new friends from DC, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Mexico ready to tackle some fried conch and the impending zombie invasion.

Port Lucaya welcomed us back!
What started with snapping solo pics...
...resulted in a few rounds of shots and great conversation.
Our crew grew...
...and grew...
...and grew as we sat at the bar and shared our past adventures trekking around Grand Bahama Island.

Soon after, we led our small gang of Walker Stalker cruisers on a short trek to one of our favorite spots in Freeport for Caribbean seafood.

Our new friends had never visited Grand Bahama Island before. we were happy to share our recommendation for one of our favorite spots in Freeport - Billy Joe's Restaurant on the Beach

Enjoying the view from Billy Joe's on the Beach

Here we are 'hanging loose' with our fellow shipmates at the infamous Billy Joe's On the Beach, home of one of the most amazing fried seafood platters in the Caribbean. This was the one place in Freeport we couldn't miss and a recommendation we were happy to share with our friends.

From top left: 1) The restaurant's famous catch phrase, 2) The fellas, 3) The ladies showing off freshly cracked coconuts (hence, the machete), 4) The gang preparing to dig in to fresh, fried seafood 5) The antics continue on the taxi heading back to the cruise ship.
Trek Tip: Pick your shipmates' brains for suggestions on what to do During your time-limited shore excursions. Odds are some of them have been there before and can tell you which activities can't be missed (and which should be avoided)
Posing with Billy Joe's daughter (top row between Mango Eddie and Naya Blue)

4. GIVING IN TO THE URGE TO TRANSFORM INTO ZOMBIES

After an awesome day at port, we headed back to the ship and went straight to the zombie make up area with hopes of quickly transforming into the undead for that night's theme party. With makeup artists from The Walking Dead on board, this was a once in a lifetime experience.

Some of us had booked appointments earlier while some of us had not. For the latter, it took four hours before we were transformed into the undead.

Although it was well worth it, we learned a valuable lesson - if you can make an appointment, do it!

At last, the transformation was complete.
TREK TIP: FOR POPULAR EVENTS ADVERTISED AS 'WALK-INS WELCOME' OR 'NO APPOINTMENT NEEDED', ALWAYS TAKE THE OPTION OF BOOKING AN APPOINTMENT ANYWAY. IN THE END, IT MAY SAVE YOU HOURS.

5. Meeting Favorite Cast Members from the Show

Zombies with a Norman Reedus (aka Daryl Dixon) look-alike

From celebrity panels, to bingo, to concerts, this cruise provided several opportunities to interact with celebrities from The Walking Dead.

But for many of the Walker Stalker cruisers, getting a chance to take a photo with a star from the show was the biggest highlight of the cruise. Of course, photo ops like those came at a cost.

Fortunately, we lucked out on impromptu photos with two of our favorite cast members.

Caribbean Soul Trekkers with Chad L. Coleman, aka Tyreese Williams (rest in peace). He is the most down-to-earth guy! Be sure to check him out on the Syfy Channel's new series, The Expanse.
Mango Eddie with Lawrence Gilliard, Jr., aka Bob Stookey, in Freeport, Grand Bahamas

Is This Patient Zero?

Our zombie Showcase

Our pick for best zombie impersonator on the cruise
Undead Elvis
Zombie biker chicks
If there was a cure for this infectious fun, no one wanted it.
Zombie cheerleader. Classic.
Surrounding the last remaining victim.

our Final Opinion of themE cruising

We have to admit, there is something special about theme cruising! After all, it's not just cruising. It's cruising with people who love doing what you love doing while en route to a dream destination.

Fan appreciation from head to toe

For us, this meant spending three nights at sea aboard a fun-filled cruise ship with fans of our favorite TV show and with countless opportunities to indulge in zombie adoration right along with them. When we lounged on the sun deck with cocktails in hand, they engaged us in fun stories about the show and its cast. When we returned from our shore excursion and needed a zombie makeover, they waited in line with us for four hours. When we had a hankering for zombie movies at 2 am, they were there with popcorn. And, when we 'got it in' at karaoke, they cheered us on. Even Chad L. Coleman was there!

Walking Dead fans are a loyal, diverse, free-spirited and ridiculously fun bunch of people. We had a blast aboard this theme cruise with them!

For details about the Walker Stalker Cruise, click the link below

Created By
Naya Blue Mango Eddie
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