A cool new eco-adventure park has opened in one of our favorite Caribbean cruise destinations.
Carnival Corp. and Rainforest Adventures have collaborated to create Rockland Estate in St. Maarten, and the park is excited to welcome cruise passengers.
Carnival helped finance the project, and Rainforest Adventures built Rockland Estate, which is touted as a "one-of-a-kind attraction expected to quickly become one of the most popular in the Caribbean."
The new eco-park is located on the historic Emilio Wilson Estate, a former plantation property that also features the Emilio Wilson Museum.
Rockland Estate is a short ride from the cruise port and offers a range of thrill rides and activities that can be purchased individually or as part of a package of rides. Carnival's cruise passengers can buy a trip to the park and its attractions though the onboard shore excursion desks on Carnival Corp. ships.
Rockland Estate is considered an eco-adventure park committed to preserving native eco-systems while ensuring the sustainability of the estate's physical and intangible attributes. Rainforest Adventures built the attraction to enhance and preserve St. Maarten's natural features while aiming to endorse the island's cultural and historical significance -- thus promoting education through adventure.
I love to learn as I have fun in the outdoors so this looks like a winner to me, especially because it is designed to have minimal impact on the natural beauty of this historic property.
"In constructing the park, one of our goals was to uphold our commitment to environmental conservation, with less than 5 percent of the Emilio Wilson Estate impacted by the new Rockland Estate eco-adventure park," Rainforest Adventures president Josef Preschel said. "Our other key goal is to educate visitors on the importance of ongoing conservation in this area and to celebrate local history and culture, while also providing thrilling rides and relaxing activities."
At Rockland Estate in St. Maarten, cruisers can try:
Soualiga Sky Explorer: This attraction offers 68 four-passenger chairs that take visitors to a transfer station for zipline and tubing, and then to the top of one of St. Maarten's highest points where they can take in spectacular panoramic views from 1,125 feet up.
Sentry Hill Zip Line: From the transfer station at the midpoint of the Soualiga Sky Explorer, the Sentry Hill Zip Line sends riders off on a 1,600-foot, four-span line that provides unforgettable vistas of the mountain ridge.
Schooner Ride: This ride at the midway point of the Soualiga Sky Explorer gives you the chance to glide down the mountain in large 40-inch inner tubes across a specially designed 657-foot track of heart-pounding curves mixed with fast straightaways.
Top of Sentry Hill: One of St. Maarten's highest elevations, Sentry Hill, offers walkways and platforms that encircle the mountaintop, showcasing 360-degree vistas of the island with views of neighboring Saba, St. Barts, St. Eustatius and Anguilla.
Flying Dutchman: The Flying Dutchman is Rockland Estate's main attraction and the world's steepest zip line. It guarantees thrill-seekers the ride of a lifetime while securely harnessed in a chair, dropping them 1,050 feet in elevation from the top of Sentry Hill down the mountain over a 2,800-foot span.
Emilio Wilson Museum: Originally built as a plantation home in the 1700s, the museum tells the powerful story of Trace Wilson, who was born into slavery on the property, and her direct descendant, St. Maarten pioneer and preservationist Emilio Wilson. It also highlights the customs, traditions, lifestyle and stories that have earned St. Maarten the moniker "The Friendly Island."
Thanks for reading and always travel happy!