Hello fellow cruisers,
Cruising Carnival Triumph 12-8-01 eastern carib, am with the wife and granddaughter(12). We would love to lay,play,eat and swim at a beautiful tropical beach in St. Thomas and still get back to town in time to do a little shopping at the market place. Question: should we do a tour, or strike out on our own? This is our second time in St.Thomas aaand we want to do the things we didn't do before:beach,water,play eat,and just enjoy.Would appreciate any info, thank you in advance. Happy cruising.
Definetly do this on your own and you can do everything you mentioned. Take a taxi to Maegen's Bay. They do charge you per person but it is only about $5 each and there is a small admittance fee into the beach area. You can rent chairs and water sports equipment if you like. There is a beach bar and changing facility. Taxi's que up all day. Go early in the morning and plan to leave about 1p.m. asking your driver to leave you off in downtown Charlotte Amalie. Take a taxi back to the ship once you are done shopping and you may even have time for a trip on the tram up Paradise Point across the street from Havensight. You will save a lot of money and get to do and stay as much or little as you want.
Its very easy to get a cab at the pier and go to Meagans Bay right in St. Thomas, beautiful beach and on the way back you can get off downtown to do some shopping. You can also do your shopping near the pier as well. There are some even nicer beaches over in St. Johns if you want to go a bit farther, more travel time, but well worth it, have fun.
Many of the hotels on the beaches will allow you to use the beach if you spend some money on things such as lunch, etc. In the past I have Emailed hotels on some of the beaches and have usually received an affirmative reply which I take with with me to produce if asked as I lounge in great comfort. Good trip JP
One other place is Coki Beach. There is a nice area for swimming/snorkling and something your daughter might like is Coral World which is right there also. Coki Beach Dive club operates on the beach and they have a free pick-up service from Havensight to Coki Beach for cruise passengers. I'll be visiting in January...
Your granddaughter would love Coki Beach. It's great for all ages. Go to Walmart and pick her up a little mask and snorkel and she will be able to see some colorful fish right their in the swimming area. It's much easier and cheaper than buying an excursion. You'll spend less than half the $$$$. There are a couple of places to get food/drinks, one is next to coral world. If you haven't run across it already, you can see a great picture of Coki Beach at www.virtualstthomas.com. Enjoy your trip, we're not going until February. Amanda
Another beach to consider is Saphhire Beach. It is a nice beach with facilities, fairly calm waters and beautiful views of St John's. It's about 20-25 mins from the ship. Make arrangements for the driver to pick you up at a prearranged time. They can drop you off downtown for shopping on the way back. Morningstar is another beach at the Marriott Frenchmens Reef ( this is the large hotel you see at the entrance to Charlotte Amalie Harbor.) However, the water is much rougher here and may not be the best spot for your granddaughter to swim ( unless she likes the surf.) Definitely explore on your own and save some money. Have a great time!
We also were to Sapphire Beach last week. We have been to St Thomas a number of times and usually we take the taxi to downtown right away in the morning and do some shopping. My wife usually has something special she is looking for and we stop at Imperial Jewelers and see Karen right away. They are really nice people and they'll take good care of you. Then we will go on a short tour of the island with a taxi driver from downtown. They will take you back to the ship for lunch and after will take you around the island and drop you at a beach for a couple hours. Our tour guide, "Godfather" took us on a very thorough tour and then to Sapphire Beach. It was the first time we had been there and it was nice for swimming and not crowded at all, with a great view of St John and the BVI. At Megans Bay and Coki the beach can get a little crazy if there are a lot of ships in that day. We're going back in March and we'll probably go back again. St Thomas is a fun port and no matter how many times you go you'll find something fun and different, so matter what you do you'll have a great time.