Hi, we are looking for any information concerning your favorite excursions in St. Thomas and St. Marteen. We are looking to book them thru Carnival and would appreciate any info. Where is the best snorkeling? We are not against just getting a cab and going to a beach for a few hours and then some shopping. We don't necessarily have to go on an excursion. Thanks for any suggestions.
St. Thomas is one island where you do not need to book a ship's excursion. Very easy to get around. Since you are looking for good snorkeling i would suggest you take the water taxi over to St. John Island - gorgeous beaches with very good snorkeling. Many beaches to choose from. Trunk Bay is the most popular -all the cruise ship excursions end up here, tends to get a bit crowded. There is a marked snorkel trail at Trunk- interesting. Plenty of other beaches to choose from if you want to get away from the crowds, go to the board of tourism web site for lots of great info.
If you want to sight see & shop after the beach all you need to do is hire a cab for a couple of hours and tour the island.
St. Maarten - we did a great, fun ships excursion here - The Golden Eagle Catamaran Sail - we had a blast- you sail up the coast which is gorgeous, over to a small island (Tintamar) which is a nature preserve, here you can swim, snorkel, walk the beach , or just relax on the beach.
There is also very good snorkeling over on Pineal Island ( just off the coast of St. Maarten) - again i would suggest taking a ships tour here.
St. Maarten has great shopping, i think better than St. Thomas.
On St. Thomas we also went to St. John's to snorkel. On St. Maarten we rented a car for the day. It cose us only $50.00 and we were able to drive the island and go to the beaches we wanted to see. There are also a lot of little shops on the side of the rode that have great deals. We printed maps from the internet of beach locations, and just went...We were also able to park the car close to the ship and were able to eat lunch there. The kids wanted to stay in the kids program after lunch, so my husband and I finshed exploring on our own..
We did the BOB excursion which is an underwater scooter type thing, quite fun, there is also time to snorkel after being on the BOB. This excursion goes to Buck Island to do its thing. the cost was $109 a few weeks ago.
We tried the horseback riding in St.Martin. Although the city seems georgeous to travel around in yourself. The horseback riding was only ok. The trail was gross in the beginning, then absolutely stunning as you approached the water. The nice thing was being able to take your horse into the water. Not sure if it's worth the $99, but was relaxing. They offered this at 2 times, so if you book the early one, you have plenty of time to still enjoy the other parts of the island.
Mary try looking at www.sailwinifred.com we just spent a day on this "yacht" last week and had a wonderful time without the crowds! We snorkeld off St.Johns in a couple of nice, nearly private spots, had a nice lunch on the boat, then sailed across the bay to a fantastic spot with an abundance of coral beds and tons of fish to view...very clear waters even though the sky was overcast that day...I can't imagine what it would look like with the sunlight working off the coral colors! We're certainly going back again if we get a chance to be back in St. Thomas!!
We just got back yesterday and I have to say that the The Golden Eagle Catamaran Sail in St. Marteen was the worst excursion ever. We were really excited about snorkeling but once we got to the island and in the water, you could barely see your hand in front of your face. People were running into each other because they couldn't see. Everyone was complaining. Everyone kept asking why it was so bad. What I didn't like was their answer. Instead of explaining why the water was so bad, they kept telling us to drink rum and we'll see all the fish we want. I didn't pay that much money to drink lots of rum so I could imagine seeking fish in a drunken stupor. They really didn't care. There was however a nice beach to lay out on. The only problem with that was that we couldn't bring our towels to the beach because you had to swim off the boat to get to the beach. It wasn't a walk in water with your towel over your head swim, the water was deep.
In St. Thomas we did Captain Nautica's snorkeling adventure and it was fantastic. Best of the best. The captain and his mate were totally committed to us having a great time and bent over backwards to do so. They even took the time to coat everyone's mask with tearfree baby shampoo so our masks wouldn't fog up. Personalized attention for everyone. When they found out that one of the beaches we were supposed to go to wasn't good that day, they switched and picked another beach for us. We went to 3 places and they were all great. Lots of fish, turtles, seastars, stingrays, coral and even a shipwreck. My husband even picked up a huge sand dollar but it was alive so he put it back. The boat was even a blast. It was the best excursion we went on.
I am interested in more info on the Captins Nautica's adventure. I am looking for cost mainly. This is the first cruise the my husband and I have taken. We are renting a car on Aruba and really want to swim with dolphins, but just not sure!?! However, the Captins Nautica's adventure really sounds nice and it doesn't take up the whole day.
This was also our first cruise!
We went on Captain Nautica's excursion in St. Thomas. Cost was $68 per person. We were supposed to go to St. Johns as one of the stops but because of bad visability we ended up going to Turtle Cove, Shipwreck Cove & Honeymoon Beach. I'm not sure which one was not the scheduled stop. It's worth the money. If you do your own stuff you have to pay for taxis, snorkeling equipment, drinks, etc. When you factor all of that in, the cost isn't too much. My nephew and his wife went swimming with the dolphins in St. Marteen and also had a great time.
RobRen....where did you swim with dolphins in St. Maarten. We wont have enough time in Nassau and the kids would love to go. We will be in St. Maarten for 10 hours....plenty of time but never knew it was there ???
Thanks for any info.
When we were in St. Thomas in Jan, we took a taxi to Secret Harbour beach. It is beautiful, not crowded and some of the best snorkeling we have ever done ( have snorkeled a lot!!). We took our own equipment, I don't think you could rent it there. They also have a cute restaurant with great food. Taxi over was $9.00 per person, same on the way back. People on the ship were complaining about Megan's Bay and Coki, being too crowded and not that pretty. Just be careful you give yourself plenty of time to get back to ship, the traffic is HORRIFIC close to time for all the ships to leave.
In St. Maarten, we rented a minivan, went all over the island, Dawn Beach recommended for snorkeling by locals, the snorkeling isn't St. Maarten's thing, it was beautiful, but too rough to snorkel. Went to Orient Beach, beautiful, also rough that day. We found the French to be really rude to us. We went to Marigot, had a very overpriced French lunch, the shopping is much better in Phillipsburg.