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Old July 25th, 2006, 11:43 PM
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Default Highlights of Eastern Caribbean

I have recently booked a cruise on RC's Explorer of the Seas for President's Week. Our group includes several adults and three children, ages 8,11, and 14. We're going to Puerto Rico, St. Maarten, St. Thomas and Nassau. What are the most OUTSTANDING excursions for these destinations that are great for children? Where are the most beautiful, fun and family friendly beaches (bathroom, food and water activities)? How are the excursions to St. John? I am just beginning this process and I welcome any and all suggestions! Thank you so much for your help! Jamie
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Old July 26th, 2006, 04:53 AM
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Default as far as Puerto Rico go...

Puerto Rico has two main attractions, (1) old San Juan (2) rain forest. Both are good, the ship offers excursions to both.
You can find an independent tour bus outside the ship.
You can even find a private tour just for your group, you can find thses companies at www.puertoricoplanner.com click on the EXPERT link.
The easiest thing to do is just to walk around and visit the fort. $3 entrance fee
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Old July 26th, 2006, 09:45 AM
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Jamie,

I have recently booked a cruise on RC's Explorer of the Seas for President's Week. Our group includes several adults and three children, ages 8,11, and 14. We're going to Puerto Rico, St. Maarten, St. Thomas and Nassau. What are the most OUTSTANDING excursions for these destinations that are great for children? Where are the most beautiful, fun and family friendly beaches (bathroom, food and water activities)? How are the excursions to St. John? I am just beginning this process and I welcome any and all suggestions! Thank you so much for your help!

If Royal Caribbean offers it on your itinerary, the excursion in St. Thomas called "Champagne Catamaran Sailaway to St. John" is well worth every penny of the price and suitable for all ages.

In San Juan, there really is not much. I recommend the tour of the old city and El Moro (an old fort, which the childen will enjoy) unless you want to go to the Bacardi distillery instead.

In Nassau, the day at Breezes Resort is very good. The resort will treat you as a regular guest, with full access to all facilities and activities, for the time that you are there, and all food and beverages are included.

Norm.
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Old July 26th, 2006, 11:16 AM
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In St. Maarten, the most awesome excursion EVER is the America's Cup Race. It is not for the faint of heart, but it was our favorite excursion of all time. . .and we've taken a bunch.
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Old July 26th, 2006, 11:16 AM
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Hi Jamie,
You may want to consider the "America's Cup Regatta" in St. Maarten for the older kids and adults. Its great fun and a real learning expierence. It does fill up quickly, but you can pre-book it.

In St. Thomas, we did BOB a few years ago, that was different and fun too. You can also book that through the cruiseline.
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Old July 26th, 2006, 12:06 PM
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San Juan - Rainforest
Fort El Morro
Old San Juan
Hit the Beach
St. Maarten - a great family excursion is the Golden Eagle Catamaran sail-
there is swimming, snorkeling, or just relaxing on the beach.
Do some shopping after your excursion.
St. Thomas - Sapphire Beach is my top pick for a family beach on St.
Thomas, proper.- just grab a cab. IF you want to take the
time getting over to St. John Island is the best. St. John is
gorgeous, white silky sand, turquoise waters, with some
good snorkeling. go to www.vinow.com for ferry schedules
and beach information.
Do some shopping after you go to the beach, and if you
have some extra time, take the Paradise Point Tramway- its
a short walk from Havensight Pier. The view is beautiful, and
there are shops, restaurants, a beautiful botanical garden.

Nassau - top pick for family- The Dig (aquarium) at Atlantis Resort.
The aquarium is amazing. Just grab a cab
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Old July 27th, 2006, 11:00 AM
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We went to the Orient Beach while at St Martin (French side of island) it is truly a great beach with many activites but you must bear in mind that most beaches on the French side allow European sunbathing (clothing optional) that doesn't mean that everyone that was there when we were were topless but it does mean that in certain sections of the beach you will observe this type of sunbathing. We just paid it no mind and enjoyed our time there. Something that you might want to bear in mind with teens ...........
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Old July 28th, 2006, 12:46 PM
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Joey is right- Orient Beach is a beautiful beach, lots of goings on here, yes you will see topless women here and there, and one section( towards the far end) is totally clothing optional. It is natural to the islanders and not really a big deal, but its totally up to you and your comfort level. You don't have to partake if you choose not to. There are other beaches to choose from on the Dutch side that are not topless or clothing optional. Dawn beach comes to mind, it is however a bit rockier than Orient.
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Old July 29th, 2006, 08:54 PM
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I haven't done an excursion on St. Maarten, but at St. Thomas I would definitely recommend Sapphire Beach. From the ship we went there immediately and had the entire beach to ourselves for several hours. There is a hotel with facilities and a restaurant. It is one of my favorites.
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