St Thomas, San Juan PR, Nassua Bahamas, Antigua, Tortola
Can anyone comment on these ports? Specifically I'd like to know:
1) Debarkation - pier or tender?
2) Best beaches for nice clear water and snorkeling close to shore
3) Transportation - bus, taxi, scooter, bus, rental car?
4) Any other relevant info like beach services/amenities, friendliness of locals, etc.
We wanted to go to a nice beach and do an all inclusive sort of day. We also heard that Devils Bridge was a must see so we wanted to find a way to get that in too.
First I called the Grand Pineapple Resort to find out how much a day pass was to go there. I got two prices and the cheaper (a little less time but to me the best deal) was $60 pp. (10-5 or something like that). I asked about taxi costs and she said it would cost us $26 each way so $52 total. No devils bridge unless we got the driver to stop there for a kodak moment or two.
Then I found Serenity Tours. Heaven. They have the BEST customer service ever. And they just started doing tours in Antigua (usually just do St. Lucia and by now I also have an Island Tour booked with them for St. L.) Anyway they have a tour that includes the transportation and goes to Grand Pineapple and then Devils Bridge and the price is $75 pp.
So right there I'm saving $22 and I get to go to the two places I want to see. I'm totally confident that with the customer service Serenity provides that if there were also something we wanted to see on the way back the driver would stop so we could snap a pic or two. Their website is www.serenitytvl.com and they have a toll free number so you can ask all the questions you want.
For St. Thomas we're using Sonny Liston Tours for a 2 hr. shop, site see and beach break for $25pp. Cannot beat that either.
BTW Antigua, San Juan and St. Thomas will be docked. The rest I don't know.
At the pier there are open air cabs readily available to take you on a tour, shopping, beaches, etc. Look into sapphire beach. The water is crystal clear and you can rent snorkeling gear. Not expensive. They have a restaurant/bar and bathrooms. I think it costs a few dollars to get in but worth it.
In Old San Juan, where most of the ships dock, there used to be a craft fair on Saturdays right around the fountain area to the left as you get off the ship...The fort is also an excellent take in, especially if you are a history buff, and kids love it...
You will see taxis/ mini bus tour vans, as you exit the ship as well..A city tour was a wonderful way for you to see the city.....Traffic is a bit insane on the narrow colorful streets, and the friendly people make this a nice port to vivit..
Trip, with her book & tea!
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You mentioned beaches, and snorkeling close to shore - to me that means on your stop to St. Thomas get yourself over to St. John Island - you will love it, it takes a bit or organization to get there thats all. go to www.vinow.com for ferry schedules and beach information.
Nassau - take a taxi either land or water over to Paradise Island and Atlantis Resort - once there take the tour known as The Dig this is an amazing aquarium.
San Juan - a day trip into El Yungee Rainforest is a must do, i would do a ships excursion for this one. Other things to do in San Juan - wander around Old San Juan and El Morro Fort - very interesting