Of the three ports, I have only been to St. Martin. We had a great time there. We walked around St. Martin shopping and just sight-seeing. Then we hopped on a city van/bus and went to Marigot, the French side of the island. It was beautiful and only took about 30 minutes to get there. There was a shopping bazaar going on with many items to buy. There were outdoor restaurants everywhere, very similar to what you see in Europe. After several hours there, we caught a city van back to the Dutch side of the island. It is a very beautiful island and I'd love to go back there someday.
In St Maarten, make sure you see both sides of the island. We did a See + Sea tour which included a semi-sub ride and it was great. But, many folks recommend renting a car and touring yourselves. That's also a good idea, just beware of traffic jams at rush hour. IMO, the French side of the island blows away the Dutch. Great little fishing villages with seafood restaurants on the beach and it's capital, Marigot, is not to be missed.
Only been to St. Maarten... You defintely have to see both sides of the island. It is really different. And it's so cool to see their culture and way of doing things. You can do it on your own or there is a great excursion offered on board to do both, where you can get dropped off in Phillipsburg to shop/go to the beach and then take a water taxi back to the port at your convenience. Happy cruising!
In St. Kitt's, there were 6 of us and we hired a van at the pier for an island tour with a stop at a beach. I believe we paid about $35 pp. It was fabulous. He took us on a tour of the Fortress, through the Rain forest, stopped at the Batik factory and we ended up at Turtle Beach for a couple of hours. Turtle Beach is across the channel from Nevis for a wonderful view. He picked us up after and returned us to the ship. Along the way, he stopped several times so that we could take photos. They are some of the most spectacular pics I have from the Caribbean.
We have friends that live in St. Lucia so we just defer to them in port.....
Never been to St. Kitt but St. Marteen is one of our very favorite places in the world. We love to head to Margiot to get French pastries and pursue the small shops. On the Dutch side on Simpson beach is a terrific sushi place called something Bernies.......Orient beach is a great beach but keep in mind this is a European Island and topless and/or nude may be seen. Our teenager didn't mind, although we all stayed clothed! Snorkeling on the port side of the island is rough, if you want to do that do it on another island.
St. Lucia is a really diverse island. We took a tour with Herod: http://herodtours.com We went on a 5 hour tour of the island, which included an hour at Jalousie beach. He took us to botanical gardens, a banana plantation, a volcano/sulfur field; and during the tour, we recieved food from the locals, and he provided us with multiple free drinks. The tour ends at the beach. Jalousie beach is between the 2 pitons and is beautiful. A must-see of the island. If you have any more questions, feel free to email me: Megs1787@aol.com
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