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mattman January 18th, 2004 12:27 AM

Can someone please tell me what the main differences between the western & eastern carribean are, in as far as snorkelling, beaches ,culture,dining, shopping ect. We have seen some of the western and enjoyed it, but due to dates on Royal caribbean we are looking at the eastern. I would appeciate any advice especially concerning snorkelling and dining, we are not big shoppers but more into snorkelling and local activities.

Lisa January 18th, 2004 01:32 AM

Re: Undecided?????
The western caribbean route is more renowned for snorkeling and water sports, the eastern itinerary more renowned for shopping. But, there are always exceptions. If you are stopping at St. Thomas, do an excursion to St. Johns which has some fabulous snorkeling. St. Maarten on the eastern route also has some great water activities like the Americas Cup Yacht Races and the Golden Eagle Out Island Catamaran Excursion. There are a lot of good beaches (not great for snorkeling, etc.) on both islands. Orient and Dawn beaches on St. Maarten (on the French side so there are clothing optional areas and they are used) and Magens Bay, Sapphire Beach and Coki Beach on St. Thomas.

Victoria January 18th, 2004 07:58 PM

Re: Undecided?????
Ditto that as well. Western for snorkeling and sight seeing; Eastern for shopping.

Marc January 18th, 2004 08:21 PM

Re: Undecided?????
Western is overcrowded. Last time we had nine ships in Grand Cayman. Cozumel can be pretty crowded too.

Lisa January 19th, 2004 01:28 AM

Re: Undecided?????
Eastern is overcrowded too....St. Thomas for example, I remember being there with many ships in port.......Southern itinerary is the best for the least amount of ships in port.

LisaK January 19th, 2004 09:55 AM

Re: Undecided?????
Turquoise waters,gorgeous white silky sandy beaches, decent snorkeling, great shopping = Eastern Caribbean.
Great snorkeling, Sting Rays, really nice beaches, ruins, waterfalls = Western Caribbean
both can get crowded

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