Okay... everytime someone asks or mentions shore activities, snorkeling is sure to be reccomended. I usually just hit the back button, and move on to another subject.
I have NEVER been snorkeling, and I lived in Okinawa Japan (a small sub tropical island) for four years! I LOVE the ocean. It is beautiful, and peaceful, and so romantic to look at. But the thought of swimming in it gets me in a panic. I am not afraid of water, you see, but sharks absolutely petrify me! When I look at the ocean, I just want to jump in, but then I remeber all the horrible man-eating sharks, and start to hypervenilate, lol. At the beach, I go in about knee deep, but then my fear of sharks coming to shore and biting my leg off sends me back into ankle deep waters.
What is wrong with me? I want so badly to not be afraid of sharks so I can snorkel, and learn to dive (activities my husband LOVES), but everytime I try to convince myself its okay, I panic over those darn sharks!
I have snorkelled 100 times from the Caribbean to Hawaii and seen 1 docile nurse shark in all that time. Most snorkelling is done mid day and in large groups and often from a noisy boat. Sharks feed early morning (dawn) and Dusk. Sharks generally feed by sight and you are not what they are looking for. Snorkelling is done in clear water where Mr shark can see you are not what he wants to eat. The large group of people in the water discourages sharks as does the noise of the arriving boat. Lastly, do you think organized snorkel tours would go where they expect sharks? Never read or heard ANYWHERE of a snorkeller having any issues with a shark EVER.
Sounds like the movie Jaws really got to you. Most sharks are night/early morning feeders. I have been snorkeling off Cozumel and Roatan and have seen sharks but they never bothered us. If you're really nervous about sharks, then go snorkeling where there are dolphins. Sharks really do stay away from them.
First of all where are you cruising? If you are going to Roatan be sure and take the Tabyana beach trip with snorkeling. I haven't snorkeled 100s or times, but dozens and have never seen anything that even resembles a shark. By going on a ship sponsored trip you will have something else to do if snorkeling ends up not to be your thing, but you really need to give it a try. It's so much fun and so refreshing. At Tabyana the water is only shoulder deep, the fish beautiful and the coral breath taking. Please give it a chance!! My hubby, who is afraid of water though he can swim doesn't snorkel. He has tried and it isn't his thing, the rest of us wouldn't think of taking a cruise or going to a resort that didn't offer snorkeling. The big, bad, boy fishies would prefer not to meet you so will most likely not even answer the door if you came knocking. Don't worry about them!!!!!!
Hello all... I am back..... and I DID go snorkeling! Twice! Once at TRUNK BAY in St. John, and once on Great Stirrup Cay, NCL's island.
When we first got down to Trunk Bay, I decided that there was no way I was snorkeling... fear took over, and I said NO! My husband convinced me to come into the water to just try it right on the shore. So I put on all my gear, went under the water, and didn't come back up until I was far from shore! It was so beautiful, that I just took off! Well, there I am, snorkeling a bit far from shore. I came up to adjust my snorkel, and hear echos of the word "shark" all around me. A snorkeling tour guide was near me so I asked him why people were talking about sharks.... and he then informed me we were swimming right over one. My heart dropped, and I started to panic and swim away, but he told me that it was sleeping. So curiosity overcame me, and went under to look at him. It was a baby shark, only 4 to 5 feet long. But as soon as I saw him, I headed back to shore, lol. My husband took some pictures.
I had a blast. We snorkeled again in GSC, but fear prevented me from going out as far. We parasailed first, and happened to see a few large sharks in the water, so I was not willing to risk having a heart attack seeing them underwater face to face, lol.
I had blast. Parasailing and snorkeling were the best parts of the trip! While we were on the parasailing boat, a school of dolphins did a show for all of us! They were all jumping and swimming around. One came up to the boat, and swam right next to it for a couple minutes!!! I got lots of nice pictures.
I'm glad you enjoyed the snorkeling. I read your first message today so any advice I had would be too late. I'm like you, I get panicky too quick but I do love to snorkel. We are leaving on the Norway May 11th and are thinking of going to St. John Trunk Bay on our own. Did you do a tour or go on your own. If you went on your own, did you have time to see a little of St. Thomas too? We would like to take the Paradise Tram and snorkel for about an hour or so in St. John. Would there be time for both. Then we also were hoping to stop by the Hard Rock Cafe to buy some souvenirs there. Not having priority tendering may be a problem to get that all done I suppose. If you have any thoughts I'd appreciate hearing them. Thanks, Luanne
I have just returned from my Dawn cruise. It was great!! My son and I did snorkeling on the 'Out Island' and I mast say it was great!!! The water was calm and crystal clear. There was NO jelly fish to worry about. Go for it.. You will not regret it.
I was also on the Dawn 4/19 cruise and tried snorkeling for the 1st time on Great Stirrup Cay. Well, actually I tried on Virgin Gorda two days before, but I'm not counting that because the sea was so rough it kept knocking me over and I was having an awful time trying to get the basics (using my sister's equipment - she snorkels a lot in Virgin Gorda and was trying to show me how).
But on Great Stirrup Cay it was wonderful, as NJJoe says. We were on the first tender and snorkeled most of the time until late afternoon. I never would have believed there would be so many beautiful fish, even after the water got very crowded with people. People were even seeing sting rays right at their feet a short distance from shore. I am no spring chicken and not in excellent shape, but the snorkeling was very easy once I got the hang of it. My sister carries around a waterproof Caribbean fish guide and she saw some fish that were new to her.
I really do recommend giving it a try, but wait until you have really good conditions like we had at GSC - very calm clear waters. What a wonderful time we had! This was our favorite day of the entire cruise.
I married in St John while on the Norway cruise March 16-23. Here's my suggestion for you: purchase the $8 ferry ticket onboard asap after you board. We cleared immigration and were waiting for a cab by 7:45 AM (you meet at 6:15 for the ferry, but don't actually leave the ship until 7:00). You could be on Trunk Bay by 8:00. Snorkel the underwater trail first - it gets busy later on. When crowds begin arriving around 10:00 or so, hop over to Cinnamon Bay. It is the next bay over and is quite lovely. We spent a week on St John over Thanksgiving (2002) and loved it. Thanksgiving morning was actually spent on Cinnamon Bay. Do some research on these boards or vinow.com and you will find lots of info. Taxis are plentiful.
For snorkeling, St John is much better than St Thomas in my opinion. We married on Hawknest Beach (St John), chartered a catamaran for the reception that dropped us off in Red Hook, and then did a taxi tour that afternoon of St Thomas. I've been to Sapphire Beach and Magen's Bay (both on St Thomas), but neither one of those compare to Trunk or Cinnamon on St John. (All of my St John / St Thomas experiences have occurred 12/2001, 11/2002, and 03/2003).
Take the 1:00 ferry from Cruz Bay (St John) back to Charlotte Amalie. This is the $8 ticket you purchased onboard. You will have from about 1:45 to 3:30 to shop right there in town, as the ferry drops you off within a few steps of where the Norway tender returns you to the Norway. Last tender to Norway was 3:30.
Enjoy your trip!!
Oh - you could always take the 11:00 ferry back and definitely have time for Paradise Point Tram.
Thanks so much for your information! We will definitley get ferry tickets asap. We like to snorkel and will love St. John I'm sure. It's so nice having these boards for people to help each other. You are so nice being a newlywed spending time with us (ha Ha)
really does help.
Hi, if it makes you feel better I'm like you. The ocean scares me. I won a vaction to grand bahamas and tried snorkeling for the first time. It took awhile to get the hang of it but now I love it.I'm not a strong swimmer and get really nervous when people get in the water around me. You should try snorkeling you'll be really amazed. I hope this helped.