Will be on the Dawn Princess Feb 3 to St. Thomas, St Kitts , Martinique, Isla Margueritas and Curacao. Have not been on a Princess cruise or to any of these locations, and would appreciate any thoughts or insights on shore excursions, things to do-places to go, along with any suggestions about the Dawn itself. Personal insights much appreciated!!!
We did a simular itinary on Ocean last year and we did find a neat beach in St. Kitts you may like, if you like a day at the beach. We just walked into town and got a taxi with some others that wanted to go too and went to Turtle Beach. Its a nice drive, about 45 minutes, but very scenic, the driver even pulled over so we could get out and take pics. You can arrange for the driver to come back at a certain time, which we did and yes, he showed up. The beach was nice, and you could see over to Nevis from there, food was also available and you could purchase peanuts to feed the monkeys that were there, very cute little guys:-)
In Curacao, there is a good snorkel excersion we did through the ship on another cruise, this time we just walked over town, very nice town, friendly people that don't bother you at all.
Isle Margarita we just too the tender and went to the beach that was right by the pier, but others did excersions and said they were nice.
I'm sure you will enjoy Dawn as much as we loved Ocean, have fun.
Thanks for the tips, Donna! The St. Kitts thought especially sounds like a good way to go. Do enjoy the snorkling, so glad to have my plans for curacao confirmed too. Next year is Panama Canal time - gonna get my port side balcony reserved early though! Thanks again! The advise is most appreciated :-)
If it's your first visit to Curaçao, be sure to take the island tour that visits the distillery and includes a walking tour of Willemstad. This excursion is pretty affordable, and you will get to see a lot in a short time. After the excursion, you will have the option of staying in Willemstad and returning to the ship on your own.
The "Island Highlights" tour on St. Kitts also is worthwhile. It visits a very impressive fort (deservedly known as the "Gibraltar of the Caribbean"), the Carabelle Batik factory and gardens, and a few other attractions. Of course, that was arguably a poor substitute for the sailaway to Nevis -- which was full when I booked my excursions....
On St. John, I highly recommend the "Champagne Catamaran Sailaway to St. John" -- a delightful sailing expedition to a secluded beach and snorkeling area where the crew of the catamaran puts out quite a spread. I have taken this tour twice, and have yet to see them run out of any beverages (champagne, rum punch, beer, sodas, and juices). If you wish to snorkel, the crew provides the gear and complementary lessons for those who don't know how.
I also opted for a tour that visited several attractions on Isla de Margarita, and was not disappointed.
We are taking this cruise on the 20th. will try to provide some information on the excursions when we get back. Have signed for the sail/snorkel tour in St thomas, the banana/rum tour in martinique and historic in Isla margarita
Yes, all these stops are "first-time" for us, Norm. Sounds like some good tips. I had been looking at that Nevis sailaway, but bet I've waited too long to book it - probably sold out like you encountered too. Thanks!
If you have your booking number, you can reserve shore excursions at Princess's web site (http://www.princess.com). It probably is not "too late" yet. If you don't get the Nevis sailaway, though, the "Champagne Catamaran Sailaway to St. John" from St. Thomas is not a bad substitute!
BTW, you should have received a packet of information from your travel agent about a month ago that contains Princess's "Cruise Answerbook," an "Adventures Ashore" booklet describing the optional tours in your ports of call, and some other miscellaneous information. If you did not receive it yet, annoy your travel agent until you get it. The descriptions of the shore excursions generally seem to be very accurate, so be sure to read them carefully before making yoru final selection.
We got back from the Dawn Princess Saturday. Beautiful ship.
We did the sail/snorkel excursion in St. Thomas. Snorkeling at Buck Island is pretty good. Just walked around on St. Kitts. Took the Banana Plantation-Rum distillary in Martinique. Good bus ride around the Island get to see what it's like outside of Fort de france, which is pretty nasty (IMHO). Took the Historic Island tour on Isla Margarita, Once again, a good way to see alot of the island and walked around in Curacao.