My hubby and I went to St Thomas and St Marteen 5 years ago and we LOVED it! The only tour we took was in St Thomas. Someone had posted about Godfrey tours if you google Godfrey tours St Thomas you will find him It was a really inexpensive tour too about 20 bucks a person for a 3 hour tour. He picked us up right off the ship in an open air bus and drove around the Island showing us some of the History and then we could shop for awhile then swim for awhile at a resort with nice beach and changing area too. This wasn't an excursion the ship offered someone on our roll call group found Godfrey and at first I was a little NERVOUS but after we took the tour I GIVE HIM MUCH KUDOS!!! As far as St Marteen went we didn't take a tour we went to town and SHOPPED SHOPPED SHOPPED then went to someplace Daves something I think and went swimming and drank. Daves is kindof a hole in the wall from the front but when you go in it opens up to a nice beach area with chairs and his drinks are GREAT strong and cheap too
We just came back from an eastern cruise. Stops at San Juan, St. thomas and St. Maarten.
In St. Thomas we took a taxi, they are lined up as you get off the boat. For a total of $20 for 3 of us he took us for a 15-20 minute drive to Magen's Bay.
It is one of the 10 most beautiful beaches in the world, and it truly was! The water was so beautiful and clear...my daughter said it was like a swimming pool, and even tasted the water to see if it was salty!!
We rented beach chairs and 1 float, $25. We stayed about 4 hours and took a taxi back...they are lined up and waiting, so that was easy.
The bottom line is that we spent about $65-$75 for this adventure and saved a LOT of money from booking an excursion.
We talked to several people who took an excursion to Turtle bay and they were dissapointed...it was a long time to get there and they only had about 1.5 hours of time on the beach.
Have agreat time on your trip!!!
Freedom of the Seas 4/2009 (Can't wait!!!)
Freedom of the Seas 3/2008
Norwegian Majesty 4/2007
Soverign of the Seas 12/06
Disney Wonder 8/2004
so much depends upon what you want to do. St. Thomas if you want gorgeous beaches, scenery and really good snorkeling then you really should make the effort to get over to St. John Island, you can do it on your own and have all the time you want go to www.vinow.com for ferry times, rates and beach information. If you want to stay on St. Thomas proper and want beach/snorkeling then i would grab a cab to Sapphire Beach, if snorkeling doesn't interest you at all then grab a cab to Megans Bay Beach. After your beach time you can go shopping if you like, if you dock at Havensight there is a nice mall right there, another fun thing to do is to take the short walk from Havensight to the Paradise Point Tramway, the view from up there is breathtaking. If you just want to tour the island and make a short beach stop then hire a local cabbie for a few hours, negotiate a round trip and pay when you are returned to the ship.
St. Maarten - Orient Bay Beach is by far the most popular beach on St. Maarten it is french so it is optional topless and there is a clothing optional section that is aways from the mainbeach and it is clearly marked, this is a beautiful beach, grab a cab at the pier. IF you want a fun excursion for the family i would suggest you book thru the cruise line the Golden Eagle Catamaran sail, we totally enjoyed this tour - you sail to an island preserve where you can swim, snorkel or just veg on the beach, food and drink are included. Shopping is also very good in St. Maarten, after your tour grab the water taxi at the pier- for about $7 you buy an all day fare you can come and go as you please and the water taxi puts you into downtown- this is on the dutch side. If you want to shop on the french side you will need to grab a taxi. If you want to just tour the island then hire a cab for a few hours.
We loved our tour with Sunny Liston tours in St. Thomas. He was a blast and gave a good tour of the island. We also enjoyed our tour over to St. John. If you go to St. John, I would recommend taking the boat from Down town and not from Red Hook. The ride over to and back to Red Hook is LONG. I'd rather take a longer boat ride.
In St. Maarten, we took a cab over to Maho Beach to the Sun Set Beach bar. It is at the end of an airpot run way and you can watch planes come in while having a "beverage" and a bite to eat. There is also a small beach there if you want to catch some sun. We had so much fun there!
I believe they still offer the sailing ship regatta in St. Marteen. Famous America Cup ships have been re-fitted" for the non-pro. You are placed as a "team" on one of four ships and actually race. No racing experience is needed. Thre is a "coach" on board for each position. I've never sailed before and knew nothing, but they did a great job of assigning each person an appropriate job (taking in consideration age, physical fitness, etc.) and we ALL had a blast!
We've taken many shore excursions everywhere, and this remains one of our all time favorites! Highly recommend it, even though it is pricey. It is money well spent.
All posts have good advice. One thing to consider is if this is your first time on each island. If it is stay on that island. If not try St. John from St. Thomas to Trunk Bay Beach, and from St. Martin a day trip to St. Barts is great. Remember in the French W.I. tops optional at public beaches.
Freedom Of The Seas -07
Radiance Of The Seas-07
Adventure Of The Seas-05
Navigator Of The Seas-04
Soverign Of The Seas-02
Big Red Boat-93