Hi, I am wondering which is better for shore excursion, Pinel Island or Orient Beach? We like beaufiful beach & snorkeling. We are planning to snorkel in St.John's Trunk Bay already, will we be missing out by not snorkeling in Pinel Island in St.Martin? But I am also wanting to do Orient Beach for beaching and shopping, just hanging out. I have to be back at the ship at 4:00ish.
One more ?, At Trunk Bay, is it better to bring my own snorkeling gear? I told not to lug that thing around when I can rent.
we always bring our own snorkel gear mainly for fit and sanitation reasons. I am not comfortable renting something that is going into my mouth from a shack on the beach, if you want to rent, i would suggest renting your gear on the ship, that way you know it is clean, and you can clean it yourself.
St. Maarten - you might be able to do both, if you book a morning ships excursion to Pineal Island to do your snorkeling,you might have enough time after your excursion to grab a cab to Orient Beach for awhile
We snorkeled Cinnamon Bay (the next one down from Trunk Bay) and Pinel Island. St. John's snorkeling is heads and shoulders above the snorkeling at Pinel. Pinel does have a beautiful beach and the island is more primative than others, but if I had to choose, I would choose St. John for the snorkeling, and go to Orient Beach in St. Maarten.
Mariner of the Seas 3/30/08
"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."
Just returned from a cruise on the Valor and visited St. Maarten. We went to Orient Beach, it is beautiful!!!! We had snorkeled in St. John and wanted to just hang out and swim. The sand was silky soft, no pebbles or shells and the water was clean and spectacular. There are lounge chairs set up on the beach with umbrellas should you wish to rent one ($7 for a chair and $3 for an umbrella). There are water sports galore available at an extra charge, i.e., banana boat, windsurfing, etc. There are lots of restaurants and tiki bar, changing rooms (co-ed) and restrooms. We saw some fish but this is not a beach for snorkeling, try Pinel Island for snorkeling.