I am taking my boyfriend on a surprise vacation in December aboard the Carnival Victory to the Southern Caribbean. He has never really traveled before and has only seen the murky Gulf of Mexico (which we all know does not really count Anyways I am trying to get advice regarding what to do in our ports of call. I am not a big fan of tagging along behind hundreds of other cruisers and prefer to strike out on my own, so any advice as to best beaches, best places to grab a bite to eat, etc. Oh and we are 21 so the more fun the better! Thanks for any advice you have!!!
Hi simpson217, welcome to Cruise-Chat. Congratulations on your up-coming cruise. You really are generous. One thing you need to check into, is your age requirements. It used to be 25, but not sure if that's for all cruise lines.
Since you asked about Antigua, I'll tell you what we did the two times we were there. First time we went on a catamaran sail/snorkel. There were so many jellyfish in the water you couldn't enjoy the snorkel. This was late October/early November. The beach they took us to next was a nice beach and no jellyfish, so maybe it was just where we were on our snorkel. My hubby drank too much rum punch, so we didn't get to do anything after the snorkel except go back to the ship. The last time we were there, we walked outside of the terminal and found a local that took us on a tour for $25/pp. We went to Shirley Heights then over to English Harbour and Nelson's Dockyard. He then took us to a nice beach for a few hours. Much better experience. Not sure what other ports your visiting, but hope this helps a little on Antigua. Best wishes!
Depends on what kind of activities you like. If you just want a nice beach to lay on and have a few drinks, then Valley Church beach (also known as "The Nest" beach for the bar on it called The Nest) I have pictures of it if you would like.
There were plenty of local tour guys to negotiate with. If you just want a beach break, grab a local taxi guy (guys closer to the port entrance), if you want a island tour, go past the taxi guys and talk with a tour guide.
There are 365 beaches on the island. We saw three of them and they were all spectacular. Devil's bridge is an interesting site, but I'm not sure it would be my only stop... Penny also gave you some good options.
Thank you for your advice. I had originally planned on taking an Eco-Tour with Adventure Antigua.... but they are closed on New Years Day, which is the day we are docked. We are visiting St. Thomas, Dominica, Barbados, St. Lucia, Antigua and St. Kitts. If anyone has anyother advice for those I would appreciate whatever you have to say/offer! We are both 21, cruising with Carnival so we are ok for age! I am working with a travel agent, I have a book, but I like to get real input from honest people! Thanks for anything you have to offer, it is greatly appreciated!!!
Here are my suggestions:
1. St. Thomas-If you want to stay on the island, Coki Beach or Megan's Bay are nice beaches. Sapphire is a good beach for snorkeling, but not a whole lot of ammenities there. If you don't mind a little venturing, grab a cab to Red Hook and take the ferry over to St. John. Then grab a cab to Trunk Bay. We've also done some great catamaran sail/snorkels out of St. Thomas.
2. Dominica-Champagne Reef snorkeling. I prefer going in a catamaran, but it can be done from the shore. One of the best snorkels I've ever had. Trafalga Falls and the Emerald Pool are also nice.
3. Barbados-Tiami Catamaran sail/snorkel, great excursion. Good snorkel, nice beach, great crew, beautifully kept catamaran. If you like spicy food, try the bajan pepper sauce.
4. St. Lucia-Pigeon Island or a snorkel to the pitons.
5. Antigua-we covered.
6. St. Kitts-there's a fort there with a beautiful view, and we also visited a batik factory there. The snorkeling is not that great there. It's not bad, but just not as good as the other islands. I think JimC went to a beach there.
If you'd like to find all the posts made about these ports, use the "find" feature in the upper left hand corner. Type in your ports and it will pull up all the posts made about them. Maybe there will be something that really sparks interest.