If we wanted to take the water taxi to go to Maho, we'd get off and take a bus, then do the reverse to return, if I understand right. Where do we find the bus? And would it make sense to Water Taxi from the ship to the bus, go to Maho, then return to the beach by the port to swim, beach hang, and maybe shop a little? I don't care for the beach at Maho...
Any current pricing on water taxis, bus, and taxi?
The water taxi goes from where the cruise ships dock to a couple of stops at Phillipsburg - at the main public beach. Taxis and buses are available at the cruise piers to go to Maho and any place else as a tour, so no need to take the water taxi unless you want to take the local bus. In that case, go to town and then to Back St, behind the court house and look for the bus halte sign.
I think we paid $7 per person for the all-day water taxi wristband. Local buses are privately operated and have no set schedule, but the cost for going to Maho should be around $2 pp each way.
We were there last November, 2015. There are van/taxis from the port pier area and your group and a few others should fill it nicely. I want to say it was about $15-20us to the Sunset Beach bar. We have been there several times in the past and try to get there by 10am or so. The big KLM 747 comes in around noon or so and is amazing to witness!! The bar will be crowded-if you can find a picnic table open, SIT! Order lunch and watch the show! They NOW have installed a secondary fence right along the roadway so the idiots cannot "ride the fence" as it was called locally. People would hang on, and basically get sandblasted from the jet wash! They never figured out that it wasn't THAT the wind blew, it was WHAT the wind blew!!
We got every time we cruise to the port!! The other thing we did, and my wife only says that we did it ONCE, was go snorkling on the French side of the island. The island is governed by two nations, the Dutch side where the airport is and that MOST ships dock, and the French, where the beach where the snorkling excursion is located, CAN be topless for the ladies, so you should be aware. Being American, my Country has a problem with bare chests which I've never understood, but just a little advise for you. Otherwise, have a great time!! St Maarten is a great port!
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