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Old 07-14-2006, 02:13 PM
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Is anyone out there going on this same cruise? Or has anyone done this intinerary before, please share your experiences good and bad on the islands: Antiqua, St. Lucia, Grenada, Martinique, St. Thomas, Princess Cay.

Looking forward to a perfect Southern Carribean Cruise Vacation, any input would be great! And if you're going on this same cruise, would like to hear from you.
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Old 07-17-2006, 07:09 AM
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We're going on that itinerary October 21st. It will be our second time on the Sun. We haven't been to Antigua before, but I'm really looking forward to that port. There are supposed to be 365 beaches and be awesome for snorkeling. The rest of the islands we've been to. St. Lucia has some great snorkeling, we've booked sail/snorkel excursions through the ship. Last year we did a land tour because there weren't enough for the snorkeling excursion. They took us to a waterfall that you had to climb down the side of a mountain. Going down was really tricky. Grenada is the spice island, Grand Anse beach is a nice beach, the tour to the rain forest is beautiful, the snorkeling is good. Martinique the snorkeling was ok, but we usually just go to the beach near the pier. St. Thomas has some wonderful beaches, Maagen's Bay and Coki (see Sonny, I didn't forget). The shopping is good on St. Thomas as well. We usually end up taking the ferry over to St. John then a cab to Trunk Bay. Trunk Bay is one of the top 10 beaches in the world, it is gorgeous. Warm, crystal clear, calm water. White sand beach and you can find shade as well. They have fresh water showers, a snack bar, a couple of shops (shop in St. Thomas), lockers, and a place to rent snorkeling equipment. There is a self-guided snorkeling trail about 50 yards from the beach. Princess Cay is their private island. The beach is nice, there are a couple of shops, and the crew from the ship cater lunch and set up the bars. They have water toys and the snorkeling is not bad. Hope this helps annd have a wonderful cruise!!
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Old 07-17-2006, 09:24 AM
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Thanks for the great tips, very much appreciated! Your right about Trunk Bay, went there in Jan on a stop in St. Thomas (Royal Carribean Mariner of the Seas), totally awesome, the only problem with that excursion is that you only get an hour or so on the beach there with a tour excursion. I suppose you can stay longer if you go on your own. On another trip to St. Thomas we rented a Jeep and toured the island, found Magens Bay too conjested so we went to Morningstar Beach, very nice beach and restaurant bar with Hammock Chairs, but the view to sea didn't include a view of other islands in the distance, something that makes the Virgin Islands so spectacular. Thinking about going to Coki Beach in Nov. Any other suggestions for a great beach on St. Thomas would be appreciated. I think we'll stay on the island this time. We're very exited about this interary, we're definately going to a beach on Antigua, one that's good for snorkeling too. We're not sure what to do on St. Lucia, Grenada and Martinique yet. We've never been on a Princess, I've heard Princess Cay is one of the better private islands. Our absolute favorite Cruise Ship Islands in the Bahamas so far is Half Moon Cay, for Holland America, Heavenly! Please share more of your experiences.
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Old 07-17-2006, 11:09 AM
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We do Trunk Bay on our own, the ferry runs every hour (I believe), it was $6/pp, then we got a cab up to Trunk Bay. Coki is a nice beach. Another of my favorites is doing a sail/snorkel to Buck Island. My husband loves sailing. Last year we were on a wonderful catamaran run by a husband/wife team that lived on board. The cat was beautifully maintained, they served us homemade bread and fruit. Of course, rum punch. We booked the trip through Princess. This will be our 5th Princess cruise. I must say I thought the food on the Sea and the Dawn were better than the Sun, but it might have been the chef at the time we were on her. I'll let you know when we get back. Princess Cay is nice, the beach is clean and the water is great. The snorkeling wasn't excellent, but it wasn't bad. We have our own gear, so it doesn't cost us anything. It is a tender port, so it can take a little while to get there, but it is definitely worth going. They have a wonderful bar-b-que, salads, and of course deserts. The margs are great!! St. Lucia we'll be doing a sail/snorkel as well as Grenada. If we have time in Grenada, I'll take my husband around the island a bit (by cab). I've been there twice, but this will be his first time. The rain forest really was beautiful and the island has a wonderful aroma of spices. Martinique has not impressed me, it's a clean island, but the snorkeling trips we've taken haven't been that good. Still, we'll probably do another one because we love sailing. I've only been on HAL once, it was a great cruise, but so far, I like Princess better. Let me know if I can answer any other questions.
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Old 07-17-2006, 01:08 PM
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Thanks Penny! We'll be doing some sail/snorkel excursions as well, we like them the best, especially when they anchor on a deserted beach. Buck Island is one that I was considering last time we went to St. Thomas, but went to Trunk Bay instead and loved it! Maybe we should do Buck Island. Question: If you go to Trunk Bay independantly, how long can you stay on the beach there without missing your cruise ship? I think 3 hours would be a fair amount of time there, wouldn't you? 60-90 min. wasn't enough on the Royal Carribean excursion there in Jan. When we were there the beach wasn't crowded at all, some of the forums warn about it being too crowded. Did you say you'd done Buck Island already, or will this be your first time there? Sounds like you like what we like, catamaran sail and snorkles and pristine beaches Any tips on best beaches on these islands is appreciated. You mentioned Grand Anse. Saw picutres of that beach, looks nice. Marigot Bay in St. Lucia looks great in the pictures that we've seen, but my wife wants to go on some tour that includes the Drive-In Volcano, whoopie! Sorry about all the questions, very excited about my favorite subject (Cruising!) Thoroughly enjoy your reply posts, thanks.
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Old 07-18-2006, 08:07 AM
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I've done Buck Island three times, two on catamarans, one on a sailboat. The snorkeling was wonderful as well as the sailing. 3 hours on Trunk Bay should be fine, we were there about that long. I've never had a problem with the beach being too crowded, we are usually there in late October or the first part of November, so I guess with the kids in school, it's not a hot vacation time. Marigot is a nice beach, one of our excursions stopped there for about 45 minutes. I haven't done the drive-in volcano, it sounds different, but I have to snorkel. Antigua should be great, hard to choose the right place to go snorkeling because Barbuda is so close and is a noted snorkeling area. Grand Anse beach is pretty, the snorkeling wasn't that good, in fact only saw some beer bottles and a few bait fish. However, for a beach (just to swim and play) it's nice. I am soooo ready to go.
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Old 07-18-2006, 09:22 AM
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I'm so ready to go too. Hope the weather is good. Had really bad weather last Jan.. On Friday the 13th, in the Bermuda Triangle with a Full Moon we experienced 85mph gail, and that ship was rockin'! (RC Mariner of the Seas) Due for good weather in Nov. for our Sun Princess cruise. Grand Anse in Grenada isn't the beach for us then, since you mentioned that the snorkeling wasn't the best. I want a nice beach there that has everything, calm turqouise water, powdery sand, great snorkling, beach bar of course. If you know of any that fit that bill on any of the other islands that we're going to... (St. Lucia, Martinique, Grenada.) And of course if you hear anything about Antiqua's offerings, please pass it along I only have 115 days, 11 hours, 46 minutes and 43 seconds left to wait! I think I'll flip a coin to decide wether or not to go back to Trunk Bay or Buck Island, since you think those two choices are the best, hmm. ( I used to be indecisive, but now I'm not so sure!) In Jan. the weather was bad there Trunk Bay - (See Picture below taken on that day), cloudy water, snorkeling wasn't good at all that day, but even still, the beach was the most beautiful I've ever seen.
 
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