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Old 05-18-2012, 04:26 AM   #91
disneycruisers2013
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Hi, we have just booked the EC for 19th Oct 2013 - can someone tell me how we go about booking excursions please. We are new to this cruising malarky!!
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Old 05-18-2012, 09:52 AM   #92
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We did an Eastern Caribbean on the Magic last year, and here's some info from our trip report (saw some people asking about Trunk Bay, so here's our two cents...)

On St. Maarten, we did "our own thing" and after some research on a good beach, decided to go check out Dawn Beach.

The trip from the port to the beach was fairly quick - once there, we were greeted by "The Guy", who quickly mentioned he would be happy to rent us lounge chairs and an umbrella - but we politely said "thanks, but no thanks" and headed a bit further down the beach and found a nice spot to throw down our towels. The water was, just as you see in some pictures/postcards, crystal clear blue - and very warm (St. Maarten had the warmest water out of all three of our Port days). We all spent a lot of time swimming, playing on the beach, and snorkeling - I think we were there at Dawn Beach until about 2 in the afternoon. Saw lots of fish and coral right off the beach - it was definitely a great spot for snorkeling. There were some other folks on the beach, but it never felt "crowded" and we had plenty of space to ourselves. Once everyone felt like they had had enough sun (being our first day off the ship, we knew we didn't want to start off the trip with any sunburns), we grabbed a taxi back to the port.

At St. Thomas, we booked the Trunk Bay excursion...

This was perhaps the only disappointing thing about our whole cruise - even though we were prepared and knew about it in advance, we hadn't appreciated the travel time to and from Trunk Bay, and the amount of our "ashore" time it was going to eat up. It took just about an hour (each way) for the boat to get us from St. Thomas to St. John, and then some waiting around to get on the buses, and then another ~15 minutes to reach the bay. So we only had just over an hour and a half to actually snorkel. The water, while just as clear and beautiful as St. Maarten, was a bit colder, and Gillian toughed it out as long as she could, but eventually needed to take a break from being in the water. So while she and Kayleigh played on the beach, Ginger and I got some more snorkeling in. One of the things we had heard about in Trunk Bay was the "snorkel trail", which really wasn't all it was made out to be - some underwater plaques that talked about the various fish in the area, but I'd have a hard time calling it a "trail". But we still did enjoy our (brief) amount of swimming/snorkeling - it was just over too quickly, and we were rushed back on the buses to get back on the boat to St. Thomas.

For the second day in a row, it did rain a bit - although much heavier than the day before in St. Maarten. Luckily it waited until we were done swimming, but we had to wait to board our boat due to them unloading another set of travellers - so while some people were able to take shelter under the covered portions of the line, there were a lot of other folks standing in the rain getting soaked. Luckily, once on board, just about everyone was able to seek shelter in the portions of the boat that weren't open to the rain.

We got back to St. Thomas in time to spend a few minutes walking through the various tourist trap stores, but pretty soon we had to go get in line so we weren't left behind!


So I think in the future, we would for sure hit Dawn Beach again, but we'll find something else to do in St. Thomas...
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Old 05-18-2012, 11:22 AM   #93
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Originally Posted by disneycruisers2013 View Post
Hi, we have just booked the EC for 19th Oct 2013 - can someone tell me how we go about booking excursions please. We are new to this cruising malarky!!
Congrats on your first cruise!! Once you hit your 75 day mark and you're paid in full (PIF), you can do your online check in and book excursions, spa reservations and dinner/brunch reservations.
Keep reading the DIS boards and you'll learn just about everything you'll need to know before your cruise!
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Old 05-20-2012, 09:55 AM   #94
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Congrats on your first cruise!! Once you hit your 75 day mark and you're paid in full (PIF), you can do your online check in and book excursions, spa reservations and dinner/brunch reservations.
Keep reading the DIS boards and you'll learn just about everything you'll need to know before your cruise!
Lovely, thanks for letting me know. 75 days.... I think I have to be more patient!! I am sure the time will pass quick enough.
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Old 06-19-2012, 12:27 PM   #95
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An excursion I haven't seen mentioned yet is the America's Cup Challenge on St. Maarten. We are signed up for it in September and will give a review afterwards.
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Old 06-19-2012, 04:17 PM   #96
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Kon Tiki Sightseeing and Beach Cruise

Any one done this St. Thomas excursion?
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Old 06-19-2012, 05:08 PM   #97
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Decisions,decisions

I'm having trouble deciding between
St. Maartens
See and Sea Island Tour
and
Under Two Flags Island Tour
any input?
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Old 06-23-2012, 08:12 AM   #98
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We are interested in the St. John Island Tour, mostly for photographs. I have read through the itinerary for this tour, and am just wondering if there is time to take photos along the way. If any if you have done this excursion, and can provide more detailed info, it would be MOST appreciated. We want beautiful photography opportunities, and trying to find an excursion that will fit our needs.
On St. Maarten, any advice for tours that would also show us the island, and allow for photo ops? Maybe a Bernard's Tour? Or a personalized Bernard's Tour?
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Old 06-23-2012, 08:55 AM   #99
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScrappinGran View Post
We are interested in the St. John Island Tour, mostly for photographs. I have read through the itinerary for this tour, and am just wondering if there is time to take photos along the way. If any if you have done this excursion, and can provide more detailed info, it would be MOST appreciated. We want beautiful photography opportunities, and trying to find an excursion that will fit our needs.
On St. Maarten, any advice for tours that would also show us the island, and allow for photo ops? Maybe a Bernard's Tour? Or a personalized Bernard's Tour?
You will have amazing photo opportunities on the St. John Island Tour. They stop and let you get out of the van at all the locations.
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Old 06-23-2012, 09:56 AM   #100
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Crbruce us, THANK YOU! This will be our choice! Now hoping for something similar for St. Maarten!
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Old 06-23-2012, 12:01 PM   #101
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We're on the March 2013 Fantasy and I'm wondering if anyone has ever done a tour with GODFREY TOURS in St. Thomas?
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Old 06-23-2012, 07:06 PM   #102
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Is there a excursion or way to get to Paradise Point besides riding the skyride? I have a huge fear of those but really want to see the point.
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Old 06-23-2012, 10:57 PM   #103
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We just got back today from our Eastern Caribbean cruise on the Fantasy, and we were thrilled with our excursions! They totally made the trip!

In St. Maarten, we did the Bernards Tour. It was well-organized, and the service was excellent. We met the guides right at the pier, and since we were early, they took us out right then, and we got extra time at one of the beaches. We went to the iguana farm and one of the shallow pools to hold starfish and sea urchins. We then went to Orient Beach and stayed for almost two hours. Our guide, Junior, then took us to Marigot and Maho Beach. Along the way to each stop, he told us the history of the island and the differences between the Dutch side and the French side. He also stopped several times for us to take pictures. There were also two coolers filled with rum punch, beer, water, sodas, and juice boxes. We recommended this tour to our friends who are going on the June 30 Fantasy sailing.

In St. Thomas/St. John, we went with a Disney excursion, the Champagne Catamaran Sail and Snorkel. We were also very happy with this excursion! We took an open-air taxi to the marina, then boarded a HUGE catamaran. Our three awesome guides took us to Honeymoon Beach, and we were able to snorkel around the coral reef. We saw lots of fish, sea turtles, coral, and sea urchins. It was absolutely amazing! We sailed back and enjoyed champagne, rum punch, juice, and sodas along with an assortment of snacks. If we're ever back in St. John, we want to do this excursion again!
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Old 06-24-2012, 09:56 AM   #104
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Best excursion with a 4 yr old boy

Which ones did you really enjoy with preschoolers? Is Bernard good for that age? I was thinking that the planes landing may be good.

I booked the Tortola Dolphin Experience but it sounds like it gets bad reviews?

Any assistance will help. Him being four really limits the DCL excursions
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Old 06-24-2012, 10:16 AM   #105
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An excursion I haven't seen mentioned yet is the America's Cup Challenge on St. Maarten. We are signed up for it in September and will give a review afterwards.

Here is our St Maarten review:

12 m Regatta / America's Cup Challenge - We did this in March and it was a highlight of our cruise! DH and I are sailors, but you don't need to be. Many had no sailing experience at all. Disney cruise passengers all sail on the first race of the morning - 8:15, I believe. It's a short walk to the pier where you get a brief orientation and split into 3 groups. You do not get to choose your boat, but it doesn't matter - all 3 have fabulous captains. Then you get onto a boat to take you to your sailboat. On the way, you are assigned your jobs on the boat. You can choose to be active or inactive. I was the first to choose, and decided inactive so I could take pictures and video (this was a BIG dream of DH's). I got to be time keeper which was perfect. DH chose active and he was a main grinder. There are bartenders, sheet trimmers and lots of grinders, as jobs. You have more of an orientation, can wear a lifejacket (although none did), and then you are underway! The race is a few laps and lasts probably an hour or a bit more, depending on the wind. There is a boat that comes up to take your picture to purchase later if you'd like. It was an awesome, amazing time! We won, so that made it even better for DH. We were also on True North and, being Canadian, that was also nice. They have complimentary beer, soda and water on board - and yes, the beer was cracked into by many, after our win at about 10am! When you return, there is a gift shop to go through, but don't have to. They have nice clothing, hats etc... of the America's Cup Challenge. A boat takes you back to the pier, or you can walk a fairly short distance. We shopped and took the boat back and were on the ship, right on time, I think (11:15ish).

After that, we got DS, had a quick bite to eat, and took a taxi to Maho beach. That was another wonderful experience. The beach was packed and we didn't plan to stay long, so we didn't bother with loungers. The water was very warm but rough. We stayed in the shallows and had a blast! The planes were thrilling to see come in overhead and friends are amazed when we show them the pictures and video. There is a bar there that had nice-looking food and music. We didn't eat since we already had lunch, but wished we had more time to enjoy there. A big downpour came in and we took shelter in the bar area as we made our way to find our taxi. When our taxi driver dropped us off, we arranged a pick-up time, and she pressured us to be there, so of course, we were, and right on time or even early. We waited for her for 20 min and then when she didn't show, we took another taxi van back to the downtown shopping area near the port. I'm not surprised she didn't arrive back - how can you do that? The traffic was far worse than I imagined.

I'm really not sure where we went to shop, but it was a little area with a beach and you could see all the ships across the water. DS picked out a few little souvenirs and we walked back the the ship.

It was an excellent day!
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