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Old 10-09-2012, 02:12 PM   #16
onecoolpilot
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Cool, thank you
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Old 10-09-2012, 03:31 PM   #17
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We did Bernards in June. Didn't love it. Won't do it again. The time at Maho was short, so if that is your main focus you may be disappointed.
It was A LOT of time in the van. Our tour left at around 9:00, returned around 4:00. We spent 90 minutes at Orient beach (which I liked a lot) and about 30 minutes at Maho.
People rave about it, and although there wasn't anything particularly bad, it is not something that I "higlhy recommend" like so many other people.
I have to completely agree! If we ever go back, we don't need to do this tour again. Lots of time in the van. It was okay with two highlights...Orient beach was fantastic. In Marigot, we had time to use the restroom and then had to leave to make it to Maho in time for the planes landing which was a lot of fun. Our driver was Sexy and he was nearly impossible to understand. When the tour ended, he stood at the van door and talked on his cell phone.

I do however highly recommend The Sea Safari/Virgin Breeze tour on St. Thomas. We had a blast!
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Old 10-09-2012, 05:27 PM   #18
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I have to completely agree! If we ever go back, we don't need to do this tour again. Lots of time in the van. It was okay with two highlights...Orient beach was fantastic. In Marigot, we had time to use the restroom and then had to leave to make it to Maho in time for the planes landing which was a lot of fun. Our driver was Sexy and he was nearly impossible to understand. When the tour ended, he stood at the van door and talked on his cell phone.

I do however highly recommend The Sea Safari/Virgin Breeze tour on St. Thomas. We had a blast!
We loved Orient Beach also. Honestly could have stayed there all afternoon. If/when we go back on an Eastern that is exactly where we're headed.
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Old 10-09-2012, 08:35 PM   #19
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And we did not like Orient Bay beach very much at all. Loved Maho. Our guide personalized the tour for us so we spent less time at Orient Bay and more at Maho We had Sugar & he was spectacular 8)

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Old 10-09-2012, 08:40 PM   #20
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And we did not like Orient Bay beach very much at all. Loved Maho. Our guide personalized the tour for us so we spent less time at Orient Bay and more at Maho We had Sugar & he was spectacular 8)

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When you were at Maho, did you go on the beach, or go to the restaurant and hang out? I found the beach at Maho to be small, rocky, crowded, and in lots of places you were unable to sit because of the jet wash from the take-offs. We saw a plane land...and that was fun for about 5 minutes, but to actually go to the beach there was difficult IMHO.
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Old 10-09-2012, 09:03 PM   #21
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My family and I took Bernard's tour in Nov 2010. It was okay, but like another poster mentioned we spent a lot of time on the bus. We wasted about 30 minutes because a husband/wife wanted to stop at the Harley Davidson store to get t-shirts. The rest of us waited on the bus and got annoyed when time started slipping by. The traffic to Marigot was terrible. Not Bernard's fault, but since waiting 30 min at Harley Davidson..and a late start to the tour...I think it threw the whole tour off. I think we waited in traffic for an hour or more....and then had 30 minutes to walk around before meeting back on the bus. We opted for Galleon Beach....while the rest went to Orient. Several of the people who went to Orient said our family made the right decision to go to Galleon as there were a couple of older men walking down the beach sans clothing....not just on the clothing optional side...but all down the beach...I draw the line when the bottoms come off. We also did not get to see the sea life that they usual show on the tour because we went in "the other direction" according to our guide since our tour got off to a late start. We did spend a lot of time at Maho which we enjoyed, but the beach was no where in sight when we were there! The water line was up to the rocks...so a little disappointing. Not sure how often this happens.

A couple of years prior when it was just DH and I....we went to Mullet Bay via taxi and then walked to Maho via a trail at the far end of the beach. From there we caught a taxi back to the ship. I think we might do this again when the kids are a little older.
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Old 10-09-2012, 09:49 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by mom2aredhead

When you were at Maho, did you go on the beach, or go to the restaurant and hang out? I found the beach at Maho to be small, rocky, crowded, and in lots of places you were unable to sit because of the jet wash from the take-offs. We saw a plane land...and that was fun for about 5 minutes, but to actually go to the beach there was difficult IMHO.
Beach. It was definitely not crowded either. We had no issues with jet wash. We could've watched planes land all day. The only take off that was cool was the big plane; the little ones were just "meh." We plan on heading to Maho next time we are in St Maarten. It was our favorite part of the tour. Marigot was boring; we used the restroom and that was about it!

We didn't buy anything & I'm sad we forgot to buy Guavaberry

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Old 10-10-2012, 08:17 AM   #23
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Just got our confirmation for Tour 1.

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Old 10-10-2012, 10:35 AM   #24
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My feeling was that we could do the tour the first time. If and when we go back, we will know better what we want to see and do. Most tours spent about an hour in Marigot and that is definitely on my list - getting to both Capitols.
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Old 11-16-2012, 03:12 PM   #25
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My feeling was that we could do the tour the first time. If and when we go back, we will know better what we want to see and do. Most tours spent about an hour in Marigot and that is definitely on my list - getting to both Capitols.
Just curious, how did you enjoy the tour? I didn't realize it at the time, but I believe you guys were sitting behind us on the van ( driver was David, your daughter talked about people being tackled in the Quad...)

It was interesting, but if I found myself on the island again, I probably wouldn't do the tour. David was cool and I enjoyed seeing the sites. I'm really bummed though that I didn't get to hang on the fence while the big KLM 747 took off ( missed it by about 30 seconds)
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Old 11-16-2012, 07:01 PM   #26
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Just curious, how did you enjoy the tour? I didn't realize it at the time, but I believe you guys were sitting behind us on the van ( driver was David, your daughter talked about people being tackled in the Quad...)

It was interesting, but if I found myself on the island again, I probably wouldn't do the tour. David was cool and I enjoyed seeing the sites. I'm really bummed though that I didn't get to hang on the fence while the big KLM 747 took off ( missed it by about 30 seconds)
Yes, that was us with our daughter Sarah, a graduate of SUNY-ESF. I wanted to do the tour because it was our first time to St. Maarten and I knew nothing about the island. I really enjoyed seeing the Iguanas and the sea urchins. I was a little disappointed that we didn't actually go to Orient Beach. I would have rather spend a little less time at Maho Beach. My DH and Sarah held onto the fence when a plane took off. After the tour, we got off the van in Phillipsburg and shopped a bit and we then found where we could have our passports stamped (a must for Sarah, since she is our world traveler.) Next time, we will probably arrange for transportation to a beach for a little while, back to Maho beach, and then a little shopping in Phillipsburg.

Did you get a chance to eat at Sarafina's in Marigot? The pastries were awesome!!
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Old 11-17-2012, 12:24 AM   #27
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Oh yes, Sarafina was very tasty. Maho was a bit of a let down for me personally, with little beach area (because of the tide I guess?) and missing the big plane, but all is well, maybe next time. My little one had fun playing in the small beach area, down the road from Sunset Bar. That was the only beach time she got this trip, poor thing.

She decided to stay on board while we shopped in St. Thomas, and we let her thinking that she would have all day at Castaway to play at the beach...OOPS!

Like you, if we end up there again, we will probably just hit the beach for a bit, make our way to Maho, swing by Sarafina of course, and then if time permits, a little shopping.
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Old 11-17-2012, 06:57 PM   #28
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Oh yes, Sarafina was very tasty. Maho was a bit of a let down for me personally, with little beach area (because of the tide I guess?) and missing the big plane, but all is well, maybe next time. My little one had fun playing in the small beach area, down the road from Sunset Bar. That was the only beach time she got this trip, poor thing.

She decided to stay on board while we shopped in St. Thomas, and we let her thinking that she would have all day at Castaway to play at the beach...OOPS!

Like you, if we end up there again, we will probably just hit the beach for a bit, make our way to Maho, swing by Sarafina of course, and then if time permits, a little shopping.
My husband and daughter did the Eco Tour on St. Thomas. I met up with friends that live in St. Thomas (and I hadn't seen in 20 years). They gave me a person tour of their home island. It was an awesome opportunity. This was Sarah's first cruise and she was so very disappointed that she missed Castaway because she really wanted to go to the beach. Sounds like, when you go back to St. Maarten, that you will be touring similar to us.
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Old 11-24-2012, 08:30 PM   #29
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Bernards tours

I am looking to book a tour in St. Maarten but the website asks what time we dock. Does anyone know the answer?
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Old 11-24-2012, 09:47 PM   #30
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After the tour, we got off the van in Phillipsburg and shopped a bit and we then found where we could have our passports stamped (a must for Sarah, since she is our world traveler.) Next time, we will probably arrange for transportation to a beach for a little while, back to Maho beach, and then a little shopping in Phillipsburg.

Did you get a chance to eat at Sarafina's in Marigot? The pastries were awesome!!
Where do you get the passport stamp? Do you get one on the French side and the Dutch side?

So you recommend a tour? We are first timers, but I think we would just like to go to the beach for 3 hours, then to both capital cities. I was thinking a taxi?

Nancy
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