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Old 04-07-2014, 05:21 PM   #91
sdjen
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Good call on the shell

We took one and they did confiscate it on the ship when we boarded. I understood but would think that the tour guides should have known that. My dd was disappointed
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Old 04-07-2014, 09:17 PM   #92
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Look like a fun start to your time on St Maarten!!
It ended up being a really fun day! The tour gave us a nice variety while visiting St. Maarten.
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Old 04-07-2014, 09:25 PM   #93
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Good call on the shell

We took one and they did confiscate it on the ship when we boarded. I understood but would think that the tour guides should have known that. My dd was disappointed
That is such a bummer that she ended up not being able to keep the shell. It is especially disappointing since they were taking tips for those shells instead of letting you know that you wouldn't be able to keep them.
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Old 04-09-2014, 04:16 PM   #94
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Bernard's Tours Orient Beach

Our next stop would bring us to Orient Beach. On the drive over Junior explained that the beaches in St. Maarten were topless and that part of Orient Beach there was the option of going fully nude. He explained that if you wanted to avoid the fully nude section we should stay to the left of the rocks that were on the beach. We pulled into the parking lot and this was the first thing that we saw. Junior wasn't kidding!



We gathered our things from the bus and made our way to the water. Along the way we encountered our first topless woman. Apparently DD10 wasn't really listening to what Junior was saying, because she was surprised by this. During the time we were there I did see one other topless woman. Just a heads up if you plan on going to Orient Beach.

The area where we were dropped off had all kinds of chairs and umbrellas set up. We found a spot and shortly after we arrived a man came up and let us know that it was $20 for two chairs and an umbrella. It also gave us access to the bathroom and showers. After we got back on the bus we were talking to another family and they told the guy they weren't going to be there very long and I believe they ended up paying $10 for three chairs while they were there. Doesn't hurt to barter!

We weren't at the beach long enough to enjoy any of the activities, but there were jet ski rentals, a water trampoline, and other water activities available for rent if you have more time.







As far as Orient Beach goes-we thought it was wonderful! The water was just so blue.













While we were at the beach some really dark clouds started to roll in. The next thing I knew it was raining. DH and the girls were playing in the water so they barely even noticed that it was raining. Thankfully it only lasted for about 10 minutes and then it was over.





My only complaint about Orient Beach is that there were a lot of women that would approach wanting to sell any number of things-beach bags, towels, hats, jewelry, hair braiding, etc. They would even ask to braid DD10's hair and it was already braided. It really got annoying saying no thank you, so I eventually made like I was napping.

Unfortunately our time at Orient Beach was up too quickly. We made our way up to the showers to rinse off before heading to our next stop.



Up next: Marigot


Last edited by LoveMyTwoPrincesses; 04-28-2014 at 07:04 PM.
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Old 04-10-2014, 05:12 PM   #95
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Enjoying your trip report! Our cruise group scheduled Bernard's Tours for this summer. I believe we have three buses!
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Old 04-10-2014, 09:33 PM   #96
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Enjoying your trip report! Our cruise group scheduled Bernard's Tours for this summer. I believe we have three buses!
Thank you!

That is pretty impressive that you have that large of a group getting together for the tour!
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Old 04-11-2014, 03:04 PM   #97
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Bernard's Tours Marigot

The next stop was at the French side capital, Marigot. The purpose of this stop was to be able to do some shopping at the market that was set up next to the parking area. There were all kinds of booths set up in this area.



There was a stand that was selling coconuts, so DH decided that he needed one.



When we arrived Junior pointed out the public restroom. It wasn't the fanciest of places and it was quite a smelly experience, but it was very needed at the moment!



By the time we got out of the restroom it was almost time to leave. We had really hoped to have time to stop at Sarafina's for some lunch or at least a snack, but there just wasn't enough time. Sarafina's is a French bakery that gets rave reviews. If it is a priority for you to stop there make sure you go there right away.

I had to grab a couple of pictures of our surroundings before getting back on the bus. There were a lot of boats, but Junior said that there are occasions where this area is packed with boats.







I was just amazed at how crystal clear the water was.



The market area is in the lower right of this picture. The places on the hillside must have amazing views!



Before loading back up I grabbed a picture of our ride. The bus was very nice and thankfully Junior kept it cool, because us Northerners were getting warm!



Up next: Maho Beach


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Old 04-11-2014, 03:47 PM   #98
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Ooh, that water looks so inviting!! Too bad you missed out on trying Serafina's - I've heard great things!!
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Old 04-11-2014, 07:42 PM   #99
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Thank you for the tip on hitting Sarafina's right away! That is the one place I really have to go. I am a little concerned with the massive number of people touring at the same time, but I figured this is typically the number of people on a tour... They just aren't necessarily from the same cruise. We have a very active cruise group.
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Old 04-12-2014, 11:55 AM   #100
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Ooh, that water looks so inviting!! Too bad you missed out on trying Serafina's - I've heard great things!!
I was in awe of how blue and clear the water was. It was just beautiful.

I'm bummed that we missed out on Sarafina's. Everything that was displayed looked delicious!

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Originally Posted by lauralynn0612 View Post
Thank you for the tip on hitting Sarafina's right away! That is the one place I really have to go. I am a little concerned with the massive number of people touring at the same time, but I figured this is typically the number of people on a tour... They just aren't necessarily from the same cruise. We have a very active cruise group.
I think if we had went directly to Sarafina's we would have been able to get something. We went over there thinking we would have enough time, but we waited for awhile and the line just wasn't moving. Just head that way right away and you should be fine.

That is awesome that you have such an active cruise group. It is fun to meet with people that you have communicated with during the planning process, especially since you already "know" them.
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Old 04-13-2014, 04:14 PM   #101
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I enjoy following your trip report. We will be taking this same trip next July. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 04-15-2014, 08:52 PM   #102
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I enjoy following your trip report. We will be taking this same trip next July. Thanks for sharing!
Thanks for stopping in! We really enjoyed this itinerary and I hope you will too!
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Old 04-16-2014, 01:18 PM   #103
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Bernard's Tours Maho Beach

Our next stop on our tour was Maho Beach. The draw of Maho Beach is its proximity to Princess Juliana Airport, which we passed along the way.



We arrived and parked in a parking lot that was near the beach. Junior advised us that we would have 45 minutes at the beach. At this point the four of us were starving, so we made our way to the Sunset Bar and Grill. The bar is located right at the beach. It was hopping, but we were able to find a table. Everyone in our little party was starting to wear out.





We waited for quite a while and we weren't getting waited on. It got to the point that we knew we weren't going to get food in enough time to make it back to the bus on time. We just were not having any luck getting food on our stops! We decided we might as well explore with the time we had left. There was a gentleman that was playing the steel drums in the bar area that was pretty cool.





We made our way over to the beach, which was actually pretty small. The beach is pretty narrow. The people that are on the right are standing at the edge of the beach and behind them is the road that we took in. The draw was definitely seeing the planes, not for relaxation.





There was a sign posted warning of the dangers of being near the planes during take off.



Soon enough we saw a small plane coming in. It literally came in right over the beach.





We hung our for a little while longer taking in the surroundings before it was time to head back.





When we got back to the bus Junior asked us if a large jet had come in yet. We told him that it hadn't and he said we could stick around until it arrived. We were a little frustrated because we were so hungry and we would have had time to eat if we knew we were going to be there longer. There was a small place that served Mexican food near where we were parked, so DH ran over there to see if we could get something to eat real fast. They made us up some nachos. I don't know if they were even that good, but at that moment they were the best nachos I had ever eaten!

We all gathered to leave and as we driving out there was a large jet on the runway getting ready to take off. Junior stopped so we could see it take off. It was crazy the power the engines put out and it actually blew peoples bags and items out into the water. If you are there during take off be sure to hang onto your stuff!

On our way back to the ship Junior said we could be dropped off in the shopping area or be brought back to the ship. We were so worn out from our day that we decided to just go back to the ship. Our home for the week was a sight for sore eyes. What a beauty!











Up next: Pirate Night


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Old 04-16-2014, 06:50 PM   #104
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That beach is pretty cool --- I've seen photos of the large planes, it's crazy!!

She really is a beautiful ship!!
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My 2014 trip report!
A 21-hour tease and one FANTASTICAL voyage! May 2014 TR!

My 2013 trip report! Makiní our way, itís an ADVENTURE every day! A Nov (10-16) trip with a 2yr old!

DW DH DD3 Baby #2 (Coming, March 2015!)

WL-January 2015; DCL-Fantasy, Western Caribbean-May 2014; YC-November 2013; WL-November 2012; WL-December 2010; WL-September 2009; POR-December 2004; WL-June 1999; WL-June 1997; GF-April 1990;Treehouse Villas-1986
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Old 04-16-2014, 07:25 PM   #105
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Quote:
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That beach is pretty cool --- I've seen photos of the large planes, it's crazy!!

She really is a beautiful ship!!
It was worth a quick stop, but we enjoyed our time at Orient Beach a lot more. It was crazy to see the force that the plane put out when it was getting ready to take off.

I am really missing the Fantasy today. We got snow AGAIN last night. It has really been the winter that just won't end!
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