Post your Eastern Caribbean Excursions here!!!

Discussion in 'Disney Cruise Line Forum' started by Debs Hill, Feb 5, 2012.

  1. Debs Hill

    Debs Hill DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    May 27, 2000
    Messages:
    2,061
    Please post your reviews and photos of your Eastern Caribbean excurisons!

    I will start us off!

    St Martin Orient Bay
    I rate this excursion a 7.5 out of 10
    the transer time was short, the beach was lovely and you had a reserved area with padded lounge chairs. It was ideal for children as the water was shallow and it wasn't crowded. It was a lovely relaxing beach day.
    Be aware that the beach is 'clothing optional'.......really didn't notice as used to European topless beaches!!

    Debsx:lovestruc
     
  2. Avatar

    Google AdSense Guest Advertisement


    to hide this advert.
  3. bluejasmine

    bluejasmine DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2005
    Messages:
    7,772
    I hear st marteen is the place to shop? Can i count that as excursion? Lol! Anyone havegood tips on that? Is there a dolphin one at st thomas or st john?
     
  4. Debs Hill

    Debs Hill DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    May 27, 2000
    Messages:
    2,061
    Afraid we didn't shop, so hopefully someone else can help you with this one!
    Would be interested to know if anyone has done excursions in San Juan
    Debsx;)
     
  5. Debs Hill

    Debs Hill DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    May 27, 2000
    Messages:
    2,061
    St Thomas; My husband did the golf excursion which he said was amazing. Expensive but worth it! This time we are looking for something that we can do as a family on St Thomas/St John.
    Debsx
     
  6. FJS961

    FJS961 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2010
    Messages:
    1,856
  7. Alexis Green

    Alexis Green Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2006
    Messages:
    334
    DBf and I did the Coral World Ocean Park by Land and Sea in St Thomas

    I would rate this excursion 5 out of 10.
    We did have an enjoyable time, but we won't do it again. The ride up was beautiful since we had a scenic open air vehicle. The submarine was very nice and it was interesting. Since DBf was in a wheelchair they helped us a lot with getting him everywhere we needed to go.
    Afterward we got 90 minutes of free time in Coral World, unfortunately a lot of things either had special times when they'd be happening or places were closed. They did have a vendor serving hotdogs and hamburgers inside and a nice shop. If we had more time I would have loved to visit the beach right next door or do some of the water activities they had.
     
  8. Debs Hill

    Debs Hill DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    May 27, 2000
    Messages:
    2,061
    Bump! Keep them coming guys!
    Debsx:cool1:
     
  9. quinnc19

    quinnc19 DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2008
    Messages:
    778
  10. 4mousefans

    4mousefans Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2010
    Messages:
    91
    St. Thomas:
    My mother and I did the Coral World/semi-submarine tour. It was chaos from the time we reached the pier...the employees had two separate tours in the same area and were trying to get us all into taxis- it was very congested and there were tons of people with no one really providing direction. It was a 30 minute (roughly) ride to get to Coral World, where we were given a guide and taken to the dock. The tour was nice- saw a few fish and a diver that went in. Then we were given free time to roam the park area- like the previous poster we found that everything had show times and other than the two turtles that were in captivity, we saw very few fish. The park itself seemed to be in need of repairs- mainly painting and such. The lunch that we purchased was GREAT! We had cheeseburgers and fries on a deck overlooking the water. The women who were cooking were so friendly and funny! Transportation back to the pier was a bit crazy- our taxi driver had told us to meet out front at 2pm but didn't arrive until 2:30pm, so we basically sat out front waiting for about 35 minutes which was time we could have spent touring or at the beach area. The ride back took just around an hour due to traffic. While it was okay, I wouldn't spend the $56/per person again for it. The tour was listed as being 4 1/2 hours and included travel time. We left the pier at 11:15, toured on the "sub" from about 12-1pm and then had about an hour to tour the park before returning to the pier.

    My husband and two daughters (ages 15, 19) did the Castaway (?) sail and snorkeling excursion. While it was a bit bumpy at times due to the waves, they had an amazing time. They saw some really beautiful fish and sting rays, as well as enjoyed the amazing views of the island. The tour was about 4 hours and was $52/per person. They said that they would do this again for sure! :thumbsup2
     
  11. WAHkoMom

    WAHkoMom Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2009
    Messages:
    434
    - - We're taking the Eastern Caribbean cruise in July and I'm looking for ideas. Thanks for starting this thread! :cool1:
     
  12. EAP'sDAD

    EAP'sDAD Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2003
    Messages:
    304
    I am also planning this for April and have booked for the family, would love to hear some feedback
     
  13. castmeaway

    castmeaway Mouseketeer

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2010
    Messages:
    126
    We have done the sea and sea tour on St. Maarten, and would rate it a 7 out of 10 as the speaker system on our bus was not working and we couldn't hear the narration. It stops at a market on the French side which is lovely, and you see fish at a reef without getting wet on the sea portion.

    On St. Thomas, we have done the island tour which I would recommend and a sail and snorkel to St. Johns which was great.
     
  14. shburks

    shburks DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2009
    Messages:
    1,645
    Thank you. We were strongly considering the Coral World/semi-submarine tour, but after reading your review (and several others), I am definitely reconsidering. Thanks for the review.
     
  15. castawaycayfans

    castawaycayfans DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2010
    Messages:
    505
    Just off the Magic on Saturday- here's what we did:

    St Maarten: Bernards Tours, we contacted them independently, $40pp. They have a stand right beside the info center by the dock. We really had a great time, our driver took us all over the island and we were able to determine how long we wanted to stay at each stop. We went to Orient Beach, which was really windy and the ocean was choppy, so we only spent 30 minutes and then headed to Marigot and spent longer there. After that, we went to Maho and spent about 1 1/2 hours watching the planes. We also had drinks included in the price.

    St Thomas: We did the Doubloon Snorkeling excursion through DCL. I believe it was $58 per adult. We had been on this one 2 years ago and had the same great experience. The sea was a little rough sailing over, but we still had a great time. The crew was a lot of fun! They also supplied drinks with this one (rum punch, coke, sprite, water, etc..)

    Castaway Cay: We did not do an excursion, but we purchased the getaway package, which gave us snorkel, bike and float rental for about $32. You can only rent this package on the ship, not on shore. This one worked well for us, as DH did the snorkeling and I used the float. In the late afternoon, we rented an extra bike for $6 and rode the bike trail, which was nice.
     
  16. MinnieMomMe

    MinnieMomMe Earning My Ears

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2011
    Messages:
    25
    St. Maarten: DCL excursion Mountaintop Downhill Rainforest Trek, 6 out of 10. Took a small shuttle van to Lotterie Farm. Then you board an open air truck that drives you to the top of the mountain. It was a crazy, bumpy ride and there is no padding on the seats (wooden boards). It was hilarious trying to hang on and was the funnest part of the excursion. If you can manage to look around while you're hanging on, there are some beautiful views of the island and bays below. The trek itself is LONG and on a rocky, sometimes slippery, single file trail. DH referred to it as the "Bataan death march". The original "rainforest" was cut down years ago to plant sugar cane. What you walk through now is what has grown back. If you're expecting a lush rainforest filled with tropical birds, plants and monkeys, this isn't it. We saw no wildlife on the hike, although we did see one monkey briefly when our shuttle van drove into the Lotterie Farm parking lot. The guide was very knowledgeable, but as it is a single file hike, you want to position yourself near the front of the line to really hear what she has to say. If you're in the back, you're pretty much out of luck.

    Tortola (we were on the 8-night New Year's cruise and this was a stop): DCL excursion Baths at Virgin Gorda, 9 out of 10. Truly amazing. You take a 45 min speed boat to Virgin Gorda (small island off of Tortola) then hop on an open air shuttle that takes you to the top of the Baths. It's a short hike down to the Baths (nothing like the rainforest hike, you can do it in sandals). There is a pretty beach at the bottom, but don't waste your time there! There are a series of caves that you walk through to get to a second beach at Devil's Bay. The caves are pretty cool, but were crowded. You have to climb over some very large boulders (there is a rope to help you), steep wooden stairs, and tight spaces between rocks, so I wouldn't recommend it for any really small children or anyone with physical limitations. The reward for your hard work is true paradise. It's a small pristine bay with crystal clear water and lots of fish. The only reason I give it 9 out of 10 instead of 10 is the time at the beach is too short. You're only there for one hour. If given the opportunity again, we'd do it on our own and spend a longer day at Devils' Bay. There is a trail directly from Devil's bay back up to the parking lot so you don't have to maneuver your way through the caves again.

    St. Thomas: On our own, Maagen's Bay, 9 out of 10. It's really easy to catch a taxi/shuttle to Maagen's Bay on your own. It was $8 per person one way (which was more than we paid in the past, but I think the prices may have gone up for the holiday season). I think we also had to pay $6 per adult and $3(?) per child to get into Maagen's Bay. It's a huge gorgeous bay with really calm waters so it's perfect for families with small children. They have a counter service restaurant where you can get burgers, pizza, and the like. We got a whole pizza which we thought was a pretty good deal and tasted good too! They have clean bathrooms and beach loungers near the restaurant. We walked further down the beach (the farther you go the less crowded), and got a great spot that had a picnic table and two beach loungers under some trees. We saw lots of fish and even sea turtles. I packed a couple of cheap inflatable inner tubes I got from Target and the kids had a lot of fun floating around in the calm crystal clear waters. A passing storm literally poured down on us for about 30 minutes. While the moms and girls took cover, the boys and dads played football catch in the water during the downpour. They said that was the funnest part of the day. My biggest recommendation is to get there EARLY. This way you miss the huge crowds coming from cruise ship excursions and can get a good spot on the beach. We got there around 9:30 and were done and back on the cruise ship by 2pm.
     
    peep22 and breakingd_awn like this.
  17. Debs Hill

    Debs Hill DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    May 27, 2000
    Messages:
    2,061
    thank you for the tips about Maagens Bay....sounds wonderful! Is it easy to get a taxi back to the ship? Would love to see photos if anyone has any!
    Debsx
     
  18. all5ofus

    all5ofus DIS Veteran DVC Gold

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2004
    Messages:
    621

    We did this one and I would highly recommend it. The snorkling was great. You could go around on your own or follow the guide around and he would point out things. The crew was wonderful. Honeymoon beach there was a delicious catered lunch when we arrived and we had a great meal and a few drinks while the kids enjoyed swimming on the beach.
     
  19. son3disfan

    son3disfan DIS Veteran

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2006
    Messages:
    1,857
    :thumbsup2:thumbsup2:thumbsup2

    We booked all three of these excursions! EXACTLY! :lmao:

    Wow, glad you enjoyed them.....we are really looking forward to Benards tour!
    Hoping the weather will be warm...only 30 more days!
     
  20. all5ofus

    all5ofus DIS Veteran DVC Gold

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2004
    Messages:
    621
    Two I would recommend for St. Maarten would be:

    Bernards Tours - http://www.bernardstours.com/

    Great overall sampling of the island. A nice mix of sightseeing, shopping, and beach time, hitting both Orient Beach and Maho beach to see the planes land. We had a larger group and were able to get a private tour with just our group for just a few dollars more per person than the group tours, then we could customize the tour to what worked for us, a little more beach time and a little less shopping time.



    Random Wind Sailboat - http://www.randomwind.com/

    A beautiful 54 foot sailboat that offers full day sail/snorkel/swim trip. A relaxing sail along the island with stops to swim and snorkel. On one of the stops they set up the tarzan swing, which is a trapeze rigged to the spinnaker boom and you swing off the boat and drop to the water below. My kids went off the tarzan swing about 50 times each. At another stop they prepare a nice lunch cooked fresh onboard.

    We have done many caribbean excursions and my kids (13,11, & 7) all ranked this one as their favorite so far.
     
  21. MinnieMomMe

    MinnieMomMe Earning My Ears

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2011
    Messages:
    25
    There are plenty of taxis/shuttles lined up in the parking lot waiting to take passengers back to the cruise ships. We literally walked up and hopped on a shuttle. The day we were there, there were eight cruise ships in port. By going early we avoided major crowds at Maagens Bay.
     

Share This Page