#1  
Old June 9th, 2004, 02:03 PM
dgates
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Default St. Maarten

We are cruising on the Radiance of the Sea 11/7. We've never been to St. Maarten before. Any suggestions for shore excursions? We have 4 kids ages 10-19.

Thanks!
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  #2  
Old June 11th, 2004, 08:42 AM
tterry
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Default Re: St. Maarten

Hire a cab to give you a tour of the island and take you to Orient Beach. Arrange to be picked up at a specified time. Cap off the day with a little shopping in Phillupsburgh before returning to the ship.
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  #3  
Old June 11th, 2004, 10:52 AM
LisaK LisaK is offline
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Default Re: St. Maarten

The beaches on S.t Maarten are beautiful. Orient Bay is where all the action is. It does however have a "clothing optional" section and the beach does tend to get a bit crowded. Dawn beach is more family-friendly and less touristy.
If you are looking for a really fun and different excursion - book the America's Cup Regatta - you get to crew on an actual racing sailboat and take part in a race. Its great fun. Another great excursion is the Golden Eagle Catamaran sail. You sail on this beautiful boat up the coast and over to Tintamar island which is a natural preserve. You can swim, snorkel or just relax on the beach with a nice cold soda or beer. They serve sandwiches, soda, beer(included in the cost) and they have a champagne toast on the return trip and they crank up the tunes, there is dancing when you enter the harbor.
There is also good snorkeling and SCUBA diving on St. Maarten.
Excellent shopping- especially if you are looking for jewlery, fine linens, perfumes,(Lipstick is a great store!) good deals on t-shirts, and you must go to the Guavaberry Emporium and sample the local libation of a Guavaberry Colada or smoothie, potent buy yummy! on the Dutch Side.
The French side of the island tends to have more trendy stores and boutiques but good deals can be found.
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  #4  
Old June 11th, 2004, 07:56 PM
dsue79 dsue79 is offline
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Default Re: St. Maarten

Thanks for the suggestions. There's so much to do it's hard to decided!

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  #5  
Old June 12th, 2004, 10:08 AM
Bon__Bon Voyage Bon__Bon Voyage is offline
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Default Re: St. Maarten

I agree with Lisak, St Maarten is beautiful Island. When we were there we took the Golden Eagle Catamaran it was relaxing and exciting I think all your kids would enjoy it, the Guavaberry Coladas are awe....some, infact when we got home we contacted the island and had the store send use a case of the Guavaberry mix. From what I'm hearing / reading St Maarten has the best vaule for shopping.

Hope you have a great trip and look forward to hearing from you when you get back!!!

J Bon

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  #6  
Old June 12th, 2004, 02:36 PM
Lynne &Trevor
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Nice Picture, J Bon. We are still trying to decide what we're going to be doing in St. Maarten.My husband would like to rent a car and share it with another couple. We definitely want to get to the French side this time.Our last Eastern cruise-on the Golden Princess-we missed out on an excursion possibility and ended up just walking up and down the main drag in Phillipsburg! We did get into the Guava Emporium, though.Lots of goodies,there! Since I used to work at a church, it was interesting to see the United Methodist Church at the end of the main area of the street. Trevor had heard about the Casinos there, but they ended up being little holes in the walls.While he was in there I was checking out the area by the Courthouse,and there was a beach right by there, too.We will be going down that way in September on the Caribbean Princess so I'll check back in with y'all and let you know what we found to do. Lynne

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  #7  
Old June 14th, 2004, 10:55 AM
jamiegunter
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We just got back, went on a tour of the Island. It also took us to the St. Maarten zoo. It was a really nice tour. They stopped a couple of times for picture taking at some pretty views. I think the tour was called Natural wonders.
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  #8  
Old June 14th, 2004, 01:35 PM
hcat
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We took a land & sea tour that included a semi submersible tour of a reef from a little sea village (Grand Case) . The tour went on to Marigot on the French side & then back to Phillipsburg. It was a good overview. Unfortunately as charming as Marigot was, it was absolutely congested & not the cleanest spot in the world--just has time to have something at a cafe, buy some perfume & look at the stores quickly. Wanted to climb to the top of Ft St Louis but not enough time. The driver made it clear he'd be leaving on time!!! Once in Phillibsburg we were on our own to explore & shop & then took the water taxi back to the ship. We were a bit disappointed in St Maarten--had a more quaint vision in mind but found it congested & commercialized. The Dutch side is turning into a desert... Next time we will look for more nature or go to a beach that is not popular with cruisers.!
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Old June 18th, 2004, 09:50 PM
Lynne &Trevor
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My husband rented a car for us in St. Maarten to tour the Island.It is to be at the St. Maarten Pier. Is that the only place to dock-where the Welcome Center is?- or is there an alternative docking area when there are several ships in at a time? He'd like to know so he can be prepared. Thanks. Lynne

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  #10  
Old June 20th, 2004, 02:28 AM
Mark&Deb
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We were on the Radiance - you will LOVE it - beautiful ship. St.Maarten - have to go to the Guavaberry Store - those ladies will crack you up & they make a mean guavaberry colada! Nice thing re: St.Maarten also - is you pay 1 price for the water taxi - we shopped - went back to the ship, dropped of shopping goods, ate our lunch, changed & then went back for sun/water/fun.

Mark&Deb
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  #11  
Old June 23rd, 2004, 11:21 AM
TheWog TheWog is offline
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Default Re: St. Maarten

Lynne -

St. Maarten has only one cruise ship docking area and that is Great Bay. The dock is a short water taxi ride away from the Main St. area. The welcome center (there are 2) is at the pier. There is a big building with a Big St. Maarten sign where everyone gets their picture taken right as you get off the ship, you can't miss it. The water taxi is right across from it. There is also a second welcome center when you get off the water taxi near downtown. The only other issue would be if you anchored and needed to be tendered in, but the pier is pretty large and you will more than likely dock.

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  #12  
Old June 23rd, 2004, 03:52 PM
delgadofam2002 delgadofam2002 is offline
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Default Re: St. Maarten

Anyone ever use private tour operators? Portpromotions.com ? I am thinking of doing the Island tour & beach bash. Any help.
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  #13  
Old June 28th, 2004, 10:04 PM
Kelly DeVore
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Do you remember what time the Golden Eagle Catamaran started and ended?
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  #14  
Old June 29th, 2004, 08:54 AM
LisaK LisaK is offline
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Default Re: St. Maarten

Kelly - we took the first tour of the day on the Golden Eagle at 8am, and we were glad that we did it. Its about a 4 hour tour, had a great time, we got back to ship around 1pm, changed into dry clothes, grabbed a bite to eat at the buffet then headed out to the water taxi to browse around Phillipsburg and do some shopping. Its wasn't terribly crowded in town- most of the folks were still at the beach, that's why we took the morning sail. Most folks do the beach in the late morning and shop in the late afternoon.
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