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St. Kitts/Nevis: trip comments

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Thank you to several forum members who offered us valuable advice which helped make our trip very special.

With our flight booked into and out of St. Kitts, we had a total of eight days. In hindsight, we're happy that we made the choice to divide our time between St. Kitts and Nevis, although after a few wonderful days in St. Kitts, we were having our doubts. It was a bit of a hassle to do an extra packing, checking out, ferry ride, etc. with a repeat process on the island of Nevis. But it was well worth it. Nevis gave us a very different, but equally wonderful, experience.

The St. Kitts Marriott, booked through Classic Vacations at the suggestion of a forum member, was great: staff, room, amenities, etc. We pre-booked our car rental online for pick-up at the Hertz office right at the Marriott. Because of flight complications, we arrived in St. Kitts at 11:00 PM instead of 3 PM. . .so not having a rental car booked for pick-up at the airport relieved us of the concerns over our late arrival, driving on unfamiliar dark roads, etc. The taxi ride to the hotel was welcomed! But beginning with the morning of Day One, having a car to explore the island, get out to different restaurants, etc. was very important to us. Lunch at Ottley's Plantation, and another day at the Reggae Beach Bar, was our style. For anyone who really likes to get out and about, we'd highly recommend a car rental. (If you've driven in Ireland, you'll do fine in St. Kitts: left-side driving, narrow roads, many not signposted, with frequent rotaries.) But you easily get the hang of it on this small island, and people are very friendly and helpful.

On Nevis, we stayed at the family- owned Mt. Nevis Hotel. It's a place we'd highly recommend, especially if you rent a car and like to explore. Mt. Nevis Hotel is situated on a hillside overlooking the Caribbean, with several beaches within a mile or so. Our deluxe suite (an upgrade extended to us) had six large glass doors facing the sea. . .spectacular! The staff at Mt. Nevis is exceptionally helpful. Before booking this hotel, we checked Trip Advisor. We were very happy to learn that a daughter of the owner, Noreen, lives in New York, and handles the bookings. Noreen was extremely helpful with details relating to many questions about Nevis.

While in Nevis, we explored a couple of the plantations by doing lunch. We spent one evening at the Four Seasons, and ate at their beach restaurant on our last day. In general, having a car allowed us the freedom to come and go as we wished.

One caveat to offer anyone who wants to transfer islands: try to avoid Sunday. The ferry schedules are very limited, and the car rental offices (only a couple in Nevis) close at 1 PM. Fortunately, we encountered a manager from the car rental company on the same ferry we were taking. It was "running late" (island time) and he was nice enough to call ahead and have an employee come in to the rental office and take care of us!

Although we enjoyed exploring both islands, eating at different places, etc., if you enjoy staying mostly staying in one place, inclusive of your meals, then the plantations are a wonderful option.

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