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Beaches in St. John

Old Jul 6th, 2003, 06:38 AM
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Beaches in St. John

We are thinking of going to St. John and staying at the Westin. I was curious as to whether all of the beaches in St. John are public. If we stay at the Westin, are we allowed to drive over to Caneel Bay and use their beaches for the day? Is there public parking at/near Caneel Bay? Thank you for your help!
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Old Jul 6th, 2003, 07:30 AM
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Yes, all the beaches are public. There are some that are blocked by access because of private land but there is a plethora of choices of wonderful beaches. Day guests are welcome to use the Caneel Beach and Honeymoon Beach on the Caneel property and there is a parking lot at the end of the entrance driveway that is convient for the public areas of Caneel. Renting a vehicle for your stay and exploring the choices on St. John is very popular.
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Old Jul 6th, 2003, 09:16 AM
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Don't forget about the beaches on the north shore like Salt Pond Bay, where we swam with turtles. Also Francis Bay is very beautiful. Leinster Bay has no beach to speak of, but the snorkeling at Watermelon Cay makes up for it.
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Old Jul 6th, 2003, 01:55 PM
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We are going to St John on Wednesday and though I originally planned on staying at the Westing I reconsidered and we are now renting a villa. I'd heard so many negative things about the beach at the Westin (I guess it's man made and a bit shabby by St John standards). For the same price, we get a full house with our own pool and a wonderful view. Just something you might want to consider.
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Old Jul 7th, 2003, 01:21 PM
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I agree with snowrooster. We just got back from the Westin last week. I must say, it is a very beautiful resort but we would have done MUCH better to have stayed in a villa. We were never there at the resort. The beach there is nothing in comparison to the others(in fact, we didn't even go to the beach there except at night). Caneel Bay beaches are beautiful, and you can visit there for the day. Gallows Point would also be a great place to stay since it's so convenient to town. We rented a jeep two days. Just another foot note--the food at the Westin was not good and very very overpriced. I would definitely go to the other beaches on the island, especially those along the North shore (Trunk Bay, Hawksnest, Cinnamon, Maho, Caneel).
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Old Jul 7th, 2003, 05:06 PM
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Hi..yes the beaches are public and free, except for Trunk Bay which charges $4 for the day.
Yes there's parking at Caneel Bay. However, know that there's no sign on the road that says Caneel Bay (all the other beaches are clearly marked with signs on the side of the road). For Caneel Bay, there are open gates with the Caneel Bay logo sign (it's on their website). Once you go through those gates, there will be a second set of gates with a guard by it. The public parking (it's free) is on the left,right before those gates.
St. John is gorgeous, you'll love it.
 
Old Jul 7th, 2003, 05:08 PM
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When I say "except" for Trunk Bay, I'm talking about the "free" part...in case anyone thinks I'm talking about the "public" part.
 
Old Jul 8th, 2003, 04:24 AM
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Snowrooster, Will you post your trip report when you return? I'd love to know how your trip went, Thanks.
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Old Jul 8th, 2003, 05:53 AM
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No problem! We leave tomorrow. We're renting happy moon villa through caribbeanvillas.com if you want to check it out.
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Old Jul 8th, 2003, 12:27 PM
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Thank you everyone for your responses. We haven't spent much time in the Caribbean and have never been to St. John or St. Thomas. We thought the Westin would be an "easy" place to stay the first time. I know their beach isn't the best, but the other amenities look good. We are definitely planning to rent a jeep for the week and explore the island and maybe take a day trip to the BVI's. Beachbuff, how was your room at the Westin and which view catagory did you stay in? Thanks again for the responses!!
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Old Jul 8th, 2003, 06:55 PM
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Hi SDAlly, we had a beachfront room, bottom floor---building 16, room 1614. It was definitely a beautiful view, very convenient to the pool, restuarants, hot tub, literally steps away from the beach, and not too far to walk to the front lobby. We actually thought we booked a poolview room (because it was cheaper) but when the bill came in I guess we must have booked the oceanview. Ouch! Honestly, it was a great room and the staff was most accomodating to us. We had never been there, either, so I think it's a great first choice. I would just enjoy eating at all the great places in Cruz Bay. I'll be more than happy give more details if you need any! I'm ready to go back !
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