Caribbean or Belize?

Old Feb 1st, 2006, 01:29 PM
  #1  
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 14
Caribbean or Belize?

Hi everyone!

I've got to say honeymoon planning is hard work! I think I have 3 great ideas, and need help selecting the best trip. Your advise will be very much appreciated:

Our primary interests are:

relaxing on beautiful beaches as much as possible
Hiking to spectacular sites
Snorkeling
Romantic waterfront dinners
Drinks at a beach bar
Live music (nothing fancy) at night
Staying with in our $5000-$6000 budget.

Which of these is best:

Option 1: Renting a villa on St Barts for 7 days and chartering a boat for 4 days for island hopping.

Option 2: Renting a villa on St. John, and chartering a boat for 4 days for island hopping.

Option 3: Spending 11 days in Belize where we would spend 7 days on the coast an 4 days inland.

Thanks in advance!

iso_sun is offline  
Old Feb 1st, 2006, 02:11 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 1,716
I'll try to help you out. If it is within your budget and you are really serious about doing both a land and sea trip your best bet is Option 2. St. john is a beautiful and semi-lush island, 3/4's of which is a National Park which will give you many opportunities for hiking to sites with incredible views of neighboring islands. The island also boasts 15+ white and light golden sand beaches lined with palm trees and other natural vegetation, plenty of very good to excellent "off-beach" and "boat access" snorkeling locations, a variety of romantic restaurants and plenty of bar for those afternoon and evening cocktails. There are all types of rental villas in all price ranges. On top of that St. john is smack dab in the middle of the best sailing waters in the entire Caribbean where you'll have easy access to 25+ island and cays in the USVI's & BVI's with hundreds more beaches to visit.

For or rental villas check out the following web-site or do a google search for "Villa rentals, St. John, USVI's":
www.wimco.com
www.greatcaribbeangetaways.com
www.island-getaways.net
www.stjohnproperties.com
www.destinationstjohn.com

For information on crewed or bareboat charters check out the following web-sites or do a google search for "yacht charters, USVI's" or "yacht charters, BVI's.

As for Option 1 - St. Barth's is similar in topography to St. John but much more arid. It is more heavily populated so ther's less opportunity for hiking and although there are many nice beaches the snorkeling there is nowhere as good as you'll find in the USVI's and BVI's. There are a lot more rental villas and one of the greatest concentration of fine upscale French restaurants in the Caribbean. The island also offers lots of upscale chic and trendy shopping. Overall it is a more expensive destination than St. John.

As for Option 3 - Belize has some very good off shore (not off beach) snorkeling (the world's second largest reef runs off the coast) but the beaches there do not hold a candle to the ones you'd find on St. John or St. Baryh's. You'll find lots of moderately priced restaurants and beach bars and it will be the most economical of the three locations you are considering.

Hope this helps.
A_Traveller is offline  
Old Feb 1st, 2006, 02:17 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 1,716
Sorry forgot to list the yacht charter web-sites. For starters check out:
www.moorings.com
www.visailing.com
www.bayoryacht.com
www.EndlessSummer.com
A_Traveller is offline  
Old Feb 1st, 2006, 02:37 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 1,716
By the way you've posted this question twice on the Latin American Forum and twice on the Caribean Forum.
A_Traveller is offline  
Old Feb 2nd, 2006, 05:39 AM
  #5  
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Posts: 14
Thank you very much for the advice. The villa websites that you refered me to are great. Unfortunately for my fiancee and I, many of the nicest villas in St. John are already booked for our dates; is anyone aware of a 1-2 br villa with pool and views that's available June 5th - 12th.

You guys are the best!

Thanks again,

Pete
iso_sun is offline  
Old Feb 3rd, 2006, 08:52 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 446
Being that the #1 priority you listed is beautiful beaches, you need to pretty much forget about Belize. Although the water and reef (offshore) are great, the beaches are flat out lousy compared to anything I've seen in the caribbean. Snorkeling has to be by boat if you to see anything worthwhile. The people are amazing, the resorts are decent, and food is pretty good & cheap (mostly). But if nice beaches are important, you need to go with your 1st 2 options.
ScottB is offline  
Old Feb 3rd, 2006, 09:43 AM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 5
Belize was by far one of my favorite vacations. I recommended Belize to friends for their honeymoon, and they loved it.

Here is the web site for victoria house.
www.victoria-house.com
hollym is offline  
Old Feb 3rd, 2006, 02:47 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,558
Caribbeanvilla.com has a search engine where you can enter your dates. They have 14 two bedroom rentals available at that time. Keep in mind that you can rent a larger home and only use one bedroom for a cheaper price. Good luck in your search!

Frenchcaribbean.com lists many villas on St. Barts. We used them to find our rental for this spring. It is called Santal. It's a two bedroom for $2450 low season (from April on). They don't have an availability calendar online, but they have a toll free number and are very helpful.

St. John was beautiful and we are definitely looking forward to St. Barts. We haven't yet been to Belize. Our favorite tropical locale so far has been Kauai. Have you considered that?

Best wishes and good luck in your search!
Maggi
Maggi is offline  
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