Like St John - maybe a little busier...

Aug 23rd, 2007, 03:50 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2004
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Like St John - maybe a little busier...

We LOVE LOVE LOVE St. John! We love that it is LUSH, MOUNTAINOUS, has PRISTINE BEACHES and EXCELLENT SNORKELING... BUT... we would like to explore someplace different. Thinking of Playa Del Carmen - or Riviera Maya (Mexico) but wondering if it's too flat and scrubby (we love a JUNGLE-LIKE fee). Thought about St. Lucia - but not sure - I was there on a cruise and LOVED it - but not thrilled with the roads. Is it necessary to drive around? How are the all-inclusives? I didn't think the snorkeling was great there either... is it?

Thanks for any suggestions!

LPOWMACBACK is offline  
Aug 23rd, 2007, 04:18 PM
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pdc are is very flat but quite lush. there is some really good snorkeling.
st. lucia is not known to have good snorkeling.
virginia is offline  
Aug 23rd, 2007, 05:16 PM
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Check out Saba, Nevis, or maybe Belize..not versed in scuba/snorklin but St. Lucia is a fav of ours..can't find a better rain forest! Roads and a tropical islands don't mix..lower your expectations.
Cissy is offline  
Aug 23rd, 2007, 05:27 PM
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St. lucia is a volcanic island therefore beaches and snorkeling are not so great. A lush island with a pretty beach is the island of Grenada. Very friendly people as well. We did snorkel in Belize last year and had a great time. I cannot tell you much about the island but the snorkeling was great.
diann24 is offline  
Aug 24th, 2007, 05:50 AM
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I guess I have to agree with diann as I do remember the beaches not being sandy. But, as I said, it's beautifully lush. Grenada is a nice choice too. There are so many..hard to choose sometimes!
Cissy is offline  
Aug 24th, 2007, 06:03 AM
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I would guess that Virgin Gorda is the closest in feel to st. John in terms of pristine beaches, gently mountainous landscape, good snorkeling, and greenery, but it's quieter than St. John, not busier. I fell in love with it at once when I visited there for the first time last month.

If you can give up the excellent snorkeling for merely average snorkeling, Grenada would be an oustanding choice. Larger island, more to see, great hiking, waterfalls scattered around the island, bautiful mountainous interior, lovely beaches, good roads, fantastic West Indian flavour to the island that is missing in St. John, very good restaurants, and lots of fun activities. check out for lots of info.

And because eating out *can* be relatively inexpensive in Grenada, and because there are so many fun places to eat, I'd definitely NOT recommend an AI, though there are a few on the island.
ejcrowe is offline  
Aug 24th, 2007, 07:42 AM
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You should look into Belieze. They have some of the best snorkling in the Caribbean, with the 2nd longest barrier reef a mile off of their shores. Ambergies Cay is wonderful, and you can take a day trip by boat up a river into the jungle and visit Altun Ha, which is an ancient Mayan ruin.
Pappy is offline  
Aug 24th, 2007, 03:55 PM
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Thanks for all of your wondeful suggestions everyone - I'm going to look into Grenada & Belize but I'm also looking into ST. MARTIN? It seems lush & hilly -beautiful beaches & great snorkeling too! Will I find it to be much like St. Thomas? While we LOVE St. John, St. Thomas is NOT our cup of tea - FAR TOO MANY chains (KFC, McDonalds, K-Mart, etc) UGH...
LPOWMACBACK is offline  
Aug 24th, 2007, 04:08 PM
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St Martin doesn't have great snorkeling, not even close (imo).
poss is offline  
Aug 25th, 2007, 03:11 PM
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Okay all - I think we want to go to BELIZE!!! (Thanks for the suggestion Pappy!)

It seems to have everything we love about St. John (kind of)... but it is DIFFERENT! Great snorkeling, great beaches, beautiful waterfalls, some jungle-like terrain, all kinds of birds & wildlife - any negatives????

Thanks everyone!
LPOWMACBACK is offline  
Aug 25th, 2007, 03:38 PM
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I've never been to Belize-- but my sense was that it did not have great beaches (one of the reasons we've not gone). Also: If you get serious about that choice, you may want to check about damaage from Dean.
poss is offline  
Aug 26th, 2007, 04:34 AM
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We're heading back to Belize in a couple weeks. Love the place, but, although I've never been to St. John, I'm sure the beaches won't compare.

The sand is white and soft, but the beaches are mostly narrow, and because of the proximity of the reef, there is sea grass in the water. Some people really don't want to walk on it, others it doesn't bother.

Ambergris is fun, but, not as lush and striking as Grenada. Grand Anse is a great beach.

I can tell you lots more about Ambergris Caye if you're interested, you can e-mail me at [email protected]
JeanH is offline  
Aug 26th, 2007, 09:51 AM
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Belize is great -- suggest 4 days in-land for great jungle experience -- look at Mopan River Resort -- fantastic place -- then transfer 3 days to Ambergris for snorkeling (poor beaches as mentioned in previous post but many trips to reefs are available for reasonable costs)
ladystack is offline  
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