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poss Nov 3rd, 2007 08:47 AM

Peter Island spa beach
Just wondering: Is the beach where the spa is one that's usable for snorkeling-- or is it just a handsome beach that one looks at from the sap area, but not that one actually uses in the other senses? Thanks

beachplum Nov 3rd, 2007 10:42 AM

you walk down Deadman's and cross the plateau where the 'copters land to Big Reef Bay before you get to Little Deadman's (which is okay for snorkeling) and Honeymoon. I found the best beach for snorkeling is White Bay at the two ends. Big Reef Bay is good for walking but is very rough.

poss Nov 3rd, 2007 02:02 PM

Thanks, Beachplum (I believe you've replied to some of my queries in the past also).
I"m still trying to decide whether to give PI our first try, or just stay with good old Caneel and Virgin Gorda, where I know the snorkeling is fine. I was hoping that since there was a reef at the spa beach, the snorkeling might be good; but in photos it always looks rough. Tant pis. Since the ocean view rooms at PI sound fairly awful (esp the bathrooms) and since the beach situation can't possibly hold a candle to what's at Caneel, likewise the snorkeling, I guess it'll be same old, same old. I'd kind of like to give PI a try because I remember anchoring there several times several decades ago, but I guess for land-based folks, the minuses outweigh the pluses, at least for these folks. I'll probably go around in more circles before I decide definitely no.
Thanks once more for your input.

LilRicky Nov 3rd, 2007 02:25 PM

Would you consider Biras Creek or Gauna Island?

poss Nov 3rd, 2007 03:52 PM

Visited Biras several times when we were on VG. I love the grounds-- all those terrific trails and views-- but I thought the beach was pretty poor. Also, no real snorkeling off the beach. Years ago, we enjoyed the dinghy kind of snorkeling, but now that we're up in years, we really appreciate being able to step into the water and have good snorkeling. Also, all the up and downing (by bicycle or whatever) would be a nuisance at Biras (as it might be at PI).
Have never been to Guana. Will look into it again, but my memory is that I thought there'd be too much up and downing there as well. Also not real fond of a "cluby" atmosphere (though that impression may be mistaken).
Thanks for the suggestions!

beachplum Nov 3rd, 2007 06:06 PM

I happened to love Biras' beach - small but no one was there most of the time unless they were doing a b-b-que and found the mix of Europeans and Americans very nice but that bike ride got old quickly! It is alot of up and down and now they use the golf carts to transport but I'd much rather be on a swimming beach. Guana's cottages are on a ridge and it too is up and down, you are right. But the snokeling there is on the two reefs on White Bay (every island has its White Bay!) and it really is quite good. I didn't snorkle much at PIR other than at White Bay and at the two ends, it was okay. PIR would have the least of the three of walking - and they too have the carts unless you choose to do the trails or hike to White Bay. I did enjoy the Boston whalers at Biras so you could venture out on your own. Guana and PIR does have better snorkeling than Biras.
Cooper Island has good snorkeling and a very small Beach Club that I haven't been to in years. Good snorkeling there but not so sure that it would measure up to the "luxury" of the other places.
I do like Caneel, the 7 beaches and its atmosphere. I'm just not happy with the "progress" on STJ, the traffic, all the McMansions and improvements. The other spots have made improvements and are more "luxurious" compared to Caneel's standards (which are just fine if they hadn't closed in the units and Turtle Bay!) I miss those louvered screens on the units and open air at the Estate House! - PIR marina rooms are roomy and very nice but I prefer beachfront and you're right, the bathrooms are nothing special and there is no cross ventilation - I take my old cold bones in the winter to the Carib to be warm - not to sit in chilling a/c with a sweater! ;-)Now if Sir Richard would hurry and open up Moskito Island again - miss the old Drakes Passage. Did you ever stop there?

poss Nov 4th, 2007 01:06 PM

Moskito, yes!!
But what's with the "closed in" units at Caneel?? The estate house at Turtle also?? Yipes. We virtually never use a.c. in the Caribbean (we're there in winter). What did Caneel do?! (We were there December '06-- last December-- and I don't remember things being different from what I'd remembered from past visits.)
Another PI question: Do men need jackets for the main restaurant? (Also, is it open-air or a.c.?)
Thanks, beachplum.

beachplum Nov 4th, 2007 03:10 PM

no, if you were there recently you've seen the glass windows - years ago they were louvered screens and no glass at all. Nothing has changed recently - they redid the Estate House I think when Rosewood took over - not sure. Not to upset the applecart but am sure you'll find it as you remember it.
Jackets are optional at Tradewinds. Just collared shirts and slacks for men and closed toe shoes.

ScubaMom Nov 5th, 2007 04:29 AM

BeachPlum is right... snorkeling at Peter Island's White Bay is good, plus no crowds! The other great snorkeling is to hop on Paradise Watersports boat (right at the dive shop) and do some world class snorkeling at The Indians, Cooper, Norman Island Caves, and The Rhone. You won't get that at Caneel! :-)

Add the gorgeous beaches, two excellent restaurants, and friendly staff, Peter Island is definitely a unique destination.

poss Nov 7th, 2007 03:06 PM

Thanks for continued in-put.
Btw, those snorkeling trips-- Indians, Norman Island, etc-- go from Caneel as well. When our granddaughter was with us once when we were staying at Gallows, we booked one of those snorkeling excursions so that she could get a taste of the BVI's and some neat snorkeling spots. The boat actually stopped at Caneel as well as at Cruz Bay. We loved that little excursion, but I don't think I'd be interested in paying extra to do something like that when I was paying Peter Island's hefty fee to begin with.
But I'm definitely leaning towards giving PI a try, despite reports of less than terrific linens and bathrooms and less than stellar cuisine. (I know that many folks think that PI food is great; others rate it much less highly. Similarly, we found the food at Little Dix and Caneel nothing to write home about; others love it. De gustibus.)
What luxury to be mulling such questions though! How delicious even to contemplate vacations in places like these! Thanks again.

beachplum Nov 7th, 2007 05:00 PM

You did check scubamom's website? Thought I posted it on this thread but musta been another

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