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Single Mom traveling with two teenaged sons

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Apr 4th, 2013, 07:15 PM
  #1
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Join Date: Apr 2013
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Single Mom traveling with two teenaged sons

I have always wanted to be there the first time my sons see beautiful blue Caribbean water. My kids are 13 and 15 and I want to take them on a memorable vacation before they are "too old" to want to hang out with Mom. I don't have a huge budget but am willing to splurge a bit, as they haven't been on a plane since Disney...9 years ago! Any suggestions?
vannflood is offline  
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Apr 5th, 2013, 06:37 AM
  #2
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
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Well, first it would help if you tell us what your budget actually is - we have no idea show much you are willing to spend - saying you "don't have a hugh budget but are willing to splurge a bit" doesn't give us any real idea of what you have available for the trip. You see resort prices in the Caribbean can vary tremendously from say $150/night to well over $5,000/night.

We need to know how long a trip you are planning and when are you planning to travel as both will also have an affect on your budget. Summer is a good time to travel in the Caribbean as you'll find some of the lowest room rates of the year but again we will need a budget range to steer you in the right direction.

Does your budget include airfare? If so where will you be flying from as airfares can use up a hefty portion of one's travel budget.

What do your kids like to do and what type of sights interest them? Don't tell us you want "nice beaches" almost every Caribbean island has them.

Help us help you - give us more information!
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Apr 5th, 2013, 07:57 AM
  #3
 
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We had a nice stay at the Westin St. John a few years ago. Great pool area and proximity to the fabulous north shore beaches. There are windsurfing and paddleboard rentals at Cinnamon Bay, snorkeling, VI Ecotours with kayaks, and hiking the ruins in the National Park.

There's Atlantis in the Bahamas, of course, which I think of as a resort on steroids (never been though). Also check out Aruba and Turks and Caicos.
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Apr 5th, 2013, 01:20 PM
  #4
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Thanks. I am new at this. We would definitely be going in the summer. Either July or August, whenever I can get the best deal. We will be flying out of New York (unless we take a cruise, but I was iffy about that with the kids). I was thinking we would go for a week. The kids obviously like the beach and sports. They would love to zip-line or hike a waterfall. They also like history and nature and would enjoy sight seeing.
I was hoping to keep the cost around the $4,000 range including air fare. I could shorten the amount of time a bit if it helped us to go some place we would really love. I have heard good things about Turks and Caicos. Atlantis looks cool but I think they would like to vary their experiences a little. (They would love a good water park...but a week of it would be a bit much for all of us).
Thanks for any help you can offer.
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Apr 5th, 2013, 03:25 PM
  #5
 
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OK, traveling in July/August will get you access to some of the lowest room rates of the year, so that's a plus. When pricing accommodations at any resort you can often save money by opting for garden view rooms vs. beachfront rooms but no matter what type of room you choose you'll still have full access to all the resort's facilities.

Now, the Turk & Caicos is noted for having spectacular white sand beaches but they are flat, arid islands and lack a lot of hiking opportunities, there are no waterfalls zip lining or real "history and Nature". The T&C's are also a comparatively expensive island and while you can find reasonably priced accommodations you "travel dollar" will go further on other islands. I'd skip the T&C's for this trip, it really doesn't fit your needs.

Check out St. John in the USVI's - 2/3's of the island is a National Park so the boys can hike the hills and forests to their heart's content, the island has wonderful beaches, very good to excellent snorkeling and plenty of water sports - there's no zip lining, though. You'll fly from NY to St. Thomas, which is usually one of the lower airfare destinations in the Caribbean than take a short ferry ride to St. John.

Another island you should consider is St. Kitts. You can fly there non-stop from JFK on American Airlines on Wednesday's and Sunday's. There are nice beaches (with darker sand) lots of "Old World Caribbean" history, plenty of rain forests and a volcano to hike, old ruins to explore, one of the most impressive fortresses in the Caribbean, plenty of water sports and you can take a day sail or ferry to nearby Nevis for more access to hiking, history and nature. Look at the Marriott Resort, it should be in your price range.

Look also at St. Martin. Because it has a Dutch side and a French side it's like visiting two different islands. It offers hiking, zip lining, lots of history, very nice beaches, every type of water sports you can image plus there's plenty of shopping for you and more restaurants than you can dine at during a month of Sundays. The island has many "condo resorts" which will give you the ability to rent a 2 or 3 bedroom condo while still having all the amenities of a full service resort. The cost will be about the same as staying at a hotel; and you'll have access to a living room, kitchen (you can prepare some or all of your meals to save money) and laundry facilities.

Hope this helps.
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Apr 5th, 2013, 03:45 PM
  #6
 
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One more thought about St. Martin - you can easily take a short ferry ride to Anguilla for a memorable day trip where you and the boys can stroll along spectacular white sand beaches and snorkel a few of the near shore reefs.
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Apr 5th, 2013, 03:59 PM
  #7
 
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Puerto Rico has everything you listed above. Rainforest, water falls, history, hiking, beaches, etc.
YOu may also want to look into the Playa del Carmen area of Mexico. Lots of history to explore, zip lines, beaches, etc.
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