St. John or Kauai?

Old Nov 2nd, 2001, 03:07 PM
  #1  
Michael
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St. John or Kauai?

I am trying to decide between Kauai or St. John for a one week honeymoon in June. We have never been to either one so are looking input and recommendations from those who have. Thanks.

Michael
 
Old Nov 2nd, 2001, 04:28 PM
  #2  
Mike
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No comparison! St. John.
 
Old Nov 2nd, 2001, 05:08 PM
  #3  
Julie
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We loved St. John, but we've never been to Kauai (I've heard it's wonderful as well). Although St. John was fabulous, I think the answer to your question really depends on what you're looking for. What's your definition of a great honeymoon spot?
 
Old Nov 2nd, 2001, 06:24 PM
  #4  
Louis
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They are different islands and they offer different things. Pick the one that is the least expensive including transportation, rooms, meals etc. Believe me you will be happy. If you are on the west coast go west and if you are nearer to the caribbean go there. If you are considering St. John you might look at Virgin Gorda which is very near but in the BVI. If you want a little island go to St. John or Virgin Gorda.
 
Old Nov 2nd, 2001, 07:28 PM
  #5  
anony
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Did a bareboat Charter few years ago and visted a number of the islands and the island that was my favorite was Virgin Gorda.

Been to Kauai as well they call it the garden Island very lush and green that's because it rains a lot. The time I was there it became overcast by mid afternoon . You need to check out weather patterns for best time of year to visit.
 
Old Nov 3rd, 2001, 01:30 AM
  #6  
Mike
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Absolutely Kauai! Superior standard of living, more lush and beautiful, better choice of restaurants. But to be fair, St. John has the Caribbean sea, which is prettier, more clear and warmer!
 
Old Nov 3rd, 2001, 11:31 AM
  #7  
Susan
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We have been to Kauai and St.John, but to be honest St. John was 17 years ago and it has changed considerably!! Kauai was beautiful but my disappointment was the weather. We went in April and had rain every morning and sometimes in the afternoon. This would be the reason why I would not return to this island. What about Maui, it is also beautiful!! St. John was one of our favorite islands, very small and beautiful beaches. The big resorts were not there many years ago! Not alot to do here but beach....depends on what you are looking for. Feel free to e-mail me direct if I can help! We spent one week in St.Thomas for our honeymoon and the other on St. John. Hope this helps, have fun!!
 
Old Nov 3rd, 2001, 05:38 PM
  #8  
Alison
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Haven't been to Kauai but just returned from St. John and loved it!!! If you have a bottomless wallet and want to make your honeymoon extra special, I'd recommend Caneel Bay. It is very expensive, very exclusive but very well worth it. St. John has spectacular scenery, privacy, and access to many other islands e.g. St. Thomas, Virgin Gorda, Tortola. You should rent a car and drive to Cinnamon Bay (best beach!) and Waterlemon Cay (very secluded and best snorkeling). You should go on a private sailboat charter for a day. Weather was perfect every day. Variety of food is limited because the town is small but I heard Caneel Bay has best restaurants. Good luck!
 
Old Nov 11th, 2001, 01:23 PM
  #9  
karen
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Alison,

I just read your review of St. John's at fodors.com. I am planning a trip and need to decide really soon between Caneel Bay and Little Dix Bay on Virgin Gorda.

I read the fodors.com raves and reviews on Caneel Bay, and most of them said the service was disappointing and the meals not great, so that's why I thought Little Dix Bay instead. It sounds like you had a different experience at Caneel - is that the case?

Also, about the car rental, do you drive on the right side or left, and can you rent an automatic jeep (vs manual).

Lastly, if you recommend the location of the Caneel property that you thought was nicest, near a certain beach, that would be great.

Thanks!

Karen
 
Old Jan 4th, 2002, 11:10 AM
  #10  
Lawren
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Coincidently my family and I were in Kauai last July and in St John in November.

My favorite is St John the water is warmer the airfare is cheaper the flight is shorter. The beaches are better and the island is small enough to go wherever you want on a moments notice. Plus you have the option of dutyfree shopping in St Thomas.

Kauai does have it's good points though. There is only one good snorkeling beach but many beautiful waterfalls. The Napoli range and Waimea (sp) canyon are gorgeous. It is surprisingly rural. Although if you stay at the Hyatt in Poipu you may never leave the property...

Either way you will enjoy yourselves but if you are only going for a week go to the closest one. We are from NY and the 10 hour flight plus transfer to Kauai you lose 2 days of your vacation.

Good luck.
 
Old Jan 5th, 2002, 11:28 AM
  #11  
Zoe
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Michael, If you havent decided yet- we have been to both. Again stick to the facts and decide what is more important to you. Both are heavenly and both are pristene- perfect for nature lovers. Airfares are low now so for the value, I would pick Kauia. I am very picky abt. accommodations and we stayed at an incredible place, private, extremely affordable, kitchen condo, nice own,(small) private beach looking w/most amazing view of Napali Coast cliffline, STUNNING setting.View of pristene, exotic birds flying in misty cove-waves crashing against cliffs. Absolutely surreal. It was the property right next to "Charro's" restaurant, which thank God was closed. The travel books say the name of property I forget. Most lovely people Ill never forget-no phones. We so sadly got message my dad died bk. in states while we were there. Staff was awesome. So much more to do in Kauai also I think. Getting there might not even be more expensive. The Virgin Islands are extremely more expensive and unless you are staying on St. John be VERY prepared for the stark reality of poverty. We visitied St. John and it is much less so. Fewer places to stay though and much more expensive-but again- very unique, and so much personality. We stayed at Saphire Beach on St. Thomas. Wow -expensive and as soon as you dare to leave the premises w/a life risking taxi ride, you will be disheartened w/the contrast of resorts to what many real islanders live like. I suggest looking into Grand Cayman getting a private condo on "seven" mile beach up on the more quiet Northern part of that section and the prices are MUCH better - no comparison to snorkeling so they say and just as much to do. BIG bonus airfare you can fly directly onto the island with out paying the expensive puddle jumping fares like in Bahamas or Virgin Islands- depending on which island you desire. The beaches are gorgeous on that Northern most end of Kauai too, but beware- the undertow is something to be strongly considered....also tends to be rougher waters than St. John. St. John has incredible underwater snorkling tour we didnt see- weather and waters rough there too when we went!! FYI we just booked a trip to G.Cayman on the beach I fore mentioned. Sounds best of all!! We shall see. The Discovery Point Club there has condos for exceptional price- best snorkling in Caymans perhaps right out our door. Perfect beaches. You might ck into www.caymanvacations.com Amazing discounts too available for "off-season" starts June 1!!! Best wishes, Zoe
 
Old Jan 6th, 2002, 05:01 AM
  #12  
anon
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Am I reading correctly? "The stark reality of poverty"??!! I've lived here for a very long time and wonder if maybe Zoe got her geographical location incorrect and stayed in the Dominican Republic rather than the US Virgin Islands or conversely what her poverty guidelines encompass. And the "life risking taxi ride...after daring to leave the property"? Maybe she happened to drive by one of the housing projects and assumed something from their outward appearance. Had she driven in there she would have seen brand new cars on the street (a fair sprinkling of BMWs) and might have noticed a lot of the occupants wearing pretty nice clothes and jewelry. What ever she might have seen which she thinks of as poverty is quite beyond me. I feel better now I've got that off my chest! Anyway, Michael, whichever island you choose, have a wonderful trip and enjoy your honeymoon!
 
Old Jan 8th, 2002, 12:12 AM
  #13  
Tim
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Get your head OUT of the sand, Anon! Oh yes, so many BMWs, just like the French Riviera, right?!? PLEASE! Both St. Thomas/St. John have abundant poverty to boot!!!
 
Old Jan 8th, 2002, 04:52 AM
  #14  
Vic
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St. John really has only two hotels. Caneel Bay and the Westin. Caneel Bay's main attraction are its seven beaches. They will compare to any. It's expensive and laid back.

The Westin is a modern resort with beautiful grounds. It's beach is inferior. It's full of anchored boats, the water is murky and the sand is inferior to the beaches at Caneel Bay. You have a twenty minute drive to get to a decent beach.

The only town, Cruz Bay, has a number of restaurants, ranging from the very modest to fairly upscale.

A large part of St. John is a National Park. Outside the park to the north really has little interest in terms of scenery or beaches. All the action is clustered in a small area in the southern tip.

There are many more hotels on Kauai. The best is the Hyatt Regency on Poipu Beach on the southern end of the island. It's a stunning resort. Beautiful grounds and plenty of activities you would expect at a world class resort. However, it doesn't have the moneyed yet laid back feeling of Caneel Bay. There are far fewer children at Caneel. The joke is Caneel is for the newly wed and the nearly dead.

The variety of restaurants is considerable. There are many more attractions than St. John.

If you decide on Kauai, you should stay on the southern tip. The weather is much better there.

I've been to both a number of times. I like both. We like beaches and they are better in and around Caneel. I feel somewhat more secure on Kauai. The roads are much better, and they drive on the "wrong" side of the road. By and large, the people of Hawaii are friendlier than in the USVI. Because of the poverty, there seem to be some resentment of the "rich" tourists.



 
Old Jan 8th, 2002, 05:30 AM
  #15  
joan
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I've been doing research on Kauai, and I've read that in summer, the northern side of the island is best, since surf makes southern beaches very rough that time of year...
 
Old Jan 8th, 2002, 05:39 AM
  #16  
Vic
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It's no accident that all the hotels are on the southern end of the island except Princeville. Club Med had a resort on the northern end of the island many years ago. They closed it because it rained so much. It also tends to be windy up there.
 
Old Jan 8th, 2002, 01:38 PM
  #17  
x
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Kauai is nothing special. Nice scenery and nothing else, but you can get that in the Poconos. It's no contest. The winner should be St. John. The "Caribbean" always beats Hawaii - better beaches, nicer sand, warmer water, calmer water, funkier drinks, more things to do. Save the trip to Kauai for when you're 50, then it'll be more your speed.
 
Old Jan 15th, 2002, 07:13 PM
  #18  
ellen
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My husband and I recently returned from Caneel Bay in St. John and Little Dix Bay in Virgin Gorda. The beaches were some of the most beautiful I have ever seen. Should you decide on Caneel Bay you must get an oceanfront room. Restaurants were just OK (we went during off season) but several excellent restaurants in Cruz Bay. Little Dix Bay on Virgin Gorda was wonderful also but we were disappointed that there was vertually no town to walk through; no restaurants you could go to.

I loved Kauai also; but I think the beaches in the British Virgin Islands are just magnificent!! I would choose Kauai only if you live on the westcoast.
 
Old Jan 16th, 2002, 08:30 PM
  #19  
D&K
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Visited K 1992 Honeymooned on K 1995, just got back from STT, StJ. a week ago. Beaches, warm water, calm water, seemingly more touristy/more to do all go to USVI's. Mystique, beauty, cleanliness, friendliness, not as congested, goes to K.
Poverty, smoverty, it all depends on what part of the islands you visit. When was the last time you visited your big city? Same stuff, people who make poor decisions, have bad attitudes. Sorry, I lived in Ethiopia for a 18 months. The people on either of the islands were living like kings even in the worst "squallor". And it is their choice!!!!
 
Old Feb 10th, 2002, 10:35 AM
  #20  
susan
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whoever said kauai is like the poconos, you have got to be kidding, or you were so out of it in your airconditioned taurus you couldnt tell the difference. i grew up near the poconos. the north shore of kauai is the most beautiful places i have ever been. the hike in the napali coast is spectacular. the waterfalls and rainbows sublime. the north coast is for the nature and beauty enthusiast, not for the casino loving, duty free shopping person. kauai is lush, remote, magical and, yes, very rainy, alas the name the garden isle.
 

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