St Marten or Aruba?

Old Apr 28th, 2001, 07:13 AM
  #1  
lisa
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St Marten or Aruba?

We're looking for good beaches for snorkelling, scuba, fine dining and just an all around wonderful place for a vacation.
 
Old Apr 28th, 2001, 06:36 PM
  #2  
Susan
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I would go to Aruba or the Caymans before I would pick St. Martin. I have not been to Aruba but it's got to be nicer. St. Martin is a very nasty island. Do a little research & save yourself some money by spending it on a nicer Island. There has been quite a few postings on the crime in St. Martin as well as problems with trash everywhere. Ever wonder why you can go to St. Martin so cheaply? You get what you pay for: dirty beaches, trash in the water, rude people, high crime etc.
 
Old Apr 28th, 2001, 07:03 PM
  #3  
cheryl
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sorry you feel that way Susan. We have been doing St. Maarten for years - it's our favortie!

Lisa, Aruba is NOT worth it.I'd NEVER go there again. Very windy. St Maarten is MUCH better. Superb restatuants, great beaches (many private ) even a nudist colony. GO THERE!

Grand Cayman was great, though, too. But been to St. Maarten at least 6 times. LOVE IT!
 
Old Apr 29th, 2001, 06:04 AM
  #4  
Vanessa
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I've been to both and like both. Both have the things you're looking for.

Ignoring the money considerations, if I had to choose, I would pick Aruba. However, when it comes to value for my money, St. Martin would win.
 
Old Apr 29th, 2001, 12:41 PM
  #5  
Jenn
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I think that Aruba is better. Been to both islands & St. Martin DOES have some problems. I stayed 8 days there a few months ago & really disliked the island. There was a big trash problem & many of the people were very rude to us. I never found that on Aruba, Grand Caymen, St. John or the BVI's. I guess it depends on what you are looking for. If you can overlook the trash on certain beaches, the high crime (my Jeep was broken into right in front of me) & the rudeness, then go to SXM. SXM is a pretty cheap island in my opinion & if you are on a tight budget, then it's all good. If you can spend the $, go somewhere nicer.

Good luck with whatever you choose.
 
Old Apr 29th, 2001, 02:07 PM
  #6  
Susan
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Lisa, I've been to Aruba and highly recommend it if you are looking for great (but sometimes hot) weather, beautiful beaches and some of the nicest local people. Although keep in mind a few things if you go. . .the closer you get to the Hyatt, the more croweded the beach. You'll need to get up early to get beach chairs, etc. You may want to explore some of the other hotels further south near LaCabana. The beaches are wider and less crowded. . not to mention the breeze is a little stronger because the hotels are not high rises and this helps when the sun really kicks in. There are some wonderful restaurants. . check out Valentino's. . the best italian food I have had in my life and the setting is so pretty. Also great cocktail scene up at the lighthouse at sunset. Don't know a lot about St. Marten . . .sorry! Enjoy!
 
Old Apr 29th, 2001, 02:48 PM
  #7  
PJ
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Lisa, just got back this past week from our week in Aruba. We went 2/2000 and stayed at the LaCabana and enjoyed it but bought a timeshare at the Marriott Ocean Club. Stayed there last week and it was beautiful. The people on the island are very friendly, beaches are gorgeous, we have two teenagers and they had a great time snorkelling. We didn't have any problem getting a place on the beach (or a hut to get away from the sun) but we didn't spend the entire day in one spot either. There was always someone leaving when we were ready for a spot. Only complaint this year was the wind was stronger than last year. Couldn't go for walks on the beach at night, sand killed the legs! Neighbors go to St. Martin every year and they love it, they're trying to talk us into it. Oh, food on Aruba is very expensive, but very good. I would think all the islands would be about the same for prices for food. But wherever you go TAKE SUNSCREEN!
 
Old Apr 29th, 2001, 04:46 PM
  #8  
Karen
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Since you asked, I would vote for St. Martin!! Fantastic food on the French side in Grande Case! Wonderful small intimate hotels and resorts and the proximity to Anguilla, St. Barts and Saba for day trips if you wanted makes it an ideal spot! Of course, Aruba will cost you a whole lot less with those "package" deals and do they have some "bargain basement" prices for the week!! But be prepared that you will think you are in some suburb of some American city that just happens to be on a lovely Carib beach!! There certainly are plenty of hotels elbow to elbow, loads of American tourists and a constant wind that can make the beach uncomfortable with the blowing biting sand!! And we did enjoy one or two of the restaurants on Aruba! On St. Martin, it is hard to choose every nite with the wonderful dining. For atmosphere and rekindingly the romance head for St. Martin!
 
Old Apr 30th, 2001, 03:59 PM
  #9  
chas
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I love these people that try to compare the 2 islands and then bash each other. The truth is that it comes down to what you are looking for.

Case in point, St martin is described as poor and arid and brown. Ever drive to the other side of Aruba away from the resorts? Of course not, there you don't have to.

Aruba's pluses major resorts in a central location with lots to do and naturally tends to be safer. St Martin's pluses is that the resorts are smaller, non-Americanized where you must travel around to see things.

Yes, you are forced to see the good and the bad with St martin beacuse the island forces you into seeing everything. With Aruba, you can stay in a more centralized area. Each has it's pluses and minuses. Do you want to experience an island, or South Florida?
 
Old Apr 30th, 2001, 07:48 PM
  #10  
anonymous
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And I just love those who think they are on a higher plain or just a wee bit smarter than everyone else then boils it down to "an island or South Florida." If that isn't the utimate bash of Aruba, I haven't seen one yet! Guess ol' Chas is the only one who sees a "discussion" as bashing and then puts the cherry on the top of the sundae with the ultimate insult while pretending he is some "ultimate" poster above bashing!! LOL
 
Old May 1st, 2001, 12:46 AM
  #11  
Dianne
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Karen W -- where did you stay on St. Martin?
 
Old May 1st, 2001, 03:14 AM
  #12  
Mike
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Anon:

Don't you just love those people that can't own up to their own comments. You're now bashing South Florida? Now how do you think all of us that live there feel.

There are a lot of nice places here and people seem to enjoy visiting. I've been to Aruba and understand Chas's point.

You seem to be the one putting yourself above everyone. Judge not lest yea be judged as well.
 
Old May 4th, 2001, 07:21 AM
  #13  
lisa
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Now I'm more confused than ever.Is anyone familiar with these resorts?Costa Linda and Playa Linda in Aruba or Sapphire in St.Marten?
 
Old May 4th, 2001, 07:36 AM
  #14  
ArubaLisa
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Good beaches, snorkeling, scuba and fine dining can all be found on the island of Aruba.

Both the Playa Linda and Costa Linda are among the best resorts on the island of Aruba. In addition, Bucuti, Radisson, Marriott and the Hyatt.

For you to make a decision on where you would like to stay I usually suggest picking a beach first and then narrowing it down from there. There are some differences between Eagle Beach and Palm Beach, Eagle/
Manchebo Beach has some waves and you can feel the wind here a little more than Palm Beach. Eagle is wide, long and very white. Because of it's width and length it will be less crowded than Palm Beach. There is less boat activity, so the water is clearer. Jet Ski noise will be found at Eagle Beach, but not at Palm Beach. There are quite a few watersports boats along Palm Beach.

Palm Beach is also long and white, but narrower and a lot less wind. Because the beach is narrower, it may seem crowded, but most of the resorts have long stretches for spreading out. For us, crowded is the Jersey shore on the 4th of July. Our favorite part? The total lack of waves makes it perfect for spending an afternoon on a float. Definitely one of our favorite activities.

Our personal preference for Palm Beach over Eagle Beach is activity. There are all types of water sports and quick access to 3 dive companies. Some fantastic restaurants are within walking distance.

Most of our trips are spent reading and relaxing on the beach. And then a nice meal in the evening. There is not enough room left to go into a discussion on the restaurants.

If you have any questions, please feel free to e-mail me. No matter where you stay Aruba is paradise.

Just as an aside, my in-laws own 2 weeks of timeshare in St. Martin. Last year things there were so bad they vowed never to return. This past March they made their first visit to Aruba and found that Aruba is perfect for them.
 
Old May 4th, 2001, 08:38 AM
  #15  
lisa
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Now, I'm more confused than ever!Anyone familiar with these resorts:Costa Linda and Playa Linda in Aruba and
 
Old May 4th, 2001, 08:47 AM
  #16  
anonymous
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I didn't mean to bash S. Florida in fact I lived in the Keys for years!! LOL and loved every minute of it! Unlike Aruba which is at the bottom of my "island preferences" list!! If I want Carib, I want Carib culture and experiences. Not that there is a thing wrong with experiencing a Florida vacation in Florida either but its NOT Carib. Why go to Aruba to find out it is the replica of any American suburb with Outbacks, Dunkin' Donuts and all the other trappings of home? Some travelers prefer the "familiarity" rather than experience differences and that's okay but travelers asking about differences should know what they are getting!
 
Old May 5th, 2001, 06:32 AM
  #17  
jill
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hi there, if i had to pick between the 2 islands - i would definitely pick St. Marten.. The restaurants in Grand Case were unbeleivable and very romantic. Aruba has very little culture of its own and does have crime -it is just covered up. One of the largest prisons is out by Baby Beach! We found St. Marten to have really wonderful people
and Aruba had very little to offer other than the weather. Costa linda and playa linda however did look like very nice resorts.
 
Old May 5th, 2001, 08:09 AM
  #18  
Kristal
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I put my vote in for Aruba, It is clean, fiendly and not too overpriced. St Martin is very dirty, extremely overpriced and yes nudity (old, fat people, not what you think).
Aruba does have a wind, it is called ocean breeze, it keeps things cool and

arid not hot and humid like St Martin.
Good luck in you decision.
 
Old May 6th, 2001, 04:58 PM
  #19  
Sheri
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Kristal is totally wrong...not everyone in St. Martin who nude sunbathes is "old and fat". The bottom line is--if you want a small island feel, go to St. Martin. If you want a larger Florida like (nothing wrong with that, we go there often also) atmosphere, go to Aruba. If you go to St. Martin, stay on the French side as it is nicer than the Dutch side and has alot of wonderful French restaurants.
 
Old May 7th, 2001, 10:27 AM
  #20  
lisa
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Thanks for everyone's opinion,even though I still can't decide.I loved the Cayman Islands and stayed at the Morritts Tortuga,so now you know a little better what I like.NOT alot of people!!! Is St.Croix any better?I'll be on a timeshare week so I picked the islands that had alot of resorts to choose from.Any replies to that?
 

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