Where to visit in the caribbean?

Oct 16th, 2000, 05:05 PM
  #1  
Kristin
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Where to visit in the caribbean?

I am planning a vacation for May, 2001. I am looking for an island that compares to Aruba or the bahamas. I love crystal clean and clear beaches with big hotels like Marriott or Hyatt. Can anyone help? I am not interested in Jamaica or Puerto Rico. How is St. Thomas? I am not interested in St. John because of the hassle it takes to get there and people are writing in their distaste of the westin st. john.
 
Oct 16th, 2000, 05:34 PM
  #2  
Brenda
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I have been to Aruba, St. Marten, Barbados, St. Croix, and Bahamas (Paradis Island). I think you would like Paradis Island. The Atlantis Resort is beautiful. I did not stay there, but did tour it. It has a very nice beach. Check it out!! I did not care for Paradis Island, because when I travel, I am looking for the island atmosphere, and I felt that it was too commercialized like Aruba. You may enjoy it since you mentioned the big hotels and beaches.
 
Oct 17th, 2000, 05:45 AM
  #3  
jbrooks
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Try Grand Cayman! It is a very laid back island with the famous 7 mile beach where you have a choice of both Hyatt and Marriot Resorts, plus some other good ones. One of the exciting adventures is to go snorkeling with a lot of sting rays there....or visit the town of hell and send someone a postcard from "Hell." I have not been here yet but do a search and find out what others have said about their experience. I rarely hear of anyone not liking Grand Cayman and it seems to fit your bill.

Another great option would be the Turks and Caicos islands. But I am not sure if there are any of the major chains located on the islands...there are some very nice hotels, and the beaches are very beautiful.
 
Oct 17th, 2000, 05:56 AM
  #4  
jbrooks
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I also meant to add in my experience about St. Thomas. I really liked St. Thomas, but not as much as the BVI islands. But, since there are no large hotels in the BVI, I would say that St. Thomas might be a good alternative. I am opposite and don't like staying in large hotels or busy islands but I know some people prefer this type of vacation...to each your own!

There is definitely a lot to do on St. Thomas. I really enjoyed having lunch and drinks up at mountain top, and Sapphire beach and MAgens bay are must sees. IF you like to shop and like the hustle and bustle that its port town creates, St. Thomas is for you. If you want a laid back, quiet island experiences, you may want to think about Grand Cayman or Turks and Caicos. Hope this helps.
 
Oct 17th, 2000, 11:46 AM
  #5  
Charlie
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Kristin -

Are you really looking for big hotels? Try Grand Cayman. The beaches are lovely although it is extremely expensive. We tend to look for quiet and solitude - something different from our everyday life so we would like to stay away from the big hotels, but if that is your pick, you might like St. Thomas (we prefer St. John without a doubt - much better beaches, but it's your call - St. Thomas or Grand Cayman.
 
Oct 17th, 2000, 01:52 PM
  #6  
Gail
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Hotels don't come much bigger than the Atlantis on Paradise Island. The place is absolutely beautiful. You can explore the aquariums and the Dig, enjoy all the water slides and any of the eleven pools, or just lay back on the beach. I've been there three times and will definitely return several more times.
 
Oct 17th, 2000, 01:57 PM
  #7  
Kristin
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Thanks for all the responses. I have been to Grand Cayman, I did enjoy it but just looking for a new experience. I was looking into St. Thomas. How are the beaches there? If they are comparable to Aruba, I would be happy. Aruba's beaches are crystal clear and clean, they remove any rocks, debris, or seaweed every morning. Is ST. Thomas comparable in that sense? HOw are ST. John's beaches better than St. Thomas?
 
Oct 18th, 2000, 01:32 PM
  #8  
Karen
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Hard to compare beaches as each has their own unique characteristics. Most on St. John are pristine as they are part of the Nat'l Park and only a few get really crowded especially on cruise ship days when they have excursions to St; John. You could find the "high rise" experience that you may have liked on St. Thomas at a couple of the hotels including the Marriott's Frenchman's Reef but you won't find the gambling, the kinds of activity - shows, dinner shows, etc - in the Virgin Islands quite like they have in Aruba. Few booze cruises, party buses and the like. The beaches are usually coves or bays not one huge beach with all the resorts huddled on it and people elbow to elbow! If you stay on STT, it is easy to explore St. John by a short ferry ride and the BVI's either on a charter or public ferry where you will find some wonderful pristine beaches and life is even more laid back. Hotels do usually remove seaweed and rake their beach each day but the best beaches are those in the Nat'l Park on St. John where nature rules not someone with a rake!!! The tradewinds are great as opposed to the blowing wind on Aruba! Great snorkling, diving, laid back, lots of options for dining (but The Reef does offer an all-inclusive option). Lots to see and do in STT and very very different from Aruba (and definately my preference!).
 
Oct 21st, 2000, 07:31 AM
  #9  
Mark
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We have been to Aruba, St Lucia and Antigua. For the best beaches I've seen
go to Antigua. Powder white sand clear
blue water. 365 beaches so they claim.
 
Oct 21st, 2000, 12:03 PM
  #10  
amber
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I have been to St. Thomas & I think it's a little overcrowed & touristy. St. John is really not a hassle getting to since all you have to do is take a short ferry ride. Then you can take a day trip to Tortola, Virgin Gorda, & St. Thomas for the shopping. In my opinion, St. Thomas is only good for the shopping. It is much too commercial. If you like crowds, then St. Thomas is the place for you. My next vacation will be an island that does not service the cruise ships because I hate tripping over people on the beach. Good luck!
 
Oct 21st, 2000, 01:13 PM
  #11  
Karen
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Actually there are plenty of beaches that remain uncrowded even on cruise ship days on St. Thomas. Unfortuantely people picture only Charolette Amalie and the beaches that the cruisers frequent, Coki and Magens, but there are plenty of others where you don't trip over one another. Frankly on cruise ship day, now that ships make their stops in the BVI and St. John, comibned with the very popular excursions to Trunk Bay, cruise ship day is pretty busy on St. John too! For the bigger hotels, I think one has to stick to the more popular islands.
 
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