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If you had one day in St. Thomas what would you do?

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baltimore, md
posts: 1,403
reviews: 152
If you had one day in St. Thomas what would you do?

We've never been - are bringing our 8/9 year old boys on a cruise. We have some active tours planned on other islands, so i'd be fine with just cabbing it to an amazing beach and laying low - but what would you do? Should we do a tour? Take a boat to st. john (then we'd miss st. thomas :( or just go to a local beach and if so which one. Really torn here and could use advise. thanks all!

St Thomas
Destination Expert
for St. Thomas
posts: 9,060
reviews: 14
1. Re: If you had one day in St. Thomas what would you do?

There are some excellent and very varied tours offered through the cruise ships which cater to pretty much anything you might be interested in doing from sight-seeing to boating, shopping and beaching in different combinations. I would take a look to see what they offer and also check on cruisecritic.com where you'll find a lot of good hints from other cruisers.

North Pole, New York
posts: 4,176
reviews: 88
2. Re: If you had one day in St. Thomas what would you do?

As sttresident said cruisecritic is loaded with threads with ideas, and you will also find a Roll Call forum there where you can interact with others on your cruise.

But I would choose one of the most popular itineraries with cruisers and just taxi to an East End beach (or a beach closer to the dock if you want to save $$) and enjoy the wonderful beach, water and island views. Then taxi back to the Havensight dock area and either take the Skyride tram or taxi up to Paradise Point. Great spot to enjoy a cold drink like their Bailey's Bushwacker and admire the view of the harbor before returning to the ship. They're currently remodeling the bar area but they are open when ships are in port. Very relaxing day because you're on your own and not part of an organized tour, and I'm sure the boys would enjoy the tram and the view.

Of course a ship-sponsored or other organized tour would probably be less expensive, but wouldn't give you the flexibility of going on your own.

There are several beaches to choose from, on the East End you have Coki, a small bay with good snorkeling but it gets crowded and has a busier vibe with many vendors. Lindquist is very quiet and beautiful, there is an entry fee and no amenities except chair rentals I understand but someone else can confirm that. Sapphire and Secret Harbor are both home to condo resorts and have all the amenities you want as well as nice beaches. Closer to town are Lindbergh Bay (aka Emerald Beach) and Morningstar Beach, both nice enough and probably a $12pp roundtrip taxi versus , $18 taxi for the East End. And of course you have Magens Bay north of town. We're partial to Sapphire and sometimes Secret Harbor but they're all nice. If interested in the Skyride tram to PP your excursions desk should have refundable tram tickets.

baltimore, md
posts: 1,403
reviews: 152
3. Re: If you had one day in St. Thomas what would you do?

thanks both! the skyride tram looks awesome. you said this is something we can do that is close to the ship docking area? how much taxi to sapphire? is it easy to find one to return? how much time to give ourselves for a return to the sky tram? and how much time to dedicate to the sky tram experience?

Dallas, Texas
posts: 1
4. Re: If you had one day in St. Thomas what would you do?

Go to St. John by the ferry! Don't miss at least one day there it's amazing-you can't believe the beaches! We took a day sail with Jester his boat is near Funge's! It's great!

North Pole, New York
posts: 4,176
reviews: 88
5. Re: If you had one day in St. Thomas what would you do?

First of all what ship are you on, and when do you arrive and depart? That info will be helpful in making it the best day that you can for everyone.

The Skyride tram is a short walk from the Havensight (WICO) dock. If you are docked in Crown Bay that's on the other side of Charlotte Amalie and you will need to taxi to the tram.

Taxi from WICO to Sapphire is $9 - 10pp each way, there are taxis there for the return. The restaurant is currently closed. At Sapphire, but there is a restaurant up behind the Sapphire Marina, as well as a beach grill called the Banana Cabana that makes a good mahi mahi sandwich. Both places have runners on the beach, and the dive center rents lounges, floaties, snorkel gear, kayaks, and stand-up paddle boards if the boys want to be adventurous. The restrooms are modest but fine.

Secret Harbor has a restaurant and very calm water if that makes a difference. SH would be our first choice if not for Sapphire as far as renting a condo.

posts: 157
reviews: 4
6. Re: If you had one day in St. Thomas what would you do?

We were on a cruise with 7 adults and 7 kids. Took a taxi to Coki beach. Went to Coral World first and then spent the afternoon at the beach. The kids ranged in age from 7 to 17 and all seemed to enjoy the day.

We spent a week at Sapphire Beach Resort in Dec 2012. One of the days we went back to Coral World and Coki Beach. Our 9 year old snorkeled for 3 straight hours. I have never seen so many fish in one place. Was truly incredible. We had many nice days on Sapphire Beach also.

IMO I would do one of the beaches first and if time permits add the sky ride. We did it, was fun. Beach days were better.

Stafford, Virginia
posts: 4
reviews: 132
7. Re: If you had one day in St. Thomas what would you do?

It is $10 pp each way to go to Sapphire beach from town in a taxi. But the beach there is great and they have the banana cabanna. We love St Johns but you might feel rushed. It is $12 pp to go over to St John and if you do Honeymoon beach is nice and only a 2 mile round trip hike.

baltimore, md
posts: 1,403
reviews: 152
8. Re: If you had one day in St. Thomas what would you do?

this is all great info, keep it coming and thanks to all posters !

posts: 1,030
reviews: 1
9. Re: If you had one day in St. Thomas what would you do?

Hi Joey, I recognize you from the LV forum :)

You can't go wrong with cabbing to Sapphire and spending the day there. It is a beautiful beach. There is a snorkel shack right on the beach where you can rent chairs, snorkel gear, floaties, etc. and they have drinks, etc. There is also Banana Cabana right there to get food and drinks and also beach waiters to take drink/food orders.

Or Megan's Bay is breathtakingly beautiful :) The water there is very, very calm. Not sure if your boys are good swimmers or not. If they aren't, Megan's may be a better choice and there are plenty of facilities there. It can get crowded on cruise ship days but if you go there just walk down to your left (as you are facing the water) and keep going till the crowd is thinner.

We've done the Paradise Point thing before and in our opinion it isn't worth the cost but to each their own.

We've stopped there on cruises several times and have also gone to stay. If I recall correctly on the cruises we were able to share vans to the beaches which brought the cost down. I'm thinking we paid about $6 each, each way last time. No worries about getting a ride back. You can either arrange with the driver who took you to come and take you back at a specific time or there are always cabs waiting around.

Enjoy St. Thomas! It is a beautiful island :)

baltimore, md
posts: 1,403
reviews: 152
10. Re: If you had one day in St. Thomas what would you do?

3katmama thanks so much for the information! i think we may lean towards sapphire. this sounds crazy, but my boys complain when the ocean is calm and there are no "fun" waves. of course it would give me more peace of mind, but they may bore of no waves....?? love all the info you gave and see you back in the vegas board ! (going in april and oct this year, you?)