For the second year in a row my wife and I stayed at Cottages by the Sea in November. This time we stayed in Compass Rose which we really enjoyed. Cottages and St. Croix meet most of our needs. St. Croix has many American basics with a real Caribbean vibe. Cottages is on the beach, quiet, laid back, unpretentious, with a full kitchen, A/C, wifi, big screen TV, good cell phone connections, great patio, clean, beautiful grounds, and friendly people. It is close enough to Frederiksted and food stores (all within 4 miles) for restaurants and staples. The thing that I like best is the sand beach and really good snorkeling right outside the door. I have snorkeled the world, but the conditions right out front of Cottages is one of the best, considering its convenience, ease, water clarity, variety of underwater environment, and variety of rocks, coral, fish, animals, and plants. At least twice a day I would casually snorkel the area, both north and south of Cottages. I called it my own personal aquarium. My wife is not a water person, so she could rest or read while I swam with the turtles. We often walked the beach looking for sea glass. This is a great place to hunt the gems; we gathered quite a collection. For breakfast we made our own toast or cereal each day. The other meals were enjoyed at Lost Dog (pizza), Turtles Deli, Turtles after Dark, Villa Morales, Sand Castles next door, Rum Runners in Christiansted, Rowdy Joes on the north shore, and Rythyms at Rainbow Beach. We also went to the Caribbean Night at the Palms at Pelican Cove---all recommended. Each restaurant provided enough take-out boxes to make leftovers for the next lunch. And each day ended with a sunset rum whatever on our patio. I went to Buck Island with Big Beard's half day charter, and we drove through the rain forest. And this time I brought home a six-pack of Cruzan Rum so I can enjoy our sunset in Indiana with a rum whatever---OK, it's not quite the same sipping rum in a 10 degree blizzard. St. Croix and Cottages by the Sea are both highly recommended visits.
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