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“The Bad Kitty was fantastic!”

Calypso Charters Bad Kitty
Ranked #11 of 42 Tours in Cruz Bay
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Choose Bad Kitty and Calypso Charters, we will make your Virgin Island visit complete by spending a day boating on the beautiful Caribbean Sea. Explore the many treasures these Islands and waters have to offer on a boat charter. For ten years we have been guiding visitors throughout the US Virgin Islands and the British Virgin Islands. We offer many boating options to meet all of your charter needs: sail, motor, public, or private. Whether you want to have a peaceful sail on turquoise waters, explore The Baths, snorkel pristine reefs, or party at an island beach bar, we can deliver. We are based on St. John, USVI, but fully accommodate guests staying on St. Thomas. Over the past year we have taken over 15,000 guests on boat charters in these waters. Our friendly and experienced staff will make your charter the best day of your visit to this beautiful place.
Reviewed December 4, 2011

My husaband and I spent Thanksgiving week on St. John's and our day on the Bad Kitty was fantastic. John and John made touring the Baths, snorkeling, and Cooper Island even better. We will be back.
Marilyn & Ruben

1  Thank MRK27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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879 - 883 of 943 reviews

Reviewed November 26, 2011

Thank you, Captain Kelly & Mate Kim for a wonderful sunset cruise. Your professional expertise and friendly service made it a trip of a lifetime.

2  Thank Kathy1945
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 11, 2011

In short, Bad Kitty is a booze cruise through the BVI, and as long as you're down with that, you'll have a fine time. It is definitely NOT a historical or informative tour in any way, shape or form. I think on one occasion, one of the guide's was like, "We could tell you more about that island...but you'll just forget it, so why not have another free drink??!" When we finally arrived at the beautiful baths, we were given the most cursory explanation of what they were or their history, as "you all just want to get back on the boat to drink more, right??"

Which sort of sucked - I >did< want to know more about all this beautiful stuff around us! And I can buy a bottle of Cruzan rum on the island for like $11. But I'm pretty sure I was in the minority - the rest of our ship consisted primarily of newlyweds young and old, who wanted to par-taaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay! Which was somewhat grating in itself, especially having to listen to all the guys tell bad jokes about losing their freedom.

Our destinations included:

- Spanish Town - Really not anything, just a stop to drop off passports. All 5 or so of the shops in town were closed when we were there.
- The Baths - impressive, but we breeeeeeeeeeezed right through them. We swam to shore, so picture taking was impossible, and we learned very little about them.
- Lunch (already???) at Cooper Island - VERY relaxing, very tasty, lots of fun
- Snorkeling at the Indians - disappointed - I can't tell you how much we were hoping for the caves. The Indians were OK, but I don't recall the fish we saw as being any more interesting than what we saw just off the coast of St John
- Soggy Dollar Bar - very relaxing, lots of fun

As you can see above, the two best reviewed stops were the bar and restaurant, which were clearly the purpose of the visit. I mean, 15 minutes at the bath vs. 1.5 hours at Soggy Dollar - you know what sort of cruise you're on.

Also, a quick note about the baths: as we were swimming to shore from the boat, someone suddenly yelled "Ow!" Then another person said "I'm being stung!" So did another. Turns out, we were swimming through a MASSIVE cloud of jellyfish. When everyone finally got to shore, people were COVERED in red stings, some much worse than others. THIS IS NOT BAD KITTY'S FAULT, and I do not hold them responsible - it's the freakin' ocean, this stuff happens, and it's a risk you take. Totally fine.

What was disappointing, however, was the response from our guides. When we arrived on shore, somewhat shaken up and in pain, someone from Bad Kitty - ANYONE! - should have stepped up and reassured us, something like "OK, listen folks, I know that was painful, but jellyfish are harmless. We have amonia in the boat to help take the sting away, and if anyone has an allergic reaction, we are prepared to deal with it." Or ANYTHING! Instead, we all just sort of stood around the beach as the two guides looked clueless as to what should happen. Still unsettled, we did our rapid tour through the Baths dodging washed up jellyfish, then arrived at a different beach to swim back to the boat. I was fine, but some people looked as though they'd been attacked by an octopus, and the silence - especially for people who have never encountered a jellyfish before - was really disappointing. I think a jug of vinegar or something finally showed up, but the most enthusiastic advice we got from the guide was, "Well, let's get back on the boat and drink some more!"

Finally, about the price: you will learn shortly after boarding the boat and paying $145 for the trip plus $30 for customs (and eventually about $15 for lunch, totaling $190) that the crew is underpaid and works on tips. REALLY?!? Furthermore, an adequate tip for a deckhand is like 20% or something, ultimately leading to us feeling guilted into spending an additional $50 or so. There is not a single word of this on the Calypso website for obvious reasons.

So yeah, booze cruise, about an hour of sight-seeing, the rest filled with food and drink, and lots of drunk newlyweds conversing about whether or not to remove their rings when going swimming. If that's your thing, Bad Kitty is for you. I can't say I'm glad I went, nor will I ever do it again, but the Virgin Islands are just too enchanting for anything to fail too greatly, hence the three stars.

PS - Showed up to Soggy Dollar, nice and quiet and mellow. Then our captain started blasting Sweet Home Alabama. AMERICANS HAVE ARRIVED!! Soooooooo embarrassing.

6  Thank whatifitworks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CalypsoCharters_USVI, Manager at Calypso Charters Bad Kitty, responded to this reviewResponded November 23, 2011

We would like to thank you for choosing Bad Kitty/Calypso Charters and taking the time to provide feedback on our tour. On behalf of management we would like to apologize for your experience with us and have addressed this unique situation with our captain, crew and the rest of our staff. On this particular day the jelly fish warning flags were not raised by the Virgin Gorda Park Staff, otherwise our captain and crew would have taken alternative measures for your tour of the Baths. Due to the number of jelly fish and people that were affected we had a number of guests requesting to return to the boat cutting the tour short.
As for other issues we again would like to etend our apologies and this has been addressed with our captains and crew. We are always looking to improve your experience with us and your feedback is greatly appreciated. We would like to invite you to join us on another trip - to give us another chance to show you we are much more than a 'booze cruize' and show you the beauty of the British Virgin Islands.
We are typically not known as a party boat, quite the opposite. Though we cannot control the actions of our guests, we have certainly addressed your feedback in this regard with our staff and apologize again. We have always prided our company for providing a quality, informative, family oriented experience!
Additionally, as with many service oriented activities, gratuity is not included in the trip cost. Our trip pricing is well in line with similar excursions in the United States Virgin Islands. However, we do not condone our staff pressuring guests to tip and apologize if you felt this way.

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Reviewed October 31, 2011

I planned a day trip through the British Virgin Islands for my wife's birthday, and we went on the power Catamaran, Bad Kitty, from Calypso Charters in St. John. Even though we were staying in St. Thomas, we took the ferry over to St John. I can't say enough about how much fun we had......the boat, crew, food, drinks, beaches, scenery, weather, and snorkeling were all outstanding!!! We had a blast!!! The Calypso employees even helped me arrange to surprise my wife with a huge birthday cake.....enough to feed everyone on the boat!!! We visited the Baths on Virgin Gorda, had lunch on Cooper Island, went snorkeling by Norman Island, and had drinks at the Soggy Dollar Bar on Jost Van Dyke. The trip lasts all day from about 8:30am until 4:30pm. It was absolutely amazing!!! It was my wife's favorite birthday ever!!! We highly recommend going on the Bad Kitty!!!

1  Thank Steve B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 26, 2011

My wife and I, booked the BVI trip on Bad Kitty, due to our first choice (KeKoa) being in dry dock. Going to the USVI/BVI in off season has its pros and Cons, but mostly pros! We had a good time and really enjoyed the Baths in Virgin Gorda and the beach on Jost bay. I was however, disappointed w/ the outdoor seating situation and no lunch served on board. I think the Cat holds up to 28 passengers and we had 18 passengers, plus a crew of 3. They only allow 6 passengers on top and can fit 6-8 passengers on the stern. So, if you book in high season, you might get stuck inside and miss the beautiful views.
Also,If you’re not a good swimmer or have health issues, you might not enjoy this trip. When you arrive at the “Baths” it’s about a 300’ (Football Field) swim to shore, with the water about 7-8’ deep. They do offer noodles and one of the crew swim nearby with a “Can” to help, if need be. Two passengers were totally spent when they hit the beach, and I was really concerned for them. After the swim, they take you into the baths, where you need to climb in between rocks and go up and down small wooden stairs. I thought it was really cool, but I’m in my early 40’s, and in great shape. If not, you might be a little tired. They do make it a little easier to get back on board, as the cat repositions itself closer to the beach on the other side of the baths.
Then at the end of the trip, they pass out your credit card receipt, were they leave a spot for a tip, where it shows what 10%, 15% etc would be. It cost my wife and I, $290 for the trip, plus $40 for lunch. I was thinking of leaving a $20 cash tip, but felt somewhat pressured into a $40 tip, which I thought was a little much.
Anyway, the crew was really nice and we did have a good time, but would not sail them again.
FYI….I had a much better time renting a jeep and mask/snorkel set and driving to some of the nicest beaches’ I have ever seen in my life (Cinnamon Bay, Truck Bay, Lester’s Bay etc…)

Thank stratthewaterrat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CalypsoCharters_USVI, Manager at Calypso Charters Bad Kitty, responded to this reviewResponded November 23, 2011

Thank you for choosing Bad Kitty Calypso Charters. We would like to reassure you that we have never experienced issues of passengers feeling 'stuck' inside of Bad Kitty. We are coast guard inspected for 37 passengers and 6 people permitted to sit up top with the captain while under way and with additional seating for another 12 on the stern. Our captain and crew are instructed to remind guests about being courteous and taking turns with the outside seating.
We apologize if you experienced any distress while swimming into the Baths. Our certified crew is highly trained to deal with any emergencies that may arise while in the water. We do offer an alternative to swimming into the Baths and our guests are asked prior to arrival at Spanish Town whether they have any issues, medical or otherwise, before entering the water.
Again, we are truly sorry if you felt pressured in any way regarding gratuity. We at Calypso do realize these are tough economic times and are thankful for your patronage. We have addressed our captains and crew about this and would like to thank you again for your patronage and feedback on our tours. We constantly strive to improve our tours to provide you with the best experience of your vacation.

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