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Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? #183058
02/04/2019 02:30 PM
02/04/2019 02:30 PM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 423
Denver, Colorado
mdldgl Offline OP
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mdldgl  Offline OP
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My wife and I will be returning to SXM Sunday February 10th after a 3 years absence. We are bringing 6 long time friends - all staying with us at OBBR. One couple hasn't been to St Maarten for 40 years, which was when they were here on their honeymoon!!

We are trying to plan around heavy cruise ship days (it will be the 14th and 16th for our stay). We know to avoid Pburg, Orient and Marigot Market on those days.

My question is, do cruise ship passengers head towards/over crowd Anse Marcel and/or Pinel island. These two items are "must do" for us - just trying to figure out best days to go .

Thanks in advance

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Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: mdldgl] #183061
02/04/2019 02:34 PM
02/04/2019 02:34 PM
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 16,313
Auburn, WA
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SXMScubaman  Online Content
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I would think that those two beaches would not be as much cruise ship excursions as Mullet, Orient and Maho are. Some might go there on their own but I doubt if it would be an organized cruise excursion.

Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: mdldgl] #183066
02/04/2019 02:57 PM
02/04/2019 02:57 PM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 423
Denver, Colorado
mdldgl Offline OP
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mdldgl  Offline OP
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Thanks Scubaman!

Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: mdldgl] #183078
02/04/2019 05:03 PM
02/04/2019 05:03 PM
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SammyM Offline
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I agree with Scubaman ... Maho, Orient, and Great Bay beach take on a lot of cruise ship visitors. Personally, I like this because it brings the island to life and I've met some really nice people in the past. Best way to avoid cruise ship crowds is to check the port schedule for Philipsburg. It will tell you the number of ship in port in advance each day. Traditionally, the best days with the fewest cruise visitors would be Monday, Tuesday and Friday. Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday seem to have most most ships in port. And, you can also check out what ships are docking. Some higher end lines like Silverseas and Azamera carry far fewer passengers than those massive ships from Royal Caribbean, Princess, etc.

Anse Marcel and Pinel would likely be a good choice any day of the week, because they simply take too long to get there and get back to the ship on time. Hope this helps!

Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: SammyM] #183089
02/04/2019 06:38 PM
02/04/2019 06:38 PM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 423
Denver, Colorado
mdldgl Offline OP
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Perfect - thanks for the info. I had checked the cruise schedule as you mentioned. One day has 4 large ships in port with 14,000 passengers!😮

Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: mdldgl] #183093
02/04/2019 06:55 PM
02/04/2019 06:55 PM
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 16,313
Auburn, WA
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Then stay away from Maho Beach.

Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: mdldgl] #183121
02/05/2019 06:59 AM
02/05/2019 06:59 AM
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bizzottom Offline
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scubaman and sammy guttit right

Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: SammyM] #183131
02/05/2019 08:08 AM
02/05/2019 08:08 AM
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Orient was not overwhelmed on any days over the New Year including when large numbers of cruise ships were in.

Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: mdldgl] #183175
02/05/2019 10:41 AM
02/05/2019 10:41 AM
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Posts: 423
Denver, Colorado
mdldgl Offline OP
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mdldgl  Offline OP
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Just an update to my original post. Yesterday I was researching kayak rental to Pinel Island. Many of the reviews were from people arriving by cruise ship - had booked excursion from cruiseline. I think I will avoid Pinel on the 2 heavy cruise passenger days and head over to Anse Marcel instead.
Thanks for your inout!👍🏻

Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: mdldgl] #183179
02/05/2019 10:54 AM
02/05/2019 10:54 AM
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downhillracer Offline
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You might want to do a day trip to Anguilla one of those days. Great beaches and places to have a bite and a drink as you walk along the beach

Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: downhillracer] #183192
02/05/2019 12:51 PM
02/05/2019 12:51 PM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 423
Denver, Colorado
mdldgl Offline OP
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mdldgl  Offline OP
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Originally Posted by downhillracer
You might want to do a day trip to Anguilla one of those days. Great beaches and places to have a bite and a drink as you walk along the beach


Excellent suggestion!👍🏻

Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: mdldgl] #183193
02/05/2019 01:19 PM
02/05/2019 01:19 PM
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Rhode Island
Bluesfan Offline
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Passport needed for Anguilla.

Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: Bluesfan] #183198
02/05/2019 01:49 PM
02/05/2019 01:49 PM
Joined: Mar 2009
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Auburn, WA
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Originally Posted by Bluesfan
Passport needed for Anguilla.

If that is a question yes it is.

Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: SXMScubaman] #183235
02/05/2019 08:40 PM
02/05/2019 08:40 PM
Joined: Jan 2001
Posts: 1,673
So. Shore MA.
jollymonsrv Offline
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Karackter Simpson bay and kimsha can get crazy also

Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: mdldgl] #183266
02/06/2019 10:30 AM
02/06/2019 10:30 AM
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 36
sandytntn Offline
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Few years back did the Ferry to Anguilla for the day. Trying to decide whether to do that again or maybe just do a boat trip. By time pay for ferry and taxi, food, etc. probably not huge difference in cost. Any opinions on day boat trips? Staying Oyster Bay so one leaving from that side would be a plus. Week we are there like 6 ships on Wed and 4 or 5 on Thurs so might be good days to escape.

Thanks.

Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: mdldgl] #183280
02/06/2019 11:28 AM
02/06/2019 11:28 AM
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SammyM Offline
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You could also consider St. Barth's for a day trip. I'm not encouraging this in any way because I'm all for keeping vacation dollars (and euros) on SXM, but if you've never seen St. Barth's it is really beautiful. Or, a least it was prior to Irma. But, as I've posted on this board before it's just big time expensive. But, the beaches their are lovely and even the most popular one (St. Jean Beach) only gets crowded on the weekends. The two clothing optional beaches that face south (Gouverneur and Anse de Grande Saline) allow you to enjoy the beach with as little or as much attire as you desire without a ton of people around, and that's something not permitted on Anguilla. But, you will need a rental car if you plan to explore the island beyond the port city of Gustavia. Just another option to ponder.

Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: SammyM] #183321
02/06/2019 09:02 PM
02/06/2019 09:02 PM
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sandytntn Offline
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Yes, did St. Barth’s for a day trip before as well. Loved it and rented car and toured island including beaches you mentioned. Anguilla so close is reason considered that again. We are going to Saba this trip as well, doing the plane for the thrill of the landing and takeoff. Any advice on what to do on SABA welcome as well. Since doing plane have from 730-5 pm on the island. Sure sand gravity will take over and Saba will be only day trip LOL

Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: mdldgl] #183330
02/06/2019 11:44 PM
02/06/2019 11:44 PM
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SammyM Offline
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Sorry! No clue about Saba. I did hear they have black sand beach there you could visit. Small and kind of rough. Anyone know anything about that?

Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: sandytntn] #183343
02/07/2019 09:15 AM
02/07/2019 09:15 AM
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 14,061
Brookfield, CT.
pat Offline
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Originally Posted by sandytntn
Yes, did St. Barth’s for a day trip before as well. Loved it and rented car and toured island including beaches you mentioned. Anguilla so close is reason considered that again. We are going to Saba this trip as well, doing the plane for the thrill of the landing and takeoff. Any advice on what to do on SABA welcome as well. Since doing plane have from 730-5 pm on the island. Sure sand gravity will take over and Saba will be only day trip LOL


There’s really not a lot to do on Saba unless you’re a diver or a hiker. It’s a photographer’s Heaven, however. The beach is NOT something you can count on as it comes and goes and in honesty, though we’ve been there a few times we’ve never managed to see the beach. Guess we were there at the wrong time of year for that as both our trips were in March or April.

We took the Edge over as part of a prepackaged and presold day trip the first time we went. We had no issues with the dreaded ‘mal de mer’ but many others on the boat did. The trip included pick-up at the pier and a taxi tour of the island with stops for sight-seeing, limited shopping and drop-off of the hikers and a full driving tour of the island. Each tour had a different stop for lunch, ours being the Queens Garden Inn which was wonderful. The second time we went it was a stay-over and we did NOTHING but that’s what we went to do. It’s an incredibly beautiful spot and unlike any other island we’ve experienced. Three nights of nothing, however, were more than enough and we were happy to get back to SXM after our brief interlude. We don’t divep or hike but we did enjoy the peaceful atmosphere and the beautiful photo ops.

As I said originally, if you’re NOT a hiker or a diver there’s not a lot going on but it’s still worth seeing and the landings are interesting to say the least, as are the take-offs. We flew the second time and I was white knuckled all the way but it was incredible to experience.


Respectfully,

pat



"Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat
them."
Re: Beaches to avoid when crusie ships are in town? [Re: mdldgl] #183719
02/10/2019 09:26 PM
02/10/2019 09:26 PM
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sandytntn Offline
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Yes, a day prob enough for me as need more to do than what’s there from what i hear. Plan to hike, have some lunch and wife wants to shop a little. I’m looking forward to hiking, taking a few pics and the thrill of the takeoff and landing.


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