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St. Martin vs. St. Lucia #60695
07/06/2015 02:30 PM
07/06/2015 02:30 PM
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 74
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dvesc Offline OP
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dvesc  Offline OP
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Joined: Nov 2013
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We're planning another trip in December and are considering either St. Lucia/Martinique or a return to St. Martin/St. Barts. We've been to St. Martin twice, and I really like being able to drive around the island and explore different restaurants and beaches. From what I've read, St. Lucia seems like an island where you spend most of your time at whatever resort you choose and don't really leave (unless it's for an organized activity or tour). I prefer smaller hotels and communities with restaurants that are independently run (we usually stay near Orient Village), so if this is the case with St. Lucia, it may not be an ideal choice.

Has anyone spent time on both islands? If so, are there options in St. Lucia that are comparable to Orient Village or maybe the St. Jean area of St. Barts?

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Re: St. Martin vs. St. Lucia [Re: dvesc] #60696
07/06/2015 03:01 PM
07/06/2015 03:01 PM
Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 2,560
Rhode Island
RonDon Online content
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RonDon  Online Content
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Rhode Island
Your description of St Lucia is right on the money. Yet it has its beauty. I too like to drive around try different beaches & restaurants.

What we like about St Maartin/Martin is the choice of high rise hotels or small intimate places. We usually split time between Divi & Grand Case Beach Club. Also, in my opinion, the food is better on SXM.

Re: St. Martin vs. St. Lucia [Re: dvesc] #60697
07/06/2015 03:24 PM
07/06/2015 03:24 PM
Joined: Jul 2010
Posts: 94
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RogerAndBeth Offline
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RogerAndBeth  Offline
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I'll let you know what we find out in a few weeks. We will be spending a week in St. Martin starting this Saturday (6th or 7th trip) and then going to St. Lucia for 5 days after.

Re: St. Martin vs. St. Lucia [Re: RogerAndBeth] #60698
07/06/2015 04:11 PM
07/06/2015 04:11 PM
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 2,349
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irina Offline
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irina  Offline
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I don't think you have to stay in your resort in St Lucia. We left Anse Chastenet and had dinner in town etc. But!
The driving there is onerous. Roads are long and dark and not knowing your way around is a problem. And they are also long in the daytime! Long and curvy and mountainous.
Good luck
cheers
irina

Re: St. Martin vs. St. Lucia [Re: irina] #60699
07/06/2015 04:14 PM
07/06/2015 04:14 PM
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 66,591
Central Florida!
Carol_Hill Offline
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Carol_Hill  Offline
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Central Florida!
Agreed, you don't have to stay at the resort, but St. Lucia also caters a lot to the all inclusive crowd, so obviously many people don't leave the resort a lot if you're doing a/i. Roads are not particularly good and it can take a LONG time to get between two places on the island.


Carol Hill
Re: St. Martin vs. St. Lucia [Re: Carol_Hill] #60700
07/06/2015 04:17 PM
07/06/2015 04:17 PM
Joined: Jan 2007
Posts: 1,541
originally Long Island, NY/now...
irish1223 Offline
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irish1223  Offline
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originally Long Island, NY/now...
We MUCH prefer to drive on SXM than St. Lucia!


Robin & Ed

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Re: St. Martin vs. St. Lucia [Re: dvesc] #60701
07/06/2015 05:23 PM
07/06/2015 05:23 PM
Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 12,574
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
islandgem Offline
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islandgem  Offline
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Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
St. LUCIA is beautiful and very mountainous so driving there can definitely be interesting especially at night.People definitely do not have to stay at the resorts, but many choose to at night or take cabs to where they are going.


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Re: St. Martin vs. St. Lucia [Re: islandgem] #60702
07/06/2015 07:51 PM
07/06/2015 07:51 PM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 221
CO, USA
kdskis2 Offline
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kdskis2  Offline
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Posts: 221
CO, USA
We've been to both.So far, we prefer St. Lucia because of the beauty . If you stay in Rodney Bay on St. Lucia, you have a multitude of choices for dining and is close to Gros Islet for the Friday night jump up. We rented a car and explored the island during the day which was really great! It is definitely more difficult to get around but it was worth it! To see the topography and the pitons, waterfalls, black sand beaches, etc.


Life's a beach!
Re: St. Martin vs. St. Lucia [Re: kdskis2] #60703
07/07/2015 09:02 AM
07/07/2015 09:02 AM
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 2,349
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irina Offline
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irina  Offline
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It is quite beautiful. We used a water taxi into Soufriere from Anse Chastenet. Pitons, bat caves! All good.
Hummingbird was great little restaurant.
Cheers
irina

Re: St. Martin vs. St. Lucia [Re: kdskis2] #60704
07/07/2015 09:11 AM
07/07/2015 09:11 AM
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 74
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dvesc Offline OP
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dvesc  Offline OP
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Thank you for the responses. We're still in the very early stages of planning the trip, but it sounds like St. Lucia might have some of what we're looking for. The hard part is we know we like St. Martin and St. Barts, so it's tempting to just keep going back. But we don't want to limit our experiences.

Re: St. Martin vs. St. Lucia [Re: dvesc] #60705
07/07/2015 09:29 AM
07/07/2015 09:29 AM
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 1,703
Southeast USA
alw1977 Offline
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alw1977  Offline
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Posts: 1,703
Southeast USA
I don't respond to or even check this board often any longer, but I wanted to chime in to say you should go for it and try St. Lucia/Martinique. While SXM and St. Barts are wonderful, I always think it's wise to try somewhere new after repeating a vacation destination. We went to SXM something like 5 times in a row... to the point we actually got tired of it (I know! Blasphemy 'round these parts!). We tried St. John/BVI and I loved it. I didn't want to go anywhere else for a while and almost cancelled a trip to Costa Rica in favor of St. John. Well, that would have been a HUGE mistake as our trip to CR was certainly one of our best!

Don't get me wrong, there is something very relaxing about returning to the same vacation destination, but St. Lucia has been on my short list forever - it has a lot to recommend it, especially the natural beauty in the Soufriere area.

Re: St. Martin vs. St. Lucia [Re: dvesc] #60706
07/07/2015 10:31 AM
07/07/2015 10:31 AM
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 11,850
Brookfield, CT.
pat Offline
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pat  Offline
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Brookfield, CT.
Quote
dvesc said:
Thank you for the responses. We're still in the very early stages of planning the trip, but it sounds like St. Lucia might have some of what we're looking for. The hard part is we know we like St. Martin and St. Barts, so it's tempting to just keep going back. But we don't want to limit our experiences.


While St. Lucia has never really been a part of our bucket list - I would suggest you go for it. You may decide it's your personal heaven on earth...., much as we decided SXM filled the bill for us.

I absolutely agree with the previous poster with respect to the fact it's always nice to try something new. We're long time SXM (and its environs) visitors and fans, but over the years we've tried almost all of the islands that intrigued us throughout the Caribbean, though we still hope to get to St. Croix one of these days.....

If you love SXM, remember it will always be there, and broadening your horizons may be a good thing or - it may just convince you there's no place like St. Maarten/St. Martin, but if you don't give it a try, you'll never know for sure. <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/handshake.gif" alt="" /> <img src="http://www.traveltalkonline.com/forums/images/graemlins/handshake.gif" alt="" />


Respectfully,

pat



"Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat
them."
Re: St. Martin vs. St. Lucia [Re: pat] #60707
07/07/2015 11:18 AM
07/07/2015 11:18 AM
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 66,591
Central Florida!
Carol_Hill Offline
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Carol_Hill  Offline
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Posts: 66,591
Central Florida!
I agree, it's hard to know that someplace is perfect for you, unless you've tried a lot of other places. Including land vacations and cruise ship vacations, we've visited, among other places, Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao, The Dominican Republic, Mexico, Tortola, Virgin Gorda, St Thomas, St. Croix, Bahamas, Barbados, ST. Barts, St. Croix, Martinique, Guadelupe, Puerto Rico, and a bunch of other places that I can't come up with right off the top of my head. St. Maarten/St. Martin suits us best. And we have stayed at probably two dozen different places on the island, and for right now, Beachside Villas suits us best. Maybe a person gets lucky and finds the perfect place right off, but you never really know until you've checked around a bit.

Enjoy, whatever you decide to do!


Carol Hill
Re: St. Martin vs. St. Lucia [Re: Carol_Hill] #60708
07/07/2015 12:13 PM
07/07/2015 12:13 PM
Joined: Jul 2009
Posts: 772
Sunset_Sammy Offline
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Sunset_Sammy  Offline
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Posts: 772
As previously said the Rodney Bay area has a multitude of hotel and restaurant choices in all price ranges. the beaches are not as nice in St. Marteen also nudity and topless are prohibited on all beaches as they are all public.
Personally I wouldn't go AI on St. Lucia, too many good restaurants to choose from.
You'll find that in the bars on the Rodney Bay strip it's about a 50-50 mix of locals and tourists.
I wouldn't hesitate to drive back from Pigeon Island or Gros Islet (except for the jump up, cause the drinks and homemade spice rum are very strong) at night, but there is no way I would attempt to drive those mountain roads after dark.
A nice hotel, right on the beach, is the Bay Garden Beach Resort; we stay at the Bay Garden Inn which isn't on the beach but you get to use all the facilities at the other resort and they have a free shuttle bus that runs hourly from 7:00 am till 10:00 pm. there is also the Bay Garden Hotel, also not on the beach, but it can be a little noisy at night as it's bigger than the inn and the bar there has things going on at night (karaoke, managers party for both properties and such)


Life is short, live it!
Re: St. Martin vs. St. Lucia [Re: Sunset_Sammy] #60709
07/08/2015 03:34 AM
07/08/2015 03:34 AM
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 325
ohio
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markis Offline
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ohio
We have been to both, and prefer St. Martin on the French side.

Re: St. Martin vs. St. Lucia [Re: markis] #60710
07/08/2015 01:38 PM
07/08/2015 01:38 PM
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 74
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dvesc Offline OP
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dvesc  Offline OP
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Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 74
Thanks again for the information and responses. St. Lucia and Martinique are definitely a possibility. At this point, we'll probably wait a while longer to book to see if tickets change for either option. Last year, right around the beginning of August, tickets to St. Martin dropped about $450 for a day or two. We're hoping for the same luck (or something close to it) for either destination this time around. Another shot at $300 tickets would be too good to turn down.

Re: St. Martin vs. St. Lucia [Re: dvesc] #60711
07/08/2015 03:06 PM
07/08/2015 03:06 PM
Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 930
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Cathyg Offline
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Cathyg  Offline
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Joined: Aug 2000
Posts: 930
We have also been to at least 12
caribbean islands...St Lucia is one of them....but our favorite is St. Martin. It does not mean the other places were not wonderful...it just means that St. Martin fits us best.

My mom asks me every year...why do you always go back to the same place.....my answer...because we want to.

We have traveled all over the world in the past 15 years...sometimes we return to a place more than once...sometimes we don't feel the need.

There is no right or wrong answer....you need to do what is best for you.


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