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  #1  
Old December 8th, 2009, 06:54 PM
Erica@cruisecritic Erica@cruisecritic is offline
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Default How do you escape Caribbean crowds?

Royal Caribbean's Oasis of the Seas takes off this week on its first seven-night Eastern Caribbean sailings to St. Thomas, St. Maarten and Nassau. The biggest ship ever built can deposit up to 6,296 passengers in a port -- and it's typically in town with two to four other ships.

So we're curious -- how do you avoid the crowds in these Eastern Caribbean destinations? Please share your favorite secluded beaches, off-the-beaten-track attractions, local restaurants, hidden boutiques or other destination secrets.
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  #2  
Old December 8th, 2009, 06:57 PM
cb at sea cb at sea is online now
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You don't! Enjoy the "hustle and bustle!" Hopefully, many of the Oasis passengers will have been to these ports many times, and will stay on the ship to get the "full experience"!
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  #3  
Old December 8th, 2009, 07:07 PM
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Its easy, we cruse to Europe, Asia, Africa, South America and Australia. We will keep looking for the Oasis, but hope not to come across her.
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Old December 8th, 2009, 07:57 PM
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We spent a week in St Thomas.
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  #5  
Old December 8th, 2009, 08:57 PM
sail7seas sail7seas is offline
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Stay aboard our ship for the day and enjoy the quiet when the crowds are ashore!



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Last edited by sail7seas; December 8th, 2009 at 08:59 PM.
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  #6  
Old December 8th, 2009, 09:03 PM
Karysa Karysa is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Erica@cruisecritic View Post
Royal Caribbean's Oasis of the Seas takes off this week on its first seven-night Eastern Caribbean sailings to St. Thomas, St. Maarten and Nassau. The biggest ship ever built can deposit up to 6,296 passengers in a port -- and it's typically in town with two to four other ships.

So we're curious -- how do you avoid the crowds in these Eastern Caribbean destinations? Please share your favorite secluded beaches, off-the-beaten-track attractions, local restaurants, hidden boutiques or other destination secrets.
Sorry, some things are just not for sharing.
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  #7  
Old December 8th, 2009, 09:23 PM
navybankerteacher navybankerteacher is offline
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One thing to look into before booking a cruise is the port schedule - paying attention to what ships are in each port with the ship/itinerary you are thinking about.

One other thing is to be quiet about any really terrific beach or area on an island - your being quiet about it might not keep it from getting too crowded - but your talking it up will contribute to its over-crowding. There is one beach on St. Martin which I go to every time - and which I never talk about for just that reason. Hint: it sure as H**l isn't Orient Beach.
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  #8  
Old December 9th, 2009, 12:03 AM
alcpa1 alcpa1 is offline
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The best time to sail in the Caribbean is during the shoulder season when most Caribbean bound ships have not arrived from Europe and Alaska.
Extended itineraries - 8, 10, or 12 day cruises may help avoid the worst days too. If you are sailing from Florida or San Juan on a week's itinerary you are more than likely going to encounter the crowds from December through April.
The fewest Caribbean sailings are during the summer months but you always face the risk of hurricanes. The weather is warmer too but the local excursion companies are very grateful to be of service.
I hope this has helped.
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  #9  
Old December 9th, 2009, 12:13 AM
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We have actually been in some of these ports before with 6 - 8 ships all at the same time. It shouldn't make a huge difference unless you are docked at the same pier as the Oasis of the Seas. Some of those passengers probably won't be able to find the gangway to get off anyway. By the time they reach it, it will be time to board and sail again. (joking)
As for crowds in the Caribbean? I can honestly say that 99% of the time, the Caribbean has been crowded when we have been there, that is why we rarely sail to the Caribbean any longer.
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  #10  
Old December 9th, 2009, 05:13 AM
Keith1010 Keith1010 is offline
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The reality is that the ports will be crowded. There is no getting around it. Yes, you can rent a taxi and go further out on the island if you so choose.

Keith
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  #11  
Old December 9th, 2009, 05:38 AM
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The only way you're going to avoid the crowd in port is to cruise another itinerary. St Thomas was crowded 20 years ago when the largest ship on the water was the Sovereign. The ships have gotten larger, but the ports are the same size so if you don't like crowds, you're out of luck..............
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  #12  
Old December 9th, 2009, 10:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phoenix1181 View Post
The only way you're going to avoid the crowd in port is to cruise another itinerary. St Thomas was crowded 20 years ago when the largest ship on the water was the Sovereign. The ships have gotten larger, but the ports are the same size so if you don't like crowds, you're out of luck..............
We have been to st. thomas three times now, and yes it is crowded but we have learned to find a taxi driver and have him take you to his favorite scenic spot, etc. We ended up at former pirates castle (a hotel now) and it overlooked the bay, it had the original cannons still in the wall, and swords, gold coins etc. to see. Our kids had a great time.
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Old December 9th, 2009, 10:56 AM
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Pretty simple. We avoid the Caribbean altogether.
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Old December 9th, 2009, 11:14 AM
sail7seas sail7seas is offline
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We love the Caribbean for the weather. We've traveled there for years and hope to continue to do so. If we arrive and it's crowded, we enjoy the beautiful weather at the pool on the ship. We no longer rush off (never did) to do all sorts of excursions in a frenzy to see everything in a day. I'd hate to stop enjoying beautiful beaches and weather in the Caribbean just because lots of other people want to be there as well. Just be flexible. If Plan A prooves to be a bad choice due to crowds, go to Plan B.

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  #15  
Old December 9th, 2009, 12:33 PM
cruzeluver cruzeluver is offline
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In researching what we want to do in port, one of the things I look for is what can we do that is not close to the port area, as obviously that is where the congestion is the worst. Plus, I've seen enough t-shirt shops to last me a lifetime!
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  #16  
Old December 9th, 2009, 12:58 PM
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We don't take ship excurisions,, we find our own way to a beach . We do not shop for stuff in overcrowded little towns where every store sells either tourist junk or jewerly..

A Tip.. on Orient Beach, walk to the nude part,, its never crowded with cruise ship passengers,, and you do NOT have to be nude to use it,, just not a gawker.
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  #17  
Old December 9th, 2009, 02:24 PM
RetireeWannabee RetireeWannabee is offline
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Quote:
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Pretty simple. We avoid the Caribbean altogether.
foolproof.
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  #18  
Old December 9th, 2009, 02:27 PM
Ljberkow Ljberkow is offline
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If you consider the Oasis as two ships full of passenger, having a couple of other ships in port is not that big of a deal and shouldn't keep you away from Orient Beach in St Martin. Just grab a cab. They're cheap. I would also strongly consider getting to the ferry in St Thomas and heading over to St John and the beach at Trunk Bay. It's perhaps the nicest beach in the Caribbean and not too many from cruise ships head over there. Have a great cruise and enjoy the Oasis.
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  #19  
Old December 9th, 2009, 03:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by screwsmcernst View Post
We have been to st. thomas three times now, and yes it is crowded but we have learned to find a taxi driver and have him take you to his favorite scenic spot, etc. We ended up at former pirates castle (a hotel now) and it overlooked the bay, it had the original cannons still in the wall, and swords, gold coins etc. to see. Our kids had a great time.
Would that be the Hotel 1857?
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  #20  
Old December 9th, 2009, 03:32 PM
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We stopped going to the caribbean years ago. But that is not to say we won't do it again.
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