Go Back   Cruise Critic Message Board Forums > Special Interest Cruising > Family Cruises
 
Register here!
Forgot Your Password?


Notices

Family Cruises Cruising with kids? Best Family Cruise Advice
Cruise Critic's Family Cruising Resources
Traveling with kids? Best Family Travel Advice
Family Vacation Critic's Family Travel Site

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old September 12th, 2007, 10:39 PM
mcfam5's Avatar
mcfam5 mcfam5 is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 1,386
Default In search of FAMILY FRIENDLY beaches on St. Maarten

Our family will be cruising Carnival's Eastern Carribean itinerary on the Glory in a few weeks. For our port day on St. Maarten, we are in search of a family friendly beach. My understanding is that clothing is optional at any of St. Maarten's beaches, but we are wondering if there are some beaches that tend to not be affected by it.
__________________
Jen

Our Past Cruises . . .
04/1992 CCL Carnivale ~ Nassau, Freeport
10/2007 CCL Glory ~ St. Thomas, St. Maarteen, Nassau
08/2008 CCL Holiday ~ Cozumel, Calica
11/2008 CCL Holiday ~ Cozumel
08/2009 CCL Legend ~ Belize, Roatan, Grand Cayman, Cozumel
04/2010 CCL Inspiration ~ Cozumel
11/2010 CCL Fantasy ~ Freeport, Nassau, Key West
04/2011 CCL Legend ~ Grand Cayman, Cozumel, Roatan, Belize
10/2011 CCL Fantasy ~ Bermuda
11/2011 CCL Conquest ~ Cozumel, Grand Cayman, Montego Bay (PLATINUM CRUISE!)
08/2012 CCL Liberty ~ Half Moon Cay, St. Thomas, San Juan, Nassua (diverted from Grand Turk!)
11/2012 CCL Dream ~ St. Maarten, St. Thomas, Nassau
11/2013 CCL Sunshine
Reply With Quote

  #2  
Old September 13th, 2007, 09:29 AM
travelingirl70 travelingirl70 is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 562
Default

We've been to St. Maarten twice via ship and twice for week long land based vacations. Our family favorite by far is Pinel Island. It is on the French side, but we didn't see any thongs, topless or similar types there. The boat ride over to Pinel is an experience. We refer to it as the refugee boat - but don't let that scare you. It is just a large boat when benches straight across and they really pack you in. It is a short ride to Pinel (you can see it from shore) and once there you can rent a chair and umbrella if you wish. The water is pretty shallow for quite a distance making it a good choice for small children. It is a good place for younger kids to try snorkeling. My kids also enjoyed getting a fishing net and catching all sorts of fish in knee deep water. We had a fantastic time there.

We have been to other beaches on St. Maarten and my kids still giggle about the pregnant woman in the thong they saw at another beach. My 11 year old son gets a horrified look on his face and says "That's just wrong!"

I'll see if I can dig up some Pinel pictures and come back and post them here. It is truly paradise!

PS - I would still allow some time for shopping on Front Street on your way back to the ship. I'm not a huge shopper, but I really enjoy Front Street. My personal favorite there is the Guavaberry Emporium - island flavored rums. Mmmm-mmmm good!

Last edited by travelingirl70; September 13th, 2007 at 09:29 AM. Reason: Typo
Reply With Quote

  #3  
Old September 13th, 2007, 09:40 AM
travelingirl70 travelingirl70 is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 562
Default My first attempt at posting a picture


Last edited by travelingirl70; September 13th, 2007 at 09:42 AM.
Reply With Quote

  #4  
Old September 13th, 2007, 09:43 AM
travelingirl70 travelingirl70 is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 562
Default Let me try it again- bigger this time

Reply With Quote

  #5  
Old September 13th, 2007, 09:44 AM
travelingirl70 travelingirl70 is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 562
Default Cool! It Worked! Here's one more!

Reply With Quote

Ad Sponsored By
  #6  
Old September 13th, 2007, 09:54 AM
crusinmama06's Avatar
crusinmama06 crusinmama06 is offline
10,000+ Club
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 18,811
Default

While on Disney Magic we took the excursion to Orient Beach. The far end of this beach is the "Naturalist resort Club Orient". But the area we were in was in the "European Tradition" of some women going topless.

Since this was a Disney ship, you can imagine how many kids were on that beach that day. And you know what, my kids didn't even blink at the tolpess women. It didn't faze them. And the family who was with us (they have a boy) he didn't mention it either.

The only one it fazed were the fathers...lol.

At these beaches the topless are few and far between. And it's more like Discovery Channel topless, not Playboy Channel topless...lol.

We are going back in April. Orient beach is beautiful.
__________________


RCI Allure of the Seas 5/4/14
Norwegian Getaway PreInaugural 1/27/14
NCL Breakaway PreInaugural 5/8/13
NCL EPIC 11/24/12 - Ewes Baby!
RCI Enchantment 8/3/12 - Addicted to BERMUDA!
NCL Gem 10/2/11 - Back to Bermuda!
RCI Enchantment of the Seas 5/28/11 - Bermuda
RCI Grandeur of the Seas 9/11/10
Carnival Triumph 6/7/09
RCI Independence of the Seas 2/1/09
Disney Wonder 09/11/08
Carnival Sensation 08/07
RCI Freedom of the Seas 5/07
Carnival Elation 11/06
Disney Magic 2/05
NCL Norway 6/02
RCI Sovereign of the Seas 9/98
RCI Sovereign of the Seas 9/97
Kids club schedules and children's menus including RCCL Adventure Ocean, Camp Carnival,
Disney, NCL, Princess, HAL and Celebrity posted here....
http://photobucket.com/cruisekidpages
Reply With Quote

  #7  
Old September 13th, 2007, 10:21 AM
abitaturbodog's Avatar
abitaturbodog abitaturbodog is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Beaufort, SC
Posts: 2,202
Default

This past March we went to Little Divi Bay and it was fantastic! It was quiet and had great snorkeling. There was a hotel bar that we used for drinks. We walked all the way to the left and the beach wasn't crowded at all.

A couple years ago we went to Orient Beach and saw some folks who were topless or bottomless. My two boys hardly noticed. Like crusinmama wrote, it's not like the playboy mansion, it's more like who you'll see at your local grocery store. Not exactly pleasant to look at!
__________________
Nov 13 - Carnival Fascination
Apr 12 - Carnival Sensation
Dec 11 - Carnival Dream

Nov 08 - Carnival Liberty

Mar 08 - Costa Fortuna

Dec 07 - Costa Mediterranea
Apr 07 - Carnival Valor
Nov 06 - Carnival Miracle
Nov 05 - Carnival Glory
Nov 03 - Carnival Imagination
Apr 87 - Big Red Boat

July 83 - NCL Norway


Reply With Quote

  #8  
Old September 13th, 2007, 06:57 PM
mcfam5's Avatar
mcfam5 mcfam5 is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 1,386
Default Thank you!

Thanks for all the insight, it will help us make our decision. Does anyone know if it is true that all of the beaches St. Maarten are clothing optional?
__________________
Jen

Our Past Cruises . . .
04/1992 CCL Carnivale ~ Nassau, Freeport
10/2007 CCL Glory ~ St. Thomas, St. Maarteen, Nassau
08/2008 CCL Holiday ~ Cozumel, Calica
11/2008 CCL Holiday ~ Cozumel
08/2009 CCL Legend ~ Belize, Roatan, Grand Cayman, Cozumel
04/2010 CCL Inspiration ~ Cozumel
11/2010 CCL Fantasy ~ Freeport, Nassau, Key West
04/2011 CCL Legend ~ Grand Cayman, Cozumel, Roatan, Belize
10/2011 CCL Fantasy ~ Bermuda
11/2011 CCL Conquest ~ Cozumel, Grand Cayman, Montego Bay (PLATINUM CRUISE!)
08/2012 CCL Liberty ~ Half Moon Cay, St. Thomas, San Juan, Nassua (diverted from Grand Turk!)
11/2012 CCL Dream ~ St. Maarten, St. Thomas, Nassau
11/2013 CCL Sunshine
Reply With Quote

  #9  
Old September 15th, 2007, 11:45 PM
TropicalSnowflake's Avatar
TropicalSnowflake TropicalSnowflake is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Vermont
Posts: 393
Default Go Dutch

I think the clothing optional people tend to stay on the French side of the island. Just a thought.
__________________
NCL: Wind, Sea, Sky, Sun, Dawn, Jewel / RCCL: Adventure, Serenade, Majesty, Enchantment (x2), Navigator / X: Horizon / Princess: Crown
Reply With Quote

  #10  
Old September 18th, 2007, 01:53 PM
neya neya is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 29
Default

We were on the Glory in Sept of 06 with our (then) 19 month old. We spend the day at Le Gallion beach (french side) and had a blast. Le Gallion is about 15-20 minute drive by taxi from the port. The beach was empty, clean and no nudity. We exited the ship took a taxi to the Butterfly Farm first - spend about 30-1 hour there - then our taxi driver took us to the Beach which is a 5 minute drive down the street from the Butterfly farm.

Once we arrived we rented chairs and umbrellas and spend almost the whole day there. While we were there a local family came to enjoy the water and I talked to mom a litte bit, the kids only spoke french and mom spoke a little english very nice lady. There is a a small restaurant at the beach called Chez Pat the owner and his wife are americans and have lived in the island for a couple of years. They have drinks, burgers, hot dogs, etc... and a small bathroom with no shower. While we were there it started to rain the ocean was warmer then the rain!!! Then it poured and we had to take cover and change because our taxi drive was already waiting for us.

I don't know if you have been to St. Marteen before, but they re did the whole port/dock and it is easy to get off the ship and get a taxi. Everthing looks very nice and clean.

Taxi to butterfly garden: $15.00 (2 adults 1 toddler)
butterfly garden: $20.00
chair and umbrella rental: $15.00
water: $1.20
Taxi to back to ship: $15.00
Playing in the rain in St. Martin with husband and daughter: priceless

Please note that our taxi driver waited for us while we were visiting the butterlfy garden and offered to take us to the beach (we were going to walk there). We asked him to returned in the afternoon to pick us up with enough time to stop and buy guavaberry at the local supermarket. He was a very very nice gentlemen and was kind enough to do this for us.
Check out this website: www. Sint-maarten.net with links to chez pat website.

I hope this helps!!
Reply With Quote

  #11  
Old September 19th, 2007, 09:34 PM
Karysa Karysa is online now
5,000+ Club
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 8,498
Default

Great advice given on family friendly beaches. Couldn't agree more with Pinel, Le Gallion or Divi. Haven't been to Orient in 15 years so I can't comment on that one. I have never seen a topless woman at Divi if that is the question. I have seen topless women at the other two beaches.
Enjoy St. Martin
Karysa
Reply With Quote

  #12  
Old September 20th, 2007, 03:54 PM
lizi116 lizi116 is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 170
Default

We were just in St Maarten in August and went to Little Divi Beach. It was a beautiful beach, nice snorkeling and my husband and son rented a jet ski. There was a nice outdoor restaurant for lunch and they let my kids use both of the hotel pools. Also, bathrooms were clean and it was $4 p.p. one way by taxi. I definately recommend it!

P.s. We did see on topless sunbather.
__________________
August 2007 - Caribbean Princess
-----------------------------------

-----------------------------------------------
Carnival Conquest 07/20/2014
Reply With Quote

  #13  
Old September 21st, 2007, 01:09 PM
AngelOfDistress AngelOfDistress is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Montréal
Posts: 42
Default

For a more exciting kind of beach experience, go to maho beach! We were there last february and my 2 years old never wanted to leave!

Pictures are worth a thousand words!



__________________
Carnival Valor - January 2007
Carnival Miracle - May 2007
Carnival Victory - September 2007
Carnival Freedom - December 2007
RCCL Explorer Of The Sees - May 2008
Crown Princess - October 2008
Norwegian Gem - January 2009
MSC Orchestra
- January 2009
Norwegian Dawn
- May 2009
Norwegian Spirit - May 2009
Norwegian Jewel - November 2009
Disney Cruise Line - January 2010


Reply With Quote

  #14  
Old November 4th, 2007, 01:30 PM
Nana & Poppa P's Avatar
Nana & Poppa P Nana & Poppa P is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: North Fayette, PA
Posts: 147
Default

We just got back off the Valor a few days ago, Orient Beach was lovely, a few topless, and some nudes but it was no big deal. Tons of kids on the beach, and such a lovely beach, it is one of our favorite beaches.
__________________
March 2005 - Carnival Fascination, March 2006 - Carnival Imagination, December 2006 - Carnival Sensation, April 2007 - Carnival Holiday, October 2007 - Carnival Valor, August 2008 - Carnival Inspiration, April 2009 - Carnival Miracle, August 2009 - Carnival Destiny, October 2009 - Carnival Sensation, March 2010 - Carnival Elation, May 2010 - Carnival Dream, September 2010 - Carnival Imagination, January 2011 - Carnival Paradise, April 2011 - Carnival Triumph, September 2011 - Carnival Destiny

Future Cruises
April 22, 2012 - Carnival Victory

Reply With Quote

  #15  
Old November 4th, 2007, 11:46 PM
adamsmom's Avatar
adamsmom adamsmom is offline
Cool Cruiser
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Tennessee
Posts: 795
Default

The last time we were in St. Maartin was a few years ago, but we just took the water taxi ($5pp) across the bay to the public beach. It's near the shopping and some little bars/restaurants, and we saw no topless women.
__________________
-----Janey-----


Carnival Dream (Eastern) couples only 4/5/15
Carnival Dream (Western) with kids 5/25/14
Carnival Elation (Western) with church group couples 1/19/13

Carnival Freedom (Eastern) with kids 9/11/10
Royal Majesty of the Seas (again, but no kids) 10/5/09
Royal Vision of the Seas 5/18/08 (Mexican Riviera) with family (no kids this time)
Royal Voyager of the Seas 3/23/08 (Western) with 2 kids and friends
Royal Majesty of the Seas 9/24/07 (Eastern) with 2 kids
Norwegian Dream 3/24/07 (Western) with 2 kids
Norwegian Spirit 3/5/06 (Eastern) with 2 kids
Carnival Holiday 4/2/05 (Western) with 2 kids and friends
Royal Grandeur of the Seas 3/04 (Western)
Carnival Triumph 6/03 (Eastern) with 1 kid and family
Carnival Inspiration 6/02 (Western) with friends
Carnival Tropicale 5/98 (Western)
Carnival Celebration 12/89 (Eastern) with friends
Reply With Quote

Reply

Bookmarks


Ad Sponsored By
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 01:35 PM.


© 1995 - 2014, The Independent Traveler, Inc. All rights reserved.
"A Community of People Who Love To Cruise"
All of the information contained within Cruise Critic is protected by copyright. You may, however, download a single copy only for your personal use.