Virgin Kayak Tours/Shuttle Question

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#1
Maryland
1,541 Posts
Joined Dec 2007
We are hoping to do this eco kayak trip when we are in St Croix. They have a special "cruisers" trip that begins at 10am, which hopefully allows enough time to shuttle to their location.

Does anyone who has been to St Croix recently know if the taxi/shuttle situation has improved? There are quite a few negative comments about the shuttles further down this board.

We really like this company, as they have great reviews on TripAdvisor AND they use the new Hobie kayaks with foot pedals as well as oars.
#2
Manchester, CT
29 Posts
Joined Dec 2008
Hi Marylandteachergirl - Did you already go on your cruise? Did you do this kayak excursion? If so, did you enjoy it? How much did it cost? Any info you have would be appreciated.

I'll be in St Croix the first week in April on RCI's Serenade of the Seas.

Thanks!
#3
Maryland
1,541 Posts
Joined Dec 2007
Hi Birks99!

Our cruise is not until November!
I did book this kayak 1/2 day as a private tour. It was $45 and they do not require a deposit or cc - just ask that you respectfully cancel ahead if you cannot go. The type of kayaks and the eco theme (plus less crowded than ship's tours) appealed to us. They have a cruise day special that begins at 10 to allow for transport time to their location. Virgin kayak is great with communication and answering e-mails! They said a round trip shuttle pass runs about $16 pp, but even with that factored in, it's still a good deal. There are shuttles as soon as you get off the ship, but they will wait until they are full to leave - so get to the shuttle as soon as possible after the ship docks. Virgin Kayak will send instructions on where to exit the shuttle and what to bring. I was very impressed with the communication!

Have fun on Serenade! This is our second time on a southern Caribbean itinerary. I hope you have a wonderful time!
#5
Tucson AZ
1,974 Posts
Joined Nov 2009
I wanted to book Virgin Kayak for Jan, but then my TA told me that RCI does not change their clocks on the ships and remain on Florida time the entire cruise. I emailed Jill at Virgin Kayak and she said if that was true we would miss the tour. Anyone have any experience with this? I've booked independent tours in all of my other ports and the tours have all said they would wait for us.
#6
3,014 Posts
Joined Jul 2000
Time zone is not an issue when your ship is out of San Juan, as Serenade was. San Juan is in the same time zone as St. Croix. This year Brilliance and Adventure will be doing Southern Carib out of San Juan, and in 2014, Jewel and Adventure.
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http://www.flickr.com/photos/jl_cleveland/sets/
Rhapsody of the Seas, March 1999, Southern Caribbean
Sovereign of the Seas, March 2000, Bahamas
Enchantment of the Seas, August 2000, Western Caribbean
Monarch of the Seas, January 2001, Southern Caribbean
Monarch of the Sears, August 2001, Western Caribbean
Radiance of the Seas, January 2002, Southern Caribbean
Radiance of the Seas, January 2003, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2004, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2005, Southern Caribbean
Empress of the Seas, January 2006, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2007, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2008, Southern Caribbean
Celebrity Summit, January 2009, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2010, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2011, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas B2B, January 2012, Southern Caribbean
Adventure of the Seas, January 2013, Southern Caribbean
Jewel of the Seas B2B, Southern Caribbean, Jan. 2014
Jewel of the Seas B2B, Southern Caribbean, Jan. 2015
In the future:
B2B on Jewel of the Seas, Southern Caribbean, Jan. 2016
Celebrity Equinox, January 2017, Ultimate Caribbean 11-night
#7
Tucson AZ
1,974 Posts
Joined Nov 2009
Thanks for your answer......I think we'll wait till the Vision starts doing this itinerary and see what the reviews say.All of our other tours say there will be no problem...but Virgin Kayak said there would be.
#8
3,014 Posts
Joined Jul 2000
Originally posted by stretchcruz
Thanks for your answer......I think we'll wait till the Vision starts doing this itinerary and see what the reviews say.All of our other tours say there will be no problem...but Virgin Kayak said there would be.
This year's Vision and next year's Legend itineraries are great. However, we really love sailing out of San Juan and prefer fewer sea days. It's been a lot of years since we've cruised out of Florida.
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http://www.flickr.com/photos/jl_cleveland/sets/
Rhapsody of the Seas, March 1999, Southern Caribbean
Sovereign of the Seas, March 2000, Bahamas
Enchantment of the Seas, August 2000, Western Caribbean
Monarch of the Seas, January 2001, Southern Caribbean
Monarch of the Sears, August 2001, Western Caribbean
Radiance of the Seas, January 2002, Southern Caribbean
Radiance of the Seas, January 2003, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2004, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2005, Southern Caribbean
Empress of the Seas, January 2006, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2007, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2008, Southern Caribbean
Celebrity Summit, January 2009, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2010, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2011, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas B2B, January 2012, Southern Caribbean
Adventure of the Seas, January 2013, Southern Caribbean
Jewel of the Seas B2B, Southern Caribbean, Jan. 2014
Jewel of the Seas B2B, Southern Caribbean, Jan. 2015
In the future:
B2B on Jewel of the Seas, Southern Caribbean, Jan. 2016
Celebrity Equinox, January 2017, Ultimate Caribbean 11-night
#9
Tucson AZ
1,974 Posts
Joined Nov 2009
Funny....we had such a horrible experience sailing out of San Juan that we said we would never do it again! The day we docked to get off we were in line for so many hours just to get off of the ship...many many folks missed their flights. Some kind of a slow down, don't know if it was dock workers or what. We were surrounded by folks who were so upset. Luckily we had booked a hotel for that night and flew out the next morning, but we got to the hotel much later than we had planned. Also, getting on, was a huge problem. There were some really good deals offered to residents of Puerto Rico. They took full advantage (I would have, as well). Problem was the long lines and huge family groups. No urgency to get on, no moving forward in line, and then other friends showing up and joining them in line, then wedding groups......anyway, we just decided we would never do that again. It was probably an anomaly, but once you have that bad taste in your mouth you just decide to not do it again.Also, all of the announcements onboard were Spanish, THEN English. I live in Tucson so I am very aware of the Hispanic community, but we thought that this cruise was going to primarily English. We were mistaken. As I said, this was a few years back so hopefully things have changed.
#10
3,014 Posts
Joined Jul 2000
Originally posted by stretchcruz
Funny....we had such a horrible experience sailing out of San Juan that we said we would never do it again! The day we docked to get off we were in line for so many hours just to get off of the ship...many many folks missed their flights. Some kind of a slow down, don't know if it was dock workers or what. We were surrounded by folks who were so upset. Luckily we had booked a hotel for that night and flew out the next morning, but we got to the hotel much later than we had planned. Also, getting on, was a huge problem. There were some really good deals offered to residents of Puerto Rico. They took full advantage (I would have, as well). Problem was the long lines and huge family groups. No urgency to get on, no moving forward in line, and then other friends showing up and joining them in line, then wedding groups......anyway, we just decided we would never do that again. It was probably an anomaly, but once you have that bad taste in your mouth you just decide to not do it again.Also, all of the announcements onboard were Spanish, THEN English. I live in Tucson so I am very aware of the Hispanic community, but we thought that this cruise was going to primarily English. We were mistaken. As I said, this was a few years back so hopefully things have changed.
In 14 San Juan sailings we've never had any of those experiences, but then again, we normally sail a Radiance-class ship or smaller, and have never before sailed on Adventure. We've heard those stories before, but I'm not too worried about it. I'm sure it will be fine. For 2014, though we're back on a Radiance-class ship, the Jewel.
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http://www.flickr.com/photos/jl_cleveland/sets/
Rhapsody of the Seas, March 1999, Southern Caribbean
Sovereign of the Seas, March 2000, Bahamas
Enchantment of the Seas, August 2000, Western Caribbean
Monarch of the Seas, January 2001, Southern Caribbean
Monarch of the Sears, August 2001, Western Caribbean
Radiance of the Seas, January 2002, Southern Caribbean
Radiance of the Seas, January 2003, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2004, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2005, Southern Caribbean
Empress of the Seas, January 2006, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2007, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2008, Southern Caribbean
Celebrity Summit, January 2009, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2010, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas, January 2011, Southern Caribbean
Serenade of the Seas B2B, January 2012, Southern Caribbean
Adventure of the Seas, January 2013, Southern Caribbean
Jewel of the Seas B2B, Southern Caribbean, Jan. 2014
Jewel of the Seas B2B, Southern Caribbean, Jan. 2015
In the future:
B2B on Jewel of the Seas, Southern Caribbean, Jan. 2016
Celebrity Equinox, January 2017, Ultimate Caribbean 11-night
#11
Cleveland, Ohio,USA
3,266 Posts
Joined May 2000
We did this tour last week , 1/14/13, and had a great time. We spent almost 2 hours on the water with Bryan who made the time fly with his narrative. He's a very knowledgeable and interesting guide. The Kayaks are new and you have a choice of paddling or foot power. We saw the ship tour heading back in as we headed out, they were out for a 1/2 hour. Bryan made sure we were comfortable and would periodically ask if we were tired and wanted to go on or back. The only thing I regret was I forgot to bring water with me. Taxi cost to Cane Bay was $18 per person round trip. We got to Cane Bay around 9:45 and met Bryan at 10 and came back to Cane Bay around 1PM. We had time for lunch at the restaurant there called Eat, a bit pricey but good. We had the taxi come back for us at 2:30 and got back to the dock by 3.
Highly recommend this tour.
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Rhapsody 3/99 - Sovereign 3/00 - Monarch 1/01
Enchantment 8/01 - Radiance 5/02 - Monarch 8/02
Radiance 1/03 - Serenade 1/04 - Empress 1/05
Serenade 1/06, 1/07, 1/08 - Celebrity Summit 1/09
Serenade 1/10, 1/11, 1/12 B2B - Adventure 1/13
Jewel 1/14 B2B, 1/15 B2B 1/16 B2B
Celebrity Equinox 1/30/17 - HAL Volendam Alaska 6/7/17