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San Juan, St. Croix, St. Maarten, Antigua, St. Lucia, Barbados...


kre8ivejen

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We are going to be hitting these ports on our cruise next week!!! I have heard that shopping is better in some ports than others... Any info on where shopping might be best in these particular ports?

 

Not looking for anything too crazy, just the usual touristy-stuff and maybe some nice jewelry (not super deep pocketed though, so looking for the best buys on the good stuff!) :) THANK YOU for any ideas any of you can offer :)

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I have been to all these places recently except Barbados. In my experience, St Maarten, the Dutch side at Phillipsburg where the ships dock, offers the largest and most varied shopping experience. Their claim to fame is "tax-free" and the low prices certainly impressed me. Front St, nearest the water is where the high-end stores and brand names are. Back St., one block farther away from the water, offers a real grab-bag of stores selling knock-offs and mountains of merchandise of all kinds. I can't say whether everything that is sold is what it is claimed to be, but you could spend hours looking through all the shops.

 

Lots of variety in Old San Juan, of store types and things for sale - everything from typical souvenirs to designer labels. No bargains, in my experience. To be honest, I was so harassed in the first two blocks off the ship in Antigua by people trying to sell us excursions and taxi tours, I just wanted to flee. I guess there were shops along the street, but clustered all over the sidewalk and the curb were these aggressive people trying to show me their photos and tour brochures, so I never went into any stores - I figured those people would just set on me again the minute I came back out. You'd have to be a stronger person than me to shop anywhere near the dock in Antigua.

 

Plenty of people in Castries in St Lucia and at every possible tourist stop (even lookout locations) selling locally made dolls, inexpensive costume jewelry, etc. It's all the same stuff, wherever you stop. Our tour guide told us the farther you get away from the port, the lower the prices are.

 

St Croix, one street of vendors as you turn right after you come to the end of the pier area. Some nice locally made souvenir items and interesting souvenir-type stuff. The vendors were very low-key, and let you look as long as you wanted with no hassles. I didn't see much else in the way of shopping as I wandered around the town.

 

If you really want to shop intensively for everything under the sun, I'd say make Phillipsburg, St Maarten your shopping destination.

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