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KTCruiserFL

Afternoon in St. Thomas

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Hello fellow cruisers! My family and I are cruising on harmony of the sea on June 30th. This is our first time bringing our kids along (8 and 4 years old). Typically, when in St. Thomas, we head over to St. John and spend the day there. We are scheduled to be in port from 12pm to 8pm which I found odd. Since we are getting there so late, St John really isn’t an option for us this time. We are looking for a nice beach where my 8 year old and I can enjoy good snorkeling while my 4 year old enjoys time playing on the beach. I worry that by the time we get off the boat, the beaches will be crowded. I have done some searching and it seems like sapphire beach or coki beach might be good fits for us. I’m just worried about them being busy by the time we get off the ship. Any advice you have would be great! 

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Depends on how many other ships will be in port. Many people on Royal Caribbean ships go to Emerald Beach or Water Island because they're close but they're not known for snorkeling. Imo, Sapphire would be better because it probably won't be as crowded as Coki and there should be good snorkeling there, too.

 

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42 minutes ago, Ms411 said:

Depends on how many other ships will be in port. Many people on Royal Caribbean ships go to Emerald Beach or Water Island because they're close but they're not known for snorkeling. Imo, Sapphire would be better because it probably won't be as crowded as Coki and there should be good snorkeling there, too.

 

Thank you for the response. It looks like the harmony will be the only ship in port that day so that’s good! I was thinking sapphire was probably our best choice but read that the waves can be rough which worries me for my 4 year old who will want to swim a little. Do you find this to be the case? 

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The waves at Sapphire are usually not rough, but Coki and Secret Harbor are in coves so more predictably calm.

 

Secret Harbor doesn't have much shade, but does rent umbrellas and chairs. Usually people with small children stay at Secret Harbor.

 

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Yes as MS411 mentioned Secret Harbor is typically calm, Sapphire is our favorite but it can be rough depending on conditions that day so with kids you can’t be sure. Coki is a busier vibe and a popular snorkel beach, but SH is probably your best option for both calm water and snorkeling, and there is a restaurant there. The Secre Harbour Resort has a designated area on the beach for day visitors, and if you get there in a timely manner you should not have a problem renting lounges and umbrellas. If you want to ensure that, you can reserve ahead at AA Divers, but be aware of the cancellation policy.

https://aadivers.com/contact.php

 

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Coral World closes no later than 4pm each day so keep that in mind if you wanted to pair that with Coki Beach.

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Consider Honeymoon beach on Water Island. It is quite and I am sure your kids will have fun there. But so will you.

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Harmony of the Seas docks at Crown Bay which is near Lindbergh Bay (aka Emerald Beach), and near the small ferry to Water Island. However for snorkeling these are not great choices, and Honeymoon Beach is anything but quiet with a ship in CB.

 

Sapphire, Coki, and Secret Harbour are the best choices for snorkeling, and are also the nicest beaches. Sapphire would be our choice unless the calm water of Secret Harbor is a priority...

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On 5/4/2019 at 7:49 AM, KTCruiserFL said:

Hello fellow cruisers! My family and I are cruising on harmony of the sea on June 30th. This is our first time bringing our kids along (8 and 4 years old). Typically, when in St. Thomas, we head over to St. John and spend the day there. We are scheduled to be in port from 12pm to 8pm which I found odd. Since we are getting there so late, St John really isn’t an option for us this time. We are looking for a nice beach where my 8 year old and I can enjoy good snorkeling while my 4 year old enjoys time playing on the beach. I worry that by the time we get off the boat, the beaches will be crowded. I have done some searching and it seems like sapphire beach or coki beach might be good fits for us. I’m just worried about them being busy by the time we get off the ship. Any advice you have would be great! 

Please explain why late arrival is an issue.  We are scheduled in port 11:30am to 7pm.  I see the national park closes at 4:30.  How much time from port arrival does it take to get to St John?

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Depending on your port, 20 - 40 minutes to the Red Hook ferry terminal + the 15 - 20 minute ferry and any wait time.

 

Later arrival is a concern if other ships are in port before you as the popular beaches will be crowded when you get there. With no other ships in port, it is more about the shorter time in port and the time spent getting to and from STJ when you could be relaxing at a beach on STT. And not to speak for the OP who usually goes to STJ, I would think this later arrival making for a longer day for the young kids would be a consideration too...

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On 5/6/2019 at 10:19 PM, Trueblueky said:

Please explain why late arrival is an issue.  We are scheduled in port 11:30am to 7pm.  I see the national park closes at 4:30.  How much time from port arrival does it take to get to St John?

 

On 5/7/2019 at 9:07 AM, blue_water said:

Depending on your port, 20 - 40 minutes to the Red Hook ferry terminal + the 15 - 20 minute ferry and any wait time.

 

Later arrival is a concern if other ships are in port before you as the popular beaches will be crowded when you get there. With no other ships in port, it is more about the shorter time in port and the time spent getting to and from STJ when you could be relaxing at a beach on STT. And not to speak for the OP who usually goes to STJ, I would think this later arrival making for a longer day for the young kids would be a consideration too...

Yes!  blue_water said exactly what I was going to say.  You can still make a later afternoon of a day in St. John, just know that its going to take you a while before you arrive at a beach in St. John.  We are not going this time because its to much for our 4 year old and we would like to get back onboard in time for a late nap.  We are excited to spend time in St. Thomas this time! 

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