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Antigua vs St. Kitts and Nevis . . . .Recommendations?


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We want to take a Southern Caribbean cruise in 2024 and need help deciding between two itineraries.  For the most part, the itineraries are the same, but one key difference is that one cruise goes to St. Kitts and Nevis, and the other goes to St. John's Antigua.  We have never been to either place, so we are looking for recommendations, differences, pros & cons that anyone could offer.  Our family of 5 has 3 kids (18, 17, and 9), so we are looking for the best option to suit to our family situation.  Any help or advice you can offer would be greatly appreciated . . . .thank you!

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Our family have always been train people, so when I visited St. Kitty I did the sugar train and tour.  But maybe not everyone in your group wants to do the same thing.  Perhaps one of you could take the older kids on one excursion, and the other take the youngest.  Or some other combination.  As for me, on my first visit to a port I try to take a tour that gives me an overview of history and geography.  EM

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7 hours ago, new2cruise721 said:

... Our family of 5 has 3 kids (18, 17, and 9), so we are looking for the best option to suit to our family situation...




To help you out your thread has been moved to the Family Cruises forum where it will be on topic for your situation.


Happy sails,


Host Kat

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We found St Kitts to be very quiet and a little boring. But it is beautiful. St John’s is one of our favorite Caribbean ports. The architecture is cool and it has a lively vibe. We have been to Antiqua and I honestly don’t remember it at all. After a while, all the Virgin Islands are more or less the same. 

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12 hours ago, Essiesmom said:

Our family have always been train people, so when I visited St. Kitty I did the sugar train and tour.

If you are talking about the St. Kitts Scenic Railway Tour, we did it in late 2021 and it was wonderful. A great way to see beautiful parts of the island. Live narration, local dancers who came aboard to perform, “adult” and non-adult beverages … A really excellent tour. 

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11 hours ago, new2cruise721 said:

@Essiesmom  That sounds amazing, thanks for the tip!  I completely agree about checking out the history and geography, and I would add culture.  Appreciate the advice!

If you decide to do the train, a few hints.  Half of the tour is in buses, small ones painted to match the train cars.  They go in order.  The early group will do the train first, then the bus part.  There is one bus for each car, and they go in order.  I did the afternoon, bus first.  I was in the back of the group, so got the last bus…which meant I was in the last car on the train.  Great views!  The cars are two levels with tables and chairs and a restroom on the lower level, enclosed.  Upstairs is open with a canopy.  I loved being in the very back.  The train moves very slowly, very narrow gauge with some sway, and I suspect if they went faster the sway would increase and cause it to derail.  EM

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We had a bit of an issue in Antigua so we weren't actually able to complete our plan for our kids.  NCL cancelled the port in the DR and the morning in Antigua after final payment to help the environment and wouldn't let us switch to an identical sailing a few weeks later so I can't personally vouch for Antigua.  But what we planned to do was visit the giant tortoises at Laiscount Island.  But the tours to Laiscount Island only run in the mornings, and I'm not sure they run every day so please email them to check availability before factoring that into your decision. http://www.stingraycityantigua.com/contact.html. .  Stingray city does a nice job of letting you visit the stingrays.  Unfortunately, our port day was cut in half by NCL so we didn't get to do the other things we'd planned (the toirteses and Devil's Bridge).


In St. Kitts we visited a nice rainforest, and the outside of a sugar plantation (very photogenic) and people are there with baby monkeys you can hold for pictures.  We then visited a monkey beach, which isn't the most scenic beach but has monkeys that visit most afternoons and an excellent restaurant.  My 4 year old is obsessed with monkeys and told the TSA officer who stopped her at the end of the cruise that her name was monkey and we had booked this cruise because our cancelled stop in the DR would let us get to a monkey reserve, so we were very grateful to have any monkey experience in St. Kitts.       


Given the fact that we weren't able to complete our itinerary (and had rearranged our plans for St. Kitts to prioritize monkeys, which normally isn't necessarily the best choice) I'm not sure I can yet advise you as to which port to choose, but felt this post might help you to get a sense of some of your options.  Best of luck to you.

Edited by kitkat343
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