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cruizin0723

Daysail on St. Thomas - Questions!!!!

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We just got back from a 10 day sail on the Emerald Princess. Given that St. Thomas is such a commercial island (which does not interest us), we decided to "get out of Dodge" on a day-sail. We picked Rumbaba, as the reviews on these boards was outstanding. The 38 foot sailboat will only hold 6 passengers - plus the 2 crew (Bobby and Karen). From what we were told when booking, they will not sail with less than four passengers. The price was $115.00 pp cash, $125.00 pp credit card. We docked in St. Thomas at 7:00, but had to clear customs before being allowed to exit the ship. We then hopped in a van (they are all waiting outside the pier) to head to Red Hook. Please note that the town is VERY busy and we were there during rush hour. While the distance isn't that long, it took about 1/2 hour or so to get to Red Hook. I had emailed Bobby the day before, when we found out our disembarkation could take longer than expected due to the clearing of customs - it actually went very quickly and we were off the ship in record time. The cab/van ride is a set price for ALL cabs/vans at $11.00 per person plus tip EACH WAY. I have to say, this sail was one of the highlights of our trip. Having never sailed before, I was not sure what to expect. We got caught in a 10 minute downpour while heading out on the high seas! ha-ha!! It was warm out, so no one cared. We were treated to some homemade banana bread on the way, which was delicious. Bobby is very knowledgeable about the water, the island of St. Thomas, and the surrounding islands. He is quite a character! We stopped in a quiet little cove (the ONLY boat in the area) and had an unbelieveable snorkel. We saw sea turtles, huge seastars, schools of squid, trumpet fish, large spiny sea urchins, etc. It really was GREAT! After the first snorkel we got back on the ship for lunch -- this was totally at our leisure, no one called us back to the ship, when we were done snorkeling and were hungry we got back on. My husband is still raving about the grilled Mahi-Mahi...I will be emailing Karen for the recipe! The food is delicious -- gourmet, and served beautifully with fresh flowers, fruit and salads. We were also treated to fresh veggies/dip/grilled shrimp and crackers as an appetizer before lunch. After lunch we jumped back in and swam to another area for more snorkeling. This was very interesting with an underwater cliff ... we had about an hour before having to get back on and sail back. We were stuck in busy traffic again heading back to the pier, but made it in plenty of time - we were never nervous about missing the ship. I would not hesitate to recommend this day-sail! The snorkeling/food/experience was outstanding. Such a nice relaxing day. But, if you are hoping to having time before or after your sail to walk around town and shop, this is not the trip for you. We literally had 20 minutes or so where we poked around some of the vendors right outside of the pier before getting on-board. Also, if you are concerned about price, this is something else to consider. Keep in mind that the taxi ride alone will cost 2 people over $50.00 with tip. And, we also tipped Bobby and Karen at the end of the day. The trip was totally worth it, just keep in mind that you will be spending more money than just the price of the sail itself. Whatever you decide, have a wonderful, safe journey! Enjoy!!:)

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Merv1, thank you for the excellent review. Those of us looking around for information really appreciate details like this!

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After visiting St. Thomas on a cruise in 2004, we decided to go back and spend a two week vacation there in 2005. Over two weeks we did lots of stuff on St. Thomas but our group (6 of us) unanimously agreed that the best day we spent on St. Thomas was the day we did the day sail. We sailed on the "Fantasy" with Capt. Brian. It was pretty expensive, but SO worth it. I'm sure any of the boats will be great. I'd just encourage doing one.

 

http://daysailfantasy.com/

Mark, I'd like to hear more about your daysail with Fantasy. I've booked it for March/2008, but have read some negative comments on another thread. What did you like/dislike about the operation? Please tell all you know.

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Mark, I'd like to hear more about your daysail with Fantasy. I've booked it for March/2008, but have read some negative comments on another thread. What did you like/dislike about the operation? Please tell all you know.

 

Not sure what negative you've heard. Brian was our captain for the day and he had one crew with him (sorry, don't remember his name). They were great. They took us to amazing coves on St. John and showed us great places to snorkel. We saw lots of fish and sea turtles. We thought they were very knowledgeable about the area. The served us a nice lunch. I'm not sure what there was not to like. All I can tell you is that our group said it was the best day of our trip. If you'd like more specific info just ask.

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We sailed with Captain Mike on Island Girl earlier this year, he meet us right as we got off of our ship, which saved us from having to take a taxi ride. We just did the half day, had the other half day to shop. They took us out to a small island where there was fantastic snorkeling and we used their sea scooters which were a total blast! My husband and I highly recommend Island Girl! :D

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Not sure what negative you've heard. Brian was our captain for the day and he had one crew with him (sorry, don't remember his name). They were great. They took us to amazing coves on St. John and showed us great places to snorkel. We saw lots of fish and sea turtles. We thought they were very knowledgeable about the area. The served us a nice lunch. I'm not sure what there was not to like. All I can tell you is that our group said it was the best day of our trip. If you'd like more specific info just ask.

General impressions are good. If you liked it enough to say it was the highlight of your vacation, that's a big plus. That's what I'm hoping for too.

The main complaint seemed to be that they wouldn't serve these people enough booze to put a normal person under the table.:D

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We sailed with Captain Mike on Island Girl earlier this year, he meet us right as we got off of our ship, which saved us from having to take a taxi ride. We just did the half day, had the other half day to shop. They took us out to a small island where there was fantastic snorkeling and we used their sea scooters which were a total blast! My husband and I highly recommend Island Girl! :D

 

Thanks for the feedback -- we are sailing on Island Girl next week.

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We did the daysail on the Rumbaba with Captain Bobby and Wendy on December 5 and had a great time with two other couples from the Freedom of the Seas. Mary1 said it all. Karen still prepares the food but Wendy is now the mate. We snorkeled at Christmas Cove- terrific, my mahi mahi was fabulous, so was the mango chedar dip, garlic bread, banana blueberry bread, cookies etc ( one reason we chose the Rumbaba)

We were on the Noordam which docks in Crown Bay (a half hr ride with no traffic). Make sure you let Bobby know what time your ship docks and take his cell # with you. We would have missed the excursion if I hadn't called- we didn't get over to Red Hook until after 9:30. If you can arrange a private taxi it's much better- you don't have to wait for the van to fill up or make stops along the way. We use Donovan each time we visit St Thomas. His cell # is 340 998 9021 and home # 340 775 2729. No matter who you use for the ride to Red Hook, don't get dropped off at the ferry terminal, have them drop you off at the strip mall just before the terminal. Walk between the buildings to the water and make a right, Bobby should be dead ahead waiting with his dingy :D

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Hey, my husband and I have found two recommended sailboats that offer private sailing/snorkeling in St Thomas/St Johns. We need 1 - 2 other couples (max 6 persons) for a day cruise to include food and open bar. Since the Valor has a later schedule than other ships, they will accomodate us with a 10:30 am - 4:30 pm day. Cost is $115/pp cash or $125 credit. If you are interested, I can give more details please email directly to UODuck1978@aol.com.

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Hey, my husband and I have found two recommended sailboats that offer private sailing/snorkeling in St Thomas/St Johns. We need 1 - 2 other couples (max 6 persons) for a day cruise to include food and open bar. Since the Valor has a later schedule than other ships, they will accomodate us with a 10:30 am - 4:30 pm day. Cost is $115/pp cash or $125 credit. If you are interested, I can give more details please email directly to UODuck1978@aol.com.

 

What's your sail/arrival date in St Thomas? I'd also say hi to or start your own roll call for your cruise and post the same question there

Have a great one!

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crisp1-we will be doing this tour with Rumba on May 14 2008. Can you tell me information on the time zone there. Our ship (the Mariner) will be there from 9:00 til 8:00, I don't know how we can get to Capt Bobby by 9:30. Did you have to go through customs? How long did it take to get to Red Hook? What about the ship's time and St Thomas time, is there a difference? And how do we plan our trip with Bobby, I'm not worried about getting back to the ship, just getting to our sailing in time.

 

Also any other information that you can give me on this tour would be great. We have never sailed before and are very excited. Did you enjoy the sail, the food, and where did you go for the snorking? How big is the sail boat? Thanks, sorry--too many questions I know, but I'm just exctied to know anything that you can tell me. kmbb

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KMBB- As far as customs goes, you only have to go through it when coming back to a US territory after visiting a foreign port. So if St Thomas is your first port or you stopped in San Juan before St Thomas you won't have to deal with it. The cruise lines have it down to a science and it takes very little time

Time Zone: same as the Eastern US, but they don't do daylight savings- so it will be the same time as Fl in May

RCI docks in Havensight- a 10 minute cab ride. Again I stress having Bobby's cell # with you. You can call anywhere while in St Thomas- it should be in your extended range from your cell provider.

Try to get others from your roll call to join you- then he'll have to wait for you;)

Bobby tailors the day to the 'majority rule'- if most of you want to snorkel- he'll take you to a great snorkel spot- if you all would rather swim, then swim it is, just want to sail, that too. He has evrything from full vests, blow up snorkel vests to noodles along with fins, masks and snorkels. He or Wendy will get in the water with you if you want and show you the good stuff.

We went to Christmas Cove but the weather ( wind, surf) will affect Bobby's choice of where to take you.

The Rumbaba is 39', a beauty. 4 seat comfortably and the other 2 sit on the side. My wife is not a 'sailor' nor does she snorkel, but she was fine- we were the late ones so the seats were taken. She grabbed a noodle and swam off the back of the boat while the rest of us snorkeled. Bobby offered to take her to a place where she could snorkel off the beach for our afternoon snorkel but she was content to lay about in the water where we were- it was beautiful. There are pictures of the boat etc on Rumbabacharters dot com

The food was excellent. Here's what we had that day

 

We were offered the choice of Mahi mahi, tuna or filet mignon as entres. The entres came with homemade garlic bread and a wonderful cold pasta salad. As we were leaving Red Hook we had homemade banana blueberry bread. After snorkeling at Christmas Cove, before the main lunch, the hors d'ourves plate came out with plenty of shrimp and veggies, and a homemade mango cheddar dip. For drinks there was water, beer and Bob's rumbaba rum

drink. Lunch was followed by homemade cookies and more drink. Everything was absolutely delicious! Wendy is Bobby's 1st mate ( looks good in a bathing suit too) but Karen still does all the preparing of the food with her home grown seasonings

Bobby is funny and has plenty of stories to tell. We got along so well with the other couples on the sail that Bobby had a hard time getting in a word at times.

Hope that helps :D

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crisp1--Thanks for all the information. We are a family of 4, so if no one else signs up it will be just us. I'm not a person who will snorkle, but I love to see my family do these things. I wil get into the water and just "hang" out. Do they offer soda and bottle water? We are not drinkers, but my husband might enjoy a beer or two, do they offer that?

 

Did you get to go by Michael Jorden house or Johnny Deff private island? Someone has said that they did that. That would be a extra bonus.

 

How pretty is the water, can you see pretty far down? We have only snorkle in Grand Caymen and my boys loved it.

 

Thanks for the information, kmbb

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KMBB,

We didn't sail past any celeb's homes. I think they're on the other side of the island.

Yes to bottled water and soda- just let Bobby know what you prefer. He had Coors light and some local beer

The water is sooo clear that you can see the bottom when you're in 30 ft of water.

You could put on a vest or grab a noodle lay in the water ( take a mask with you and just take a peek) you may get 'hooked' we saw large ray's while we were having lunch and the others saw turtles

Have a great one

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crisp1---can't wait until we can go. We have never sailed before and we all love the water. My kids(19 year old twin boys) are looking forward to it. This will probally be our last family vacation, and I want to have some special family memories. Should be alot of fun!!

 

Thank again for the information, if I think of any other questions I'll be posting again. kmbb

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crisp1---can't wait until we can go. We have never sailed before and we all love the water. My kids(19 year old twin boys) are looking forward to it. This will probally be our last family vacation, and I want to have some special family memories. Should be alot of fun!!

 

Thank again for the information, if I think of any other questions I'll be posting again. kmbb

 

Since there are four of you booked with Bobby, you don't have to worry about him leaving without you. Just remind him of your arrival time when you tell him what entres to make. Don't forget the camera

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We did a day sail excursion with Captain Max out of Red Hook. Cost was 125 pp Credit Card, 115 cash.

 

Pros: Boat was beautiful, Capt Max is a very experience Captain. She and her 1st mate Julie were lovely people and we enjoyed our conversation. Lunch was a plate of poached chicken with a lovely rice dish and a great fruit plate. Soft drinks were plentiful and alcohol was available after the snorkeling

 

Cons: Long trip to Red Hook from Crown Bay, RT was 22 pp so for 4 of us, cab ride was 88 plus tip. Traffic was horrible with 5 ships in town and a telephone pole was down across the road to Red Hook. We had a lovely sail to St John but the snorkeling was just ok. I have been to much better reefs than the one we saw.

 

The final straw though was when a 20% gratuity was demanded before we departed the ship. Both couples thought that was extremely high and we finally settled @ $50 for the 4 of us.

 

This whole excursion would have been cheaper off the ship.

 

Recommendations.

 

Find someone who will pick you up at either the ship dock or downtown and avoid the expensive and long cab ride.

 

Ask ahead of time what to expect for tipping. We had a great day until we felt we were being held hostage for a $100 tip.

 

Just our thoughts

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We just returned from a 10 day Rastern on Emerald Princess. We did the full day Catamaran booked through the cruise line. The Cat was Heavenly Days and we had had Captain Dan.

 

We stepped off the ship and after a short walk up the pier, we stepped right onto the Heavenly Days.

 

We had a great time saling over to St John. We spent quite a lot of time under sail. We had about 2 hours of snorkel and beach time and a great lunch on board along with unlimited rum punch and other soft drinks and beer.

 

Weather was great, crew was geat, views were great. Had 40 people and was never crowded. I think it was $109 pp.

We would do it again.

 

Tim

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We have Rumbaba booked on our April 11, EOS cruise. This thread has been great and I am looking forward to this excursion! I would like clarification on a couple of points, though. Tips were mentioned. How much would you customarily tip the cab drivers & the Rumbaba people for two people? Also, is the ship time the same as port time in mid-April?

 

Thanks!:)

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How do you go about selecting a daysail. I've just started the research and it seems like there are a lot of them to choose from.

 

What makes one better than the other? Most of them are priced pretty competively, almost all of them sail with about 6 passengers. Just not sure what I should be asking.

 

Trish

 

 

Hi Trish, Do you want to snorkel as well as sail?

 

If so check out www.yachtadventures.biz/rates.htm

 

My husband and I took their 1/2 day sail/snorkel trip last month and it was fantastic. The Island Girl is a 45' sloop and in addition to the regular snorkel equipment Mike has SeaDoo machines. These are fantastic! They are battery operated (no pretty darn quiet) torpedo shaped things that pull you through the water. They have 3 speeds, they will float on the surface if you want to dive down (or point them down and dive with them!). What a great way to snorkel!!!

 

Half day price was $75 each and there was only a 2 person minimum. Full day (2 snorkel stops) is $125 pp with a 4 person minimum. The maximum number of guests is 6.

 

We did the 1/2 day. Next time we will definitely go for the full day.

 

Mike picked us up right at Crown Bay port but he will pick guests up at whichever port their ship is in.

 

If you go, please say "Hi" from Molly & Steve, Reno.

 

Molly

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We have Rumbaba booked on our April 11, EOS cruise. This thread has been great and I am looking forward to this excursion! I would like clarification on a couple of points, though. Tips were mentioned. How much would you customarily tip the cab drivers & the Rumbaba people for two people? Also, is the ship time the same as port time in mid-April?
DW and I are also on this sailing on the EOS, and have booked with Rumbaba as well.. I believe we dock in Havensight..!:)

 

Any and ALL info is appreciated.. I may have to change my menu selection to Mahi-Mahi from Ahi Tuna, after reading all the great comments...:rolleyes: :p

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DW and I are also on this sailing on the EOS, and have booked with Rumbaba as well.. I believe we dock in Havensight..!:)

 

Any and ALL info is appreciated.. I may have to change my menu selection to Mahi-Mahi from Ahi Tuna, after reading all the great comments...:rolleyes: :p

We'll have to take a cab from Havensight to Red Hook. It looks like we may have to budget about $25 per couple each way for the cab....how much should we plan on tipping Rumbaba?

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We'll have to take a cab from Havensight to Red Hook. It looks like we may have to budget about $25 per couple each way for the cab....how much should we plan on tipping Rumbaba?

 

I'm anxious to know the answer. we'll be sailing rumbaba on feb 7th. woohoo!

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Hello--

We have sailed with Capt. Bobby twice this year -- once in Jan and then again in Dec. We loved it!!! The food is so good and the scenery is so beautiful and Capt Bobby's stories are the best! His new first mate Wendy is very sweet and is a very hard worker.

As far as tipping -- I would say $25 a couple each way for the taxi is right -- we asked our lady to pick us up at 3:30 and she was there waiting for us at the dock when we got off the Sail.

For tipping with Capt. Bobby and Wendy -- we tipped $20 per person which is about 17% and what we thought was well worth it. It is an expensive day but well worth every penny!

If you have anymore questions about Rumbaba ~ I would be happy to answer them! I will try to get my pictures posted with pictures of Capt. Bobby and the food. (mahi mahi and the filet)

Dorie

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