|Eastern Caribbean Dream Vacations|
Eastern Caribbean Dream Vacations
By: WePlanDreams.com / Dream Vacations
Planning to cruise or vacation in the Eastern Caribbean? You selected a great destination!
Nearly every major and minor cruise line has the eastern Caribbean on their radar. They either visit a couple ports or focus on an entire region to give you a well-rounded eastern Caribbean experience. Either way, you won’t be disappointed!
To be more specific in terms of what the eastern Caribbean entails; it ranges from the islands of St. Maarten and St. Martin which are two distinct nations on one unique island, Puerto Rico and encompasses the British and American Virgin Islands.
Also expect to see the Bahamas. It’s not an official part of the Caribbean but it along with Grand Turk in Turks & Caicos are major parts of many Eastern Caribbean itineraries. As an added bonus, many cruise lines have private islands spotted in their adventure. Carnival / Holland America owns Half Moon Cay, Royal Caribbean has Labadee in Haiti, Norwegian visits Great Stirrup Cay or Princess Cays. Each of these islands offer the best of an eastern Caribbean vacation, all packaged into the itinerary.
As if all of the above isn’t enough to make you book a cruise right now, let’s continue to dream about other ports of call on an eastern Caribbean vacation. St. Thomas, San Juan and Nassau are developed for tourist with plenty of great shore excursions, duty-free shopping, and historic sites. Each Cruise Line offers videos to inspire your next Dream Vacation! Or just read our Vacation Magazine right HERE!!!
If marching to a different beat interest you, then adventure out on your own and discover desolate beaches, popular hip restaurants, and amazing nightlife hotspots.
Eastern Caribbean Itineraries
The eastern Caribbean can be a great weekend getaway, three- or four- night trips to 10-14 night experiences. Most ships visit popular ports like St. Maarten in the U.S. Virgin Islands, St. Thomas in the Netherlands Antilles, Tortola in the British Virgin Island, and San Juan, Puerto Rico’s capital city.
The first things to consider are which port you will embark from and how long you plan to live your dream vacation. Remember…use deserve this!
Royal Caribbean, Carnival, Disney and Norwegian all offer cruises out of Jacksonville, Port Canaveral, Ft. Lauderdale and Miami, Florida. Most in which are offered as short trips year-round. If these listed seem too typical, then consider taking a Luxury Cruise which visits a few smaller ports such as St. Bart’s or the Dominican.
If traveling to Florida is a concern, never fear…other ports are here! Eastern Caribbean cruises embark from other cities such as Baltimore, Manhattan, Cape Liberty, Red Hook and Charleston. Itineraries from these East coast ports may limit the stops along the way since there’s more time at sea. If that’s a concern, take a look at visiting Bermuda!
Another option is to book a FLIGHT to Florida and save the hassle of driving and reward yourself with more Ports-of-Call!
Perks of the Ports
St. Maarten & St. Martin: Discover Dutch and French cultures on one small island. One the Dutch side (St. Maarten), Philipsburg is the hotspot for duty-free shopping and bargaining. On the French side (St. Martin), Marigot is the capitol and boasts designer boutiques, restaurants, bistros and cafes. A must see destination is Sunset Bar & Grill perched at the end of Princess Juliana International Airport’s runway.
Nassau, Bahamas: As soon as you dock at the port you’ll find all sorts of souvenirs for sale, hair-braiding, thatched purses, etc. The Straw Market is a Nassau tradition and a perfect place to take home a piece of the Bahamas. If you are a beach lover then make sure you visit Paradise Island where you’ll find watersport rentals and tasty eateries. You can also purchase a day-pass to enjoy the Atlantis Resort and all 34 acres of their paradise.
St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands, Charlotte Amalie: Enjoy walking through duty-free shopping heaven! You may enjoy jumping on a ferry to St. John’s and go snorkeling. The U.S. Virgin Islands is also home of one of the Eastern Caribbean’s top beaches known as Magens Bay. Rest assure there’s plenty to keep you in that Island state-of-mind! You’re not going to want to leave.
Grand Turk, Turks & Caicos: If powdery white sands located along a major coral reef peaks your interest, then you have discovered paradise. One with pastel-painted wood buildings, the governor’s house, old churches, a public library, and even a small shopping plaza. Here, you’ll also find a Columbus Monument, claiming the explorer landed there in 1492. Did I mention snorkeling, watersports, scuba diving, and catamaran adventures?
San Juan, Puerto Rico: Give yourself a chance to soak up some history. Visit El Morro, one of San Juan’s most historic monuments. El Morro has sections dating back to the 16th century. El Yunque, the only U.S. National Rainforest, gives way to numerous waterfalls and wildflowers along marked hiking trails.
Tortola, British Virgin Islands: If this port doesn’t get you excited, you may need to seek professional help. Two words come to mind…BEACHES and WATERSPORTS! Then there’s snorkeling and swimming among the prehistoric boulders that make up “The Baths” just a ferry ride away to Virgin Gorda. You could get lucky and run into Kenny Chesney while visiting Jost Van Dyke’s famous beach bars such as Foxy’s or Soggy Dollar!
When to Visit the Eastern Caribbean
Now that you’ve made up your mind and can’t escape the lure of the Eastern Caribbean, when should you visit?
Are you escaping the Northern cold? Taking a family summer trip?
The “High” season in the Eastern Caribbean begins in December and runs through April. This range is when the “snow birds” escape winter in the U.S., Canada and Europe. The summer months of June, July and August will be enticing to the family adventurers.
Keep in mind that the Hurricane season runs from June 1 – November 30. August, September and October are risky months due to extreme weather conditions.
Make sure you look into LeisureCare insurance to protect your Dream Vacation investment!
Eastern Caribbean Dream Vacation Advice
Disembarking at ports-of-call can be hectic and getting bombarded with the touristy vibe can hinder your visit…..DON’T LET IT!!!!
Do a little research ahead of time, ask your Dream Vacation Specialist, and you WILL find your slice of paradise at every stop along the way.
Even though you discover paradise, you can’t leave yourself open to local crime. Pickpocketing is common and expect the locals to wheel-n-deal. For some, it’s how they feed their families. It’s unfortunate so be smart about your belongings.
If you are booking a shore excursion through us you will be in great hands and things will be well organized. If you go at it on your own, plan ahead and look into renting a car. Some islands are more easy than others but make sure you work out transportation both ways and DON’T MISS THE BOAT! They will leave you!
For more information and Travel Tips click HERE!