After a late evening departure from San Juan, we’ve made our way to one of the most popular cruise destinations in the Caribbean, St. Thomas. But, it’s a very quiet day today, we’re the only ship in port. We’re moored at Havensight, the cruise focused duty-free shopping area outside of Charlotte Amalie. At the end of the harbor is a new shopping area called Yacht Haven Grande. Formerly only a moorage operation for large yachts, this area now features high end shopping and dining options. If you’re ready for a casual, waterfront location off the ship, check out Fat Turtle – it gets good reviews and was very busy as we strolled by.
It’s a muggy and warm day (mid 80’s) in St. Thomas, and by 2pm we’re back on the ship seeking shade and cool drinks. At 4pm we head ashore for a ship organized shore excursion – “Sunset Sail and Caribbean Beach BBQ”. Our group of about 30 guests is escorted to the beautiful schooner Silent Lady. We’re bound for Water Island’s Honeymoon Beach. It takes captain Dave just under an hour to sail around to the protected bay where we anchor and climb aboard the inflatable dingy for a quick ride to shore. A favorite of locals and tour companies, Honeymoon Beach is exactly what you think of for a Caribbean beach – powder soft sand, clear water and shady palm trees. Our BBQ dinner is ready for us as we arrive, pasta salad, baked beans, chicken and ribs along with plenty of cold beers and “painkiller” rum drinks. We enjoy a fantastic sunset before heading back. Our return to the ship is highlighted by the lights of Charlotte Amalie and other traffic on the harbor. Thanks to Christy, Gabe and Capt’n Dave. This was a great excursion â€“ and not available from other cruise lines because by 5 or 6pm, most other ships have departed St. Thomas. But, we’re here overnight and won’t be leaving until 7AM, for the short sail over to St. John.
More from Cruz Bay, St. John tomorrow.