My family arrived the day before (Jan 29) into San Juan on United 699 from Washington Dulles and had a great flight down to SJU. Once we arrived, we stayed at the Courtyard Isla Verde Resort, 7012 Ave. Bosa de Cangrejos Carolina,PR 00979. We stayed in room 307 and the room was very big and the beds were very comfortable. We got this Hotel from Hotwire for $102 and it is a 3.5* and was a great hotel stay. The beach was great, which is what my family wanted. The hotel is located very close to the Airport though and the airplanes were taking off by our hotel which didn't bother me but if you want peace and quiet, you probably might want to take this hotel out of the question. I like flying and airplanes, so I loved this hotel because I got to see all the planes takeoff. We were able to walk to the grocery store,and also Denny's for breakfast which was good. For dinner we had excellent Puerto Rican/Cuban food at "Metropol" which was directly across from Denny's. The air traffic at night did not bother us because we kept the balcony door closed all night. Very Nice stay at this hotel and a pretty good Location.
We checked out of the hotel and they allowed us to use the beach until we wanted to go to the pier.
We went to the pier around 3:00 and we moved through customs very quick and the process was very organized. We went aboard for the first time and loved the environment of the ship as soon as we walked on. We went to our stateroom which was Deck 2, state room 2102. We really liked this room because it was bigger than the past rooms we stayed in. Our stateroom attendant, Soccorro was excellent, and was very nice and friendly and kept our stateroom well maintained.
We attended the 6pm seating on Deck 5, Table 577. Our waiter, Peter (from India) was excellent and the best waiter that we have ever had! He never messed up our order or anything, he was an awesome waiter. His assistant, Selvin (from Honduras) was great as well. He always kept our water glasses full as well as our coffee cups full, he was very friendly and welcoming. We wished that we can have Peter and Selvin as our waiters in our home, that is how much we miss seeing them every night!
The food on the ship was excellent, The Food in the Cosmopolitan Dining Room, The Buffets on Deck 10, everything was great! On the night after we left St. Kitts, there was a great fruit buffet on the pool deck that you cant miss. There was great music and fruit. On the night we left St. Lucia, our last Port of Call, there was an unbelievable chocolate buffet on Deck 11 Forward, which was the best that you cannot miss either.
The activities for children was OK, but the basketball courts best fitted us instead of the Teen Center.
Everything was great and we were disappointed to leave the ship because we loved it so much, but hopefully we will go back soon. Everything on the cruise was excellent, no complaints at all.
Disembarkation was no issue for us. Our flight was cancelled to get home due to the Mid-Atlantic snow storm, so we were not in a rush to get off. We had the 9:20 disembarkation time, which worked well for us. We were booked to stay at the Sheraton Convenciones Hotel, we didn't know how far it was from the pier but we payed a $20 cab ride to drive around the corner which was a joke.
We payed $116 for 3 nights from Priceline and got the Sheraton Convention Center Hotel, 200 Blvd. de Convenciones San Juan, PR 00907. The hotel was a 3 star hotel and was very nice for a 3 star. We were in room 755 and the 7th floor housekeeping was terrible. The hallway floors were never vacuumed and the housekeeper never came to our room to give us clean towels and washcloths. It had a great pool and a great fitness center. The location of the hotel was not very good, the only restaurant we could walk to is Sizzler which was OK, but to get anywhere else, we took the Bus to Old San Juan. The San Juan bus system was a joke. The bus drivers would pull up in the terminal and will park and walk into a booth for forever and would keep 50 people waiting in the terminal for 20 minutes+ every time. But it was 75 cents (COINS ONLY) and was good for the price but the buses wore us out after 3 nights. We had excellent Puerto Rican food in Old San Juan, which is the Place to get the great food there.
On Tuesday 2/9 we were supposed to get home to Washington but our flight was canceled again on our 2nd flight which was from Orlando-Washington Dulles. We decided to fly to Orlando and we rented a car and stayed at the Radisson Lake Buena Vista, a 3.5 star for $65 from priceline. We were then able to get back to DC on 2/11. I would have stayed longer if I could, because I am not a cold weather person, but we still had a good time.
This cruise vacation was excellent and will not be forgotten and was one of the best.
We took a bus (BUS 22) to Darkwood Beach for $1.50 Per Person. The beach was very nice with jet skis that I rode with my brother for $40 for 30 minutes which I thought was a great price. Overall, the beach was excellent. (Please Note: you can't have wet bathing suits in the bus, you need dry clothes to ride the bus!)
St. Croix was very nice (we were the only ship docked again), we went to a beach to the left of the pier that was easy and convenient to get to. The beach was excellent for snorkeling. The shopping was OK, but not much stuff to do around the pier. The snorkeling is spectacular there.
This time there was 3 other cruise ships in port with us in St. Kitts. We took a cab to the Marriott Resort, which was $2.50 per person. This Marriott was awesome!! The beach was OK for snorkeling, but the beach was great, we spent most of the time on the beach and in the pool they had there with volleyball. The beach was a public beach which was free to get on.
In downtown Basseterre, it was very nice with lots of shopping.
We met Stephen Lucien who runs "Stephen's Taxi Service" (Cell: 758-384-8983) who took us to a beautiful beach for $20 each way for 4 people. We did a raft ride and the person driving was terrible and we got thrown off the raft, we were glad to have life vests on! My brother wanted to do Jet Skis again, it was $40 for 30 minutes, and the jet skis were beat up and not reliable and the employees were not helpful to get us what we payed for. After a long wait, we finally got the ride we payed for.
This beach was beautiful, "the best on the island" is what the taxi driver said.
There are islanders on the beach who keep bugging you about buying their products, that was the bad thing about the beach but we really enjoyed it anyway.
We took a cab to the Best Western Resort for the beach (A public beach) which was very nice. The cab fare was $20 each way for 4 people. I would suggest to walk away from the cab station when you walk off the ship and find a cab when walking down a street because this one person there was going to overload his van so he can receive more money.
We were in St. Thomas on a Sunday, most of the shops were closed (we were the only ship there) but there was a flea market where we bought our souvenirs from.