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Home > Member Reviews > jjonmain's Port Reviews of St. Maarten, San Juan, St. Kitts

jjonmain's Port Reviews of St. Maarten, San Juan, St. Kitts
Celebrity Reflection cruise in January 2013
Member Name: jjonmain
Cruise Date: January 2013
Embarkation: Miami
Destination: Eastern Caribbean
Member Review: jjonmain's Celebrity Reflection Review
St. Maarten
Port Rating: 4.0 out of 5+
It was very organized at the port - you could just go to the appropriate taxi line for where you wanted to go, and the price/person was listed. Just wait and get in the next available taxi. We headed to Orient Beach on the French side (? 15 minute drive) at a cost of $6/person as we had more than five people. The driver dropped us off mid-beach (gated entrance), and we turned right to the end of the beach. There were a number of bars and restaurants. Currency is in euros. Not too crowded. Far end is signed for clothing-optional. It had fewer people, but still quite a few. Many were staying at the Club Orient Resort right on the beach, but some were curious, and some were just looking for R&R. All ages and sizes were on site. Beach chairs were available for rent for $7/person/day. There was also a restaurant and washrooms available there, plus a spot to rent water toys including kayaks, etc. The sand was clean and white and a nice temperature. The water was also clean, clear and warm, although it was a windy day, so the current was somewhat strong. You could only walk out about 20 feet. There were windsurfers out and about. We spent most of the day there, and then easily found a taxi back to the cruise port.

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San Juan
Port Rating: 4.0 out of 5+
Celebrity Reflection was in port from 3-10 pm, so we were somewhat limited in our activities as we didn't want to do anything in the dark. We went left off the cruise ship to bus stop #24 I think, which said trolley on it, and we waited 15 minutes for the free trolley to come along. We were then given a ride through old San Juan including up to the fort doors at the far left of Old San Juan. It was a very windy day and the lawns were scattered with kites and their owners. It was really nice to see. The trolley dropped us back in the market area, and a quick browse was enjoyed before meandering back to the ship.

We had previously been to the fort on the right side (a brief walk straight ahead from the cruise ship and quite inexpensive $5, but well worth a visit for a day). Lots of iguanas could be seen.

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St. Kitts
Port Rating: 2.0 out of 5+
We had nothing planned here, and there was not a lot to do within walking distance. We walked through the close shopping area and visited a grocery store (prices were almost twice what we would pay).

We also walked along the water to the left and headed up towards where you can see white buildings in perhaps a better area of town. As we went, they were digging up the beach area, quite possibly due to the recent hurricanes. We had encountered a tourist who frequents St. Kitts and she gave us the thumbs-up to continue our walk during daylight hours. We saw university buildings, and also a garden that is open by donation. Near the top of the hill, we turned left and walked past a small Ocean View Resort - apparently you can get a day pass and spend it in the gardens and the pools). It was gated. To the right, there was part of a fort that had been a hotel at one time, but it was abandoned. Following the bend along the shore, the buildings had been part of the fort as well, with a few rentals available. Canons could be seen on roof tops. It was very pretty with lots of greenery and birds! The Brazilian Embassy was also on this route. Then, we just headed back towards the cruise ship.

Cruise guests had been bombarded with monkey photo opportunities ($10-$20 for three photos on your camera). If you aren't interested, walk quickly by with no eye contact.

We did inquire about a taxi to the beach, but it was $12/person each way and we were short of time.

There is a Batik factory that quite possibly was worth visiting.

I did hear people talking who took the train ride, and it was nothing special, although they did sing on the train!

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