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St. Thomas St. John Snorkel/Sail Excursion Reviews

St. Thomas St. John Snorkel/Sail cruise excursion
Overall Rating
Sail from St. Thomas to nearby St. John for a relaxing afternoon on and in the water; offshore cays and reefs make St. John a premier stop for snorkeling.
Member Image Reddy2sail
3 reviews
Nov 2014

Great day here on the Champagne Catamaran snorkel/sail tour. The weather was cloudy and the bus ride horrible ...bumpy and a bit scary. After that though we got underway fast. Good safe instruction and well over an hour maybe an hour and a half in the water. Excellent viewing - sea turtles, sting rays and many colorful fish. Gorgeous water one of my best snorkels ever. Not too crowded either. Then we had free flowing drinks and snacks. The crew Mark, Alex and Jen were excellent. Highly recommend this.

Read Reddy2sail's full Norwegian Getaway cruise review
Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
Member Image GottaKnowWhen
1 review
Nov 2014

A super trip, with one exception. An open tour "bus"/truck and a van hauled 29 of us over to the marina on the other side of the island where we loaded onto a catamaran, sailed to St. Johns, snorkeled, sailed back (with rum punch, champagne etc for those who wanted it), then drove back to the port. All was wonderful and could not have been better except that in the morning at the port the driver of the open bus/truck vehicle: a) loaded 25 of us onto the 20-person vehicle, b) realized that he couldn't get the other four onboard, and then c) called in a 9-person van for those four people. All of this over a 20-25 minute period with no explanation of what he was doing, when we would be going etc. No mention of how long the drive would be, no commentary along the way. I am not sure if he was incompetent or just a total jerk. Fortunately everyone else (the cat crew) were super in all respects and took care of us very well. I would do this trip again but I might just take a taxi over to the marina the next time.

Read GottaKnowWhen's full Adventure of the Seas cruise review
Provider: Royal Caribbean International
Member Image ports2call
1 review
Nov 2014

In St. Thomas, we did the snorkeling in Trunk Bay. This was ok, we seemed rushed. By the time we returned to the ship, there was not much time to shop and we weren't told that they close the shops on the beach at Trunk Bay at 3pm. However, there are some shops near the port and we were lucky to pick up some authentic perfumes and colognes for $10 each at a place called Dynasty Dazzlers. They were selling full-size testers. I've spent 10 days in St. Thomas last year and it's very easy to get around with their shuttles, ferries and taxis.

Read ports2call's full Carnival Glory cruise review
Provider: Carnival Cruise Lines
Member Image lsdavis
1 review
Not Rated
Jul 2014

This excursion was fantastic! We were taken to the beach by boat and then bus. The rides seem long; however, we turned it into part of the adventure. Our children love experiencing different modes of transportation; therefore, this part was fine with us. Others were complaining about the amount of time it took to get to the beach itself. Again, it's all on what you get out of each experience!

The beach was breathtakingly beautiful...right out of a magazine. The word paradise is the one I would use to describe it. The snorkeling gear was provided as part of the fee. This excursion was age appropriate for everyone. There was a choice to go deeper into the ocean, and view the reefs and abundance of fish, or to stay closer to shore. There were life guards on duty, and marked areas for safety. We have taken several snorkeling excursions, in the past, which consisted of having to jump off a boat in the middle of the ocean to snorkel. Although those excursions were great, they were not necessarily geared for younger children. This is why this particular excursion was so perfect for our family. My teen daughter and husband went into the deeper end of the ocean, while my 7 year old son and I remained on the shallow end. We were all able to snorkel safely and see hundreds of beautiful fish. Plus, once we were tired of snorkeling, we still had time to enjoy the beautiful beach. This beach also offers a place to eat and showers. The tour guides gave us a 20 minute warning before returning us to the bus. Again, extremely organized and well planned. We also learned much about St. Thomas on the ride to the St. John beach and back.

The entire tour is about 4 1/2 hours long. At first, we thought it would be too short of a time. We were concerned about getting our money's worth. However, it proved to be ample time to enjoy the beach and snorkeling! The guides are very organized and efficient. It turned out to be just long enough in that it gave us time to explore the port area. There are many beautiful shops and places to see. We absolutely loved every minute of this experience!!!

We will return...

Read lsdavis's full Norwegian Getaway cruise review
Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
Member Image PITTSBURGHV
1 review
Not Rated
Jul 2014

We did the St. John Champagne Catamaran Snorkel & Sail and it was a great day. We boarded open bench buses and took a long ride to the marina. I was surprised at the poverty, even at the marina. I've never seen so many boats in such sad condition. The catamaran used for the excursion was in excellent condition, though. The crew members were friendly and professional. It was a hot day and they served plenty of cold water as soon as we boarded. Champagne, rum punch, and juice were included, but I was thrilled that they had water available. Sailing from St. Thomas to St. John gave us a scenic tour of both islands and some smaller nearby islands. The crew members shared island history, points of interest, and their personal experiences of living on the islands. We anchored at Honeymoon Beach, which was picture perfect with white sands and palm trees. It was like something you dream about. The crew provided each of us with flippers, a mask, a snorkel, and a flotation vest that you had the option of blowing up or wearing flat. You're anchored in 30 feet of water and can go right off the ladder, but a few people preferred to be brought to shore on a little inflatable boat. The snorkeling was pretty good. My son and his friends saw some lobsters and we all saw big turtles and plenty of fish. On the return trip home, the crew provided fresh bread, cheese and fruit, along with the drinks. One thing I will mention is that everyone is pushing for a tip, including both bus drivers and the crew. A crew member told us that the majority of their income is from tips and that 15-20% of your excursion cost is appropriate. That would have been $40-$45 for our party of 5, plus additional tips for the bus drivers and I definitely hadn't brought that much cash. They did a nice job and deserved a tip, but I would have preferred to have it factored into the cost of the excursion rather than finding out on the boat when I think I'd only brought $20!

Read PITTSBURGHV's full Norwegian Getaway cruise review
Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
Member Image shenstar
1 review
Jun 2014

We snorkeled in Trunk Bay on St. Johns. The excursion boat took us into Cruz Bay and from there we embarked into various taxis that took us to the Virgin Islands National Park. There were BRIEF stops at some vistas, but not long enough to get out and take pics, except for the final view of Trunk Bay, and that was barely long enough. We had our own snorkel gear, but the company providing the instruction and loaner gear seemed professional and competent. It is apparent that the reef is under stress, but we still saw many varieties of fish and coral.

Read shenstar's full Carnival Freedom cruise review
Provider: Carnival Cruise Lines
Member Image IslandGrl411
1 review
Apr 2014

This was a nice excursion. The beach at St. John Trunk Bay was absolutely beautiful. The water was so clear that you didn't even need snorkel gear to see the fish. I didn't actually snorkel. A lot of people chose not to snorkel. I hung out at the beach and played in the warm water. We only made two stops where we got out of the bus and took a few photos. Other than that the bus was not much of a tour.

Read IslandGrl411's full Carnival Liberty cruise review
Provider: Carnival Cruise Lines
Member Image CM_MO
1 review
Not Rated
Apr 2014

Dan gave great narrative of life on and history of St. Thomas. Very informative and fun.
The snorkeling was fabulous. Beach area was pristine and water was clear and full of beautiful coral and fish to observe along the well laid out trail.
Would go again, any time!

Read CM_MO's full Allure of the Seas cruise review
Provider: Royal Caribbean International
Member Image lesssnowmorecruise
1 review
Mar 2014

Good tour
This was a good tour. Organized and enjoyable. The tour guide was knowledgable and wanted to make sure everyone had a good time. I would have marked it with more stars if we had been able to snorkel, but unfortunately it was too windy. I appreciated that the cruise line let us know in advance that we might not be able to snorkel and would have refunded our fees if we had decided not to go. I would recommend this tour to others.

Read lesssnowmorecruise's full Celebrity Reflection cruise review
Provider: Celebrity Cruises
Member Image mrfviews
10 reviews
Mar 2014

Our shore exc. got canceled last minute because of rough seas,really ? We were not informed until we boarded the ferry to St. John's. Oh well went over any way, took a taxi to the closest beach and then back into the village for chips salsa and triple Margaritas at Margarita Phill's, to drown our sorrows. Very disappointing Princess ...

Read mrfviews's full Emerald Princess cruise review
Provider: Princess Cruises
Member Image brydea
1 review
Feb 2014

St. Thomas – we broke from tradition and did a RC excursion. We did a ½ day champagne catamaran snorkel expedition. They take you to St. John to dock off a beach there to snorkel and it’s a great place with lots to see. One note though: although it is billed as a half day snorkel trip you only get to snorkel for about 1 hour and 15 minutes. The trip involves a 40 minute open air bus ride and a 45 minute boat ride each way. The guys who drove the boat were a ton of fun but just be aware of the short snorkel time.

Read brydea's full Allure of the Seas cruise review
Provider: Royal Caribbean International
Member Image julieg3
1 review
Feb 2014

We took the "All inclusive Trunk Bay Snorkel" excursion. Trunk Bay was stunning. The reef is marked, so while snorkeling, you can see what some of the coral and some of the marine life are called, and they are abundant. Keep in mind there are no chairs there, so if you have a hard time getting on and off the ground you might want to reconsider this. There is also no shelter, which wouldn't matter, except that it poured while we were there. Neither of these things would in any way lessen my decision to do this excursion again. There are not showers so you can head back to the St. Thomas ferry clean.

Read julieg3's full Celebrity Summit cruise review
Provider: Celebrity Cruises
Member Image slee14
2 reviews
Feb 2014

We took this tour so that our son and daughter-in-law could get idea of St. John USVI. They went to a small beach there and we snorkled and swam ashore to lay out some on the beach. During our return back to St. Thomas we were served cheese and bread and choice of beer, champagne or rum punch.

Read slee14's full Norwegian Getaway cruise review
Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
Member Image SamanthaH
1 review
Not Rated
Jan 2014

Sailed on the Champagne Cat with Grady, kenny and Mickey! They were so much fun and knew how to host a GREAT party. They really know their stuff about the islands, snorkelling and safety. We miss them already and hope to see them again in the future.
HIGHLY RECOMMEND TAKING THIS TOUR! Nothing like St. John!

Read SamanthaH's full Royal Princess cruise review
Provider: Princess Cruises
Member Image jdpitzer
1 review
Oct 2013

Did the boat ride to St. John, the ride along the coast looking at beaches and then a trip to Trunk Bay. Could have skipped the boat ride to look at the beaches and just get the taxi to Trunk Bay. Great beach and snorkeling. After snorkeling, we came back to Cruz bay and went to Woodies, Kenny Chesney's hang-out. Fun place with good, cold beer and we had some very good shark bites.

Read jdpitzer's full Oasis of the Seas cruise review
Provider: Royal Caribbean International
Member Image sabres431
1 review
Sep 2013

We did the half day St. John Champagne Sail through the cruise ship. What a great time! There was a nice ride out to honeymoon beach on the catamaran. There was plenty of time to snorkel and/or hang out on the beach. On the way back we had a nice leisurely sail to St. Thomas. They provided cheese, bread, and fruit as well as rum punch and other drinks. I thought it was well worth it.

Read sabres431's full Oasis of the Seas cruise review
Provider: Royal Caribbean International
Member Image mbc1983
1 review
Aug 2013

We did the the excursion to St John's, we had done Maaghan's Bay before. Beautiful beach and great snorkeling!

Read mbc1983's full Carnival Splendor cruise review
Provider: Carnival Cruise Lines
Member Image kaykels
9 reviews
Aug 2013

We sailed with Jester Sails and loved loved loved it! The Capt and his mate were laid back and fun and we just totally enjoyed the day.

Read kaykels's full Jewel of the Seas cruise review
Provider: Royal Caribbean International
Member Image IAmSonOfASonOfASailor
1 review
Jul 2013

St. John Champagne Catamaran Sailaway was great. The crew was fun and knowledgeable.

Read IAmSonOfASonOfASailor's full Carnival Breeze cruise review
Provider: Carnival Cruise Lines
Member Image mommacruiserof3
1 review
Mar 2013
Although we couldn't snorkel because of strong tides, the beach at Trunk Bay was GORGEOUS!
Read mommacruiserof3's full Ruby Princess cruise review
Provider: Princess Cruises
Member Image CanuckAlberta
3 reviews
Mar 2013
Was a little rushed by the time you take a boat over from St Thomas to St John then a bus to Trunk Bay but beach and snorkeling were very good.
Read CanuckAlberta's full Freedom of the Seas cruise review
Provider: Royal Caribbean International
Member Image jaluca04
2 reviews
Not Rated
Mar 2013
This was a great excursion. Ferry ride with a great tour of St. Thomas and surrounding islands. Snorkeling was so-so, but the beach was stunning. Facilities were great. Worth doing.
Read jaluca04's full Oasis of the Seas cruise review
Provider: Royal Caribbean International
Member Image aseligman
1 review
Feb 2013
Went to Trunk Bay on St. John. Great beach, very good snorkeling.
Read aseligman's full Norwegian Epic cruise review
Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
Member Image Tweekey
1 review
Feb 2013
The ride to the boat was not fun! you must sign a release form first! Drinking and driving is not a crime here. But the sail was wonderful. Ryan and Chris were fun and knowledgeable. the rum punch was good and so was the music
Read Tweekey's full Explorer of the Seas cruise review
Provider: Royal Caribbean International
Member Image isupilot
1 review
Feb 2013
We took the St. John Champagne Catamaran Sailaway excursion. Due to the winds and sea conditions that day, we had to go to an alternative sight -- which was Christmas Cove near Great St James island. We took a 20 minute bus ride to the other side of the island and launched out on the catamaran. We had an American crew led by young captain Eddy. The crew was great -- very informative and lots of fun. The snorkeling itself wasn't that great as we didn't see much marine life. After snorkeling, the rum punch and champagne began flowing. They take a longer route back to the dock and give you plenty of time to drink -- all while dancing and partying to music. Let's just say we drank a little too much, as we don't remember the drive back to the cruise terminal or getting back on the ship!
Read isupilot's full Carnival Dream cruise review
Provider: Carnival Cruise Lines
Member Image Zwicks8
1 review
Feb 2013
St John Trunk Bay Beach. Stunning!!!! A must do! Wish we would have had more time there but were happy with the time we did have.
Read Zwicks8's full Carnival Breeze cruise review
Provider: Carnival Cruise Lines
Member Image 6girls2boys
1 review
Feb 2013
Well run and a good thing to do There were 5 ships in port and we wanted to avoid the crowds. Pleasant sail, not too many fish, good crew. St Thomas looked crowded and run down. Glad we didn't stay there.
Read 6girls2boys's full Norwegian Sun cruise review
Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
Member Image phantompiper
1 review
Jan 2013
Rain showers cleared up just in time to enjoy the spectacular reef and beach on St. John. The only things keeping this from a 5-star rating - poor restroom on the catamaran. Very very basic marine toilet with no running water. Have been on other catamaran snorkelling tours (Beaches Turks & Caicos) with more humane facilities. Also - the very persistent reminders, including a suggestion of 15% - 20% of the tour price, that apparently, the catamaran crew do not get paid by the owner, and rely 100% on cash gratuities for their livelihood. Tip jar held in the face of everyone as they disembarked. Took the shine off an otherwise beautiful morning. Also struck by the garbage everywhere along the roadways in St. Thomas. Maybe with no sales tax they can't afford to pick it up. If I lived in a Caribbean tourist paradise I'd sure want to keep it a bit cleaner.
Read phantompiper's full Norwegian Epic cruise review
Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
Member Image capequeen
1 review
Dec 2012
Lots of fun, light lunch and good entertainment. Plenty of time to snorkel and swim and enjoy the beautiful waters of Turtle Cove. Unfortunately, I had a mishap and fell rather hard on the platform going onto the beach shuttle and hurt my left knee rather badly.
Read capequeen's full Grand Princess cruise review
Provider: Princess Cruises
Member Image russelltim
1 review
Dec 2012
We took the St John Champagne tour. This was the only excursion I pre-booked. I have snorkelled in the BVI in the past and hoped this would be of similar quality. The crew was nice and efficient and the time went by very quickly. Probably about a 3 hr trip when you take off the bus trip to and from the destination. Leaves about an hour in the water, I did see a turtle and various fish but the reef we went to at Caneel Bay wasn't all that great. There was a strong current you needed to fight against all the way as well. The snorkeling around Virgin Gorda had been much better. We took a similar excursion in Cuba last year from Cayo Coco that was better for snorkeling. As promised there was rum punch, Champagne and beer for the return trip.
Read russelltim's full Norwegian Gem cruise review
Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
Member Image ShiningC
1 review
Dec 2012
St. John was incredibly awesome. I have been there many times and it never disappoints. We opted to head to St. John as we arrived in St. Thomas on New Year's Day along with 7 (yes SEVEN) other cruise ships and wanted to get away from the crowds. Though high surf prevented us from snorkeling everyone in our group felt this was the best port and best day of the cruise.
Read ShiningC's full Carnival Freedom cruise review
Provider: Carnival Cruise Lines
Member Image klemeci
6 reviews
Nov 2012
Great day on St. Thomas & St. John for a sail & snorkel. We were on the Champagne Cat and the crew was fantastic. The snorkeling spot was great, we saw sea turtles, squid, lots of colorful fish and had a wonderful time. The 'rum' punch on the way back was missing the 'rum' but otherwise tasted okay. They were pretty pushy about tipping them, asking for 20% tip of the ticket price. But overall it was a good trip.
Read klemeci's full Explorer of the Seas cruise review
Provider: Royal Caribbean International
Member Image corgimomx3
2 reviews
Nov 2012
This was a great snorkel spot. We saw several turtles and really enjoyed the beautiful secluded spot. Please note, the drive to the dock took a long time. We were at a small cruise-port away from the regular terminal. One passenger on the taxi started to faint from heat and exhaust fumes. Please keep this in mind. Also, it is a long ride back to the ship and there are no restrooms. When they tell you to use the restroom on the catamaran, do it!
Read corgimomx3's full Eurodam cruise review
Provider: Holland America Line
Member Image aimelearning
1 review
Nov 2012
St. Thomas is our favorite Caribbean destination. We had never been to St. John and frankly, we couldn't make up our minds until the last minute as to what to do. We finally decided on the catamaran to St. John. This was a very fun excursion. The crew was great, the snorkeling okay, but the journeys over and back were really the key to the success of the excursion. A very good day.
Read aimelearning's full Celebrity Summit cruise review
Provider: Celebrity Cruises
Member Image Sraz
1 review
Oct 2012
Trunk Bay is awesome this is my second time on this island and I went to Trunk Bay both times Beautiful!!
Read Sraz's full Carnival Dream cruise review
Provider: Carnival Cruise Lines
Member Image OrangeHunter
1 review
Oct 2012
The crew of the catamaran was awesome! We were able to see coral reef, beautiful fish and a turtle! The crew also gave us tons of information about the area and helped us to get an idea of what life on the island is like. They were personable and a lot of fun!
Read OrangeHunter's full Carnival Victory cruise review
Provider: Carnival Cruise Lines
Member Image rbdmb
1 review
Oct 2012
No sailing, but a fast boat ride to two areas to snorkel. It was a fun crew with lots of rum on the return. What you see is better than the Florida keys but not spectacular, unless you have never dived or snorkeled on "virgin" atolls as I have done in the Pacific. My wife had only done the Florida Keys so she was thrilled and that was all that mattered.
Read rbdmb's full Oasis of the Seas cruise review
Provider: Royal Caribbean International
Member Image zoof26
2 reviews
Sep 2012
Did the sail away. Wonderful trip! Great crew, made new friends. Drank rum punch/champagne/beer on the way back. Snorkeling was excellent in St Johns. Saw turtles, sting rays, tons of fish. Nice beach to relax on if you don't want to snorkel the entire time.
Read zoof26's full Carnival Liberty cruise review
Provider: Carnival Cruise Lines
Member Image soundtracklover
2 reviews
Aug 2012
I was unenthusiastic about this tour when I found out it was a 50 boat ride out and a 50 minute boat ride back. Our ride out was partially in the sun, so we had to keep ourselves from baking. My husband got burned pretty badly in a few locations because he was furthest in the sun. The boat company itself was good. They gave a decent tour and commentary on the way out to St John. Once to St John, we took a bus ride to Trunk Bay for snorkeling. By the time you got a locker for your things and got your snorkeling gear I believe we had only about an hour to snorkel. There was someone on the beach to remind you to return to the bus so being left behind wasn't really a threat. There were taxis if you missed your bus though. There was no reason this excursion needed to be rushed. We could have easily had another hour at the beach and been back to port in plenty of time.
Read soundtracklover's full Oasis of the Seas cruise review
Provider: Royal Caribbean International
Member Image LOVER OF LIFE
1 review
Not Rated
Jun 2012
TURTLE COVE SAIL AND SNORKEL WAS THE HIGHLIGHT OF OUR RC TRIP. LOTS OF TUTRLES STAFF EXCEPTIONAL
Read LOVER OF LIFE's full Freedom of the Seas cruise review
Provider: Royal Caribbean International
Member Image bonesdad
1 review
Apr 2012
Champagne Cat and snorkel on St. John's Honeymoon Beach was amazing. Captain and crew were fun, funny and very helpful. Plenty of beautiful fish to see on our first snorkeling experience. Beautiful day, beautiful islands and everything looked even better after 6 rum punches! We had a blast and cannot wait to go back to USVI to see more!
Read bonesdad's full Norwegian Sun cruise review
Provider: Norwegian Cruise Line
Member Image LOP
5 reviews
Apr 2012
Having vacationed on St. Thomas and St. John previously all we wanted to do was get to Trunk Bay with as little effort as possible. Take our advice and although the ship's tour is a nice option, grab a cab from the pier to Red Hook Ferry landing and take the 20 minute smooth ferry ride to St. John and then cab to Trunk Bay and then return to downtown St. John for shopping/eating. OR take the ship tour from the dock and ride the stomach churning 45 minute boat ride to St. John. Your choice.
Read LOP's full Celebrity Summit cruise review
Provider: Celebrity Cruises
Member Image Tuey
1 review
Mar 2012
Great snorkeling at honeymoon bay. Saw sea turtles and stingrays and beautiful fish. Great crew of the Adventuress.
Read Tuey's full Ruby Princess cruise review
Provider: Princess Cruises
Member Image hlhp3
1 review
Mar 2012
This sailboat tour is the top rated activity on Tripadvisor so we were excited about it. It cost us about $300 - so our most expensive excursion. The tour through Morningstar Charters is supposed to be a sailboat ride from St. Thomas over to St. Johns, snorkeling at a few spots, and lunch. Unfortunately for us - there was no wind. It was a total freak thing - Captain Mike said he has only seen it like that 6 times overall in the last decade. So very rare. We weren't able to sail at all during the trip so it was just motoring along slowly for us. That meant we only got to go to one stop - honeymoon bay - at St. Johns. The other dissappointment was the boat. The boat pictured on their website was being painted so they took us on a smaller boat which was very run down. It is rented out to a guy to sleep in at night and he clearly doesn't take very good care of it. Captain Mike kept telling us how it was a very prestigious, old boat, but the bottom line was that it wasn't very nice. Now, for the good stuff. Captain Mike was wonderful - kind, helpful. The lunch was fantastic. Honeymoon Bay was beautiful - I swam with turtles, took fantastic pictures. I don't know if I'd do this again because it didn't turn out like it was supposed to because of the lack of wind. A suggestion for Morningstar Charters would be to have snacks. A suggestion if you go - take something for sea sickness if you need it.
Read hlhp3's full Emerald Princess cruise review
Provider: MorningStar Charters
Member Image momofteens3
2 reviews
Feb 2012
We booked the half-day St. John Champagne tour. The excursion started out on a local "bus" part way around the island, approx 25 minutes to the site of the catamaran. We boarded the catamaran and made our way to St. John's island. We got to see some great views on board of the island and of the other smaller islands nearby. Once we docked at St. John's we could jump off the catamaran to snorkel right there or you could take the dingy into the beach area to start snorkeling there or just relax on the beach. The snorkeling lasted for an hour or so. Once back on board, they served cocktails and cheese/fruit and entertained you. We enjoy sailing so this was an awesome excursion for us with great views.
Read momofteens3's full Oasis of the Seas cruise review
Provider: Royal Caribbean International

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