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Please Help Me Select My Vacation  
User currently offlinepilotaydin From Turkey, joined Sep 2004, 2539 posts, RR: 51
Posted (1 year 1 week 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 2558 times:

Good day conutters I hope all is well. I would like to ask for the expert advice of any well travelled folks on here. I am looking at a vacation from nov 1-9th in the caribbean or somewhere near. I have researched St lucia, Turks and Caicos, Cancun and Jamica, but I don't know which one to go to. I will be with my girlfriend and we would like to relax and snorkel, budget is not too much of an issue, just want to avoid heavy rains!

any help would be great, I have a turkish passport so i need a visa for the ABC islands and Caymans  


The only time there is too much fuel onboard, is when you're on fire!
26 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineflymia From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 7151 posts, RR: 9
Reply 1, posted (1 year 1 week 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 2506 times:

Quoting pilotaydin (Thread starter):
nov 1-9th

November is the last month of hurricane season, usually there are not many if any storms that late in the season. Rain is of course still possible but usually rain at that time of the year would be brief and not last even the whole day.

Quoting pilotaydin (Thread starter):
St lucia, Turks and Caicos, Cancun and Jamica

Cancun and Jamaica are good if you were on a budget. They have some all inclusive resorts. I would definitely take Cancun out of consideration. I have never been but it is more for people wanting to go party even though there are some nice sights around. I have never really heard great things about Jamaica, away from the resort areas it can be pretty dangerous, same with Cancun.

Quoting pilotaydin (Thread starter):
St lucia,
Quoting pilotaydin (Thread starter):
relax and snorkel,

If relaxing, snorkeling and beach time are your prime motivations I would go with either Turks and Caicos or St. Lucia. These islands are smaller, more relaxing and not home to the huge resort atmosphere like the other two. Also from both you can get to others islands rather quickly and easily by air or boat.

I have never been to any of these places but living in South Florida I know lots of people who have been and if I was you I would probably go with St. Lucia as its really "down" there in the Caribbean Lesser Antilles and I have only heard great things about that Island. But you wont go wrong with either of them, or maybe some other islands. If budget is truly not an issue I would say go to St. Barths, but that is if budget is really not an issue at all.



"It was just four of us on the flight deck, trying to do our job" (Captain Al Haynes)
User currently offlineLonghornmaniac From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 3290 posts, RR: 45
Reply 2, posted (1 year 1 week 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 2506 times:

I've heard Bonaire has some of the best diving in the Caribbean. It would stand to reason that the snorkeling is good, too.

The snorkeling would be better in Cozumel than Cancun.

You could always go to St. Maarten!

Cheers,
Cameron


User currently offlinePITingres From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 1140 posts, RR: 13
Reply 3, posted (1 year 1 week 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 2490 times:

Out of your list, +1 for St Lucia.

If you want to mix in some partying, Barbados might be worth a look. It's quite a bit busier than St Lucia though.



Fly, you fools! Fly!
User currently offlinepilotaydin From Turkey, joined Sep 2004, 2539 posts, RR: 51
Reply 4, posted (1 year 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 2480 times:

Quoting flymia (Reply 1):

Thank you so much!

Quoting Longhornmaniac (Reply 2):

those all sound wonderful dear friend, however because of my passport and obviously profession I don't have the time to obtain a visa  
Quoting PITingres (Reply 3):

Barbados also sounds interesting I checked the weather there it says there is some rainfall for november, but I believe that it may be as some posters have said, quick n out of the way and then sunshine again



The only time there is too much fuel onboard, is when you're on fire!
User currently offlineOA260 From Ireland, joined Nov 2006, 26955 posts, RR: 58
Reply 5, posted (1 year 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 2462 times:

St Lucia would be ideal although to snorkel not the best but some nice trips to do whilst there and lovely resorts.

Th Sandals Grande St Lucia is a lovely beach front resort and lively. If you are looking for unique and exclusive the Boucan by Hotel Chocolat is the one although in the hills its the place to be if you want luxury.

http://www.hotelchocolat.com/uk/boucan

http://www.sandals.com/main/grande/gl-home.cfm

Barbados is not what it once was and Jamaica I would never go back to.


User currently offlinemariner From New Zealand, joined Nov 2001, 25173 posts, RR: 85
Reply 6, posted (1 year 1 week 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 2439 times:
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Quoting Longhornmaniac (Reply 2):
You could always go to St. Maarten!

If you're a food lover I'd go to St. Martin - French side - and pay a visit to Grand Case, the "gastronomic village."

http://www.grandcase.com

mariner

[Edited 2013-08-25 11:27:10]


aeternum nauta
User currently offlinepilotaydin From Turkey, joined Sep 2004, 2539 posts, RR: 51
Reply 7, posted (1 year 1 week 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 2435 times:

What about weather? On some sites it says up to 14-15 days with rain, are these like northeastern US rains that last for hours or are they like 1-1.5 hour showers and then the sun comes up again? Statistics can be misleading  


The only time there is too much fuel onboard, is when you're on fire!
User currently offlinemariner From New Zealand, joined Nov 2001, 25173 posts, RR: 85
Reply 8, posted (1 year 1 week 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 2369 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Quoting pilotaydin (Reply 7):
What about weather?

November is - generally - the end of the rainy season but, sure, there could be some. Personally, I find a bit of tropical rain welcome.

mariner



aeternum nauta
User currently offlineYVRLTN From Canada, joined Oct 2006, 2454 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (1 year 1 week 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 2368 times:

Quoting OA260 (Reply 5):
Barbados is not what it once

I have not been since 2005, but I have been 5 times and I agree it has changed for the worse, it is a lot busier, more affordable to get to so can feel a bit like Ibiza or somewhere particularly on the south coast. It used to be quite rustic and pretty laid back, but has become quite modern and a bit more hustle and bustle. I also saw drugs were becoming an increasing problem, guys would frequently come up to you on the beach trying to sell them. One guy was trying to get me to trade my England footbal shirt I was wearing for a joint...

However, it is still a very nice island and I recommend going. I would actually recommend spend a few days there then if money is not an issue go on to St Vincent and some of the Grenadine islands. They are beautiful.

I have not been to Antigua myself, but heard good things about it.

Quoting pilotaydin (Reply 7):
What about weather?

it is the end of hurricane season, so torrential rain and humidity. If you can wait it out into December, that is one of the best times to go and the storms have blown through and everything is gresh and green. The only downside is nearer the xmas the prices go up and it gets busier.



Follow me on twitter for YVR movements @vernonYVR
User currently offlinezippyjet From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 5478 posts, RR: 12
Reply 10, posted (1 year 1 week 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 2368 times:

You've got a tight schedule but, may I reccomend the following itinerary/idea.
First off yes Carnival and the other major cruise lines have been the stuff of late night TV jokes because of their misfortune. Especially Carnival this year with the not so triumphant Triumph. With that said, from three past Carnival cruises, I have no problems taking another Carnival Cruise. As a matter of fact, I'm working on booking myself on a 5 night Carnival Cruise in mid September! I've always been treated first class and 99.9% of the Carnival staff are exempulary.
The advantages of cruising should be obvious. You are basically vacationing at an all inclusive resort that happens to float on the open ocean. You get to sample several ports of call. Granted your time at each stop is extremely limited. But, you at least get a bit of a taste so on a future vacation you may want to return and spend more time. The food is usually very good to outstanding and you meet many new people. And the smell sound and motion of the ocean on a large luxurious cruise ship is quite relaxing, I'd try a short cruise (3 to 5 nights). This gives you time for your long flight too and from Turkey. With the remaining time leftover, I'd visit Miami or Orlando. Maybe visit the house that Mickey built. If you are scared of Carnival there are many other cruise lines including competitor Royal Carribean and Disney Cruises.

http://www.cruisecritic.com/ Check out Cruise Critic for more intel. November is still an off time so you could get a really sweet deal. Are you or your GF employed in our industry? If so, additional discounts abound. Have a safe great trip wherever you decide to go.



I'm Zippyjet & I approve of this message!
User currently offlineplaneguy727 From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 1247 posts, RR: 1
Reply 11, posted (1 year 1 week 1 day ago) and read 2355 times:

I've been looking at snorkeling in the same areas you listed. Belize was recommended to me and has moved to the top of the list. Trying to set up a trip for October. Just a thought.


I want to live in an old and converted 727...
User currently offlineusxguy From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 1013 posts, RR: 5
Reply 12, posted (1 year 1 week 23 hours ago) and read 2341 times:

I'm an avid caribbean traveler, scuba diver, and backpacker.

I THOROUGHLY enjoy St. Martin (french side) and Tortola. I am NOT a fan of "Las Vegas with a beach", so I avoid Cancun, parts of the Dominican Republic, Grand Cayman, etc.

If you want to get away from everyone, here are a few of my recommendations -- and I've found hurricane season to be the BEST time to go, hardly anyone around and 95% of the time you get AMAZING weather

1. Treasure Cay, Bahamas - Treasure Cay Resort; Green Turtle Cay; Hope Town (Elbow Cay, although easier to reach by Marsh Harbour). No mega resorts, very friendly staff, all willing to give you deals during off season. Easily reachable via Nassau, and to some extent Florida

2. Tortola - wow, amazing. Long Bay Beach is one of the most photographed spots in the Caribbean. LBB Resort is very well self contained.

3. St. Martin - we stayed at the Radisson and was VERY impressed. We had a lot of fun at Grand Case. The Dutch side is just VERY VERY busy, but reachable by boat or cab - so you can easily "escape" the McDonalds/Hard Rock type atmosphere. Maho Beach before flying out is also a must, and is only a 10 minute walk back to the terminal. Drinks are a bit pricy though @ the bar.

4. Belize. simply amazing. they speak english and take the USD 1 for 2 BZD.. easy conversion.

5. T & Cs - same as the Bahamas -- you'll be able to negotiate prices down a bit, enjoy some amazing diving, and avoid the "Vegas with a beach" scene.



xx
User currently offlinecomorin From United States of America, joined May 2005, 4896 posts, RR: 16
Reply 13, posted (1 year 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 2324 times:

Quoting pilotaydin (Reply 7):
What about weather? On some sites it says up to 14-15 days with rain, are these like northeastern US rains that last for hours or are they like 1-1.5 hour showers and then the sun comes up again? Statistics can be misleading

I went crazy in St Lucia because of the din of the crickets at night - the hotel even offered industrial grade ear plugs which did little good. I stayed at the poshest hotel there built on a cliff - spectacular views but so what.

In November, you are safer weather-wise the further south you head. So skip the Bahamas, Bermuda, Jamaica etc. and head to the Lesser Antilles. The ABCs are a good bet, and Aruba seems to be a favorite of airline crew (low hassle/ low poverty).

My own top picks are:

St Barth: Chic but $$$$
Anguilla : Amazing beaches, but quiet. For couples.
Belize: Natural beauty. *
Antigua: Laid back, amazing beaches.

Notes:

If you like sailing, THE spot is is The Bitter End Yacht Club* in the British Virgin Islands.

I strongly urge you NOT to go an a Caribbean cruise, unless you are on a tall ship like the Windstar etc.

* = hearsay.

.


User currently offlineOA260 From Ireland, joined Nov 2006, 26955 posts, RR: 58
Reply 14, posted (1 year 1 week 19 hours ago) and read 2303 times:

Quoting YVRLTN (Reply 9):
I have not been since 2005, but I have been 5 times and I agree it has changed for the worse, it is a lot busier, more affordable to get to so can feel a bit like Ibiza or somewhere particularly on the south coast.

Yes well I have been the same amount of times and the first being over 15 years ago. It has suffered from the economic crash. Well off British and Europeans that once made it exclusive. ( That also confirmed by the Barbados TO ).have reduced in numbers. My last visit just over a year ago I thought it had got quite run down. Hopefull they can get it back to something similar to what it was.

On the other hand Antigua has come along way. I have Family there who have a house and run a business and its had alot of investment in the Island. Lovely beaches also as mentioned above.

---

A cruise would be a nice idea. Having done a large amount on all lines myself over the years I would recommend Celebrity, NCL as the top ones for the Caribbean. For a more party cheaper experience you have Carnival. Royal Caribbean is laid back and more Family orientated but not that cheap unless you get a deal.


User currently offlinecomorin From United States of America, joined May 2005, 4896 posts, RR: 16
Reply 15, posted (1 year 1 week 14 hours ago) and read 2242 times:

Quoting OA260 (Reply 14):
A cruise would be a nice idea. Having done a large amount on all lines myself over the years I would recommend Celebrity, NCL as the top ones for the Caribbean. For a more party cheaper experience you have Carnival. Royal Caribbean is laid back and more Family orientated but not that cheap unless you get a deal.

You of the legendary cruise TRs, all hail!

I would defer to your view but my experience on RCL cruises has been one of sail at night and wake up in a new port every morning. You then join the hordes along with other hordes from other ships and do the island. I would much rather do a genuine TATL cruise like you so splendidly described!


User currently offlineOA260 From Ireland, joined Nov 2006, 26955 posts, RR: 58
Reply 16, posted (1 year 1 week 14 hours ago) and read 2235 times:

Quoting comorin (Reply 15):
You of the legendary cruise TRs, all hail!

Haha well what can I say flights and cruise ships are my hobby.  
Quoting comorin (Reply 15):
You then join the hordes along with other hordes from other ships and do the island. I would much rather do a genuine TATL cruise like you so splendidly described!

Yes true I guess it depends on the occassion and company etc... I do love the Caribbean cruises although sometimes I wish I had more time on a beach to chill out. Sometimes 8-10 hours in a port is enough depending on the cruise port etc..

I do love the TATL and sea days are great for chilling out. The ideal for me is 2-3 days at sea then a few ports of call before more sea days and port of call etc.. its a nice balance. Its not for everyone though and some people love the idea of every day stopping somewhere and a day at sea is their worst nightmare! I would happily do the QM2 again Southampton-New York and would have no issue doing both legs on a 14 night back to back voyage.


User currently offlinepilotaydin From Turkey, joined Sep 2004, 2539 posts, RR: 51
Reply 17, posted (12 months 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 1893 times:

Thanks guy for all this valuable information. I was also messaged by a user and told to take a look at the US Virgin Islands...it looks like travelling there is easy via ZED tickets and the hotels are much better priced than the T n T islands. Any information on these 2 islands? I have a UK visa but I think I need ANOTHER one to visit the British Virgin Islands


The only time there is too much fuel onboard, is when you're on fire!
User currently offlineBoeingMerica From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (12 months 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 1856 times:

Quoting pilotaydin (Thread starter):
I have researched St lucia, Turks and Caicos, Cancun and Jamica, but I don't know which one to go to.

I have been to each of those, minus T and C. If money and a budget is not much of a concern then you should really prioritize what you think is the best location based on your desires.
St Lucia: I've heard and experience once, the snorkeling was not that great. Average at best.
Jamaica: dido
Cancun: Never been snorkeling there.


Barbadoes and Belize have fantastic snorkeling, check them out! If your not sold on a place(as long as you don't need that visa!!!!)


User currently offlineNoUFO From Germany, joined Apr 2001, 7953 posts, RR: 12
Reply 19, posted (12 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 1821 times:

Quoting zippyjet (Reply 10):
The advantages of cruising should be obvious.

WHO and Helmholtz Association have recently made public that going on cruise can harm your health due to (often invisible) exhaust fumes. Admittedly they are more concerned about the health of staff members rather than tourists who only spend an average of nine days on the ships, but Ships are basically floating incineration plants.



I support the right to arm bears
User currently offlineipodguy7 From United States of America, joined Aug 2008, 349 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (12 months 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 1798 times:

If you're looking for luxury look at Grace Bay Club in Turks and Caicos, Coral Beach Club in St. Maarten, Ritz-Carlton Grand Cayman, or St. Regis Bahia Beach in Puerto Rico. Had amazing stays at all these! While each island is different, you really can't go wrong staying at any of these, and all are relatively easy to get to from the U.S., and apart from SJU, I believe PLS, SXM, and GCM have at least one direct flight from Europe (LHR-NAS-PLS/GCM, or SXM-CDG/AMS). Hope this helps, and have a great vacation!

If you're a diver, I'd reccomend PLS or GCM over SJU or SXM.

Matt in Nashville

[Edited 2013-09-03 16:29:17]


Next Trips: BNA-ORD-LHR-JTR, HER-CPH, CPH-ARN-CPH, CPH-LHR-DFW-BNA, BNA-DFW, DFW-BNA-DFW (X3)
User currently offlinezippyjet From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 5478 posts, RR: 12
Reply 21, posted (12 months 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 1777 times:

Quoting NoUFO (Reply 19):



What else is new? Joe Jackson in his 1982 moderate hit said it best: Everything gives you cancer! I don't care, I'm planning my 4th. cruise. It's relaxing, good food, new sights, you can make new friends and there are some hot women. Or, you can go to a theme park which is basically a large day care center with spoiled filthy bawling kids and their entitled parents and they can carry a Petri Dish of nasties. If you or anyone is on concerned about fumes/odorless noxious gasses etc. consult your physician or take some herbs and natural supplements.



I'm Zippyjet & I approve of this message!
User currently offlineAvianca From Venezuela, joined Jan 2005, 5925 posts, RR: 40
Reply 22, posted (12 months 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 1706 times:

Quoting pilotaydin (Reply 4):
those all sound wonderful dear friend, however because of my passport and obviously profession I don't have the time to obtain a visa
Quoting pilotaydin (Reply 17):
I have a UK visa but I think I need ANOTHER one to visit the British Virgin Islands

If you have an US visa, most islands will let you in, without any additional one... at least I am sure about it in SXM.

regards
Avianca



Colombia es el Mundo Y el Mundo es Colombia
User currently offlineNoUFO From Germany, joined Apr 2001, 7953 posts, RR: 12
Reply 23, posted (12 months 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 1633 times:

Quoting zippyjet (Reply 21):

Made my day, thanks.  
I basically agree, as I don't avoid unhealhy stuff every single day, after all that would be too much fun to give up. But I do consider cruise ships brightly illuminated floating prisons that stink. Those shipping companies could at least spend some money on filters and burn diesel rather than heavy fuel oil.

That said, I need to dust off my Joe Jackson records, including 'Night and Day'! Long time no listen.



I support the right to arm bears
User currently offlinezippyjet From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 5478 posts, RR: 12
Reply 24, posted (12 months 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 1578 times:

Quoting NoUFO (Reply 23):

And check out Joe Jackson's Obvious Song one of my faves of his. I wouldn't mind seeing cruise ships have solar panels and recycle their poop and trash to cut back on the air pollutants. I consider Disney World and the theme parks as overheated overpriced prisons with obnoxious parents and their evil spawn. I'll take my cruise any time. It's also relaxing. If I wanted a thrill a minute holiday I'd head out west and take some performance driving courses. Bob Bondurant the racer has a reknowned school out in Sanoma, CA. And if you complete the course many auto insurance companies give you a break on your rates. Heck you might even be able to date Flo and boff her. Or you can have Gecco under glass cooked to order.
  



I'm Zippyjet & I approve of this message!
25 NoUFO : The Obvious Song is probably the best song on 'Laughter & Lust' which, however, I don't consider his best album. I like 'Night & Day', 'Body &
26 Post contains images TWA772LR : I say Sydney. As an a.nutter, I'm surprised SXM isn't on your list.
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