The Royal Caribbean cruise I was on had two ports of call: St. Thomas and St. Maarten. Our first stop was St. Thomas where we were able to do some shopping and explore the area a bit before going on our excursion on the Kon Tiki Sightseeing and Beach Cruise.

Kon Tiki was a sightseeing boat that had boxes that could be opened up to allow you to watch through the glass bottom of the boat. The guys operating the boat were not only skilled at sea, but also funny and talented. They were always cracking jokes and performed for us while we headed to Water Island. You can see a bit of one of their songs below.

The view through the glass bottom of the boat allowed us to see some coral and even part of a shipwreck. We saw a few varieties of fish as well, and of course we were shown some beautiful parts of the island and some distant islands too.

st. thomas excursion

Our tour took us to Honeymoon Beach on Water Island where we enjoyed some time in the water and bought some gorgeous sea glass jewelry from one of the local residents. A brief rain shower did nothing to dampen anyone’s spirits. The palm trees, the sand, the water…it was all breathtaking. My daughter and her friends found some coral on the beach and we were soon headed back to The Freedom of the Seas.

st. thomas collage

Our next Port of Call was St. Martin/St. Maarten. I was initially confused by the two names but I learned that  Sint Maarten is the Dutch part of the island that is in the south, and Saint Martin is the French part of the Island in the north.

We were treated to a bus tour of both sides of the island before stopping at The Butterfly Farm. Even this squeamish traveler appreciated the beauty of the butterflies (from a distance), and we were educated about the need to preserve butterflies by providing habitats for them. You can read more about butterfly gardening and how you can make a difference by visiting their website: Getting Started Butterfly Gardening.

st. maarten tour

Our tour ended at some street markets where we could buy handmade jewelry, sundresses, toys, scarves, etc. It was a beautiful and colourful place!

st. maarten market

There were many shore excursions to choose from and there is definitely something for everyone. If I find myself on another Caribbean cruise, I think I will attempt snorkeling!

What would you like to do or see on one of these islands?



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Sheri McDonald is a family lifestyle blogger who has been sharing her parenting and travel adventures online for the past eight years. You can find her discovering the world with her children when she's not at home enjoying a good book.


Lifestyle Blogger. Traveler. Writer. Social Media Marketer. @SunwingVacay #Kidcations Expert Panel. Member of ITWA @PTBAssoc IG: familyenroute
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