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St. Croix Research Report Aug. 2017

Discussion in 'Lesser Antilles' started by drrich2, Aug 20, 2017.

  1. drrich2

    drrich2 Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Southwestern Kentucky
    8,154
    5,555
    113
    Some Non-Diving Things To Do.

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    1.) ATV Rainforest Tours – Gecko’s Island Adventures. Trip Advisor.

    2.) Jeep Tours – Tan Tan Tours. Trip Advisor. Raised back seat (my mid-face was about level with the roll bar), no seat belts & it can rattle you a bit, but scenic and fun.

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    3.) Horse Back Riding in the Rainforest – Paul & Jill’s Equestrian Stables. Trip Advisor. Or try north shore horse back riding with Equus Rides. Trip Advisor.

    4.) Jet Ski & other water sport and beach gear Rentals – West End Water Sports. Trip Advisor.

    5.) Kite Boarding, Windsurfing, Standup Paddle Boarding (more info.).

    6.) Open-air Bus Tours of St. Croix – Sweeny’s St. Croix Safari Tours. Trip Advisor.

    7.) Tour Fort Christiansvaern &/or Fort Frederik. Trip Advisor – Fort Christiansvaern; Fort Frederik.

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    8.) Historic Frederiksted Walking Tour – CHANT. Trip Advisor.

    9.) Visit/Tour various historical buildings, museums, plantations (more info.).

    10.) Island-wide ecological & historical excursions (e.g.: hiking, snorkeling, kayaking) - Bush Tribe Island Wide Eco Adventures. Trip Advisor.

    11.) Ecotourism Kayaking (various providers). Barefoot Pirate Island Adventures offers clear kayaking, snorkeling, hiking and paddle boarding tours. Trip Advisor.

    12.) Sailing and Snorkeling Trips to Buck Island, sunset cruises & private charters – Big Beard’s Adventure Tours. Trip Advisor.

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    13.) Cruzan Rum Factory Tour. (Trip Advisor – Cruzan Rum Distillery).

    14.) Captain Morgan Rum Distillery Tour. (Trip Advisor - Diageo’s Captain Morgan Rum Distillery).

    15.) Meet the (Non-alcoholic) Beer-drinking Pigs at Mt. Pellier Hut Domino Club. Trip Advisor.

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    16.) Beaches – GoToStCroix.com’s guide to the beaches of St. Croix.

    17.) Deep Sea Fishing (more info.).

    18.) Golf – 3 public courses (more info.). Trip Advisor.

    19.) St. George Village Botanical Gardens (16 acres) (more info.). Trip Advisor. Warning: Open Mon. – Sat., hours were 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. with last guest admitted at 1 p.m., so you’ll likely be there in the heat of the day when ultraviolet content of sunlight is strong. We arrived too late and missed it.

    20.) Visit Point Udall, the easternmost point of the U.S. (more info.). Trip Advisor.

    21.) Gambling - Divi Casino. Trip Advisor. Hotel Caravelle has slot machines.

    22.) Skydive Virgin IslandsTrip Advisor. Skydiving after scuba diving can be hazardous much as flying can be; DAN Europe has an article on it.

    23.) Hang Glide St. CroixTrip Advisor.

    24.) Parasailing, Paragliding and more tours/water sports – Windborne Adventures (Trip Advisor). Richard’s Update: I went in Watersports Dive Center off the boardwalk in Christiansted and was told despite their sign saying parasailing, they no longer offer it, the staffer didn’t think anyone else did, either, but somebody offers hang gliding seasonally (in winter).

    25.) Trip Advisor has a St Croix Travel Forum post by ccrosner, St. Croix Snorkeling Spots, from Nov. 18, 2012, detailing several sites. Several posters gave additional input.

    *There are limits to my research. I didn’t separate these by proximity to Christiansted or Frederiksted because most visitors rent a car and it’s not that long a drive between them.

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  2. drrich2

    drrich2 Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Southwestern Kentucky
    8,154
    5,555
    113
  3. KathyV

    KathyV Orca

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Midwestern US
    5,172
    3,238
    113
    Fantastic as always, Richard! Glad you had a good trip and thank you for the detailed and extensive report!
     
  4. jonhall

    jonhall Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Indianapolis
    997
    450
    63
    Glad you had a nice time. Great report and photos. Glad you were able to spend some time on one of my favorite islands.

    I will add that if one goes in early July, the Mango Festival at the St. George Botanical Gardens shouldn't be missed and if there in December, the Christmas Boat Parade and Carnival are fun events.
     
  5. drrich2

    drrich2 Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Southwestern Kentucky
    8,154
    5,555
    113
    Yeah, our Tan Tan tours jeep driver John mentioned that we'd missed the mango crop, but he picked us some passion fruit to try (pretty good; a hard taste to describe, but good). I wish that botanical garden stayed open later into the evening.

    Here's a question about climate, since we had a tropical storm come in one evening and, over the night and into the next morning, dump over 5 inches of rain on us. The typical weather report on my iPhone was around 88 degree high, 79-80 degree low; it was hot, and tended to be a little muggy. Is St. Croix normally arid, or a little muggy? There was a frequent breeze in open areas.

    Speaking of that storm, they usually come out of the east but this one came out of the north and did some damage. I saw a catamaran listing to the side badly (like one side sticking into the water), & a large boat looked beached on rocks. Didn't cancel any diving (though it shot the nearby viz. the next day).

    Richard.
     
  6. jonhall

    jonhall Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Indianapolis
    997
    450
    63
    Have been in late March-early April, late June-early July, and early to mid December. Don't believe St. Croix to be normally arid (in my mind) but it has its moments. July was that time for us. Morning rains, temps in the mid to upper middle 80's, higher humidity. Richard, you happened to pick the right time of year for hot and humid!


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    I don't perspire a lot, but hiking up to the Lighthouse at Ham's Bluff in July had me sweating a little bit. Beautiful sights where the west coast meets the north coast and, unless it's changed, one can climb up into the lighthouse.

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    March to April was pretty comfortable. Air temps were pretty constant in the low 80's and water temps 79-80.

    Found December (2012) to be fairly comfortable with temps in low 80's and a constant water temperature of 84. Did all diving on this trip on the west side.

    Sorry for your bad luck of not seeing a seahorse or frogfish. The following pics were taken under the pier. I admit the DM had to point out the frogfish.

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    drrich2 and KathyV like this.
  7. Saboteur

    Saboteur Regular of the Pub

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Earth
    725
    910
    93
    Excellent review. A great reference for a St. Croix scuba-cation.
     
  8. TN Traveler

    TN Traveler Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Knoxville, TN; St Croix, USVI
    1,438
    309
    83
    I love your report. Wish I had known you were on island when we were - would have enjoyed joining you for some diving.

    I also "hate" that you are showing folks what a great place St Croix is :). We fell in love with the island and bought a place there last September and now spend about 25% of our time on island. I will try and post some of my pictures from our August trip a little later. We like the uncrowded, untouristy nature of the island and selfishly want to keep it that way.

    St Croix is an under-discovered gem. So much of it still untouched but enough "civilization" to make it very comfortable.

    By the way - the food on the island is superb. The quality of the food rivals 4 and 5 star US restaurants and they are mostly very eclectic.

    By the way - the best dive on the island is at the deep end of the Fredriksted Pier in about 50 ft of water. Fantastic viz and a tremendous variety of sea life that changes daily.

    Dive Safely
     
    Schwob, KathyV and drrich2 like this.
  9. Steve_C

    Steve_C Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Raleigh, NC USA
    4,269
    2,894
    113
    Great report. Timely too since wife and I are thinking of going there in a few months
     
  10. TN Traveler

    TN Traveler Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Knoxville, TN; St Croix, USVI
    1,438
    309
    83
    Here are a few pics from the end of the Pier about 2 weeks ago
    Brittle Stars.jpg Brittle Stars.jpg Banded Shrimp.jpg Pregnant Seahorse.jpg Sea Horse.jpg Seahorse Pair.jpg Tan Seahorse.jpg Tiny File Fish.jpg
     

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