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Mitsugirlys FASCINATION with San Juan-review & pictorial

Day 9: St Kitts

DAY 6 on the ship: ST KITTS

 

We were just in St Kitts a few months ago and honestly, it didn't really impress me too much. It was probably just the experience we had, although not bad it was not really great either. I will admit that those mountains and our driver just made me a nervous wreck. I had picked out two different places to go to that time: Reggae Beach, located all the way at the end at Cockleshell Bay or go to either Ship Wreck or Carambola, located at Frigate Bay. Since we had a rather LARGE (over 100) group from our roll call going, we picked Carambola.

 

So...this time I decided to head to Frigate Bay. I also knew that by going here it wouldn't be as long of a drive AND we would not have all those mountains to go up and down as well. (Although pretty, I was still a bit of a wreck by the time we arrived).

 

I debated on going to Carambola or Ship Wreck and decided for the sake of the family, who enjoys the luxury look of the beach over simple and practical, I would go to Carambola. So that will be what we did this day.

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Alarm set for 6:45am and I jumped up and got the family moving. We headed to the buffet for breakfast and I got my usual...but discovered the pastries today as well.

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The sun was coming up and it appeared that it was going to be a beautiful and sunny day.

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There was a few clouds hanging over the mountains, but they would quickly pass.

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Hercules was there to help us out

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We rushed Kendra and B, who never show up until about 7:45am to eat, and heard the psshhhrrrrp of the loud speaker and everyone jumped and we headed for our room to grab our beach bags and some ice in our bags for our pop and we were off the ship at 8:15am just in time for the paparazzi to catch us.

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Man, cruises are supposed to be relaxing...I look like I haven't slept in days!

We walked outside the port gate, told the taxi driver where we wanted to go, and off we went. It cost us $4 for each adult and they said the kids were going to be free. Awesome!

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Oh crap, it looks like we were going to have to endure a mountain after all. Hold on....

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But the views are so beautiful up here. I have to say it was definitely a different experience being in an enclosed vehicle instead of an open air taxi. I felt safer, but yet you couldn't get good pictures. I guess that's the trade off you get.

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Last time we were here, they were working on the roads and tunnels and they had all the detours. What a difference a few months make...they now have the tunnel completed! Gosh I remember the sharp turn we had to make last time and that is now gone. You don't have to go that way anymore. Whew!

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Here was the sign signaling that we were already at Carambolas.

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WE HAVE ARRIVED...BRING ON THE FUN!!!

  

We came out of the restaurant building and onto the beach.

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We were the first ones there!!! We had our pick of chairs and followed this guy looking for the perfect spot.

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Sakari had already removed her cover-up and her and B were checking out the water.

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​​We headed down toward the end because it looked like an interesting spot.

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This is where we decided.

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Immediately the swimming and exploring began. Even though it was still early in the morning, the water was warm and it was already hot. Holy moly those are some bright swimming trunks B. (Just kidding, this is what happens when you forget to change the setting on your camera to underwater).

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The morning pictures turned out kinda crappy. I'm not sure why. The water must have been stirred up a bit or something because they didn't end up very clear. Sakari was off exploring and had morphed into a mermaid.

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I spotted some fish then over to the right of us was a dock of some sort. I headed that way and there were a bunch of rocks up against it.

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I think she's swimming faster than her tail is today.

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Oh look, I spotted an Azure Damselfish

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GASP...it's one of those fire worms that stung Sakari back at Little French Key one year. I pointed at it and told her to stay away and not pick it up.

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Sea urchin. Don't this "stuff" at the bottom of this area remind you of a dirt mop? It was weird looking.

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So there really wasn't a whole lot to see over by the dock. I was kinda disappointed. So there's an area that runs up and down the beach that has rocks and "sea life" and that's where we would do our snorkeling. It pretty much looks like this:

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It's nothing to write home about, but it would have to do. It still gave us a place to "look out" for things. But I wouldn't say this is much of a snorkeling area.

I seen these (I assume some type of coral?) everywhere.

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We found some black spiny sea urchins. Of course I pointed at them and ask Sakari if she would like to pick one up today. I got that "look" from her and I think she learned her lesson from the day before.

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Banded butterfly fish and a yellow tang. I honestly don't see a lot of the yellow ones. You usually see more of the blue ones.

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Does anyone see what's here? Yea, I didn't either, but Kendra is a pro at spotting these. She has found every single one of them when we have been snorkeling in the past. It was Mr Octopus

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Love the color of these feather dusters. They were like a white color with a pretty blue tint. I had never seen any that color before.

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The hubby had followed us out and decided to join us...from above the water. It must have gotten too hot for him back on the beach. (This entire area of snorkeling is not deep, you can stand up there). So I found this

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And decided to let the hubby hold it. He has never held one before.

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I hated to see all this trash in the water. Of course it's no fault of Carambola. This could have came from anywhere...from the weather/ocean bringing it in, to inconsiderate people on the beach, to the wind whisking it away from the beach. You just never know. I still hate to see it though. Especially bags that critters can get caught up in. I watch so many of those "rescue" videos online.

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So I was in the water with a lady and her daughter. She approached me and we started talking (she had been snorkeling too). She ask me if I knew if we were allowed to snorkel "on the other side" and pointed on the other side of the dock. She said she walked over there earlier and there was lagoon type area with steps leading down in to it. I had never heard anyone mention this and knew I had to go explore and see what she was talking about.

 

This deck part you see in the picture, that leads to the left of the picture, is the dock. The rocky area is where I was headed. It was like the property next door or something.

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It was nothing but rocks everywhere and man it hurt my feet. But I made it and it was BEAUTIFUL over there!

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The steps she was talking about...this area was AMAZING and so pretty. It reminded me of Chankanaabs lagoon.

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It looked like a prime area for snorkeling (or even diving) and with all the rocks down there, I can only imagine the things to see.

 

The only problem is, the steps led down to the water and really not into the water. Once getting down in there, I'm not sure how you would get out...short of having to hoist your body up with your arms...and this fluffy girl won't be doing that any time soon.

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I could see fish everywhere. There were just so many of them. The place just really looked amazing.

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I kept putting my foot down on the last steps, as several crabs scurried off of the steps and back into the water, scaring the crap out of me at first, and sticking my camera under the water to see if I could get any good shots of the fish that were crowding the steps. There were hundreds...seriously....until I would put my camera in the water and then they would disappear. It reminded me of my aquarium at home and the fish going back and forth at the top waiting for me to feed them. But once I stuck my camera in the water, they would flee for the most part.

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The other problem was, once again, I forgot to put my camera setting on underwater. So I end up with a bunch of "RED".

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I didn't realize it at the time of course. I walked away hoping that I ended up with a bunch of pictures that made it look like I was actually under the water over there. Fail

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I decided to walk back...over the rocks we go. There was a road that leads back to this area and I did see a white truck back here at one point. I still don't know what this area is for though. Can anyone tell me?

 

This picture shows where it's located in relation to Carambola.

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After sitting down to massage the battle wounds on my feet, I look over and see this on the dock....

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Why were the kids talking to some stranger and is this stranger danger or a friendly local stranger? I had to go investigate.

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Do you see what B has in his hands? A monkey!

 

This guy sat over at the dock for hours. The kids were over there playing with the monkey for hours. It would crawl all over them and let them feed it and hold it and they were busy jumping off the dock over and over too.

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Of course this concerned me because I knew that below the dock (at a certain point) there were huge rocks that I had snorkeled earlier. The last thing I needed was for one of them to jump and hit a rock and break something. I had to go over to investigate.

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The monkey sitting on Sakari's shoulder.

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Now I know these guys walk up and down the beach (and in port) letting you hold and take pictures of the monkey for $5 each. This guy never mentioned anything about having to pay anything and he was sitting on the dock for hours. He was letting the kids play with the monkey for a good portion of the day. I went over to talk to him. We talked for quite some time and I told him how my daughter (Kendra) has been wanting a monkey forever. He mentioned they sell them for $100. Oh wow, because they are thousands back home. He also mentioned they can ship to the US. I went over to tell Kendra and she came running. She would spend probably the next 2 hours talking to him about the monkey and holding it while also taking pictures of it to send to her fiance back home telling him she wants it...That would be followed with her being on the phone with him for another hour. LOL She was bound and determined that she wanted a monkey. Not any monkey, but THIS monkey. LOL

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The kids continued to jump and Kendra continued to talk monkey talk.

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The guy gave Kendra his social media site for her to add him and told her everything about this monkey. He had went into the forest to get the mother and she had 5 babies. This was one of them and he was 4 months old I believe. He said they were all pretty tame and they had removed their fang teeth. He said they can only ship to 2 places in the US (Miami and Arizona I think). She would have to arrange to have an address in one of those places to accept the monkey and then have to pay shipping for it to get there (COD). She would not pay for the monkey until it arrived in the US.

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The guy gave Kendra his social media site for her to add him and told her everything about this monkey. He had went into the forest to get the mother and she had 5 babies. This was one of them and he was 4 months old I believe. He said they were all pretty tame and they had removed their fang teeth. He said they can only ship to 2 places in the US (Miami and Arizona I think). She would have to arrange to have an address in one of those places to accept the monkey and then have to pay shipping for it to get there (COD). She would not pay for the monkey until it arrived in the US.

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I told her that no matter "how" he said it's done, I still can't believe that US customs would allow some animal from a different country to just be shipped there with no problems due to diseases and such. But she was on a mission.

 

(Update since we returned...still no monkey, of course, and the guy won't answer her on SM so....)

 

A video of the kids (and the hubby) jumping off the deck.

Sakari found a sand dollar. This entire cruise she kept asking me how much is this worth? She just couldn't put the name "dollar" together with "it's not real money".

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The hubby, Sakari, and I decided we were going to go for a "walk". I knew I wanted to see if I could find this "black" sand that everyone talks about down by Ship Wreck. After leaving Carambola, we started to see some blackness in the sand. Cool

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This stuff really sparkled in the sun

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It was getting blacker and I was getting excited

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I just couldn't believe how it sparkled in the sun. It was like little diamonds in the sand. So pretty. I really wish the camera could capture what I was seeing.

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Watching the ocean water rush up, it would turn brown, then when the water went back out, it would be black.

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We came to another beach club and it was deserted. Not one person there. They had chairs put out and what looked like a little bar with (maybe) the owner sitting there. But not a single person there.

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The sand was REALLY black at this point.

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Just look at the difference?

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Heading on down toward the Ship Wreck bar

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Rocks along the side

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We arrived at Ship Wreck:

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I do have to admit, my first impressions of this place was not a positive one. I was prepared for it not to be a luxurious place, and I was expecting kinda rustic, but I didn't really picture this. It didn't look rustic to me, it kinda looked run down. It looked like there were weeds growing and the place hadn't been "swept" or anything. I don't know, I just wasn't too impressed.

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I mean I know you are going for a different kinda feel here, but I would at least think you might rake the beach from all the sea weed and get rid of some of the debris in the area. Make it a little more appealing. I know a lot of people on here love this place. But, I'm glad I made the decision to stay a Carambola instead. I really don't think this place is for me...and not just because of the beach or area.

 

So, I know it was mentioned that this area was good for snorkeling and Sakari and I decided to take a look around. We headed into the water...this is what you'll be walking on:

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It pretty much had the same "look" as it is down by Carambola...with the "ledge" running up and down the beach with a few things to see there. However, there were TONS...I mean TONS of black spiny sea urchins.

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I really didn't think there was much to see in this area and definitely no different than the area over by Carambola.

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It was pretty shallow in most areas, but man the sea urchins. They were really making me nervous. Although Sakari and I had brought our snorkel mask so that we could look around, I did not bring any flippers and with all the sea urchins everywhere you turned, it was making me super nervous.

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They were seriously in every crevice. One wrong turn and you could be scraped by one or put your foot down on one.

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This was also floating at the top of the water in the entire area...which made it kinda creepy when it was constantly rubbing up against you.

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We were only in the water about 10 minutes before I tapped Sakari on the shoulder and told her "Let's get out of here". I was just too nervous. I really don't know how anyone can swim in this area with all the sea urchins...or maybe they had an area on down that had a sandy entrance. The area we were in was directly in front of the Ship Wreck and to the right.

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It almost looked like oil mixed in with the sand when you picked it up. So cool though.

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We started heading back and I was glad that I took the trip to see the black sand. I REALLY like it. It was beautiful and so unique. I just didn't care for Ship Wreck itself.

 

Sakari ask if she could run back to Carambola and the chairs and she scurried off. I don't know where she gets her energy.

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Once away from Ship Wreck, the sand turns back to brown (which is weird) and then it would turn back to black once we got back to the other little beach place with no people, then it would be black again.

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We did this in the sand in front of that other place.

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It really was a pretty place. I'm not sure why no one was there unless people are just not aware of it. It liked the natural shade with the palm trees.

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It's definitely a place I could see myself staying at. It's very simple, but yet gorgeous.

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Discovery Beach Bar I guess is the name. I'll have to do some research on this place maybe for the next time.

 

Their rental was the same as Carambola....$10 per chair.

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A big open area in between this place and Carambola. The hubbys wheels were turning...buy this place and make a beach club and work from the beach every day...haha...um yea, I'm game, but somehow I think it's too close to Carambola, which seems to get most of the business and is well known.

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From here, you could see the new tunnel they just built

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Once I got back to our chairs, I was showing Kendra my black sand and what she had missed out on by being on the phone for an hour with her fiance talking monkey talk. I put some down on the sand and showed her the difference.

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It looks like a bag of charcoal.

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As you can see, a lot more people have showed up at Carambola now.