Our first stop was Puerto Rico. We have visited Puerto Rico multiple times on other cruises and for resort vacations. Since we were only in town for a few hours the four of us thought it would be best to just wander around Old San Juan.
Our friends have never been to Barrachina and yes it's touristy and normally somewhere we wouldn't venture to but as the birthplace of the Pina Colada I think it's worth the stop. I settled on a Mojito while the others enjoyed their Pina Colada's. Next we wandered through some stores and galleries. A few favorites of mine are Puerto Rican Arts & Crafts (everything from local gourmet food to artwork), Spicy Caribee (sauces, spices, local baked goods), and the Coach Outlet (best styles and prices of any Coach outlet I have been to).
The 2nd stop of our cruise was St Thomas. Together we decided to do the shore excursion St John on your own. The ferry ride over was small but pleasant. Once we got to Cruz Bay we hopped in an open cab to the beach. We knew everyone would head to Trunk Bay so we opted for Cinnamon Bay. Cinnamon Bay is a beautiful beach and definitely wasn't crowded. Before our ferry back to St Thomas we decided to grab some lunch. We chose Joe's Rum Hut in Cruz Bay. The Painkillers (drink) were delicious and perfectly combined. We also enjoyed conch fritters, burgers, and a shrimp salad.
Back on St Thomas we wandered through the shops at Havensight Mall and Yacht Haven Grande. We picked up a couple Mango Beers from St John Brewers and wandered through Louis Vuitton and finally settled on some towels and a necklace from an artist co-op booth.
Our final stop of the cruise was St Maarten. We had planned on going kayaking but the day was extremely hot, muggy, and full sun so we decided to visit Philipsburg and the beach area. We wandered through some stores, walked the beach, and checked out what liquor we would have to buy! For lunch we decided on Barefoot Restaurant (mainly because it was close to the ferry and we were getting exhausted from the heat and sun). We were so glad we stopped here!
We started with a couple of Carib's (beer) and an order of Conch Fritters (not dairy free) and an order of Jerk Chicken Wings. Greg enjoyed the Conch Fritters. The Chicken Wings were amazing. Insanely hot but jam packed with flavor. As I was dying from the heat of the wings our waitress kept checking on me but they were so delicious that it was worth the pain. Our waitress also offered me a tip for the spicy wings. When you are done eating take a sugar packet and sprinkle it on your tongue. This actually did work better than bread and I can't drink milk so there you go lol. For entrees we chose Chicken Roti (chicken curry with vegetables in a thin bread (similar to a pita wrap but much better).
We were so happy with these days on the islands it really made up for the less than stellar cruise.