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moe46

which itinerary

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Trying to compare the ABC islands of Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao vs  St. Croix, Antigua, Barbados, St. Lucia, Grenada, St. Vincent, St Kitts. Which itinerary would be preferable for a Southern Caribbean cruise on Equinox at the end of the summer?

 

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They are all very good !

The only island that was not very good was St.Marteen, we are there on a French holiday and everything was closed.

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We have done only one Caribbean cruise that included Aruba, Curacao, St. Lucia, Grenada, Barbados, St. Thomas, St. Marten and Antigua.

 

Perhaps I expected more at Aruba, it was nice, but we were not overwhelmed.  We like Curacao more.

 

Our favorite islands were St. Lucia and Grenada, they seemed more authentically Caribbean.  We also like Barbados, St. Thomas and Antigua.   St. Marten seemed to be more like a hyped up Miami.  It was OK, but just a but too much overrun by tourists and didn't seem as Caribbean as the others.

 

I would go with the cruise that included St. Lucia and Grenada.

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Both are wonderful, but given the timing - end of summer - you would probably have better weather outside the hurricane zone, in the ABCs.

 

Even if there are no serious storms on the Eastern/Southern itinerary, you would likely still have more rain, just based on the time of year.  

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I would definitely go with ABC islands. That is a very nice itinerary, and hurricanes are not a problem there. It definitely could wreck your cruise on the other option. We got evacuated on our Labor Day week vacation last year due to Dorian. I am still bitter, lol. Vacation time = precious time.

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I'd take the Southern route with Barbados, St. Vincent etc...... Every port on that itinerary is great except for St. Croix, IMO.  These are true caribbean islands.  So much to see and do plus they are all different.  There is no comparison between these islands and the ABC.  The ABC is very underwhelming.  Flat with a cacti desert feel.  

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We were also underwhelmed by the ABC islands.....the St. Croix, Antigua, Barbados, St. Lucia, Grenada, St. Vincent, St Kitts...would be more interesting to us, but as others have mentioned, the weather can be a factor that can effect either itinerary.

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2 hours ago, EatonDoolittle said:

Both are wonderful, but given the timing - end of summer - you would probably have better weather outside the hurricane zone, in the ABCs.

 

Even if there are no serious storms on the Eastern/Southern itinerary, you would likely still have more rain, just based on the time of year.  

Good point. I didn't realize ABC was out of the hurricane zone but definitely something to consider in September.

 

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We were also underwhelmed with the ABC itinerary. We did the other one in March and loved it. Ours had Grand Cayman instead of St. Croix.

Edited by daniels5759

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I went to the ABC islands and Grand Cayman on the Silhouette in 2018, and I took a Summit cruise in November to Barbados, Antigua, St. Kitts, St. Lucia, and St. Thomas. I liked both itineraries, but I preferred the ABC islands. I thought all three ports in the ABC islands were nice, and I found them interesting or fun for different reasons — the beach in Aruba, the town of Willemstad in Curaçao, and the marine life and salt flats in Bonaire. I also thought all three ports were good for shopping. (Bonaire is not known for shopping and doesn’t have the stores that are staples of port shopping sales pitches, but it has a nice street of local stores and vendors.)

 

I think the other itinerary has some hits and misses. I enjoyed beaches in Barbados and St. Kitts, but Antigua and St. Lucia didn’t impress me. Both seemed more run-down than some other ports. And it seems like the main attractions in St. Lucia are far from the port.

 

 

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Different strokes for different folks as the saying goes.  For us, ABC islands beats the others any time. Part of the reason might be that we don't get down to see them as much as we have seen the others over the years, particularly before retirement when we could only do 7 day cruises.   It also really depends what you like to do.  We are not big beach people, so we often just get off the ship and walk around and enjoy being out of the cold of Chicago.  Aruba and Curacao in particular are great for that.  We also love Bonaire, but tend to take tours there as the town is not that big.   We also prefer more sea days to port days, which you normally get on ABC itineraries.  And it is true that the ABC's are out of the normal hurricane paths, although you potentially could be impacted on the route there.

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You didn't provide any information on what you like to do/see, so that makes it a bit difficult to provide recommendations.

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I'd go with the ABC itinerary because its a bit more rare.  However, the others are also fine.  So, in the end, I'd probably base my decision on price.  

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