|Waiting to get on Big Beard’s Adventure|
A quick 25-minute ride to Christiansted was all it took and we were dropped off near our destination, Big Beard’s Adventure. Last December I had the chance to spend the day out at Buck Island and so I thought I would take my husband and son there, too. We paid for our tickets inside the store marked “Big Beard’s Adventures” and we waited only a short while before being able to board the boat. Inside the store we purchased a few bottles of water since you could bring your own beverages and snacks on board, but no glass bottles.
Prior to the start of our trip, I was incredibly anxious as I remembered how choppy the water had been previously and how quickly I was approaching full on seasick last December. We took off our shoes on the mat prior to boarding the boat and they were collected in a bag to be returned at the end. Finding a seat toward the back with my view toward the front, I sat down and quietly hoped for the best. The ride was a little choppy, but not nearly as bad as last year.
Once anchored, we could depart the boat and head toward the beach on Turtle Island. You get about an hour at this location snorkeling, including a free snorkeling lesson, and you’ll have time to test out your snorkeling equipment. There are some fish to see in this area, but don’t get discouraged if it feels a little too tame and underwhelming here.
After about an hour at this location, we were then back onboard the Adventure and headed back to St. Croix. The boat trip to and from Buck Island is less than a half hour each way and please be sure to put sunscreen on as the sun is terribly deceptive, both at this time of year and out on the water. I put on some spray suntan lotion and the wind blew it all over the place and so now I have red stripes from where the suntan lotion landed and didn’t land. Strange but true!
There were four crewmembers onboard Big Beard’s Adventure as well as Caitlin, our captain. Gratuities are appreciated as the crewmembers do work on tips, but we were surprised to see so few of the 50 people who went out that day leaving gratuities. Extremely sad as you should always build in a tip for any type of excursion you might do. The crew assisted us with masks, fins, and life vests and helped us out on the water so it’s the least we could do to say “thank you.”
|Asha St. Croix|
I was now a woman on a mission to find some shopping in Christiansted, but there was one thing I hadn’t planned for and that was Sunday. Apparently, this area becomes a ghost town on Sunday and most everything was closed. I was a little sad for people visiting here for the first time as I am sure they got the wrong impression of what Christiansted was about as it is a beautiful area with lovely people, great food, great shopping, and so much more. We made our way over to Company Street so I could stop at Asha St. Croix, a store I visited and fell in love with last December, but it was closed until the first of December. Not sure what was worse: That it was closed on Sunday or would have been closed regardless until the first of December.
|Shuttle area for trip back to Fredriksted|
Reluctantly, I headed back toward the waterfront and the shuttle area to get a ride back to Fredriksted. Once again, we weren’t exactly sure where to get the shuttle so look toward your left once you are closer to the water and you will see the employees wearing the blue shirts as they did when you drove into Christiansted. We were told to wait by the blue awning and we watched as the driver finished eating his lunch. He placed the remainder of his food inside a plastic shopping bag and then grumpily advised those that were waiting to then to get in the van.
Unlike the female driver who drove us to Christiansted, he had nothing to say to us other than to give him our tickets once he started driving. There was no identifier on our tickets and we were worried that someone else might not have a ticket, so I was glad that I had taken a picture of the tickets earlier in the day. Luckily, there was no need to produce evidence of our tickets to the driver.
|Celebrity Summit in port in Fredriksted, St. Croix, USVI|
Some people chose to walk around the sleepy little port of Fredriksted, but since we had been here previously, we decided to head right back to the ship. If you do have St. Croix on your itinerary, please venture off into Christiansted as unfortunately, Fredriksted is somewhat limited in its offerings other than a few flea market type booths and some small shops. The beautiful island of St. Croix is nothing like her sisters, St. Thomas or St. John, and it would be a shame if you missed seeing all of what she has to offer.
|Celebrity Summit: Royal Suite 6133|
When we returned to the ship, we were famished and decided to order room service. Staying in the Royal Suite affords a better room service menu and we were delighted that we would be able to order a veggie burger! I quickly placed our order and within a few minutes I received a call from room service advising me that they were indeed out of veggie burgers. Hopefully, they will be able to restock before the end of our cruise, but we ordered a few other items including a pepperoni pizza for my son (think small, personal size pizza), a turkey club sandwich, and a hamburger as well as vegetable lasagna and an avocado quesadilla. Our butler, Santoso, takes care of having the room service items delivered to us and it is set up with great care each time on our dining room table. I am afraid I will never be able to sail on a ship again without all of this space. Usually, we are tripping all over each other trying to get to the bathroom or to the closet, but here we have so much room it’s scary.
With a few hours before dinner, my husband decided to go for a run at the fitness center while I decided to get some work done and my son committed to studying for school. He is out of school this week for our cruise so he agreed to study daily. I took my laptop in the bedroom and mistakenly turned on the TV, where I started watching a Nova program on glaciers. I then told my son about it and he started watching it in the living room and when my husband returned, he said my son had fallen asleep on the couch. Granted, he kept nodding off in the van on the way back from Fredriksted, so he was definitely tired. The snorkeling got the best of him!
|Bistro on Five|
For dinner we all decided that we needed to keep it low key and minimal so we went up to Bistro on Five. There were only a few tables full as most people were in the main dining room. Santoso had spoken with my husband and met us there to seat us personally. I have to say that you really do get the star treatment with Celebrity when you stay in a suite. It will be hard to go back home and have none of this, but it will just mean we will have to sail again very soon.
Dining options in Bistro on Five consist of crepes, paninis, soup, or salad. I had wanted the soup of the day, which was broccoli and mushroom, but learned that it had been prepared with chicken stock. I ordered the Vegetable Panini, as did my husband, but he also added on a Mexicano Crepe. Our son decided on the Cowboy Crepe as it had steak in it and if it had meat, he was happy. For dessert there are three crepes: One with Grand Marnier, a Dulce de Leche crepe, and an “Italian” with bananas, Nutella, and pistachios. My son and I ordered the Italian and my husband ordered the Dulce de Leche. Overall, dinner was exactly what I wanted, which was none of the crowds or noise and an intimate dinner for three so it was perfect.
As I said, an early morning for St. Kitts so until next time!