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parissian

Registered
11/19/2013

Posts
9

Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 19, 2013 04:24PM

Hi there,

I have been all over the sights but was not able to find an answer..

When we visit St Thomas in December and staying at the Saphire Beach Resort, we would like to take boat outing to BVI..perhaps Bath or Tortola..however, when I look at many boat operaits, like New Horizon, etc most of it seems for adults and many are booze boats.

With kids, 2 and 4, year old we want to find a safe, kid-friendly, non-booze boat tour -- can anyone recommend? My son has bad milk, egg, and nuts allergy so I was wondering if those sunset dinner tours (they said they can prepare Vegan dishes) really good?

Thanks..


Also..I brought these non-deet natural bug spray from the same company that makes "OFF" deet..because DEET can be quite toxic and being my kids are so young I prefer not to have to use it on them...has anyone have any luck on these non-deet products, partiducarly since my son is suspectible to bad eczema as well.

Thanks..

toes in the sand

Registered
09/20/2007

Posts
263

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 19, 2013 04:50PM

Something that I use at home but have not used taken with us to the islands yet is 5% tar oil dandruff shampoo. I use it for my Psoriasis.
We have had good luck with it warding off mosquitos here and my sister-in-law had a flea infestation problem thanks to their dogs and she tried it. She went flea free after using the TGel shampoo.

"I got a drink in my hand; I got my toes in the sand."

Alana33

Registered
07/01/2012

Posts
791

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 19, 2013 08:13PM

Skin So Soft is also very good at repelling mosquitoes.
You'll have to check different companies for child friendly boating environments and be sure to let them know of the allergies, in advance.

parissian

Registered
11/19/2013

Posts
9

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 19, 2013 10:19PM

Can I ask, what is Skin so Soft? Is it a lotion that I can get at Target or Walmart..I am located in NJ..

Thanks.

Alana33

Registered
07/01/2012

Posts
791

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 19, 2013 11:21PM

Yes, It's skin lotion. You can try Target or Walmart or see if you can find it online.

STT Resident

Registered
09/19/2005

Posts
3,293

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 20, 2013 06:59AM

Skin So Soft is a moisturizing bath product manufactured by Avon but, although some people swear by it as a mosquito repellant, Avon itself has continuously said that it's not and is solely a beauty product.

Deet-containing repellants work the best and you might find this article helpful:

[kidshealth.org]

As far as the boat trips are concerned I'd suggest you look into the 6-packs (boats which carry max 6 passengers), I recommend S/V Independence, S/V High Pockets and S/V Fantasy which all run out of Red Hook which is a 5 minute drive from Sapphire. Enjoy a great vacation!

beachboy

Registered
06/01/2007

Posts
98

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 20, 2013 11:59AM

It will be unusual if you have a mosquitoes problem at Sapphire. There is most always a nice breeze that blows them away. Once in a great while when there is no breeze some of the beach level units can have some but it is not the norm.
There will be sand fleas at dawn and dusk though so just keep the kids off the sand for a half hour at dusk. Do take something with you when you go out if you are eating at a beach restaurant but again there is usuall a breeze by the water.

Regarding a snorkel trip ask when you book who else they have booked on a particular day. Sometimes it is couples, and familys others young party people. They will try to help you.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/20/2013 12:02PM by beachboy.

Alana33

Registered
07/01/2012

Posts
791

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 20, 2013 01:06PM

Ask if any families with young kids scheduled for their trips. Maybe you'll meet new friends with kids who they will end up playing with.

Personally, I would not want to share a day with kids on a boat trip, especially if they get tired and cranky. No offense.

STT Resident

Registered
09/19/2005

Posts
3,293

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 20, 2013 01:49PM

On a 6-pack you'll likely be the only family aboard. Most of the boats are on a per person rate and don't mandate that the boat be full to go out. Just check their websites and give them a call.

parissian

Registered
11/19/2013

Posts
9

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 20, 2013 04:10PM

Thank you..I checked into the recommended "6 pack"..guess I will email them direcly...perhaps they will go to BVI as well..

Yes..I totally understand not wanting to be on board with kids..we don't mind being the only family..but its so hard to book far ahead with kids..if you don't know weather conditions, etc on boats cause they can get sea sick and then be really cranky! I will have to ask the boat people..

I have a very dumb question...what is considered dusk when the mosquitoes, sand flies come in? IS that 6 pm..when it starts to get dark? I thought in evening the tide is high and you can't really be on beach anyway so I thought we would go to the swimming pool at Sapphire around 7/7:30 pm nightly (I think my condo owners said it was on the beach)..hopefully 1. the pool is warm waters and 2. there are no sandflies on the walk from our condo to the beach..

I am one of those that get eaten alive in the summers months in NJ...and so my young daughter..

STT Resident

Registered
09/19/2005

Posts
3,293

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 20, 2013 06:46PM

The sand fleas start coming out around 4:30PM which is why you'll see most residents leaving the beaches around that time! High tide has nothing to do with it - the difference here between high tide and low tide is minimal. There's very minimal "dusk" here - the sun sets very quickly and doesn't linger. Don't worry too much about the mosquitoes. Just protect yourself with a good repellant and, as was mentioned earlier, the nice breezes at Sapphire generally keep then at bay. Have fun!

parissian

Registered
11/19/2013

Posts
9

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 21, 2013 04:21PM

In regards to boats -- any one reco a "private" charter..this way guarantee only just us family on boat....we kind of need the personal attention..i'd love to snorkel but not really a great swimmer at all..always will use life jackets...I was looking at costs..for us a family of 4, its like 500 for those boats with 6 people...

Also..we were thinking of one day touring st. johnourselves and is it too much to one day go to tortola or virgin gordes? There is barge car to St john but doesn't seem like car barge to tortola and definitely not virn gordes..probably because of distance to these bvi islands?

If so I would need to taxi once I arrive at one of the BVI islands.


Thanks.

STT Resident

Registered
09/19/2005

Posts
3,293

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 21, 2013 05:24PM

Not sure what you mean by "private" charters. The boats I recommended earlier are all privately owned and operated.

As far as ferries go, if you go top right this page you'll see a link to the ferry schedules both for St Thomas/St John and to the BVI. There are regular ferries to the BVI. Note that you MUST have valid passports to travel between the USVI and the BVI, whether on a ferry or a private charter.

Hope that helps.

parissian

Registered
11/19/2013

Posts
9

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 21, 2013 10:45PM

yes I just realized I probably didn't make sense...I meant renting a boat, hiring a captain, to go to BVI directly..instead of going thru the regular ferries....so more flexible schedule..but I don't know of any trustworthy captain...I will ask around..

then, I am just wondering I am only staying a week..just spending 1 day going to st john and then spending one day coral ocean park and linquist beach, then one day drake point/magens bay, and then one day havensight paradise point..or maybe I should combine drakes/paradise point in one day and enjoy magens for one day...so that's 4 of my 7 days..

probably the rest I should just spend relaxing at the condo so maybe a trip to bvi is too much at this time with 2 very young kids..

STT Resident

Registered
09/19/2005

Posts
3,293

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 22, 2013 06:09AM

On this I agree - a trip to the BVI is too much to pack into just one week when you'll only have enough time to get a little taste of what there's to do and see on STT and STJ. The worst thing you can do is over-think and over-plan!

Here's a llnk to the Sapphire webcam - think relaxation!

[www.sapphireinthesun.com]

Alana33

Registered
07/01/2012

Posts
791

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 22, 2013 09:21AM

The point of a vacation is to relax. If you plan on going on any full day trips, you need to consider yours and your very young children's stamina and endurance levels. You can't tell what kind of weather you'll encounter on any given day, in advance so you may want to plan a 1/2 day trip if kids get worn out easily or need naps, prone to seasickness, etc. We often have rough seas and blustery winds during the winter that may make it uncomfortable for a full day on a boat so you may want to take that into account.

There really is plenty to do and see in STT for your family and you can always take your rental car (make sure you can when you make reservation for your rental car) over to St. John and spend the day there on your own, exploring that island. You want to have an enjoyable and relaxing time and gong up to the BVI on a full day trip might not be in the cards until your kids are a bit older and can handle a full day and what all it entails.

parissian

Registered
11/19/2013

Posts
9

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 22, 2013 02:37PM

Thank you for the valuable feedback!

mcmc

Registered
11/22/2013

Posts
2

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 22, 2013 06:06PM

Quote
STT Resident

As far as the boat trips are concerned I'd suggest you look into the 6-packs (boats which carry max 6 passengers), I recommend S/V Independence, S/V High Pockets and S/V Fantasy which all run out of Red Hook which is a 5 minute drive from Sapphire. Enjoy a great vacation!

I tried to google S/V Independence, etc. and didn't come up with them. Does S/V stand for something I should know to look for them? Anyone have the website?

STT Resident

Registered
09/19/2005

Posts
3,293

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 22, 2013 06:16PM

S/V is "Sailing Vessel". Here's the website:

[www.sailingvirginislands.net]

A google of "S/V Independence st thomas" brings up a bunch of links including many reviews.

mcmc

Registered
11/22/2013

Posts
2

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 23, 2013 04:05AM

Thanks!

Alana33

Registered
07/01/2012

Posts
791

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 24, 2013 10:49AM

This guy has gotten very good reviews so you many want to check him out:
[www.swashbucklintours.com]

[www.tripadvisor.com]

STT Resident

Registered
09/19/2005

Posts
3,293

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 24, 2013 04:46PM

Quote
Alana33
This guy has gotten very good reviews so you many want to check him out:
[www.swashbucklintours.com]

[www.tripadvisor.com]

Just FYI, this is a very small (22') runaround no-frills (and no bimini) boat. Not really suitable for a trip with a 2 year old and a 4 year old.

parissian

Registered
11/19/2013

Posts
9

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 25, 2013 02:51PM

Thank you STT Resident and Alan33...

I have to admit I get so confused with these boats as we are basically "dumb" and inexperienced with boating..we went snorkeling once when we were in Fiji and on small boats..I recall getting a little sea sick and dizzy at night after doing over 3 snorkel trips..so my husband thought it be because the boats were small..

..we looked into the 6 people boat that STT recommended..if its for only 6 people..my hubby concerned does it mean its small and easy to get seasick with bumpy waters vs a bigger boat like those Stormy Petrel/New Horizon less movement...also its less expensive with the boats with more people...cost sadly does play factor.

Question...we are arriving on a Sunday afternoon and the next Monday and Wednesday there are like 5 cruise ships those days...is St John very busy on cruise ship days as well? If weather permits, I thought we would visit the smaller beaches on those days like Lindquist and/or Secret Harbour (since it sounds like where we stay at Saphire would be very busy on cruise ship days)...I read on tripadvisor Lindquist is very pretty and quiet..we would be a bit apprehensive if its only us on the beach and parking so I don't mind a little more people..I am not one of those that need the beach all to ourselves but we don't like Overcrowded either.

And we thought that on cruise ship days we should take the car barge to St. John (Wednesday)..so not sure how busy St John is on days with lots of cruise ships...or we can book a sailing trip on that day..

There are so many excusrions and on tripadvisor almost all of them has 4-5 stars..amazing!.. so it sometimes become difficult to choose which one..and cost can help play factor in I guess..

Thanks.

STT Resident

Registered
09/19/2005

Posts
3,293

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 25, 2013 04:50PM

Quote
parissian
..we looked into the 6 people boat that STT recommended..if its for only 6 people..my hubby concerned does it mean its small and easy to get seasick with bumpy waters vs a bigger boat like those Stormy Petrel/New Horizon less movement...also its less expensive with the boats with more people...cost sadly does play factor.

S/V Independence is 44' - ample room for six people and two crew and a most comfortable, smooth ride!

Alana33

Registered
07/01/2012

Posts
791

Re: Any reco on snorkeling, boat tours with very young kids (2 and 4 year olds) and mosquitoes?

November 26, 2013 11:15AM

You might try looking into a catamaran/trimaran day sail since they provide a more stable sailing environment. Most day sail boats usually take 6 passengers plus their crew. New Horizons takes more as do others but easy to check. If you are coming here during our winter "high season" it may
be difficult to find beaches (Secret Harbor is a resort hotel and they get busy during winter) that are sparsely populated as that's when snowbirds are all looking for fun in the sun and our warmer waters. Possibly the concierge (if Sapphire has one) or the tour desk at your hotel can provide info you seek. Enjoy and let us know how it goes.


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