we have rented a car and driven over to Sam Lords castle.. for the wonderful views of the coastline, then rambled on up that coast stopping at the Edgwater Inn for lunch out on their little deck overlooking spectacular views, then cutting inland and over to the other side of the island where the water was calmer. We asked the driver to find us a hotel that would allow us to use their beach and facilities. We spent a few hours swimming and lounging before heading back to the ship.
If you do Harrison's caves.. be aware that if it has rained, the caves will be closed.. something that most taxi drivers will not tell you
St. Lucia. http://www.fodors.com/world/caribbean/st-lucia/
We have done the catamaran tour out to the grand pitons, and had a wonderful time. We have also hired a car and taken a tour of the island. Going to Marigot bay, seeing a batik factory, etc. We enjoyed this island a lot.
We also did the "volcano tour" one time, and found that once we went there, out tour fee did not include going up to the volcano. it would have cost about $10 each more. So as we were looking at some smoke coming out of the side of the earth in the distance.. we asked if that was the volcano. It was.. so we decided to forgo the pleasure and walk around the small community outside of the gates.
We could see the van we had been in, and see the people. Frankly it did not look worth the extra. But we have seen volcanoes before.. If you have not seen one, then it may interest you, but it is not a volcano like you think of, .. impressive and with a peak.
We would skip that tour .
whenever we go to St. Thomas we head over on the ferry to St. John.
It is beautiful, with tons of lovely beaches.
We usually go to Trunk Bay, you will pay a small fee to get in, but they have showers and a place that you can buy food.
and St Martin.. http://www.st-maarten.com/
We have gone to Orient beach, it was OK, but there are other more beautiful beaches to pick from.
You can go to the back street.. it runs behind the main shopping street and catch a Jitney (van bus) over to Marigot bay,. It used to cost $4 each, and ran every 30 min.It is very picturesque over there, with nice outside cafes to eat at while you enjoy the view.
You can go to Maho Bay and watch the planes roar over your head only a few feet from the beach.