Cruise Review | 8 Day Carnival Caribbean Island Tour (Grand Turk, San Juan, St.Kitts and St.Maarten) Wednesday 05 October, 2016

The Carnival Splendor 8-day trip was amazing! Four islands sailing through Grand Turk, San Juan (PR), St. Kitts and St.Maarten. It was nothing but great weather, beaches and fun. I loved learning more about each location, the culture and makes me want to take separate trips to each island again in the near future. Check out some of my photos of the island destinations we stopped on. 8-day-carnival-cruise-caribbean-island-tour-travel-guide



Our first stop was Grand Turk, which is located in the Turks and Caicos island. Did you know that Carnival owned Grand Turk island? I didn’t know that until last year..a cool tidbit! I was here last year and I was shocked it was the first stop – because when I went on Carnival Sunshine last year it was the last stop. Well since I was already prepared on what was in store, I told Nina we don’t even have to do much I know exactly where we were headed. MARGARITAVILLE!!!


Its always a party at Margaritaville in Grand Turk. The pool is the hot spot and all the music, dance contest and more!

Grand Turk is definitely the American tourist party island. I see why Carnival owns it now. There is a beach right in front of Margaritaville that everyone can hang out at without having to go on a tour, but Nina and I stayed here the whole time. There really was no need to go anywhere else – this was literally the party! I believe we got here on a Monday too. Being here would make you love Mondays instead of loathe it. Good times, vibes and the music was fun and so many dance contests. You have no choice but to come here and have a wonderful time!


Our new cruise friends at Margaritaville



Second stop was in San Juan, PR. The cool thing about this stop was I believe this was the first one we were here until 8pm at night. If you know anything about most cruises you port early and maybe return back to the boat around 4 or 5pm.  It was nice to know we had a night time setting in San Juan. I have never been so excited for my first time going!



The Beach we stopped at on the San Juan Tour.

We did do a San Juan Tour, but I will give a disclaimer. We did like an 2 hour tour for only $10 with the local tour companies – but there was a little blip in the situation. We did get a cute little preview of San Juan for 45 mins but we only got a 20 min tour of the beach. Nina and I at the time didn’t mind because we just wanted to be near a San Juan beach for a moment. Most beaches were not near the port where the cruises dock so you had to drive. The tour took us to this cute little beach…but…


As I stated before Nina and I only had literally 20 mins at this particular beach. Here is where the blip happened. We were 2 mins late, walking back towards the tour bus. Guess what? The tour bus left us. Yup. By two minutes. We were a little pissed. Understand when you do these local tours, please know you have to understand everything is a hustle. The good thing is we didnt pay him beforehand, and honestly – the other people on the bus could of let the driver know it was two females missing (clearly they didn’t).

So what did we do? Thankfully because we were in an area where lots of local tour buses scout for cruisers to do the tour, there was another bus tour willing to take us back and ride with his group. Very nice and accommodating and he knew the other driver. We just ended up paying him instead of the original driver. This is a disclaimer to say be careful with local tour guides that let you off and come back to a certain location. Make sure you get the tour guide number, the tour guide company number and info, and make sure you communicate with them, get them to remember your name so they don’t forget to leave you. This was definitely a lesson to learned. I also earned my lesson on getting on tours with only a 20 min tour of the beach. Not ever enough time.



Third location was my favorite in St.Kitts. Prior to the cruise I never even considered traveling to St.Kitts on my own. So happy I got an opportunity to explore this wonderful island. Another special perk about this particular Carnival cruise on Splendor is that this was our longest day on land. From 10am-8pm! So happy we got so many hours on the best island!


Monkey See. Money Do (Not Rip My Lips Off) lol so cute in its little diaper! His name was Peter!

St. Kitts drops you off like many of the cruise locations in the tourist area of the place and I met Peter here. Peter was a local man’s baby monkey. It was so cute with its little diaper…and it actually kissed me! Now I see why Michael adopted bubbles. Monkeys are so cute!


Nina and I made friends with our tour guide. He did an amazing job taking us around St.Kitts and showing us his beautiful town

Now remember the local tour I told you about in San Juan. The one in St.Kitt made up for it. This  was a local tour company who was very kind and affordable who only charged I believe $14 for 3 hours of a tour. I believe 45 mins around the town and history and then 2 hours at the beach. We told him our experience in San Juan, he was very kind and said he promised not to leave us plus we had wristbands with the company info on it. Another good tidbit note when doing a local excursion.


Views of St.Kitt beaches from the tour bus



So Nina and I had 2 hour at Cockleshell Beach. I have been to a lot of beaches but this one was the clearest I have seen. This was definitely the clearest water I have seen at it was so peaceful. It wasn’t overcrowded and I am just so happy our guide gave us some time here and made us feel like this was paradise. After coming here and getting a little history of the city, this is the one I am definitely going to take a travel trip to in the near future. Learning from a local, St.Kitts is also very close to my mother’s native island of Montserrat – in which I can take a two hour ferry to visit on my next trip. I will be doing that as I have never been to Montserrat.



Last land island was at St.Maarten. St.Maarten was a fun little island. Another island I wouldn’t of thought to visit prior to my Carnival Cruise experience.


Views of St.Marteen going into the town


When you go into the town please visit Lemon Mojito! The best mojito I ever had and its fresh!


Riding in the water taxi to get to Great Bay Beach


The girls and I enjoying the water taxi to Great Bay Beach


Last Dip in the Beach at the final land spot!


My colorful dressed match the St.Marteen local restaurant

I enjoyed each stop, and each island had their own feel. I definitely would recommend traveling on an 8-day Carnival cruise to these locations because you see so many places within a week. I know some people are weary of traveling that long on a cruise, but I tell people why not? That is the whole fun of cruising, stopping and exploring places you wouldn’t get a chance to do normally. Maybe even place you wouldn’t even think to consider because it isnt the “norm” travel spot.

I am so happy I picked Carnival Splendor to travel to these places because then I wouldn’t of realized how amazing St.Kitts was (one of my favorite spots). It was my favorite I guess because we had a really amazing tour guide and more time on the beach verses the other location. St. Marteen was also an amazing place. I want to go back just to eat more of the Caribbean cuisine. They had so many local spots to choose from. To be honestly, in all of the spots, I felt like I was home because many of the locals were so friendly to us.

I enjoy this experience and I hope it inspires you to take this trip (or a similar one) with Carnival! Check out my next post on how much fun I actually had on the boat here.

I partnered with Carnival Cruise who hosted my experience on this press trip #CruisingCarnival but all opinions are my own.

Have You Been To Any Of These Islands?

About the Blogger - Kiwi the Beauty

Kiwi is the free spirited blogger and content creator of As a digital influencer, she produces creative inspiration around beauty, lifestyle, media and travel leisure. Her life mantra is to make manifesting fun! When she’s not blogging, she is eating trendy hipster food, carrying crystals, making it rain at her local farmer's market and binge brunching. Follow her on her blog and social media at + @kiwithebeauty

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