Island Hopping Part 4 - St. Thomas
...The final leg of our Caribbean adventure was St. Thomas. Unfortunately, while close to Vieques, there is no quick way to get from one island to the other without chartering a private plane or boat. So we hopped back on a tiny plane to San Juan, went through an expedited security check and then onto a regular jetBlue flight to St. Thomas. From the airport at Charlotte Amelie, we took a group taxi to the quieter East End of the island. The whole trip from Vieques to our hotel in East End took about 4 hours and we've be obsessed with finding a quicker way to get here in the future.
The Mann chose Point Pleasant Resort, an interesting blend of timeshare condos and hotel... I think that owners rent out their units through the property's management company. The great news is that we were never approached with a sales pitch and the property is clean and well cared for since many of the owners stay for much of the snowbird season. We also has spectacular views of sunrise and the surrounding islands. And we were greeted with genuine smiles and rum punches at check it, sooooooo Point Pleasant for the win!
Point Pleasant has a small restaurant on the beach appropriately called Shoreline Bar and Grill. We went there for dinner and breakfast. All the meals were great and the drinks were creative and refreshing. We especially loved a pineapple rum and muddled lime concoction one of the bartenders came up with as an alternative to the more sugary cocktails on the menu. The staff at the restaurant also host a tarpon feeding everyday and these huge fish just swim around right by your feet waiting for table scraps. The resort also offers some free water sports like kayaking, paddle boarding and snorkeling equipment. We tried paddle boarding for the first time with some success but cut the experience short when a rogue wave took Will out (along with his Raybans). We returned the boards, grabbed a snorkel mask and miraculously found the glasses despite the strong current. We spent the rest of that afternoon checking out the local beaches. The resort has two beaches, one that is secluded and picturesque but rocky and small and another that is shared with the neighboring Margaritaville resort and is bigger and calmer but not as pretty. Coki Beach is a short walk away (or you can take a shuttle from the hotel lounge) and has fine white sand, beach shacks offering snacks, drinks and activities and lounge chairs for rent.
Another fun feature at the resort is their nature trail, which is a set of pathways that go from the shoreline to the lobby and buildings that are further up the hill. St. Thomas is all hills and the resort is positioned in three or four levels with the restaurant, beaches and pool at the lowest level, one set of buildings above that, another set, including the lobby, above that and one final level nearer the peak. You can get shuttled around the property in a van or climb the nature trail and work off all that delicious vacation dining. We chose to climb and found cute overlooks and lots of lizards along the paths.
While the resort had a lot of things to keep us entertained, and we had a very comfortable room and veranda... it wasn't really our vibe and the Mann had lots of plans that kept us off property for most of our stay.
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