Although I did not stay in this location, I did drive by the complex and boy was it gorgeous!
I would highly recommend spending a couple days in this paradise!
Cinnamon Bay Campground was by far, the most lovely campground that I have ever stayed in. While as no-frills as most campgrounds are, Cinnamon Bay had some special amenities that made it a unique and charming experience. They have bare sights (for those traveling with their own tents), tent sites and rustic cottages available for different prices. It was by far the least costly accomodation on the island and easily accessible to everything and everywhere, especially if you have/rent a car.
I have never seen a scorpion in the wild before...
The stone showers made for one of the best showering experiences of my life...once you learn how to rig them.
There a Gecko lizards under foot every step that you take.
We saw an Iguana the size of a dog.
There was an ant mound behind our tent that looked like it was straight out of National Geographic magazine.
The cottages have electricity and built in fans which you will appreciate.
I did not select "camp Ground" for this because you don't pitch a tent, haul an RV trailer or "any of the like" to Maho Bay Camps. It is what is called an "Eco' Resort". If you don't know what that means, (which I didn't either when I first heard about it) "read up" on it on the WEB page given below.
Outstanding characteristics: It is in the Caribbean at a price families can afford!
Check the WEB page given below but I think you will find the taxi fare from downtown NYC to JFK will be more than the "day rate" here!
I can't say enough good things about the In Harmony Retreat. Greg, the owner, made us feel so welcome and was so helpful, long before we arrived. He answered any questions we had about beaches, shopping, exploring, etc.
The In Harmony Retreat is a couple's cottage that sits high up overlooking Coral Bay. We loved being away from the crowds of people that you find in Cruz Bay. However, we were still close enough to go whenever we needed to.
This cottage has a full kitchen with very modern appliances. There is a bedroom, living area, and bathroom. The bedroom is the only room that has air conditioning, but there are ceiling fans throughout the cottage. Step out of one set of sliding glass doors, and you are on the deck with lounge chairs and a stunning view of Coral Bay. Step out of the other doors, and you are on the patio with the pool/jacuzzi. I'm telling you - this place has it all!
The owner - Greg was such an excellent host. He met us at the cottage when we arrived and made sure we had everything we needed.
The pool/jacuzzi - Although it is small, you can't beat the views you have while swimming/relaxing. There are also powerful jets that can soothe sore muscles.
We didn't stay at the Caneel Bay Resort, but we considered staying here when we were planning our trip. The cheapest room was about $450 USD/night. When we walked around the resort, it was lovely. However, I can't give an honest opinion about whether or not it is worth that much money.
There are several restaurants here, and I know that an all-inclusive meal plan is an option. There are also many things to do: kayaking, hiking, exploring the ruins, croquet, tennis, swimming, and more.
Another perk of this resort is 7 private beaches. Guests are allowed to visit Caneel Bay, but only hotel guests are permitted to visit the other beaches of the resort.
7 private beaches!!
Where to begin about Maho Bay? Maho is a stunning complex of ecotents connected via elevated wooden walkways. Maho bills itself as an eco-resort with the whole complex designed to exist in harmony with the delicate ecosystem of the Virgin Islands.
The tent-cottages are made of translucent fabric on wood frames with screened windows and open air terraces. Each has a separate sleeping area with comfortable twin beds. An extra mattress is behind the sleeping-couch in the living area. Bed linens, blankets, towels, cooking and eating utensils are all provided, including propane stove and ice cooler. Every tent-cottage has its own private deck, electric outlets, lights and fans. Barbecue areas and fresh water are available along the walkways.
Remember that you are in nature and if that sounds like a drawback then stop reading, but you will encounter your fair share of bugs so bring the bugspray and also make note that the small harmless lizards will likely make an appearance inside your tent.
A Few Miscellaneous Tips
1. The Maho Bay complex is easy to get lost in, so use the map to learn the way from your cabin to key places like the dining pavilion, nearest bathroom, and registration desk.
2. Be sure to bring a flashlight. It gets very dark here, and the walkways aren’t lit, so you’ll need it to get around in the evening.
3. Every cabin location has its advantages and drawbacks: view; amount of privacy; number of stairways you have to climb to reach it; proximity to the bathrooms, the dining pavilion, the beach, and the road. If any of these is particularly important to you, be sure to mention it when you make your reservations or at check-in and see if they can accommodate you.
4. There’s a free “help-yourself” center across from the registration desk. This is where departing guests can leave anything they don’t want to take back with them, and incoming guests can help themselves. There’s always plenty of pulp fiction, usually some sunscreen, and a varying selection of food items.
5. If you don’t have a rental car, memorize the schedule for the shuttle, which runs several times a day between Maho and Cruz Bay and will drop you off or pick you up anywhere along the route. You’ll find the schedule printed on the back of the camp map they give you at check-in. There are also several places you can realistically walk to from Maho, including Cinnamon Bay, Annaberg Plantation, and Leinster Bay.
6. Have a fabulous time! There’s no other place in the world like Maho!
We had the time of our lives loved the campgrounds and they are very well equiped they have everything you need.
They have cottages as well and a mini market but the best thing was the beach they have one of the best beaches!! The front desk people were very rude but I guess it's part of their culture!!
The overwhelming choice for accommodations on StJ are rental villas. These are privately owned houses that are available for rentals. Villas offer the widest variety, the best privacy, and the closest to feeling at home on your island vacation. Most are single family type houses. Some are multiple buildings on a property with the owners occupying a building on the property. Some are apartment style rentals.
Many villas are owner managed. You will deal directly with the owner.
You can find a great selection through a villa management company such as:
I have used both of these firms and was very pleased with the service of both. When using a management firm you should ask a few basic questions about the firm;
-Are they located on StJ? If you should have trouble with the rental and they are not on island you may have troubles getting issues resolved.
-Is the villa you are interested in handled directly by this firm or do they just pick up a commision for the rental? Try to find a villa that is managed directly by the firm you choose or if you choose a villa, find the management firm who is the primary manager and has an on island presence.
Whoever you rent the villa from you can expect that they will greet you at the ferry and lead you to your villa. Some offer other services such as arranged car rentals and other services such as excursions, grocery provisioning, shipped package hold or in villa massages.
The overwhelming choice of accomodations on St. John are private rental houses. Most are managed by a villa management company. Some are available directly by the owners. Second Wind is managed by Caribbean Villas and located in the Reef Bay area. It afforded privacy, air conditioned bedrooms, seperate but equal sleeping quarters for couples sharing the villa. It has 3 bedrooms, 3 baths, pool & hot tub. Short walk to Parrot Beach/Reef Bay trail which is a short hike to Reef Bay Beach. Second Wind is about a 15 minute drive from Cruz Bay and 25 minutes to North Shore National Park Beaches. It boasts a pool and hot tub, fully stocked kitchen, washer/dryer, BBQ grill, reading, games, music, sound system, TV, outdoor showers (wonderful touch) and a breathtaking southeastern view. It is about 5 miles (15 min) from Cruz Bay center and about 25 minutes from NPS north shore beaches. A very short walk downhill to Genti Bay beach and the trail to Reef Bay. We would (will) return in a heartbeat.
The whole house to yourself. Beautiful view. Private (no need to get your suit wet in the hot tub) indoors and out except for small parts of the deck visible to neighbor uphill.
I have stayed here several times, the last being my honeymoon (my wife and I were married on Cinnamon Bay Beach). The Inn is a 5 minute walk from the ferry dock in Cruz Bay, so is very close to the taxi stand, shopping and restaurants.
The Inn does not have all that the big, expensive resorts have to offer, but it is nice, and quiet. They have an "honor bar" available.
Charming, quiet, you have the feeling of being left alone, yet friendly staff is available to serve you when you need it.
The pool is quite small, more of an over-sized hot tub kind of thing but who needs this when there are so many beaches nearby.
As is typical in the Caribbean, the room rates vary substantially season to season. Note high season/low season do not necessarily correspond to winter/summer. See website for details.
There are few hotels or resorts on StJ. The two large ones are Caneel Bay and The Westin St. John. Others in the Cruz Bay area are St John Inn, The Lindquist, Tamarind Inn and Hillcrest Inn.
Caneel, Westin and Lindquist are quite pricey. I understand that you recieve numerous ammenities for the price. St John Inn and Tamarind Inn are right in Cruz Bay and the costs are comparable to what you might find if you were to rent a villa on the island.
I have not stayed in any of these places. I only list these as options other than the rental villas or campgrounds on the island.
I will preface this by stating that I have not used any of these facilities. My knowledge is gained from those who have used some of these locations.
There are numerous choices for camping on St John.
-Cinnamon Bay Camps
-Maho Bay campground and ecotents
-Botanical Villas and camping
You can select a bare site up to a fully equipped campsite at some of the above locations. Camping puts you virtually at waters edge. You might consider a lower end villa if you are looking at a low cost accomodation. You will find that a camp site can end up close to the same price as a villa in some seasons.
Across the bay, we could see the tents of the Maho Bay Campgrounds.scattered about the foilage. This is among the world's first eco-resorts, Maho Bay opened in 1976 on the St. John. The tents and walkways were buit so as not to harm the natural landscape.
We didn't stay here but I would love to do that if we ever get back to the island.
Not an ordinary hotel....
Solar power-solar heated water-
tent/cabin like accommodations
20 minute HIKE to beach
lots of exercise
great beach and hiking
I have not stayed in any of the following so I cannot give firsthand reviews. I do have freinds who have stayed at Cinnamon Bay and Maho Camp and they have loved it.
St. John Inn is in Cruz Bay and not waterfront. Hummingbird villas is in Frank Bay. Vie's, Maho, Concordia and Cinnamon are all waterfront. The only drawback about waterfront can be the mosquitos and no-seeums at night and during the summer months it can be hot and humid at water level. As you rise above sea level the cool breeze increases.
Vie's Beach Camping and Vie's Snack Shack, call 340-693-5033 for camping reservations - only $35.00 per night to stay on a secluded beach property.
Cinnamon Bay $30/night baresite $64/night with tent, $77/night cottage
Maho camps $80/night Maho camp tent, $105/night Concordia eco-tent
St. John Inn $105/night
Botanical Villas $12.65/night baresite, $57.50/night cottage
Hummingbird Villas $140/night apartment
The overwhelming choice of accomodation in St. John is the private villa. To find a waterfront accomodation you will end up paying about $400/night in the off season UNLESS you consider camping or bare cottages.
Sort by: Most recent | Most helpful