St. Maartens weekend vs cruise to Half Moon Cay?

Never been to HMC, but I have been to St. Maartens and St. Thomas and loved it enough to want to fly to St. Maartens for a weekend. Half Moon Cay is at the top of my list to cruise to next but I need opinions from cruisers who have been to both, because right now I can only afford either a cruise (to HMC) or a weekend in St. Maartens, but not both, and I need to decide which one to take my 20 year old daughter to this summer, who has never done a cruise nor flown to the caribbean.

Great Bay in St. Maartens seems to have the same emerald green water and soft sand (best jetski experience in my life!!!) as what I see on youtube at HMC, though I could be wrong here. I am also concerned about the fact that cruises sometimes skip HMC due to weather or water conditions, and I would hate to miss this golden opportunity for her to see this place because of that fact.

I am leaning towards flying down to St. Maartens for the weekend, maybe going in Mid-June. Is it way too hot down there for this timing?

Thanks in advance.

Tags: Caribbean Half Moon Cay

10 Answers

If I had the choice, I'd spend the weekend in St. Maarten. But then I have had the opportunity to cruise and spend a port day in St Maarten. Have you asked your daughter? If I had never been on a cruise, I would take that, no matter where it was headed. I have not been in Caribbean in the Summer as we prefer to cruise in during the Colorado Winters. have fun no matter which you choose.

Hi lboiv001! I’m sure your daughter will love the trip regardless of the destination, but I think we need a little more detail about the cruise option to give an informed opinion. It’ll probably have more ports than just Half Moon Cay – what’s the itinerary? What ship are you looking at cruising on? Would the cruise be mid-June as well?

Either would be great, but we loved St Maarten - Orient Beach so much, we'd love to go back for a few days.

Likely Nassau and/or Freeport would be the other stops.

I should probably also mention that I snore terribly, and several nights in a cabin with me would driver her nuts, but I think the experience of the cruise - if I go that route - would more than compensate, hopefully.

We cruised in March and stopped at San Juan, St Maarten, St Kitts and Grand Turk. That was a Carnival cruise on the Sunshine.

Keep in mind that June 1 to November 30 is storm season in the Caribbean so a port may be missed and if on land you may be shut in to your hotel room.

Hotel room or ship cabin, if sharing she will get the snoring either way. The ship would be safer if she had to get out of the cabin for a bit at night on her own.

I would go or the cruise for the ease of meal and entertainment. who knows she may turn into your cruise buddy.

How did St Kitts and Grand Turk compare to St. Thomas? (St. Thomas comes in a very close second, since that was the intinerary port stop prior to St. Maartens).

We haven't been to St. Thomas (but hope to someday), but we loved St Kitts and Grand Turk. The beach at Gr Turk is right at the end of the pier, which is great. On St Kitts, we took a tour to the beach. The driver didn't tell us much at all which was pretty disappointing, but the beach we went to was beautiful and we looked out to see the island of Nevis. Our friends took re of an eco tour and they learned a lot about the vegetation, stopped a couple of times to see the different plants, and then they had a short time at a different beach that they enjoyed too.

Good reply. I suppose my thinking is that she can have her own room in a hotel or escape to the porch if the noise became unbearable, but I do plan on taking her on a cruise either way, I'm just afraid of risking not making it into HMC because of weather, and may opt for a short cruise to Nassau just to give her a taste.

I travel with a friend that snores as bad as I do. I suggest Breath Right strips and ear plugs.


* is not a booking agent or travel agency, and does not charge any service fees to users of our site. Our partners (travel agencies and cruise lines) provide prices, which we list for our users' convenience. does not guarantee any specific rates or prices. While prices are updated daily, please check with the booking site for the exact amount. is not responsible for content on external web sites.

Back to Top