Puerto Rico OR U.S. Virgin Islands in April???

Old Feb 14th, 2015, 07:12 PM
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Puerto Rico OR U.S. Virgin Islands in April???

Hi - I'll be traveling alone in April to either PR or the USVI and was wondering which would be the best getaway location. I eventually would like to visit both Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands and was thinking since they are not very far away from one another, I could maybe travel to both in one trip if possible. Here are my questions:

Is it possible to do both (PR 2-3 days; VI 3-4 days or vice versa) in 6-7 days and still enjoy my stay in both? (If USVI - I would split time between St. John & St. Thomas).

If it's better to just do one for the week, which is better in terms of interesting things to see/do, people, lodging options, cost and safety for a female traveling a lone? (Personal opinion/experiences is very welcomed here as I realize i'm not providing much details in terms of my interest..)

Will I need to rent a car for either locations or will I be able to get around good with public transport? Will driving in either locations be noticeably different from driving in the states?

**I'm still doing quick research but would like to purchase my tickets by tomorrow to avoid inflated tickets and analysis paralysis**

Thank you!
TiaStevens is offline  
Old Feb 14th, 2015, 09:47 PM
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There's a greater variety of everything, including things to do, in Puerto Rico. And as you admit you haven't given us much to go on, I suggest PR for the entire week. It isn't much time and I wouldn't divide it, giving you very little in each.

If you want to do more than shop and lie on the beach, you'll want a car. Lots of great places to go outside San Juan (rain forest, caves, quiet beaches, Ponce, rum tours, and on & on) that you'll need to drive to. Driving there is not a problem. Taxis in metro San Juan, get a car when you want to go farther afield.
MmePerdu is online now  
Old Feb 15th, 2015, 04:11 AM
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I'll try to give you some answers;

1) Yes, it's possible to visit PR and the USVI's in one trip but there are some logistics to consider. You have to fly between those islands which involves getting to/from airports at both ends plus waiting time at the airports and you'll have to check out of one hotel (usually before 11AM and you can't check in to your new hotel until around 4PM. All that means you'll effectively loose at least 1/2 day and maybe more of your vacation. Also, if while in the USVI's you decide to stay on both STT and STJ you'll also "loose time" getting between islands and hotels. Don't forget to factor in the added cost to travel between islands.

2) No right or wrong answer here - just different options for the reasons mentioned above. Some people would find visiting 3 islands in 6/7 days to be a bit hectic - to paraphrase the title of an old movie, do you want to be saying "If it's Tuesday this must be St. Thomas" or do you want a more relaxing trip. It sounds a bit like you have a touch of the "are the palm trees nicer on the island syndrome". The choice is yours. To answer the "second"part of your question - you'll find plenty of interesting people and things to do on all three islands (more than enough on each island for a week's stay). And, if you use common sense you'll find all three islands are safe for a single traveler. Now, here's some food for thought - If you choose just Puerto Rico you'll find there is so much to see/do that you can't do it all in one week. If you choose St. Thomas, you can easily visit St. John for a day trip - that will give you a taste of 2 islands without the hassle changing hotels.

3) If you stay in San Juan, PR you'll have access to some decent public transportation. If, however, you stay in one of the more outlying areas you'll need transportation, either taxis (which get expensive) or a rental car. If you stay on either St. Thomas or St. John your best transportation option would be a rental car. Driving in PR is the same as driving in the US (i.e. you'll be driving on the "right"). Driving in the USVI's will be "on the left".

Hope this helps.
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Old Feb 15th, 2015, 09:26 AM
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The end of April is carnival time in St Thomas. Lots of activities including an all day food fair, parades, music, etc.
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Old Feb 16th, 2015, 03:19 AM
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I've traveled the world solo

I prefer Virgin Islands to PR, for many reasons-- PR is huge. PR is not as safe as VI. I know Spanish, and find people at Vi to be much nicer and friendlier. At Vi people are much more helpful too.

(don't knock me, I know there's many PR lovers-- I've been many times in last 30 years to both destinations and find this to be the case every time)

VI is small and compact, but you can easily island hop to St. John, Tortola, Jost Van Dyke, Virgin Gorda. These islands are stunning! Actually I would pick Tortola as a base instead. Easier to reach all the others (including going to St. Thomas, which is my least favorite Virgin)

The scenery of VI is amazing at every turn, the water much more beautiful and turquoise.

I would pick one destination for 1 week instead of 2. If 2 major destinations in only 6 days, gives you really 2 full days at each. You won't see anything in just 2 days at either. If you want to travel to multiples, then just cruise-- that's the way to do it, and then decide which you want to go back to for longer.

There's plenty to do at both, but different feels to each destination.

Plus if you split a week, that's really costly for just a tease. PR is large enough that for example, it's hours from San Juan to rain Forrest, so you're not giving enough time to see anything!

If yu pick PR, stay there a week. Try to day trip to Culebra and Viesques (which are like VIs were 30 years ago).

So stick to 1 grouping! Especially if only 1 week, if splitting 2 destinations like that in 6 days, you won't see anything at either.
blamona is offline  
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