Best USVI diving

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Regulatrix

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St. Croix is my pick. Awesome diving at the pier and Cane Bay, though they are on opposite sides of the island. If you schedule your trip around the new moon cycle, kayaking in the bioluminescent bay is a must!

Now is the time to dive in USVI. Recent approval by the St. Thomas and St. Croix governments will allow dredging the reefs for mega piers for the mega ships of Royal Caribbean:mad: No timeline has been set but the wheels are in motion.
Just trying to understand . . . Are there new piers scheduled to be built on St. Croix or St. John? "Dredging the reefs" does not sound good from a reef health standpoint. Does anyone know more specifics?
 

TTPaws

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Just trying to understand . . . Are there new piers scheduled to be built on St. Croix or St. John? "Dredging the reefs" does not sound good from a reef health standpoint. Does anyone know more specifics?
It sound like they are going to replace the old section of the pier that was destroyed a few hurricanes ago. If they are doing what I think it's mostly sand, debris and rip-rap so I don't think it will ruin much and will provide more spots for fish to hang out around.
 

mwall04

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Just trying to understand . . . Are there new piers scheduled to be built on St. Croix or St. John? "Dredging the reefs" does not sound good from a reef health standpoint. Does anyone know more specifics?
For St. Croix specifically, I think the plans are to expand upon the existing pier versus building new ones. So far, this one article in our local online new source is the only info released so far. It was part of a big announcement last month between Royal Caribbean and our local government. Not a lot of specifics other than deep dredging to accommodate larger vessels. No mention of increasing the length of the pier here. Hopefully it doesn't impact the pier which is an amazing dive for a site so easy to dive. The area around the existing pier is mostly sand and man-made debris, so shouldn't directly impact the surrounding reef system, although debris during any dredging operation could cause problems.


"On St. Croix, Royal Caribbean will work with the government to expand and develop visitor experiences to bolster the island's struggling cruise tourism sector. There will also be enhancements at the Frederiksted Pier to facilitate Royal Caribbean's larger vessels, said Jayne Halcomb, director of development at Royal Caribbean. She said visitor volume can be increased without these developments, so a more prudent approach would be to first focus on the enhancements of what's already in place. "That is already an opportunity for us," she said. Mr. Dowe said enhancements to the Frederiksted Pier will include deep dredging."
 

TTPaws

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Just trying to understand . . . Are there new piers scheduled to be built on St. Croix or St. John? "Dredging the reefs" does not sound good from a reef health standpoint. Does anyone know more specifics?
It sound like they are going to replace the old section of the pier that was destroyed a few hurricanes ago. If they are doing what I think it's mostly sand, debris and rip-rap so I don't think it will ruin much and will provide more spots for fish to hang out around. If they deep dredge to the South, it is a bit empty anyway.
 

drrich2

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"On St. Croix, Royal Caribbean will work with the government to expand and develop visitor experiences to bolster the island's struggling cruise tourism sector. There will also be enhancements at the Frederiksted Pier to facilitate Royal Caribbean's larger vessels,
If I intuit correctly from this, it means a lot more cruise tourism for St. Croix.

1.) 'Develop visitor experiences' sounds like up the number of paid excursions.

2.) 'Facilitation Royal Caribbean's larger vessels' might potentially mean making the pier offer access to Oasis-class ship. The pier already can handle Voyager-class (like Adventure of the Seas, which I was on when I first visited). These ships are enormous and carry large numbers of people, so disgorging the bulk of those will have an impact.

It's my understanding that historically St. Croix has been fairly light on cruise ship tourism (good news if you want to dive Frederiksted Pier, since you can't when a ship is docked there); if they get Oasis-compatible, that may change.

If you want a look at Oasis-class vessels, plug in any of these words with 'of the Seas' - Oasis, Allure, Harmony, Symphony.
 

Regulatrix

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It sound like they are going to replace the old section of the pier that was destroyed a few hurricanes ago. If they are doing what I think it's mostly sand, debris and rip-rap so I don't think it will ruin much and will provide more spots for fish to hang out around. If they deep dredge to the South, it is a bit empty anyway.
Gotcha--thanks!
 

Regulatrix

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For St. Croix specifically, I think the plans are to expand upon the existing pier versus building new ones. So far, this one article in our local online new source is the only info released so far. It was part of a big announcement last month between Royal Caribbean and our local government. Not a lot of specifics other than deep dredging to accommodate larger vessels. No mention of increasing the length of the pier here. Hopefully it doesn't impact the pier which is an amazing dive for a site so easy to dive. The area around the existing pier is mostly sand and man-made debris, so shouldn't directly impact the surrounding reef system, although debris during any dredging operation could cause problems.


"On St. Croix, Royal Caribbean will work with the government to expand and develop visitor experiences to bolster the island's struggling cruise tourism sector. There will also be enhancements at the Frederiksted Pier to facilitate Royal Caribbean's larger vessels, said Jayne Halcomb, director of development at Royal Caribbean. She said visitor volume can be increased without these developments, so a more prudent approach would be to first focus on the enhancements of what's already in place. "That is already an opportunity for us," she said. Mr. Dowe said enhancements to the Frederiksted Pier will include deep dredging."
Thank you!
 

Painter

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I have only gone on dives out of St. John. I got certified there and I liked that instead of doing pool sessions we went to a regular dive site. I've been there diving three times.
All of the dive sites that we went to were between St. John and St. Thomas, so I would guess that a lot of the St. Thomas dive ops go to many of the same sites. A couple, like Lind Point and Stevens Cay are pretty close to St. John, but we went to Cow and Calf, and Little St. James which are closer to St. Thomas.
Some days when we went out, the conditions were "sporty," but the captain could always find a sheltered spot to dive, which was very nice.
I would go again.
 
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