Charlotte Amalie the capital city of the U.S. Virgin Islands is located on Saint Thomas Island. It is a major port of call for Caribbean cruise passengers, offering everything from duty-free shops to white sand beaches and a coral marine park. Apart from the shopping and beaches, Charlotte Amalie is also a good place for sightseeing. The island has plenty of landmarks and historic attractions like the 99 Steps and the St. Thomas Synagogue. Whether you arrive here by plane at the Cyril E. King Airport or by cruise ship at the dock by the Havensight Shopping Mall, you will need to get a car for hire in Charlotte Amalie if you want to move around on your own.
There are two agencies offering visitors a car rental in Charlotte Amalie. Both have offices and counters at the Cyril E. King Airport as well as in the city itself. You can specify pick-ups and drop-offs at the airport, dock, or any hotel or resort on the island at your convenience. It is not that hard to find which one of the two agencies is currently offering a good deal. Simply compare both online, pick a deal you like, and book your vehicle right now.
The reason most visitors come to the Caribbean is to laze on the white sand beaches and soak in the sun. The beaches on St. Thomas are right up there with the best in the Caribbean islands. You will find it hard to give up an exploration of a string of magnificent beaches, most of which are within 2-5 miles of Charlotte Amalie. Three miles north is Magens Bay, which is ideal for families with its calm and clear turquoise waters. Also in the north, near the Coral World Ocean Park, are Coki Point Beach and Grand Beach. Towards the east coast, you have Secret Harbor, Sapphire Beach, and Lindquist Beach. The west coast has Brewers Bay and Lindbergh Beach, while Morning Star and Limetree Beach are to the south.
Apart from the beaches and exotic food and culture, there is another good reason why Charlotte Amalie is so popular among cruise passengers. The shops offer duty-free goods, and visitors can load up on everything from liquor to perfumes, cameras, china and electronics. You can buy items worth a total of $1,600 without having to pay any duty or taxes. The shops are close to where the cruise ships dock at the Havensight Mall and the Crown Bay Center. You can shop for trinkets on Main Street, or head for the Red Hook Shopping Center in the East End.
Cruise passengers are often hurried along by their guides with a set itinerary and rarely have time for a real exploration of the island, let alone Saint Croix, St. John, beautiful cities like Cruz Bay and charming towns like Christiansted. To make the most of what time you have, get a car for rent in Charlotte Amalie and head out on your own to explore St. Thomas. Do not miss the 99 Steps, Blackbeard's Castle, Drake’s Seat and Fort Christian.
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