Stingray City

April 3, 2007

Stingray City is a sandbar that’s several miles off shore that you get to by boat. While the area is rather shallow (waist deep water) where you meet the stingrays, the boats have to anchor in slightly deeper water. When you get off the boat… the water will almost certainly be over your head.

If you can’t swim… I’m not sure if a life jacket would be the solution. Obviously it would keep you at the surface, but you would still need to get to the sandbar (a short distance away). Some ability to get around in the water would be necessary.

Here’s a question to consider. Would you consider taking several swimming lessons at a local YMCA or other place before you go? That’s exactly what our friend Rita did before we went with her to Bermuda last summer. She wanted to snorkel and decided to get some practice before she went. A few lessons and she was comfortable in the water. You won’t need to be a great swimmer… just be comfortable, and be able to move around in water over your head.

There are a number of excursion operators with excellent reputations. Two that get great reviews are Captain’s Marvin and Crosby. Others here will have more details on them, as well as other operators.

I think Stingray City is one of the most fantastic experiences you can do on a cruise. I just think you might have a better experience with a little swimming proficiency. If you learn to swim… maybe next time we can get you to go snorkeling at Trunk Bay in St. John. That’s also one of my all time favorites.

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Stingray Injuries

April 3, 2007

As kids, we were always told to shuffle our feet when we waded to find bay scallops cuz this would scare the stingrays away. Every now and then somebody would get hit by one but it was rare. My bro in law got hit on the ankle one day and although it left a nasty gash the spine didnt stay in. We poured really hot soapy water over it and them some peroxide and it never got infected although it did leave a good scar. Stingrays never scared me even when we snorlked right over the big ones. It was sharks that scared me but I tried not to think about em. Sometimes we’d be just a couple feet above the big rays, some of them were 6′ across and it never occurred to me that they might do serious injury as one did the Steve Irwin. We always figured that as long as you didnt step on them you were safe.