Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Ten Days Aborted

I'm horribly bored with this 10 day blogging series!  It ends today.  Days 8, 9 and 10 are hereby forfeited.  I just can't stand to blab on and on about random things that I (and you) could care less about.  No one is even reading this anymore.  I'm sorry!   I'm officially giving up.  (You can thank me later.)


Instead, let's talk about something way more fun.

The Caribbean! 

Who's been?  Where did you go?  Where did you stay?  What did you do there?  

I'm asking because we're thinking about spending our Christmas holiday in the Caribbean!  I know, amazing, right?  Last year we spent Christmas on the beach in Belize and raved about it.  This year Ryan's parents want to spend the holidays somewhere warm and sunny and have invited us along!  Hell yeah!  I'm still not sure if we're going to be able to swing it though - we need to find a house/condo with at least 2 bedrooms, close to a beach, that's available 12/23 - 1/2, that's not priced out in orbit.   So, we have a lot of research to do, not much time to do it, and about 80 islands to pick from.  Help! 

I've never been to the Caribbean, so I don't know anything about the islands.  Which ones are nice?  Which ones are boring?  Which ones have the best snorkeling?  Which ones have the best food?  Which one have the best beaches?  Which ones are the safest?  

I'm clueless!  Have you ever been to the Caribbean?  Please tell me about your experience!  Where would you recommend that we look?  I'd like to narrow our search down to 3-5 islands.  Any advice is appreciated!   
Thanks!

21 comments:

  1. Too fun!! I can't wait to see where yall end up, either way, I know you will have a blast!

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  2. Prepare for a novel (or, just email me): I spent my youth in the Caribbean and I cannot rave about it enough. We vacationed there all the time but I haven't been since my mom died. My moms BFF has a house there, so, that's where we stayed. It's the Limin House on Tortola in the British Virgin Islands and it is hands down, my favorite place EVER. There is also the Long Bay Beach Resort which is fabulous, also on Tortola.

    We've also stayed at Gallows Point on St. John in the USVI and it was one of my favorite places--you could walk everywhere and the rooms were big and open--I think they have villas/condos too, but, I'm not sure.

    Or anything in Cinnamon Bay area--there's even a campground--we did that once--so.much.fun!

    I love St. Thomas too, but, St. John and Tortola are smaller islands and less touristy, I think. You've got to got to Virgin Gorda and go to The Baths. Eat at the Top of The Baths resturant--and get tacky tee shirts. Go to any of the Pusser's resturants (owned by Richard Branson) and order the mud pie. To die for!!!

    If you go to Tortola, take a day charter on the Kuralu--it's a catamaran and the captain, Robin, is the nicest guy you'll ever meet. Snorkle at The Indians and spend a day lounging at Cane Garden Bay.

    Can you tell I love the islands? Seriously, I can get you the number and info for Limin House if you want--it's close to the beach, has it's own pool, it's amazing.

    I have tons more tips, you know my email address.

    Have so much fun!
    XOXOXO
    PS. I might attempt to hide in your luggage, just a fair warning.

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  3. I've only been on cruises in the Carribbean, stopping thru Cozumel, Progreso, and Grand Caymen Islands. I loved all of it! Grand Caymen and Progreso were both less touristy, which was cool. Have fun!

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  4. We're hoping to get away for Christmas too since our proximity (Florida) is so close... we just have to watch the budget! Please, PLEASE post your findings as I don't have time to research :(

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  5. I find this post to be quite hilarious AND exciting ALL at the same time because I have found it HARDER AND HARDER every day to keep up wit this challenge, hence why it must be a challenge? Iono.....I too am givin'er up though! haha Seeing as though you were the one who INSPIRED me to do it!!!! hahahaha

    A tropical Christmas!!?? WHoooohoooo
    I went to Naples, Florida for Christmas last year....it was fun but not the Caribbean, thank you for rubbing this in :)

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  6. Aren't you glad the 10 days of blogging monkey is off your back?!?! That's the feeling of blog freedom my friend!

    As for the Carribean, I've only ever been to the Bahamas. I've only stayed at the Atlantis, which I love, but I wouldn't recommend going anywhere else in the Bahamas. Everytime I've left the Atlantis property I've wanted to return immediately. I've heard great things about Turks & Caicos though.

    Also, I think you should get a connecting flight through Orlando. Clearly, this is an A+ idea. :)

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  7. I've been to the VIrgin Islands, Jamaica, Cozumel, and Grand Cayman. My favorite is probably the USVI out of all those. Beautiful beaches, lovely weather, nice people. Love it. Although, Grand Cayman is really lovely as well, and you can hold a stingray! Haha.

    I've been to St Thomas, Virgin Gorda, and St John. LOVED St. Thomas. Both St. Tom and St. John have great snorkeling... some of the best snorkeling beaches in the world are off of those two islands. St. Thomas is less touristy than St. John I think (although I see someone above me commented the opposite, so its your call!), and it has cute little markets etc. where you can really get a feel for the culture as well as the beauty of the island.

    Virgin Gorda has some gorgeous rocky beaches with giant boulders that are sooo cool (Google image search it, you'll see!). I wouldn't stay on Virgin Gorda, but definitely take a trip over there for a day.

    You can't go wrong with the Caribbean. Good choice. :)

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  8. I'm abandoning it, too! I sat down to do it last night and thought...who cares??? I don't even care! Maybe I'll do the last one if I feel like it, maybe not.

    A Caribbean vacation sounds amazing, but I'm no help as far as where to go. I'll be waiting to live vicariously through you when you blog about it, though!!

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  9. Hey! We'll be in the British Virgin Islands over Christmas through New Years! Would love to see ya down there! My fam and I all sail, so we charter a sailboat down there and sail around the islands - it is always my favorite trip :) Email me if you want to do something like that and I'll send you some info!

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  10. I've been a lot of places in the Caribbean... BVI is the best. Tortola rocks. Best snorkeling is on Norman Island (which only has goats on it) as it was the inspiration for Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island. I sailed around to almost every island in the BVI (incl. Cooper & Sandy Spit). I'd stay on Tortola and visit Virgin Gorda for the awesome boulder rock 'beaches'. Jamaica is fun- we stayed at a guy's treehouse who split his time between Chicago and Jamaica and then drove us everywhere and had personal chefs. Yes, I did say treehouse. We saw more of native Jamaica than tourist Jamaica. St. Kitts and Nevis are nice but really quiet. There are rainforests all over Nevis which is fun to go on a tour in there. Puerto Rico, I was bored. Hmmmmm... where else? My vote is for Tortola!! Have fun! Sounds great. Check out vrbo.com too for condos. Vacation rentals by owners, great site!

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  11. I've been all over the Caribbean on cruises and I also loved Belize when I went there last year for a week. I went on a Silversea cruise with my mom two years ago and my two favorite stops were Dominica and Grenada, but for different reasons.

    Dominica was very quiet and safe and not touristy at all. The people were awesome too. There is a ton of active stuff to do there, including an all-day rigorous hike to a boiling lake, which we unfortunately didn't have time for. I looked into going there and would probably stay at Jungle Bay and do one of their excursion packages. The snorkeling is amazing! There are reefs over volcanic vents, so it looks like champagne bubbles floating to the surface. You can also go whale watching. I wanted to dive there, but there was no availability. The downside to this island is the beaches themselves are not great.

    Here are my pictures:

    http://girlstandstill.blogspot.com/2008/04/photos-part-v-dominica.html

    This is turning into a novel, but also consider Grenada which is gorgeous. One group of islands I'm dying to go to is St. Vincent and the Grenadines. Supposedly amazing diving there!

    Grenanda post:

    http://girlstandstill.blogspot.com/2008/03/photos-part-iii-grenada.html

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  12. Awww, boo - I stole the 10-day thing from you too! LOL I could never do the 30-day thing that's floating around. Too much for me.

    I love Caribbean vacations!! It's not really a vacation unless you're sitting on the beach. Hah! My favorites are Jamaica, St. Thomas and Turks & Caicos although Grand Cayman has the most gorgeous beaches I've ever been on.

    Since we're back from our honeymoon I've been telling everyone they HAVE to go to Aruba. It's not far, relatively cheap (compared to what we're used to in NYC) and there's no need for money conversion.

    We have a kickbutt travel agent but check out this site too: http://www.cheapcaribbean.com/

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  13. We're cruising the Caribbean at that very same time!!! Let us know where you'll be and we'll wave!!! :)

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  14. I have been to St. Lucia for our Honeymoon and it was fantastic! We did the Sandals thing and actually left the resort a whole lot to explore the island. If you end up booking a trip there I am happy to blow up your inbox with what we did and suggestions. Loved it!

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  15. I have no suggestions since I've never been to the Caribbean, but I so wish we were going somewhere for Christmas. Maybe next year. Excited to see where you guys pick!

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  16. I would recommend St. Lucia (my fav), BVI (specifically Tortola since it's more civilized) or Barbados. All are gorgeous, safe, clean, and activity-packed. For snorkeling, you're not going to beat Grand Cayman, but I haven't been there yet (trip planned next month!). I've only ever cruised in the Caribbean (let's face it, it's the cheapest way to go), but I'd love to actual set roots on an island at some point.

    I would not recommend Dominica or Grenada. While Grenada is beautiful, it can be sketchy.

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  17. No, don't give up on it! :)

    And I've never been to the Caribbean but I hope to go next summer for a little vacation. You'll have to keep us posted on where you end up! :)

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  18. How fun! A vacation is the best Christmas present ever!

    Here's my Caribbean two cents...I wouldn't go back to the Bahamas (Atlantis is nice but seems boring after a couple of days). Nassau was really sad to me because there was so much poverty everywhere, super skinny horses pulling carts of tourists, barefoot children trying to sell you things, skinny dogs foraging for food. You get the picture.

    Grand Cayman is beauiful, clean, and seems very safe. I was only there for a day on a cruise but I would love to go back for several days.

    Jamaica was just okay in my opinion. The beaches weren't that pretty and there are some sketchy people there. It's also very sad because there is so much poverty like Nassau.

    Good luck with your planning and I look forward to your Christmas blog about your adventures!

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  19. First of all, totally jealous!! Except you couldn't pay me to spend a Holiday anywhere with my in-laws!!

    Second of all, I've been to Jamaica...is that in the Caribbean? Yes, I sound dumb right now, Geography isn't exactly one of my strong points.

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  20. I'm obsessed with the Caribbean/islands in general. I've been to Jamaica, the Caymans, the Virgin Islands.
    I loved Jamaica! It was amazing. Mind you, my dad's business associate used to have a house there complete with staff, so I really had nothing to complain about. At all.
    There's A LOT to do in the Caymans and Grand Cayman (at least when I went) is really clean and easy to get around. I loved the Virgin Islands as well (St. Thomas!) but I mostly loafed on the beach, snorkeled, etc. The ocean at both of those is amazing!
    My half brother, who's into scuba diving, goes to Bonaire pretty much every year. I am dying to go! From his pictures, it's completely gorgeous. Maybe I should go to the medical school there :)

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  21. Simply put... ST. LUCIA! I was born there... got married there... you will love it... I flew over 100 Americans in for my wedding and everyone loved the freedom of the island. You do not have to stay on the hotel property. The Island is safe and the people are friendly. Even if you stay on the property you will still get a taste of the culture because St. Lucians love to stay at the hotels for staycations.

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