It goes without saying that the Island Runaways team loves a tropical island escape. When we’re not actually traveling, we’re dreaming of island adventures, from the simply rustic to Caribbean luxury vacations. If you’re like Zickie and me, the chance to plunge into deep relaxation on one of the gorgeous Caribbean isles is your idea of heaven on earth.
While we’ve explored islands like Jamaica, Martinique, Puerto Rico, St. Maarten, Grenada, and many more, there are still some elusive beauties that remain on our island wish list. Where, you might ask, do two experienced island explorers fantasize about going? Without further ado, here are the 3 tempting islands on our wish list -- that also should be on yours!
(Swim with sea turtles in Bonaire. Photo by SnorkelingDives.com/Flickr/Creative Common license.)
Ah, beautiful Bonaire! It’s hard not to be seduced by tales of gorgeous diving on the “B” of the ABC islands. Situated in the Leeward Antilles just north of South America, Bonaire not only has gorgeous sand beaches and palm trees, but also world class diving. In fact, 470 different fish swim among the corals, making it understandable why so many call Bonaire "a divers' paradise." Above the waves, you can see gorgeous pink flamingos and Bonaire's famous little donkeys. Another aspect that I want to investigate while on vacation? The distinctive historic architecture that combines traditional Dutch elements with bright candy colors. The Island Runaways can’t wait to experience Bonaire’s marine life and also its unique culture as part of the Dutch Antilles.
2. St. Barts
The French island of St. Barthélemy sits splendidly in the Caribbean Sea just 22 miles southeast of St. Maarten. St. Barts is famous for its striking beaches, and just as well known for the chic French atmosphere of its capital city, Gustavia. Being a French island, the cuisine is definitely something to write home about, with a reputation for refinement and gustatory excellence.
(Shell Beach, St. Barts. Photo by Bruce Tuten/ Flickr/ Creative Commons license.)
In terms of Caribbean luxury vacations, St. Barts really does make of the top of many lists. In my ideal world, I’d rent a private villa for myself and my very closest friends. One day we’d charter a sailboat with a crew, and set out on the ocean. Another day, after enjoying the beach, maybe we’d indulge in shopping for gorgeous new sarongs and sandals. Yes, there’s no doubt that St. Barts has made our “island dreaming” vacation list.
The third island we’re dreaming of seeing for ourselves is Tortola, the largest of the British Virgin Islands (or BVIs). With place names like Smuggler’s Cove and Soper’s Hole, it just conjures up visions of the eighteen-century Caribbean, and the days pirates and English colonists. The photographs and stories make this island sound breath-taking, especially its white sand beaches and lush terrain, including Mount Sage which reaches 1,740 feet. I think I’d take surfing lessons, then visit the Callwood Rum Distillery and the Botanic Gardens. But best of all? I’d set aside some time to simply sit on a lounge chair with a cool drink and stare into that spectacular turquoise sea. Heaven indeed!
(The blue waters of Tortola. Photo by Denise/Flickr/Creative Commons license.)
Have you already escaped to one of these islands? Lucky you! Then leave a comment below and tell us what you liked about it! Or give us some hints on your own island wish list.