Friday, 23 October, 2009

Planning an Escape

If you want to travel to the Caribbean, one of the most important things you can to is plan it completely. Planning it now may be a lot of work, but if you do it before ever leaving home, you’ll be able to enjoy your vacation while there. No matter which Caribbean island you want to visit, planning is very important.

First, plan how you want to get to your destination. Because of the nature of the Caribbean, flying straight to your destination is not you sole choice. You do so if you choose, but you can also take a cruise throughout the Caribbean islands and visit a bunch of different port cities. In either case, you should plan your transportation as one of the first and foremost aspects of your vacation. Often, you can get a cheaper deal on tickets if you plan far in advance.

You should also consider your accommodations when traveling to the Caribbean. You first choice is, of course, any one of the many hotels and resorts scattered around the islands and catering especially to tourists. Many of these places to stay are completely Americanized and some even are owned by America companies. Another choice you have is the all-inclusive resort. Found on many of the Caribbean islands, all-inclusive resorts are great because they include meals, tours, private beaches, and more for free. If these don’t strike your fancy, you can also try booking a room in a smaller hotel or bed and breakfast, where you can get a true cultural experience.

Once you have your transportation and hotel figured out, you should consider planning certain activities. You can leave a number of days open for relaxing on the beach and spur of the moment tours, but if you don’t plan ahead for some of your activities, you may not be able to fit them into your schedule once there. It is best to plan ahead a bit, but not too much. This is the best way to enjoy your Caribbean vacation.

The last thing you should consider planning is a back up. Things inevitably go wrong on any vacation, so if it rains, have something to do other than lie on the beach. If the hotel overbooks accidentally, be prepared by knowing the names and numbers of some other hotels that might have open rooms. The key to a great vacation in the Caribbean is not to have everything go smoothly, but rather to enjoy it no matter what.

The Balmy Bahamas

Made up of over 700 small islands and cays, the Bahamas are a great Caribbean island destination spot for travelers. These islands are located east of Florida in the United States and North of the country of Cuba and make up their own English-speaking country. Tourists from around the world love to visit the Bahamas, and it is a popular travel spot for honeymoons and weddings.

The Bahamas are one of the most prosperous countries in the world because of their success with tourism and with financial institutions. Recently, urban renewal programs have been launched to keep the island safe and high-end for travelers. The country as the third highest per capita income in the West and is the most successful country in the Caribbean. The climate in the Bahamas is beautiful and comparable to the Florida climate enjoyed in cities like Miami and Fort Lauderdale. Although the islands are highly susceptible to hurricanes, they usually have a very tropical and pleasant weather, influences heavily by the waters of the Gulf Stream.

If you are traveling to the Bahamas from the United States, the closest island is Bimini, known as the gateway to Bahamas. Here, they cater to tourists. Andros Island, which is to the south of Bimini, is the largest island in this chain, and the largest city on the island is the capital, Nassau, which is located on the island of New Providence. Other larger islands in this chain include Eleuthera, Cat Island, San Salvador, Crooked Island, Exuma, Acklins, and Long Island.

A number of great festivals take place in the Bahamas, so you can enjoy things like the Crab Fest on the island of Andros and the Puneapple Fest on the island of Eleuthera. This is also the birthplace of the rhythmic musical genera junkanoo, which is played heavily at festivals. Rake and scrape, calypso, and hymnals are also important in these islands.

If you decide to travel to the Bahamas to visit one or more of the great islands, you will have a variety of activities from which to choose. There are water sports like sailing and jet skiing to help fill your days, or you can relax on the beautiful sandy beaches near the clear ocean water. A variety of tourist attractions and tours can also be a part of your Bahamas vacation. Be sure that you book your trip well in advance to get the best prices and to be sure you have the chance to do everything you want to do while traveling in this Caribbean paradise.

The Cayman Islands: Dive into a Beautiful Vacation

If you are planning to travel to the Caribbean for you next vacation, you have many islands from which to choose for you destination. On such island that makes a beautiful place for a vacation is the overseas territory of the United Kingdom known as the Cayman Islands. If you love diving, this is an especially great place to visit, since is the world’s leading underwater diving tourist destination.

The Cayman Islands are made up of Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac, and Little Caymen. These islands are located in the western portion of the Caribbean Sea. The Cayman Islands are about 150 miles from Cuba and about 480 miles from Miami, Florida. Cayman Brac and Little Cayman are sometimes known as the “Sister Islands” and are about 90 miles east of Grand Cayman Island, which is about 75 square miles. The islands are made up of large coral heads and is home to a number of exotic birds, fish, and land animals, including the endangered Blue Iguana, as well as The Grand Cayman Parrot and Cayman Brac Parrot, which are found only on these islands.

Tourism accounts for most of this island’s revenue, so while you are visiting these islands, the people there will surely cater to your every needs. World famous scuba diving is found here because of the clear waters and the proximity to the Cayman Wall. You can swim beside string rays and number of other amazing sea creatures while traveling in the Cayman Islands, as well as explore shipwrecks.

Outside of the water, you can check out popular spots like the black limestone fields, hiking trails, lighthouses, and museums. Cayman Sea Salt Co is also located here, as well as a number of financial institutions. In fact, many business men travel to the Cayman islands because this location is one of the world’s leading offshore financial centers.

Before you head to the Cayman Islands, it is important to understand a bit about the islands and make sure your paperwork is in order. You’ll need a passport to fly there, and maybe a visa, depending on where you live. Camping is illegal in the islands, which many do not realize when leaving, and if you are caught camping, you will spend time in jail. It is also important to make sure that you can show a return flight ticket. Visit the Cayman Islands can be lots of fun if you’re ready!

Visiting Anguilla

If you know you’re interested in traveling to the Caribbean Islands, you have a variety of choices for your final destination. You can try a fun cruise throughout the islands in order to visit all of the best hot spots, or you can fly directly to one of the many wonderful islands found in this region of the world. One of the islands from which you can choose is Anquilla.

Anguilla is not one of the most popular islands when talking about Caribbean travel sites, but for that very reason, it is great if you are looking for a more private Caribbean vacation, without lots of other tourists. Anguilla is actually a British overseas territory and is the most northern of the Leeward Islands. Anguilla is comprised of one larger island, including the capital city of The Valley, and also includes a number of tiny islands and cays, most of which are privately owned or uninhabited. Some of the other smaller islands that are part of the Anguilla chain include Dog Island, the Prickly Pear Cays, Scrub Island, Seal Island, and Sombrero, or Hat Island.

The climate on Anguilla is generally what you would expect to find in this tropical region of the world. The island does get northeastern trade winds, so it is fairly dry compared to other tropical islands, with the most rain coming in September and October. Anguilla is also along the path of some hurricanes in the summer and fall.

When traveling to Anguilla, make sure you spend some time in the beautiful Caribbean water. Anguilla is known for its coral reef, which is home to a variety of sea animals and plants. The land itself is mostly sandy and not particularly good for farming industries. However, the waters along the coast are great for fishing, so if you enjoy that sport, you may be interested in applying for a fishing license and talking to some fishing outfitters in Anguilla when planning your Caribbean travel.

As with most Caribbean islands, if you want to travel to Anguilla, you need the proper paperwork. Before you leave, apply for a passport, and it is important to be able to show either a return plane ticket or a ticket to otherwise leave the island at some point. Make your hotel reservations at least a few months in advance in order to find the best deals for your stay in the Caribbean.

Wedding Bells in the Caribbean

The Caribbean islands have long been a favorite honeymoon destination for newly married couples. The weather here is sunny all year round and you can enjoy a number of wonderful vacation activities together, like taking tours, trying water sports, and lying in the sun. However, in the past few decades, it has also become very popular to travel to the Caribbean for the wedding itself, not just for the honeymoon. There are both advantages and disadvantages to doing so.

First, you must consider who you want to have present at your wedding. By law, you will probably be required to have a certain number of witnesses, and you may not be able to imagine your wedding without your father to walk you down the aisle or your best friend as your best man. Remember that every guest you want to be present at the wedding will have to be flown to the island. In many cases, the guests will not be able to afford this trip themselves and you will have to pay for all or at least some of it. If this isn’t in your budget, it may not be possible for you to have everyone present at your wedding ceremony. The cost of a Caribbean wedding is definitely a disadvantage.

Remember also that you will probably be vacationing for your honeymoon wherever you hold the wedding. While it may be nice to have friends and family around for the wedding, you might wish they would disappear for the wedding. Your guests may also want to take a vacation while they are in the neighborhood, so if you want some private time, and all inclusive couples only resort may be what you need for them to stay out of your way.

However, one of the main advantages is that you are already in the location where you’ll be honeymooning. Travel is stressful and not a good way to start a new life together, so instead, you can just jump right in to paradise. Not only that, but your wedding will be an very memorable event because the beach background overlooking the sunset and ocean will be beautiful. Many couples love the island scenery, so a Caribbean wedding may be perfect for you.

If you decide to have a Caribbean wedding, contact a wedding planner from the specific island to which you will travel. He or she can help make sure that your big day goes smoothly and that you will have the time of your life on your honeymoon.

Monday, 19 October, 2009

A Honeymoon in the Caribbean

Your honeymoon is one of the best vacations you’ll ever take. It is the start of a new life with someone you love. As well as a great reason to visit one of the most beautiful places in the entire world. Whether you leave straight from your reception or wait a few weeks until the excitement dies down, a honeymoon is a vacation that you will remember for the rest of your life. One of the most popular places to go on a honeymoon is the Caribbean.

There are many reasons why the Caribbean is the perfect honey spot. First, not many people live in a magical tropical paradise as is found on most of the Caribbean islands. Because we do not live in this kind of weather, the Caribbean is an escape from reality. Another reason when the Caribbean is a great place for a vacation is because it is in fact so popular. The islands cater to couples and love, and you can find a variety of special activities available just for newlyweds.

To plan a honeymoon in the Caribbean, you must start long before you even finish planning your wedding. First, consider how much the honeymoon will cost in your budget. If you overspend, you’ll find yourself coming home to a new life filled with debt, and that is never a great way to start a new life. Instead, start with a budget in mind and find a Caribbean island that can meet your needs.

The second thing you should consider when it comes to planning a Caribbean honeymoon is that you’ll need a way to transition from the wedding to the honeymoon. Traditionally, the honeymoon was to start on your wedding night, but most couples also love to hold wedding receptions. Your wedding reception will probably last well into the night, and leaving for an airplane trip to the Caribbean islands may not be the best idea at that point. Instead, lots of couples are opting to spend the night in a local hotel and leave for the honeymoon in the morning. Still others spend the week after the wedding moving into a new home and leave on the honeymoon after that. Some couples even wait an entire year and plan their honeymoon for their first anniversary in order to save up money. The key is to do what is right for you.

When on your honeymoon in the Caribbean, make sure that you mention this fact to people. You may receive special treatment like a ticket bumped to first class or a nicer hotel room for the same price if people are helping you to celebrate. Champagne and other free drinks, special prices are restaurants, and hotel gifts are some of the other great honeymoon specials you may receive on your honeymoon in the Caribbean. This is a great way to start your new life, so even if small things go wrong, simply focus on enjoying your time together.

Aruba Adventures

If you like warm, arid weather, beautiful sunny beaches, and stunning sunsets, Aruba might be the perfect vacation spot for you. This little treasure in the Caribbean caters to tourists, especially from the United States, so many people find this to be a great destination. If you’re interested in Caribbean travel, check out what Aruba has to offer to you.

Aruba is found not far north of Venezuela and is part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. One of the best things about this island is its climate. Unlike many of the other island in the Caribbean, Aruba does not have a generally rainy climate, and in fact is home to desert-like terrain featuring a few species of cacti.

The standard of living in Aruba is very high, and they cater toward a classy, high-end market. Therefore, if you wish to travel to Aruba, your stay may be a bit pricier than in some of the nearby islands in the Caribbean, like the Bahamas or Jamaica. However, the stay is definitely worth it. Aruba has famous white sand beaches and beautiful clear blue waters. If you like water sports, you don’t have to lie on the beach all day! You can try diving, snorkeling, sailing, swimming, parasailing, jet skiing, or any number of other fun adventures.

The Carnival season is important in Aruba and takes place from January until Ash Wednesday. Just as in many other Caribbean countries, Carnival in Aruba has a variety of great festivities in which vacationers on the island can take part. This includes midway games and children’s rides, parades, contests, parties, and special foods. If you’re looking for an exciting time to visit Aruba, try during the Carnival season.

Because the majority of this island’s revenue comes from tourism, and many of their tourists come from the United States, Aruba’s residents usually speak English. The America dollar is also widely accepted (for a fee) in the major shopping and restaurant districts, and the exchange rate is fairly fixed, so money is easily exchanged if you want to do so. More and more, Aruba is becoming a second home for the wealthy from the United States and from around the world.

Aruba can be your sole vacation destination, and you can fly directly into the country’s large public airport, or you can take a cruise throughout the Caribbean islands and stop to enjoy Aruba for the day. The island has a little something for everyone, so whether you like a relaxing vacation to sleep in the sun or an exciting vacation full of adventure, Aruba is a destination in the Caribbean that you should consider.