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What's the best way to explore inland

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My wife and I are heading to Nevis Feb 12-19. We're staying at Oualie Beach and are wondering what's the best way to explore the nature of the island (forests/flowers/trails) and what are some nature must sees. Should we go on foot, horseback, bike, car, or maybe a combination. We're generally fit so could handle pretty strenuous adventures.

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    Hi Tonykv -

    I am assuming you are talking about next Feb? Or perhaps you meant Mar 12-19? In any event...

    I just got back yesterday from a week in St. Kitts/ Nevis (3 nights on Nevis). We LOVED Nevis! A trip report will be forthcoming....in the meantime, here are the bits of advice I can offer tto your specific question:
    - for exploring the island, since you will be there a week you may want to rent a car. Before you do that, however, I would suggest you have a taxi driver take you on an island tour so you get a good overview of the island. This is a great way to get your bearings.
    - we did not do significant hiking on Nevis, but we did do the short interpretive nature trail that leaves from Golden Rock Plantation Inn (where we stayed). There is the 30 minute short trail, and the longer 3-4 hour rainforest hike, both of which can be done self-guided from Golden Rock (which you will need a taxi or car rental to get to - it's quite a distance from Oualie). Just stop in the Inn's office once you get there and Pam or one of her staff will give you the map for the trail and review it with you...the map for the short hike also includes a guide to various plants indigenous to the area and what they were used for on the planatation.
    - nature must-sees: definitely the rainforest, in some capacity - either on one of the trails listed above or perhaps another trail with a guide (though we did not do a guided trail hike on this island so I can't offer advice on that). I will add here though that if you do find out about guides for hikes before you go, BOOK THEM YOURSELF vs. through your hotel, as usually the hotel takes $$ for booking and you will pay more that way vs. booking directly with the guide.
    - didn't do horseback, so can't comment on that.
    - not sure I'd want to do bike, even if I was very fit, just because of the hilly aspects of the island, the (in some parts) narrow roads, and (in some cases) interesting driving done there.
    - other nature must-see: you don't mention the water, but just in case you're interested in that type of nature too, supposedly one of the best watersports places is at Oualie Beach, so if you want to take a catamaran/snorkeling cruise, you could do that from here. We did one with Caona (sp?) and it was very nice - - - but again, book directly with them vs. the hotel as it should save you some $$$.

    I will lastly add that while we had a very pleasant stay at Golden Rock, we loved our visit to Oualie and our lunch there (the chef is excellent) and would stay there on our next trip - you made a great choice & should love your trip!

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    Thanks for the info. Yes I did mean March. This year is going by so fast I need a vacation. Wait, got that covered.
    I will look to booking our excursions directly. I've never been horseback riding (I'm from Chicago my wife is from Montana) so we'll probably do the horse thing.
    I personally could spend all day in the water (snorkeling). I've been to about 10 different Carib islands most of them arid so I thought this trip would be mostly about the island. That said, we do want to do a snorkling (or maybe scuba) outing. I expect we'll have to do a day trip to find good snorkeling as it sounds like the snorkeling is marginal on the island.

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    Oh, Looking forward to your trip report. We like to explore different restaurants, shops, beaches. But with limited time, need to make the most of it. Looking foward to what you saw/found.

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    Hi Tony - hopefully I will get the trip report posted tonight...tomorrow at latest!

    In the meantime, I would agree the snorkeling wasn't overwhelmingly impressive on Nevis, but still fun. But if you've done this often on other islands with better reefs, it certainly wouldn't be as exciting.

    Another must-see I would add, though may not meet the 'nature' criteria....the plantation inns. There are several old sugar plantations that have been turned into inns, e.g. Golden Rock, Montpelier, Nisbet, etc. and they're quite historic & interesting to see...as is the botanical garden I have heard, though we did not visit that. All of these would likely be included in a taxi tour of the island.

    Lastly, since you will be in Nevis for a week, you may want to consider a day trip to St. Kitts if you've never been there. Though as mentioned I don't know much about guided hiking on Nevis, I do know you can arrange for guided 1/2 day rainforest or full day volcano hikes on St. Kitts (we did the rainforest hike with Rogers Safaris - excellent - we had hoped to do the volcano, but they needed a group of at least 4 to do it which we didn't have). If you did just a 1/2 day hike on St. Kitts you could perhaps combine that with a taxi tour of that island which would include also a few plantation inns and the impressive fortress at Brimstone Hill - very well restored fort with incredible views of St. Kitts, and other nearby islands.

    I believe St. Kitts & Nevis are similar with respect to nature, though St. Kitts has a great deal more in the way of sugar cane fields...so to us Nevis seemed much more natural & exotic.

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