Any suggestions for a quick January getaway?

Dec 19th, 2004, 05:12 AM
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Any suggestions for a quick January getaway?

We are looking for an island that is convenient from Newark Airport (non-stop flight) for a 3-day weekend. We would like the weather to be warm enough to lay on a pretty beach and relax. We would prefer not too many crowds, if possible. Any suggestions? Thanks!
lisa3664 is offline  
Dec 19th, 2004, 05:48 AM
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puerto rico.
girlonthego is online now  
Dec 19th, 2004, 06:40 AM
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Kimberly is offline  
Dec 19th, 2004, 11:02 AM
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Thanks! Forgive me for being dense, but how long is the flight, approximately? Can you recommend any nice hotel/resorts that are not too far of a drive from the airport yet have a nice beach? Thanks again!
lisa3664 is offline  
Dec 19th, 2004, 01:14 PM
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Nassau is a much better choice than puerto rico or Jamacia
sharkdiver49 is offline  
Dec 19th, 2004, 01:40 PM
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I am assuming you want to go at this time of year? That is why I said Puerto Rico. The flight would probably be around 3 hours.Correct if I am wrong people. We flew from Newark back then also.
I haven't been in a while. We stayed at the Caribe Hilton. I heard a few not so nice reviews, but we liked it. Like I said, it was a few years back. It is in a good location. It has a private beach/lagoon area.
girlonthego is online now  
Dec 19th, 2004, 04:33 PM
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My understanding is that Nassau will be very cool this time of year, as opposed to
more southerly islands. Depending on days
of travel, you might be able to get a non-stop
to Antigua from Newark, which would provide many options on accommodations.
Also, what about the U.S. Virgin Islands?
Boonie is offline  
Dec 20th, 2004, 04:21 AM
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You really need to go to the Southern Caribbean to find warmth. Not sure if BWIA flys from Newark, but if it does they fly non-stop to Barbados -- that's a great location.

Virgin Islands, Nassau and anything upper Caribbean will be cool.

Lois is offline  
Dec 20th, 2004, 04:50 AM
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Lois: I have to respectfully disagree with you. Anything upper Caribbean will be warm and not cool. Yes Bahamas will be cool but the Bahamas are not part of the Caribbean.
The U.S. and British Virgin Islands will be warm. Puerto Rico will be warm (I've been there in February).
Lisa: If you do want to do Barbados as Lois suggested, I believe Continental flies non-stop from Newark.
The Caribe Hilton is a convention hotel. If you don't want a lot of crowds, you shouldn't stay there. There were several ones when we were there. Ugh.
Good luck.
Dec 20th, 2004, 07:18 AM
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Thanks to all who replied! What do you mean by "cool"? I've been looking at weather websites and it seems the average for late January in Bahamas is upper 70s. If that is true, that is fine with us. The thing about Barbados, Jamaica, USVI, BVI--they are all pretty long flights and for 3 nights and barely 2 1/2 days (plus it is our first time leaving our infant) we do not want to travel too far.
lisa3664 is offline  
Dec 20th, 2004, 07:44 AM
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There are a couple of Fodorites who have gone to the Bahamas that time of the year and said they've had to wear sweaters at one time or another.
If you look at the weather today, it's high 69, low 50..but by Thursday it's high 77, low 73.
So you may get lucky or you may not.
Here's a great website to check out the weather history.
Dec 20th, 2004, 09:42 AM
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For what it is worth, we are doing a similar trip in January, although for a bit longer (4 nights) out of D.C. and we are heading to Jamaica. We, too, are leaving our toddler for the first time, so wanted something convenient, i.e., a direct flight. The flight from Newark to Montego Bay is 4 hours...not bad at all, and personally, I wouldn't risk a trip to the Bahamas where you could end up needing sweaters and not enjoying your time away. We are going to Negril which is 1.5 hours from the Montego Bay airport, but there are closer options in Montego Bay and Ocho Rios. Good luck deciding!
KDR is offline  
Dec 20th, 2004, 09:48 AM
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The Bahamas has the same weather as Southern Florida, so figure the days will be in the upper 70's.

For a cute quiet place you might try Orange Hill on Nassau, small hotel, with a nice pool area, feels like one of the out islands.

Another suggestion would be British Colonial, downtown, but it has a private beach/pool area. Staying there you are very close to all the restaurants and some shopping, but at night it's pretty quiet.

Jet Blue is now flying out of JFK, and I think the price is about $200rt.

IF you have not flown Jet Blue yet, it's a real treat. Big planes, your own TV and very comfortable seats.

Nassau International aiport is pretty easy to get into and out of, and by now they are used to dealing with the people coming off a large flight.

Hope this helps, have a great time.
wantsomesun is offline  
Dec 20th, 2004, 10:50 AM
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I would not choose Nassau for several reasons. First, IMHO it has little charm and second, it may well be cool. I live in FL and today our high is 36. Not the norm, but not such a stretch either.

Jamaica would be my choice. Non stop flights, great beaches (Negril) and a host of options for hotels and resorts. Idle Awhile is a nice, small property in Negril on a great beach and an hour drive from Montego Bay airport.

In my mind, St. Thomas and the US Virgins are not much more appealing than Miami Beach.

I also really enjoy Puerto Rico. The old city is very European and great for strolling, there are very good restaurants and the nightlife is also very good. I would rate the beaches just average as compared to Jamaica, the Caymans, etc. And I agree with the comment that the Caribe Hilton is more of a convention hotel as are many in the Condado area. It is not as "islandy" feeling as Jamaica; much more cosmopolitan.

The Turks and Caicos have great beaches as well but I am not sure if there are firect flights available for you.

Cancun also has great beaches and is easy to get to.
kfusto is offline  
Dec 20th, 2004, 11:46 AM
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I've spent quite a bit of time researching winter air and water temps in the Caribbean region and Jamaica is consistently warmer than Puerto Rico, VI, many others. I suspect it's because Cuba "protects" Jamaica from the Atlantic.

Personally I would not choose the Bahamas in January (although they're certainly warmer than Newark!), and the Turks & Caicos are marginal.

I think the vast majority of visitors find PR and the VI to be warm enough in Jan., but Jamaica's warmer.
cdt is offline  
Dec 20th, 2004, 01:30 PM
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If you can get a direct flight, I would go to T&C. The flight was only 3 hours from Boston. Once you arrive its easy to get through customs. Most of the hotels meet you with a shuttle and the hotels are only 15-20 minutes from the airport. The water might be a little cool in January, but I think the air temp would be fine. The beaches there are beautiful.
matkat is offline  
Dec 21st, 2004, 11:54 AM
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Thank you all for your helpful advice. Unfortunately we had to cancel plans to go away in January due to a work conflict. We will probably reschedule for March or April.
lisa3664 is offline  
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