Location with best activities and culture...

Oct 3rd, 2005, 12:11 PM
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Location with best activities and culture...

Hello all! I'm interested in getting your general recommendations and opinions for Caribbean islands. My husband and I are generally very Europe-focused, but for our February trip we want to consider warm destinations as well (we're from NY).

What islands and/or locations are great to visit for a variety of activities (not only watersports) and also some history and culture? Though we need to relax, we don't want to be limited to lying on the beach. Our favorite thing in Europe (or anywhere, really) is just walking the streets of cute little towns and absorbing the local atmosphere.

Thanks for any advice...trying to broaden my horizons a bit
TarheelsInNj is offline  
Oct 3rd, 2005, 02:26 PM
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Puerto Rico
joanie433 is offline  
Oct 3rd, 2005, 03:25 PM
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Caribbean Mexico
Diana is offline  
Oct 3rd, 2005, 03:57 PM
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I'm flummoxed when people ask for help finding a place with "culture." Every place, everywhere has a culture. Do you mean opera, historic buildings, interesting traditions, etc. ?
marigold is offline  
Oct 3rd, 2005, 04:11 PM
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Mayan Riviera in Mexico. Lots of local culture and history and Mayan ruins to explore as well as quaint Mexican towns if you go off the beaten track. Do not go to Cancun as it is very Americanized now and party central.
ONZGO is offline  
Oct 3rd, 2005, 04:14 PM
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Thanks so much for the suggestions!

You're right, "culture" is a very broad term. Primarily I want to find something that has its own culture and personality, as opposed to being just a resort destination. Any of the things you mentioned (opera, historic buildings, interesting traditions) would be great- but rather than something specific, I'm interested in hearing about those places that have managed to hold onto a local flavor in the midst of tourism.
TarheelsInNj is offline  
Oct 3rd, 2005, 05:35 PM
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Agree with Puerto Rico and Riviera Maya.
Adding Martinique, Guadeloupe (wonderful creole cuisine, music/culture despite still being French territories)...Speaking a bit of French would make for a better trip.
And Curacao as well.
Oct 4th, 2005, 03:29 AM
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I think I understand what she means in asking about " culture " in this sense ..... We do tend to talk about it a lot here , even if not directly . Jamaica overflows . St. Lucia , Trinidad and Tobago , Nevis , Grenada are islands I have gathered have lots of " culture " , local flavor , irie factor , history , whatever you want to call it( there are others of course ) . Islands that I believe have a bit less of that would be Aruba , St.John ...... Which obviously have a culture of course , people do live there !!! Just perhaps less colorful than other islands ..... (jm2c) And not meant as a negative !!
faithie is offline  
Oct 4th, 2005, 08:12 AM
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Thanks all! It looks like flights to Puerto Rico from NYC are inexpensive in February, so that may be at the top of our list right now. I'm also really intrigued the Riviera Maya. Great suggestions, everyone! Thank you!
TarheelsInNj is offline  
Oct 4th, 2005, 06:54 PM
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Hello TarheelsinNj! It is hard for me not to recommend Puerto Rico. I totally love PR.Condado Beach is AWESOME!!You could stay for months in Condado and not run out of grreat things to do. Go to the Conquistador resort in Fajardo on the east end of the island and take the ferry over to Culebra island, it is a beautiful,short ride and you can find world-class snorkeling all over Culebra. Make sure you visit FLAMENCO BEACH in Culebra. Thi is a MUST- SEE beach!!!
caribedon is offline  
Oct 5th, 2005, 03:49 AM
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I have been advised that Curacao has the culture,European feel,history,and nice cove beaches.It is on my list to travel to..oneday.Jamaica is another place that I really want to visit..full of color and culture.

By the way...are you from NC?Thought that I would ask because of your name. I live in NC..but I am a NC State fan.

Take care,
christiegr is offline  
Oct 5th, 2005, 06:37 AM
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I think there is plenty to Oooh and aahh over in Curacao. Lots of culture and history. The Marriott offers you privacy when you are seeking it and very nice accomodations. Our balcony overlooked the beach, which was great. Jamaica is also worth exploring.
Knowing is offline  
Oct 5th, 2005, 06:54 AM
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Haven't looked into Curacao yet, so I'll do that- thanks! Right now we're also really interested in Isla Mujeres in Mexico.

Christie, my husband and I both went to UNC for undergrad, so we're die-hard Tarheels Nice football game last week, huh? (wink, wink!)
We live in NYC now though (but were in NJ when I opened the account! confusing!)
TarheelsInNj is offline  
Oct 5th, 2005, 07:18 AM
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I am chiming in here in favor of on Isla Mujeres and the Riviera Maya (Caribbean Mexico).

I've been to 35-35 islands and think it's very difficult to top the Yucatan for a plethora of amazing and top-level cultural sites and experiences in a relatively small geographical area.

Some of the most incredible ruins, diving/snorkeling, shopping (OK, maybe that's NOT cultural), art, music and theatre are all within an easy day trip of many of the best places to stay there, and there is truly something for everyone.

We've been going every year for 12+ years - sometimes twice a year - and we discover new and exciting places every time.

Tarheels, I live in NC and am a UNC-CH grad. I was at a horse show across the street from the game last week and enjoyed the sad looks on the State fan's faces as they trudged back to their cars. (My horse did not care for that silly wolf howl thing they set off though!)

I think Isla Mujeres is a wonderful destination, and we've been there for at least part of our trip for the last three years.

It makes it a little more difficult to get to the mainland, but the ferries are frequent and fast. We usually split up 2 to 3 weeks among 2 to 3 destinations.

Have fun choosing!
Diana is offline  
Oct 5th, 2005, 07:37 AM
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Diana , are you dressage or hunter/jumper ?
faithie is offline  
Oct 5th, 2005, 08:05 AM
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Hi faithie!

Actually, hunter under saddle. (Flat classes.) Lost my nerve for jumping when I left my 20's behind! gt;
Diana is offline  
Oct 5th, 2005, 11:21 AM
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Ahh , I see .... I did flat and hunter/jumper . Sis has a dressage stable . Sorry for the temporary post highjacking folks !!lol . Back to travel !!
faithie is offline  

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