Looking for perfect beach, great snorkling

Aug 7th, 1997, 06:41 AM
  #1  
Bill
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Looking for perfect beach, great snorkling

My wife and I are beginning to plan for an early-Spring vacation in the Carribean, and we would like some suggestions in our continuing search for the "perfect island". We manage to get down to the islands about every 3 or 4 years and have been to St. John, Anguilla (twice; the first time in 1981 when there was only one hotel - nice!), Tortola, and the Bahamas (twice). Our criteria are: nice people (or at least non-hostile), a low level of mass tourism, accommodations on a nice beach (price and comfort level are flexible), reasonable access to one or more FANTASTIC beaches (preferably deserted or nearly so), and reasonable access to great snorkling (one of us has an ear problem , so we don't scuba).
In browsing the guidebooks, I'm considering Turks & Caicos, Anegada BVI, Caymans (the two smaller islands?), and Bonaire. If in doubt, we'll just go back to Anguilla and lounge on Shoal Bay beach, but I would love to discover a new place.
 
Aug 7th, 1997, 10:22 PM
  #2  
Louis Dameson
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We are always looking for the same thing also. We have never quite found it yet. I am begining to think seriously about the Red Sea or Fiji. For something new consider look at the Cooper Island Beach Clusee www.cooper-island.com) in the BVI. Anagada is a interesting place to visit based on snorkeling, the Wheatlys that run the place to stay there and the quality of the lobster dinners--however the island has little to offer and the rooms are not that comfortable. Three nights there is about all one would want. It is not easy to get into or out of the place and it takes careful planning. I have considered the the two Caymans (Little & Brac) but I never quite get there. I fear that the drop off is too fast in the Caymans for good snorkeling. I think that Cooper Island has a lot to offer in all the catagories you want at a very attractive price. The snorkeling is pretty good at one end and there are dive boats leaving several times a day for other locations that offer a variety of opportunties. Due to the anchorage in front of the Club, there are lots of new people coming and going every day. Costs are very reasonable there. If you do go to Little Cayman or Cayman Brac please tell me about it at [email protected]. If the snorkeling is great, I would like to go sometime.
 
Aug 8th, 1997, 04:07 AM
  #3  
Bruce
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Hello Bill

My wife and I returned from Turks & Cacos in November. We stayed on Provo. We stayed at the Turquious Reef. The water there is absoultely perfect. There are some reefs close to shore but some hotels also offer small boats that you can go out about 1/2 mile more tie up and snorkel off the outter reefs. The people are friendly and the island is not crowded at all. The sand on the beaches is like flower. You can walk the beach for miles and maybe see 50 people. North West point is a trip well worth taking by jeep. It is at the end of the island and the snorkeling is great. It is also very private and there are great tiki huts to have lunch in but you must 'brown bag it'. We went there for the scuba but were impressed enough with the snorkeling to recommend this island to you. I have also been to Grand Cayman. It is mostly for divers (Brac/Little Cayman) are defintely for divers. We are going to St. Kitts in November on a dive vacation but we know little about the reef system. Diving is suppose to be virgin so it may turn out to be a better snorkeling location. Are you interested in rain forest ect...? I'd be happy to answer any more questions about Turks or Grand Cayman. Finding the right island can be tuff. Good luck in your search.


Bruce

 
Aug 12th, 1997, 07:35 AM
  #4  
Bob B.
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Sorry to tell you what you already know...Anguilla is very tough to beat for the things you are seeking. Amazing beaches, no crowds, clear and calm water, not to mention a selection of outstanding resorts.
Last January we stayed at the Sonesta, which was flawless. ENJOY.
 
Aug 23rd, 1997, 12:08 PM
  #5  
Sue
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I like the Turks & Caicos for snorkeling and beaches and quiet. There is very little to do, with one casino and little else but it's peaceful, serene and
very relaxing. The snorkeling is fantastic. The Turquoise Reef is nice but typical. Le Deck is much smaller and has great food. We stayed at a private villa on Chalk Sound and it was wonderful.
 
Sep 1st, 1997, 10:14 AM
  #6  
Michel
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As a diver, I really enjoy the West coast of Jamaica but the snorkeling is also very good. We stayed at Point Village which has a quiet (small) beach that is terrific for snorkeling. It was the first time I went snorkeling in a cave (right from the beach). I've also been to the North coast of the Dominican Republic where the reefs are less impressive. They were damaged in a storm a few years back. This year, we're thinking about Cuba (North - North East)? Has anyone been?
 
Sep 3rd, 1997, 11:34 AM
  #7  
Karen CHAPMAN
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IS THERE A BEST BEACH I AM UNSURE BUT ANTIGUA HAS
365 OF THEM WE VISITED ABOUT 300 OF THEM OVER OUR
LAST FEW VACATIONS RANGING FROMM 10 FT TO 2 MI OR MORE MOST OF THEM UNUSED EXCEPT FOR AN OCCASIONAL
SWIMMER.
 
Sep 27th, 1997, 02:17 PM
  #8  
Diane Reynolds
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My husband and I have been to Bonaire twice
and recommend the island for snorkling. The entire island is designated as a marine park and the government has sent up a guided snorkling program. You can go with a group to off shore sites with a certified snorkling guide or rent a car and go with new found friends. Beaches in Bonaire are few but the fish and coral are amazing!!! Quiet island, friendly people, good food (try Richards) - we are looking forward to our next trip there.
 
Sep 28th, 1997, 10:09 AM
  #9  
PAKO
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In 1995 we stayed in the beach of AKUMAL in yucatan.It is a very nice place with wonderful reefs.The hotel is an all inclusive resort and not massive beach.There is a diving club that organizes a lot of activities.I think it is a very good election.The hotel name is CLUB OASIS AKUMAL.
I'm spanish so excuse for my poor english.
 
Sep 29th, 1997, 04:46 PM
  #10  
Judy Ryan
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Bill, You really have a tough act to follow with Shoal Bay on Anguilla. Provo rates right up there, though. Grace Bay is breathtaking and there is a long expanse of beach for you! The Ocean Club is perhaps larger than you would want, but you do have a kitchen for snacks and that sort of thing. It is right next to the Club Med which lends itself to great people watching--the activity of the Club doesn't bother anyone. There is the Grace Bay Club which is divine and then Le Deck (we stayed there last year, and it is showing its age. It is small and laid back (the pool wasn't even filled, but who cares with that wonderful sand and sea in front of you)! We have not been to the two smaller Cayman Islands but have heard great things about them. We were not too crazy about Bonaire--did not have good diving at all! We stayed on Anegada and that was very laid back--the beach was nice, the lobsters were fresh, huge, and tasty! However, the electricity goes out during the day--you can see how non touristy this island is! Back to the two top beaches that we have been too--Provo and Anguilla!
Cat Island in the Bahamas and San Salvador are on my list--look them up--although I do not think San Salvador has great beaches! One other suggestion is the Meridian Club on Pine Cay in the Turks and Caicos. Talked to a couple who stayed there,, and they thought it was a piece of heaven--worth checking out. Happy traveling--let me know when you find another wonderful beach!!
 
Oct 1st, 1997, 04:29 AM
  #11  
Derek
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Bill,
I hope you find that destination spot you are looking for; unfortunately, I can't give you much guidence - having never been to the Caribbean (except a short sail to Abaco Islands). This is exactly the reason I am replying however. I am also planning a trip this spring (early May) for a honeymoon - mine honeymoon to be exact. We have been considering Antiqua, Aruba, Bermuda, Caymans, Martinique, St. Lucia, St. Martin, and St. Thomas (not in that order - although we are leaning away from the USVI). Should we consider Anguilla also? I have heard it's great but it may be too quiet for us "PARTY ANIMALS" - just kidding. Our limiting factor is that we are going through a time share.

I know you haven't been to most of these islands but it sounds like you've done a lot of research over the years and you may be able to assist me in my desperate search to find that perfect island for the Caribbean virgin.

Thanks and good luck.
Derek
 
Oct 1st, 1997, 04:42 AM
  #12  
Lydia
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Aren't we all looking for paradise? Have you considered a bareboat charter in the BVI's where you can snorkel each day in a different location and are flexible to find your own quiet beaches. We went in May and the crowds weren't so bad. Also I saw someone mentioned Bermuda. We love Bermuda. I would suggest something around St. Georges cause that end of the island is much quainter and quieter. Good luck.
 
Oct 2nd, 1997, 08:16 AM
  #13  
Laura Monahan
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Bill - Chalk up another vote for Turks & Caicos! I have been to Tahiti, the British and American Virgins, Antigua, and other islands...and the beach on Providenciales is the most breathtaking I have ever seen. Plus, the beach front isn't really built up at all, so you can walk quite a ways without seeing any house on the water. The snorkelling is great, also - a shallow reef is right off the beach, with lots of beautiful fish to frolic with. Go for it! You won't be sorry! - L.M.
 
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