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Where to - a Couple Vacation, Great Beach + Flight under 6 hrs?..

Where to - a Couple Vacation, Great Beach + Flight under 6 hrs?..

Old Apr 29th, 2005, 11:04 AM
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Where to - a Couple Vacation, Great Beach + Flight under 6 hrs?..

Early shopping for Nov or Dec vacation... would like to expand beyond Hawaii and Mexico

A couple (M- 37, F-30) looking to unwind. Like to stay active, snorkel, swim, great food, the works. Destination? Lodging?

Here are the priorities for me:

Swimming beach (un-crowned, perfect sand, large waves OK
Flight less than 6 hrs (from Chicago)
Must be an ocean front property
Prefer not to stay anywhere popular with families/small children
Nothing packed, busy and chaotic
Avoid bugs of any kind (if possible)
Love watching wildlife - animals, birds, etc
Great food
Gym available
Descent snorkeling, site seeing, etc

If you have any suggestions, please let me know; thanks in advance!

n

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Old Apr 29th, 2005, 11:38 AM
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We love the U.S. Virgin Islands,
St. Thomas. We stayed at Secret Harbour
a couple o f times and had a wonderful
vacation.
Also St. Jonh.

We also enjoyed very much St. Marteen,
the french side its very quaint and
a lot of nice Restaurants.
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Old Apr 29th, 2005, 11:46 AM
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Sounds like either Caneel Bay on St. John and/or Peter Island Resort in the British Virgin Islands may be perfect for you! My husband and I enjoyed both places tremedously. If you have any questions I will be happy to answer them! - Susan
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Old Apr 29th, 2005, 04:54 PM
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I think that there are a number of places in Jamaica that you would find desireable. It's a very exotic island and you can get a direct flight from Chicago. Lots to do, beautiful beaches, magnificent food, views that go on forever, aquamarine colored water and flowers tucked in everywhere. It was a very special island to us. Pamper yourself with a massage - you deserve it!
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Old May 2nd, 2005, 06:36 AM
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Jamaica is actually one of the very few places we will never visit. Another one is Santo Domingo DR, and another one is Puerto Rico.

I'm glad you had a good experience in Jamaica and must say you lucked out!

As I have really negative (as in "worst ever") feedbacks from all of my friends (and most importantly, my parents who traveled extensively) about Jamaica. All of them where warned by someone, but yet they had to go and make certain. I don't have to
Besides, to my knowledge Jamaica's specialty is huge AI resorts; we're looking for something not as crowded. We like to exlore the area where we stay; and it sounds as Jamaica is someplace I care not to see.

I was told that that the service is non-existent, pot-smoking staff is inept, food is awful, beach vendors and random locals will try to bother you every chance they get, etc... The water and sand are nice, but that along won't be worth the disappointment

I think Jamaica would be an ok destination for a large group of spring breakers, but we have outgrown that stage by a few years...

I did hear good things about neighboring Belize, however... as in much safer, un-crowded, descent food, smaller resorts... Great diving/snorkeling (but we were warned most beaches there are plagued with seaweed - which is good for variety of marine life but not for swimmers. But then I only know 2 people who went to Belize (I know many who had a misfortune to go to Jamaica

St. Maarten or St. Croix or Bermuda would probably be a good choice for us.
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Old May 2nd, 2005, 06:47 AM
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Bermuda is great, but not in Nov. and Dec. It may be warmer than Chicago, but it will be chilly there for swimming. If you want Bermuda, push your trip back to Oct (middle). We found the water warm and the weather perfect. IT would be a great island for all of the list you have. I recommend the Reefs hotel from personally staying three times and enjoying it for it's relaxation.
Now, if you want to go in Nov/Dec, StJohn is a great recommendation for a beautiful uncrowded island with great beaches and snorkeling. Anguilla may be another choice for you. IT is a quick ferry to St.Martin for action. IT is quieter island with great beaches and food. Unless you go with an adult only vacation place,there may be kids. If you go when school is in session, you will most likely have only a few small ones running around
We loved Bermuda. Good luck
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Old May 2nd, 2005, 07:36 AM
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I have to agree with alot of the posts and recommend St John.Sounds like a good place to unwind,snorkel,hike.(2/3rds of the island is a National Park)
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Old May 2nd, 2005, 10:43 AM
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Eschew Jamaica at your will, but please understand that each person's experience is just that. I found Jamica to be a rich cultural experience as well as a relaxing beautiful beach experience, complete with a few colorful stories. Enjoy your vanilla, but please try not to tread on those who prefer more exotic flavors and can handle diverse experiences. By the way, I met great locals, got great service and found a simple "no thank you" and a smile dealt with vendors. Jamaica is more than crass all inclusives but I guess to each his own.
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Old May 2nd, 2005, 12:34 PM
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I would recommend that you research Belize. You can probably find flights that are direct or connecting through Dallas. Belize is in the same time zone as Chicago.

Ambergris Cay is probably the most popular spot and certainly would have uncrowded beaches. Belize is mostly a dive spot so mostly adults around. And these adults tend not to be on the beach since they are all out diving, making the beaches seem uncrowded.

Surprisingly a few good restaurants on such a sleeply island. Elvis Kitchen is the common popular choice, but it is really good. Ambergris Cay is a small island off the coast of Belize which is on the mainland.


Sandy
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Old May 3rd, 2005, 05:44 AM
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maliouhana on anguilla, palmilla in cabo, or st. barth (i like isle de france you fly direct to st. maarten and take a 9 minute commuter flight which you should book independantly of your commercial flight- air caraibe)
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