Posts Tagged ‘caribbean travel’

Flying High, Caribbean Style

  • Posted by Sharon Hurley Hall
  • October 13th 2011

I’m always fascinated by the view from a plane. These days, when I travel with my family I don’t get the window seat any more, and even when I travel alone, I often opt to take the slight leg room advantage afforded by an aisle seat. But it was a nice change to have a window view when flying through the Caribbean recently. I’d like to share these photos with you.

View of the Jamaican coastline as we left Norman Manley Airport in Kingston.

In the next photo, I love the way the clouds look above the island.

Another view of the Jamaican coastline

Another view of the Jamaican coastline - this time with clouds

Next up, more cumulus clouds – the Caribbean is a great place to see them – and you can’t beat the view from the air!

Cumulus landscape in the Caribbean

Cumulus landscape in the Caribbean

Rainbows fascinate me – and it’s not often you get to see this much of one from this high up.

Rainbow over the sea

Rainbow over the sea

Finally, here’s a view of the Barbados coastline.

Flying into Barbados - coastal view

Flying into Barbados - coastal view

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Pirating the Caribbean – experiencing the best of all worlds

  • Posted by Sharon Hurley Hall
  • October 7th 2011

Pirating the CaribbeanAfter my recent trip to Jamaica, I’ve been fascinated by the island’s pirate history, but, as Chris Hoole points out, there are other ways to experience the oceans.

You don’t have to be a pirate these days to sample the treasures that world’s oceans have to offer. Nor do you need to be press-ganged into a life of semi-slavery; quite the opposite in fact. Cruises, be it in the exotic Caribbean or the more familiar, yet still surprising, Mediterranean seas remain popular despite the economic downturn. If anything, a life on the ocean waves is proving to be more popular than ever. Whether it is rip-roaring adventure or quiet relaxing days away from it all that you are looking for – a life on the ocean wave has it all.

Cheap Caribbean Cruises

Cruising the high seas has, in the past, been considered the preserve of the rich and famous. The high life and the high seas went hand in hand. With the advent of air travel the majority of those seeking the sun, the sand and the other “s” words that exotic holidays have to offer, took advantage of cut price deals to cut price locations. The rich, the retired, the internationally famous, took to the seas to avoid the crowds. Today, cruise holidays are no longer the preserve of the rich. The range of ‘budget’ holidays available in the form of Mediterranean cruises is surprising – even more so those in the tropical climes of the Caribbean. The cost of cruises varies, but actually compared to the deals on offer from some resorts, a cruise can be surprisingly competitive.

Culture confusion

The farther afield you are planning to travel, the more attractive the cruise option can be – for families or couples alike. The cheap Caribbean cruise offers a range of advantages over a resort holiday in the region. Firstly, the Caribbean is a vast, dotted with islands, ranging in size from the likes of Cuba to small, uninhabited islands. The cultural variations in the region are also incredible. Partly because of its climate but mainly because of its strategic position, the sea, islands and surrounding continental regions have been colonised by just about everybody who could gather enough money to buy a ship and hire a small army of mercenaries. The Dutch, British, French, Spanish all established colonies in the region at one time or another (although not necessarily in that order). Add to this the African slave population that they brought with them and, of course, the somewhat overlooked native races – ranging from the Carib tribes to the highly evolved civilisations of the Incas, Aztecs and Mayans – and you have a mix of cultures that is enough to make your average conquistador dizzy.

The resort with everything – and some

This incredible range of culture and history is present in many individual locations, but cruising the Caribbean offers you the best of all worlds. Cruise ships today are less ship and more luxury resort in their own right, allowing you all the comfort of returning to your own bed at night, but the advantage of exploring the wealth of experiences the Caribbean ports, islands and mainland have to offer. On-board facilities meet and often beat those in more static resorts. Entertainment complexes, shopping streets and relaxed boulevards or parks – yes the biggest do have parks – combine to make the on-board experience a rival to any luxury land-lubber hotel. Eateries, restaurants and bars alongside pools, health clubs, saunas and childcare facilities – all a stones throw from quiet, remote sandy beaches and bustling cities and towns, close to mountainous interiors and completely away from it all. When it comes to the perfect holiday base – could you really ask for more?

While splicing the “mainbrace” is still perfectly acceptable the opportunities to take a cheap Caribbean cruise no longer need to involve stealing ships. With cruise lines offering some of their best recession busting deals in years, the price of a cruise in the Caribbean is no longer daylight robbery!

Image: Bret Arnett

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2011 Travel Plans

  • Posted by Sharon Hurley Hall
  • January 6th 2011
Sapphire Beach, St Thomas, USVI

Sapphire Beach, St Thomas, USVI

At the start of the year, I always like to indulge myself by thinking of places I might visit. There are a number of places on my list. Some of them are places I’ve been to before, but where there’s still lots to see; others are completely new. Here’s my list as it stands now, along with my reasons for wanting to visit each place.

US Travel

Of course, I love traveling in the US and have a number of favorite destinations. I really like the Fort Lauderdale/Dania Beach area and have taken vacations there two years in a row. I’m tempted to take advantage of the airport parking in Fort Lauderdale and fly there direct this year rather than going via Miami.

Last year, I visited Kennedy Space Center, the local Science Museum and Butterfly World and other places of interest, while the year before I had thrills on the Dania Beach Hurricane and got close to some fearsome crocs. I still feel that there’s lots more to explore in the area and I might take in a couple of days in Orlando as well. Also in the US, I might stop off at Newark Airport, parking my behind on my sister’s sofa in New Jersey. I think I’ll wait for the weather to improve, though. ;) Read more »

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