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THE CARIBBEAN SERIES REFLECTION

ANTIGUA, BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS, SAINT MAARTEN, ANGUILLA, DOMINICA, GRENADA, SAINT VINCENT & THE GRENADINES

Caribbean Reflection. Coming back from the Caribbean it was no doubt a trip of 2 halves. The first being super productive and the latter being overrun by COVID…it was always going to happen at some point. But having not visited a new country in 18 months I was more than willing to take the risk.

ORGANISATION WAS KEY

The appeal of the Caribbean was the lack of visas I needed however this was more than made up for by the additional paperwork needed for COVID. It took an insane amount of planning and organising, fit for only the most capable OCD types! There was everything to think about; flights, online entry forms, car rentals, accommodation, PCR tests on arrival, pre-payment of PCR tests on arrival, PCR tests for arrival and so many more. All it takes is to miss one thing and its game over. Like I almost learned in Dominica.

WHERE IS CARIBBEAN?

Caribbean

NORTH CARIBBEAN

The trip started off in the north, Antigua & Barbuda, BVI and Saint Maarten were all highlights of the trip. Some of the best beaches and landscapes I have ever seen and never having to share it with more than 2 other people made it all the more special. Can you tell I enjoy my own company a little too much 😬 but a beach on your own in the Caribbean is heaven talk!

With some solid news that my entry was accepted for Anguilla I couldn’t believe my luck only to arrive and be told the only return boat is leaving straight away. This was another reminder that when you plan to visit every country no matter how organised you are logistics or something will let you down a couple of times at least.

TRIP STATS….

  • DAYS –13
  • COUNTRIES – 9
  • NEW COUNTRIES – 7
  • REVISITS – 2
  • HIKES – 2
  • FLIGHTS –12 & 2 BOATS
  • STEPS – 105,650
  • MILES TRAVELLED – 5,556.6 mi

Caribbean Reflection

WINDWARD ISLANDS

As I moved south through the likes of Dominica and Grenada you could see how different this area of the Caribbean was. There might have been just as much charm but with my issue with my PCR test in Dominica, it pretty much took over the rest of my trip. My Instagram highlight for Dominica tells the story, check it out here.

Not one to complain after getting into a country I had no right to be in, the next 2 countries (Grenada and Saint Vincent & The Grenadines) were spent in quarantine. It seems the issues some Caribbean countries have is that they cannot deal with an outbreak so these next level protocols are the only way to mitigate a localised pandemic.

Caribbean Reflection

  HIGHLIGHTS:
  • Beaches in Antigua & BVI
  • Accom in BVI
  • Getting to Anguilla
  • Maho Beach, Saint Maarten

Caribbean Reflection

  LOWLIGHTS:
  • The PCR fiasco in Dominica
  • Quarantine in Grenada and Saint Vincent
  • Getting continually grilled at every immigration 🤣

RATINGS….

  • PEOPLE – 7/10 –Vast majority, friendly, approachable and kind.
  • BACKPACKING – 5/10. Not easy. 😬
  • WEATHER – 8.5/10. Couldn’t have asked for better since it was hurricane season.
  • THINGS TO DO – 7.5/10. Plenty to see.
  • FOOD – 7/10. I was on sandwiches most days but there’s great food if willing to pay!
  • VALUE – 5/10. It’s not cheap, especially that $200 pcr.
  • PHOTOGRAPHY – 8/10. Drone alllll day.
  • GETTING ABOUT – 7/10, Taxis aint cheap, car rental is the way.
  • BEACHES – 9/10, it’s the Caribbean!
  • SAFETY – 8/10, No problems.

SUMMED UP….

  • MVP (most valuable player) – Hotel The Champs for chasing my PCR
  • LVP (Least valuable player) – The nurse at the clinic
  • HIGHLIGHT – This is never easy but has to be the accom at BVI
  • LOWLIGHT – The PCR stress
  • BEST COUNTRY – Antigua offered the most
  • BEST SURPRISE – The islands being so quiet
  • BEST BEACH – Smugglers Cove in BVI however I’d imagine Batibou in Dominica would challenge it on a good day
  • VISIT AGAIN – Purely due to the unfinished business; Dominica, Grenada and St Vincent
  • TRIP RATING – 7/10

FINAL THOUGHTS

There was no better feeling than arriving into Antigua and being back on the road to counting countries. Every island offered something different and for damn sure every island gave me a good story, not the types of stories I expected however!

For sure I can see myself coming back, there are still the likes of Montserrat which remained closed, USVI and a few others to tick off the list but one things for sure those will have to wait until after COVID or at least when things have calmed down.

Things were chaotic and at times extortionate, take my $200 PCR test in Antigua for example, but with another 7 countries now added to the list it was great to get going again and heading home via Portugal was the cherry on the cake (I actually hate cherries!). However I cannot wait for whats next.

NEXT UP

I visit one of the most dangerous countries in the world, click to read.

SAFE TRAVELS, DS x
151/229

This is the reflection post of The Caribbean Series. For episode 1 click here or to see the entire series click here.
To watch the video of my trip, head to my highlights on my Instagram.

Question Time

  • Have you been to the Caribbean?
  • What’s your favourite country?

Let me know in the comments below . . .

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