Best Things to Do in the US Virgin Islands

Flyboard, scuba and zipline
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Part one: St. Thomas

By CoolestCarib.com.

Beach and green hills
Magens Bay Beach

Summer is finally here. And we can all agree the last few years have been tough on everyone. So it’s time to take a little break and relax from the stressful and chaotic everyday life. The only problem is deciding where to go. Picking a destination can be overwhelming. And to add to that, you also need to plan some fun activities while you are there. Well, look no further. The US Virgin Islands are one of the most popular vacation spots in the world. Every year more and more tourists choose it as their destination. In this article, you will find out why people like it so much and what are some of the best things to do in the US Virgin Islands.

About the islands

The US Virgin Islands are a group of islands located in the Caribbean. They are an organized, unincorporated United States territory. Their territory consists of three major islands (St. John, St. Croix, and St. Thomas) and 50 smaller islands and cays. English is their official language. The weather tends to be fantastic and warm throughout the whole year. Beaches are beautiful, sandy and white with crystal blue waters. The islands are infused with rich history and culture that attracts people from all over the world. A convenient thing for American tourists is that they don’t need passports to travel to these islands. They are a perfect place for a family trip, romantic getaway, or even going on your own and taking a break from everyone. And according to experts at Best Movers NYC, in recent years, more and more people have chosen to relocate there, permanently.

Planning activities beforehand is key

Now that you have chosen a destination, you have another equally important task – planning fun activities to do while there. Planning these types of things can be a little tricky, depending on who you are going with. Not everyone is going to be into the same things. You are going to do one type of thing on vacation with friends and another on vacation with your family or friends. The best thing to do is to prepare and make a list so that you are ready when you get to your destination. We are going to help you with that by making a list of the best things to do in the US Virgin Islands.

This article is part one of a trilogy and focuses on Saint Thomas, US Virgin Islands. Part two is on Saint Croix, and part three on St. John, US Virgin Islands.

PART ONE:
St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands

  1. Coral World Ocean Park
  2. Jeep tours
  3. Flyboarding at Lindbergh Bay
  4. Boating to neighboring islands
  5. Catamaran sail & snorkel – swim with turtles
  6. Jetski tours
  7. Scuba with family
  8. Tree Limin’ extreme zipline
  9. Food fair

Coral World Ocean Park

For all lovers of sea life, there is no better place to visit than Coral World Ocean Park. It offers incredible experiences such as: Sea lion swimming, dolphin trek, shark encounter, SNUBA and a dolphin moment.

Jeep Tours

If you want to see the best of the island in one day the best suggestion is a private guided jeep tour. You can visit both islands, St. Thomas and St. John (by taking your jeep on a ferry to St. John), in one day, and get to see the best of two completely different Caribbean islands. And if you want to see selective sites, beaches or attractions, your tours could be customized on the same day as the trip to fit your vacation dreams.

People sitting on roof of jeep Wrangler in US Virgin Islands.
Jeep Tours

Flyboarding at Lindbergh Bay

This is an activity not only for adrenaline junkies, but anyone who wants to experience what it’s like to be Iron Man – for thirty minutes or more. This is a very exciting water sport and if you like going on a Jetski you’d very much love this activity too. We all want to fly! And this is as close we get to living out that fantasy. The beach close to the airport offers many water sports, but flyboarding at Lindbergh Bay is the most exciting of them all.

A man flyboarding high up in the air
Flyboarding is offered at Lindbergh Bay

Boating to neighboring islands

Saint Thomas is a boating mecca in the Caribbean with so many types of boats and tours to choose from. A fun option is to charter a boat with captain and go island hopping between the US Virgin Islands and the British Virgin Islands, and snorkel at the most secluded Caribbean coves. Remember to respect our marine life and not to touch the coral nor the star fish. A very popular island to request on your tour is Jost van Dyke where you’ll meet loads of like-minded island explores. Don’t forget your shades, hat and reef-friendly sun screen.

Island Hopping by boat

Catamaran Sail & Snorkel – swim with turtles

If swimming with turtles is on your bucket list then we have a surprise for you. St. Thomas offers catamaran sail & snorkel tours where you’ll definitely swim with turtles. Imagine boarding a top of the range catamaran with family and friends and sail to the appropriately named Turtle Cove. It is part of the uninhabited Buck Island National Wildlife Refuge and you can swim and snorkel among friendly fish and turtles. Well, this is not a crazy dream, but a possibility, if you visit Saint Thomas, US Virgin Islands.

Two snorkelers and a sea turtle
Swimming with turtles at Buck Island in St. Thomas

Jetski tours

If you respect this fast, personal water craft and ride far from swimmers and other boaters you can have the most memorable fun ever. Lindbergh beach is a swimming beach, but only a few hundred yards deeper you have the open Caribbean Sea where you can freestyle as much as you desire. Jetskis can be rented at Lindbergh Bay or you can book a tour to explore historic Charlotte Amalie Bay. Explore historic Charlotte Amalie Bay and cruise around Water Island and stop over at the stunning Honey Moon Beach. These jetski tours are very family-friendly and safe.

A girl on a Jetski in Lindbergh Bay
Jetski Tours

Scuba dive with family

St. Thomas is surrounded by world famous dive sites, and scuba diving is a fun filled family-friendly activity. Everyone can learn this underwater breathing skill, and experience what’s invisible above the water surface. The underwater world is mesmerizingly different, filled with funny looking sea plant structures and fish as inquisitive as the diver. Don’t miss out on this explorative water sport, all you need is a little determination and a good scuba diving instructor.

Chilled Scuba Diver

Tree Limin’ Extreme Zipline

St. Thomas offers much more than water-sports. The island sports hiking trails and exciting activities not for the faint of heart, like zip-lining. If you do not get easily scared and enjoy seeing the beautiful island nature from up high, this is the thing for you. Zipping above the trees gives one a breathtaking view of St. Thomas Island and even a glimpse of the British Virgin Islands in the distance.

 Man ziplining through the forest
This zipline is not for the faint of heart

Food Fair

Caribbean cuisine is world-famous, and there is no better way to experience it than visiting the Caribbean food fair. Depending on where you are staying, you can see food fairs on all three US Virgin Islands. In recent years many people have chosen to move to the islands in search of a new exciting life. But it can be a bit of a culture shock. So if you plan to leave New York, for example, moving abroad to the islands, this beautiful event, full of incredible local food, drinks, and arts and crafts, is the best way to start and bridge that culture gap.   

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Why Visit Jamaica in 2022

Visit Jamaica
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By CoolestCarib.com

A beach in Jamaica with many towels and a bar

Jamaica is one of the world’s most special vacation spots. This gorgeous Caribbean island has a rich landscape full of mountains, rainforests, and magnificent beaches. It provides the visitors with a diverse range of activities, places, and things to enjoy. Its tranquil environment attracts millions of tourists every year. They usually come here to rest and enjoy the beautiful nature, but they also like to eat some of the freshest seafood in the world and experience its authentic bars and clubs. The demand for this place is never decreasing. If you’re looking for a relaxed atmosphere, Jamaica is the perfect place. There are many other reasons why you should visit Jamaica in 2022.

1. Alluring Beaches

Jamaica is home to some of the most well-known and beautiful beaches in the Caribbean, which is one of the primary reasons people visit Jamaica. When it comes to some of the most popular ones, there are two: Seven Mile Beach in Negril and James Bond Beach close to Ocho Rios. Seven Mile Beach is surrounded by palm trees and five-star hotels. The second beach is famous for being the setting for celebrity hangouts.

Low Cay Beach is also an excellent choice. Its surrounding scenery is stunning. Although it has been transformed into an elite resort, it is perfect for sunbathing and swimming. Whether you wish to swim or sunbathe, Jamaica’s beauty will impress you in every possible way.

You will love the Jamaican sea so much that you will want to stay forever. And if you decide to start planning a relocation to Jamaica, make sure to contact one of the best moving companies. Their helpful team can assist you in your relocating. Hiring international movers is essential because relocations to a far-away place are always stressful. However, a moving company’s staff is here to relieve the anxiety by providing exceptional service and experience you can’t possibly have.

a man thinking about reasons to visit Jamaica in 2022.
In case you are worried about the safety in Jamaica in 2022, make sure that it is less dangerous than before.

2. Safety has improved

In case you worry about the crime rate in Jamaica, rest assured that it is safe to visit Jamaica in 2022. The most important thing is choosing the proper neighborhood. Some regions are known to be dangerous, but you can avoid them. If you follow the appropriate advice and avoid the areas known as ”unsafe,” you will have a fantastic, stress-free holiday.

It is a common misconception that Jamaica is a dangerous place that you should avoid. On the contrary, Jamaica is a safe place for tourists. If you plan to visit Jamaica in 2022, rest assured that you can find safe communities in urban regions. Such areas usually have a security guard on site 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Jamaica has never been safer than in 2022, which is another reason not to avoid visiting this splendid island.

3. Job opportunities

You might not have been aware that there are plenty of job opportunities in Jamaica. Namely, this country is a place where people strive to improve their standard of living. There are more professional options in growing industries in 2022. If you plan to relocate to Jamaica to find a job, you can find opportunities here. However, you will need to prepare for your relocation well. Apart from researching more about Jamaica, you might want to check if you fulfill some of the job requirements in Jamaica.

4. Incredible food

Apart from being famous for its outstanding beaches, Jamaica also has one of the best cuisines in the world. There are many restaurants where you can get fresh seafood. If you are a food lover, bear in mind that Cosmo’s Restaurant and Bar is one of the best and most popular. This place serves delicious grilled and curried lobster, jerk chicken, and conch soup.

Jerk chicken is one of the most famous dishes in traditional Jamaican cuisine. Both Jamaicans and tourists love it! That is why it is served on nearly every street corner on the island. This spicy chicken dish is known for its special technique of preparation. Of course, one of the most famous dishes includes seafood. If you love seafood, you can choose from parrotfish, crab, kingfish, and many other kinds of fresh fish. In case you are interested in different types of food in the Caribbean, do not miss the chance to try them all.

meat and vegetables on a grill in Jamaica
Trying jerk chicken and other Jamaican dishes is one of the most important reasons to visit Jamaica in 2022.

5. The birthplace of reggae

If you are a music lover, remember that reggae originated in Jamaica. This island is never quiet. You can hear music on the beach, in the streets, and in restaurants throughout the island, and you can find the best places to hear reggae in the island’s capital. Kingston also has excellent museums dedicated to the lives of music legends such as Bob Marley.

If you are interested in nightlife in Jamaica, make sure to visit Kingston Dub Club. It is a popular nightclub in Jamaica that features reggae music. When you visit this place, you will undoubtedly experience the lively, ecstatic atmosphere and enjoy the excellent beverages and food.

6. Perfect for diving

If you are a fan of diving, Jamaica might be a great place for you. There are many kinds of tropical fish you would certainly like to see in the oceans surrounding Jamaica. If you are not good at diving but would like to give it a try, there are many diving schools in Jamaica. Any diving lover looking to discover great spots with few tourists will certainly find paradise in Jamaica. Plus, there are other islands in the Caribbean to visit with your partner or on your own, and you can easily reach them from Jamaica.

A diver underwater in Jamaica
In case you want to have the time of your life, do not hesitate to visit Jamaica.

Final thoughts

There are many reasons to visit Jamaica in 2022. You will immerse yourself in the beautiful beaches, cuisine, culture, and attractions that this country offers. If you want to enjoy good music, Jamaica is an excellent spot. If you are keen on diving, there is a possibility to improve your skills and enjoy it simultaneously. Whatever you decide to do, Jamaica won’t disappoint.

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7 Best Caribbean Islands for Couples

Seven Best Caribbean Islands to visit
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By CoolestCarib.com

A couple walking on a dock in one of the best Caribbean islands, the Bahamas.

When it comes to couple getaways, we have choices and choices. But, when it comes to the romantic heavens of earth, Caribbean islands are hard to beat. There is something about these islands that makes them mystic and marvelous, something that makes everyone put them on their traveling wish lists. And the best part about the Caribbean is that there is something for every kind of couple. For instance, in the Bahamas, you can participate in all sorts of wonderful activities that will take your breath away, and in St. Lucia, you can say that you are in your own paradise.

One thing is for sure—in the Caribbean, you will walk on the softest sand, swim in the bluest waters, eat the most delicious food, and simply have the time of your life. But you already know that. What you do not know is which Caribbean island to go to. We will help you out—here are the 7 best Caribbean islands for couples. 

1.  St. Lucia 

One of the best Caribbean islands for couples has to be the island of St. Lucia. Everything here is perfect. Wherever you look, you will see mesmerizing scenery—beaches, forests, resorts, etc., all look like they are from another world. Because of that fact, staying on this island is extremely expensive. But, you know what they say – best things always come with a hefty price tag. However, we are sure that you will not regret coming to this luxurious romantic getaway with your significant other. 

A couple holding hands on the beach.
You and your partner will fall in love even more while vacationing in St. Lucia.

2. Cuba 

Remember those amazing-looking postcards from the Caribbean with beautiful people, wonderful architecture, palm trees, cocktails, and pastel-colored cars? All those postcards are from Cuba. And, let us tell you something—Cuba looks even more beautiful and even more vibrant in person.

But, what makes it vibrant are not only the resorts, no. Cuba is all about different cultures—cultures of people with different backgrounds, languages, customs, dress codes, foods, drinks, and so much more. So, if you and your partner decide to come to Cuba, do not be lazy and stay only in the resort. Find a guide who will take you downtown—that is where you will see the essence of Cuba. 

3. Jamaica 

Another very familiar postcard is the one with cabins on the water. Yes, that too can be found in the Caribbean islands, specifically in Jamaica. It is here where you can book a stay in a cabin over the water—a cabin where you can touch the warm sea while you are lying in your bed. And a cabin from which you will have the most mesmerizing views of the sunrise and the sunset.

These cabins are a part of many resorts. Still, you do not need to worry about your privacy—you and your partner will have your own little piece of heaven without anyone interrupting you. The only time you will be interrupted is when waiters come to bring your romantic dinner, flowers, and candles. 

Cabins over the sea.
It doesn’t get more romantic than Jamaica.

4. Guadeloupe 

Guadeloupe has only recently become one of the best Caribbean islands for couples. Do not get us wrong—this island (that is, this group of 5 islands) has always been mesmerizing. However, it was little-known among tourists. Nowadays, it is a hotspot for all people looking for luxury experiences, romantic getaways, and vacations that will not end up costing an arm and a leg.

Yes, believe it or not, Guadeloupe is still very affordable. Things like accommodation, restaurants, local shopping, transportation, and similar—all come relatively cheap. This is what makes this island so desired even by ex-pats. So, if you visit this island, if you fall in love with it, and if you decide to stay for good—moving to the Caribbean, that is, moving to Guadeloupe can be easily arranged! There are countless options for properties that are reasonably priced and will afford you a lifetime of amazing views and fun in the sun.

5. One of the Best Caribbean Islands—Tobago 

Not a lot of people know about Tobago. They find out about its existence only after they visit its sister island, Trinidad. Maybe that is a good thing—secluded and uncrowned islands are a perfect getaway for couples. But, this island is not your typical resort. Tobago is still wild! It is full of lush beaches, tropical forests, hills, and mountains. That is, Tobago is meant for adventure and adrenaline rushes and not for luxury and expensive hotels. However, if you ask us, lush vegetation is also what makes a certain place luxurious. 

6. The Bahamas 

We just have to mention another postcard – the one with swimming pigs! No, that was is photoshopped—that is something you can experience in the Bahamas. But, of course, there is so much more to the Bahamas than taking a swim with cute pigs. For instance, here is where you can experience walking on the softest and the whitest sand in the world. And, it is where you can swim in the warmest and cleanest waters in the world. So, let us ask you—is there a better reason for visiting the Bahamas? Probably not! This is one of those best Caribbean islands for couples that you should definitely not miss out on. 

A pig swimming.
One thing is for sure—The Bahamas will equip you with memories for life.

7. St. Barths 

We can’t finish our story of the best Caribbean islands for couples without mentioning the famous island of St. Barths. Even though this island is tiny, it is full of amazing resorts. However, just like St. Lucia, vacationing at St. Barths will also come with a hefty price tag—there is a reason why this small piece of land is called the land for the rich. Here is where all those most luxurious resorts and hotels can be found. And, let us not forget about golf courses, tennis courts, private trails., etc. You can find all of that and more in St. Barths. So if you and your loved one want to experience luxury, and if you want to see how rich and famous tend to vacation, consider booking your trip to St. Barths. 

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Food, Travel, and a Full Life: A Quick Guide to Visiting and Living in Antigua

Antigua bird beach food
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By CoolestCarib.com.

 

Antigua is a paradise-like island nestled in the West Indies and is home to the famous 365 pristine pearl-white beaches. It stretches 54 miles and is considered the primary island of the Caribbean nation Antigua and Barbuda. Along with its sister island, Barbuda, Antigua is one of the most sought-after destinations for both migrants and travelers alike.

Whether you decide to visit the country for a vacation or choose to live there permanently through the Antigua citizenship by investment program, it is crucial that you know the different attractions you’re about to enjoy.

From great food to picturesque scenery, this article discusses everything you need to know to have an enjoyable trip and get the most out of your stay in this world-famous Caribbean nation.

The Best of Antiguan Cuisine

Antiguan cuisine is one of the main reasons this beautiful island has become even more popular among tourists. The island cuisine offers many delicacies that will tickle your taste buds and make you want to return for more.

Below are three of the best dishes you must absolutely take a bite off of when in Antigua and Barbuda:

Fungie

Not to be mistaken with microorganisms that make you sick, fungie (pronounced “foon-jee”) is a type of Antiguan food that exudes almost the same vibe as the Italian polenta. It is made from cornmeal and okra paste that is molded into balls of pure goodness.

But fungie is not only a staple in Antigua and Barbuda – it is the country’s national dish. It is served best with meats and stews, most especially with the flaked and salt-cured white fish called “saltfish.”

Conch

Pronounced as “conk,” conch is the meaty part of the spiral shells that you may be able to pick up across the sandy beaches in the West Indies. It has a slightly chewy texture and is quite similar to clams in terms of flavor. It can also be prepared in several ways, including chowder, fritters, and curries, but it is best served raw.

Ducana

Prepared using a similar process as that of making the Mesoamerican dish tamale, ducana is a package of pure sweet potato goodness. It is seasoned with coconut, pumpkin, and cinnamon before being wrapped in a piece of banana leaf and boiled in water.

As a mildly sweet dish, the ducana is best paired with saltfish. Although it doesn’t have a similar texture with fungie, ducana is a bit more flavorful and is considered the best dish using sweet potatoes as its base.

4 Antiguan Tourist Spots You Shouldn’t Miss

Aside from enjoying a gastronomic trip in Antigua and Barbuda, you should also make sure that you get the most out of your stay in the country.

Here are some of the best tourist spots you shouldn’t miss when visiting Antigua and Barbuda:

Half Moon Bay

Located in the southeastern coast of Antigua, the Half Moon Bay boasts tranquil waters and the iconic crescent white sand beach that meets the azure sea. Aside from melting away your stress with the calming scene, it is also a great place to meet undersea life face-to-face via snorkeling, when the weather permits.

On less calm days, you can also try surfing the rough waters. The beach is somewhat difficult to locate, so make sure you have a tour guide or the GPS feature in your gadget turned on during your visit.

17-Mile Beach

The 17-Mile Beach is another popular destination for lovers of the sun and the sea. This ravishing stretch of pink sand serves as the boundary of Barbuda Lagoon and the Caribbean Sea. This particular beach is mostly untainted, which explains the lack of facilities, so be sure to bring enough supplies for you to get comfortable in Mother Nature’s arms.

St. John’s

As the capital city of Antigua and Barbuda, St. John’s is the best place to savor the country’s colorful history and culture. It has colonial-style cottages painted in candy hues and market stalls filled with different kinds of tropical flowers and fruits.

It is also home to several distinctive architectural gems like the St. John’s Cathedral which boasts neo-Baroque-style towers. Some of the best spots you should also visit when in St. John’s are:

  • The Museum of Antigua and Barbuda – for a glimpse of its rich history and culture
  • Heritage and Redcliffe Quays – for an awesome shopping experience

Barbuda Frigate Bird Colony

Home to over 5,000 frigate birds, the Barbuda Frigate Bird Colony is an aviary nesting ground that can only be reached by boat. In this part of the country, the birds outnumber the people and enjoy unspoiled nature, with the mangroves as their home.

In spring, male frigate birds create a spectacle with their elaborate mating rituals. This is why most tours to the area are scheduled during this time of year.

Enjoy Life’s Simple Pleasures in Antigua and Barbuda

The benefits of living in this Caribbean nation easily outweigh the cost of acquiring citizenship in Antigua. Not only is it home to mouthwatering cuisine, but it also maintains several untainted natural spots that have become quite rare in other popular tourist destinations.

10 Reasons Why You Should Visit the Bahamas in 2022

Bahamas
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By CoolestCarib.com.

A dock in Nassau, the Bahamas.

Although 2022 has just started, many people are already planning their holidays and upcoming trips for the year. And there are so many choices out there, so many potential travel destinations! However, some of them are only good at a certain time of the year. The Bahamas, on the other hand, are a great travel destination all year round. If you’re not convinced yet, we compiled a list of 10 reasons why you should visit the Bahamas in 2022. So, without further ado, let’s get into them!

1. It’s Close & Convenient

If you’re from the US, you’d be surprised how close the Bahamas actually are! Nassau Paradise Island of the Bahamas is located just 180 miles from south Florida. That means you’re only a short plane ride away from paradise. And the tickets are usually available from almost any bigger airport in the country. Moreover, once you get to the Bahamas, you’ll have no trouble exchanging money for the local currency because they accept the US dollar everywhere. However, the only thing you’ll have to read more about is if you plan to import your own vehicle onto the islands.

2. It’s Family Friendly

The Bahamas is a wonderful spot for families to visit and vacation. It is a safe and pleasant environment for families, with many attractions to see and so much to do. If you’re planning to travel with kids, you won’t have to worry about thinking of activities to entertain them – there will be plenty of that around!

3. It’s A Great Spot For Rest & Relaxation

Whether you’re traveling alone or with your family, one thing is sure: the Bahamas are an ideal destination if you want to relax and unwind. You can spend your days sunbathing or enjoying the beach and the sounds of waves with a good book and a cocktail in hand. On the other hand, you can also book a massage appointment in one of many world-class spas in the Bahamas.

A man swimming in beautiful blue water.
The Bahamas are a great vacation destination, no matter if you’re looking for rest and relaxation or adventure

On the other hand, if you’re looking for fun and excitement, the Bahamas can offer that too! If you’re not the type of person to spend their holidays laying around, there’s so much you can do if you visit the Bahamas in 2022. You can scuba dive, participate in popular water sports, or even national sports like cricket. Moreover, you can also play some basketball, softball, baseball, and American football with the locals since they’re also popular sports in the area.

4. Chance For Adventure

On the other hand, if you’re looking for fun and excitement, the Bahamas can offer that too! If you’re not the type of person to spend their holidays laying around, there’s so much you can do if you visit the Bahamas in 2022. You can scuba dive, participate in popular water sports, or even national sports like cricket. Moreover, you can also play some basketball, softball, baseball, and American football with the locals since they’re also popular sports in the area.

5. Amazing Nightlife

Some parties in the Bahamas go on from sunset to sunrise. And there are so many options to choose from when it comes to the nightlife there! You can spend one night in an elegant cocktail place and then dance until your feet hurt at a popular nightclub just down the road. Alternatively, you can grab a pint with your friends at a local craft brewery. Whatever your style and wherever you go, you’re guaranteed to have the fun of your life and meet some interesting people.

6. There’s So Much To See And Explore

Another reason why you should visit the Bahamas in 2022 is to explore the islands. There are more than 2000 beaches in the Bahamas and 700 islands waiting for you to explore them by boat. One of the most exciting and interesting destinations in the Bahamas is Pig Beach. This is no joke. There’s seriously a beach in the Bahamas where you can swim with the pigs – how fun! That will make for some exciting memories and pictures to show back home.

Food plate with seafood and cucumber.
Bahamian cuisine is a mix of South American and Caribbean cuisine, and you should definitely try it!

7. The Bahamian Cuisine

If you’re a foodie, it’s understandable if you want to visit the Bahamas just to try their local cuisine. It’s a rich blend of South American and Caribbean influences. That means you get a lot of rice and cornbread mixed in with beautifully prepared seafood. Moreover, in all of the Bahamas’ inhabited islands, there is an excellent selection of luxury restaurants, diners, and cafes.

8. Luxury Hotels

If you want to enjoy some luxury, the Bahamas are the destination for you! There are numerous luxurious hotels to choose from. Staying here can truly feel like a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Some of the most prominent hotels here are The Beach at Atlantis Paradise Island, Breezes Resort, and Grand Hyatt. The Bahamas’ hotel personnel are kind and generous, and they’ll take care of your every need. Moreover, the hotels are so safe you’ll never have to worry about your belongings while you’re out of your room. On the other hand, before you leave, you should ensure the safety of valuables you leave behind by placing them in a storage unit while you’re on vacation. It’s one of the best options out there when it comes to keeping your valuables and other belongings safe while you’re out of town.

Aerial shot of the Baha Mar Resort in the Bahamas.
The Bahamas are home to numerous luxury hotels.

9. The People

When it comes to many popular travel destinations, locals can sometimes be quite rude to tourists. This isn’t the case for the Bahamas. At every turn, there’s a kind member of staff who wants to know how you’re doing and if you’re having any problems. Each of your demands is fulfilled with zeal and consideration. The Bahamians are friendly and kind people, and getting to know them will make your trip even more unique and unforgettable.

10. It’s The Bahamas

Have you seen the pictures?! What more reasons do you need? It’s the Bahamas! You’ve read the previous nine reasons, and if that’s not enough to convince you, nothing else will.

But, in all seriousness, our tenth reason why you should visit the Bahamas in 2022 is to experience it all: the beauty, the culture, the climate. If you do decide to go on vacation to the Bahamas, you will feel like your whole life has changed in a matter of days. There are no other words to explain it – you’ve just to experience it for yourself. So happy packing and bon voyage!

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Let’s Get Creative and Restore…

Jan Thiel
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If accommodation capacity is a problem, let’s get creative and restore our crumbling buildings to their former glory and welcome tourists to stay at places that have character and history. Our wildlife and public access to recreational areas in Curaçao are at great risk. The Curaçao government, along with APC, and the Papagayo Group want to develop the last remaining public coastal areas in Jan Thiel Bay.

Jan Thiel is an important breeding area for the Least Terns. This area is unique for different reasons. Learn why hotel development might not be the best choice for this area, and sign the petition below to support sustainability in Curaçao!

Jan Thiel’s Natural beauty

The land in question borders one of Curacao’s largest salt pans- The Jan Thiel Salt Pans – which are home to over 80 bird species. Some live here year round, while some other migratory birds visit from other countries during the winter months. Some flamingos spend their days in Curaçao, and fly back to Bonaire everyday just to sleep. These birds have been living this way for centuries. In addition, some of these birds, only mate and breed in the Jan Thiel area in Curaçao.

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5 Reasons to Visit the Mexican Caribbean

Cozumel
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By CoolestCarib.com

FOTO: Tulúm, Riviera Maya, Mexico. (Foto de Flickr/Jake Bellucci)

The Yucatan Peninsula is a lovely place to spend a vacation, especially during the winter months. The coastline is filled with unique areas with plenty to see and do. Whether it’s for a honeymoon or a family vacation, many reasons to visit the Mexican Caribbean.

Beautiful Beaches

This area has countless stretches of beautiful white sand beaches – from Playa Mujeres and Cancun down to Tulum and over to the island of Cozumel. It’s a great destination for long days spent lounging on the sand and afternoons spent snorkeling off the coasts.

Stunning Sunrises

The Mexican Caribbean boasts some of the most picturesque sunrises. Early risers will experience watching the sun emerge from the water as the waves gently crash on the shore. Each daybreak brings a new set of colors painted across the morning sky.

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Read more on Cozumel

Caribbean Foiling Championships 2021

The Caribbean Foiling Championships
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3 Days of Racing

The Caribbean Foiling Championships will celebrate its second edition in 2021 from 10 to 12 December. This new and innovative event will offer three days of racing for professional as well as leisure kite/windsurf foilers!

Pro & Leisure Classes

There are two categories; kite- and windfoiling. To suit all needs we created two groups for each category; the professional and the leisure kite/wind foiling group. By doing this you will race against your ‘equals/rivals’, which results in competitive racing on every level.

1 round the Island race

The Round the Island Race, a race around St. Maarten/St. Martin and is the most anticipated race among competitors. A leg destroying stretch of 26 Nautical Miles with a current record of 1:29:32h. Are you up for the challenge?

Get all the info here

Importing Your Household Belongings and Vehicle Into the Bahamas

Importing Your Household Belongings and Vehicle Into the Bahamas

FacebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedinmailImporting Your Household Belongings and Vehicle Into the BahamasA Pristine Beach in the Bahamas.

Are you ready to make your move, to any of the over 700 islands, islets or cays in the Bahamas? If so, you’re no doubt excited about your upcoming change of scenery. You’ll enjoy picturesque beaches, amazing snorkeling in the clear waters and sunny skies. The speed of life is also much slower and you’ll be able to savor the fresh seafood that’s prominently featured in Bahamian cuisine (1).

However, before you can relax, unwind and take in all of the sights and sounds the Bahamas has to offer – you must do the unpleasant chore of planning and executing your move. International relocation can be a difficult task, and it’s easy to find yourself in over your head. This is why working with an international moving company that has a proven track record is so important.

Yet, even with their professional guidance, you’ll still be responsible for collecting all of the necessary paperwork and paying all of the fees. For this reason, you’ll need to be informed beforehand, about everything that the process entails.

What Duties Will You Pay?

Importing Your Household Belongings and Vehicle Into the Bahamas
Staniel Cay, The Bahamas

Import duties to bring your shipment of household belongings into any foreign country, can range from free of charge to extremely burdensome. Unfortunately, this point isn’t clear, when it comes to your personal belongings and Bahamian customs.

Sources Disagree
One highly respected source claims that your used personal goods can be imported fully exempt from any duties. This is, provided that you only have reasonable amounts of each item in your shipment, and they are for your own personal use (not for commercial enterprise or to resell) (2).

However, a different source states just the opposite – asserting that you’ll be hit with an import duty of 35% of the CIF value. This is higher than just the value of your belongings, as it includes the cost of freight (or shipping) and insurance into the mix. A separate 7% stamp tax will be added to this as well, at least according to this particular source (3).

What Bahamian Customs Says
When sources disagree in this manner, it’s best to consult the customs website directly. Currently, the Bahamian customs website does have this 35% import duty listed. In addition, according to their site, your shipment will be charged value-added tax (VAT) of 7.5% – though whether this is assessed on all items isn’t clear (but it is likely). You’ll also be charged a separate environmental levy fee, however this is quite small. For example, on a $400 television this fee would be just $5. For a $10,000 vehicle, the environmental levy fee would still be a reasonable $200 (4).

Fee Calculation Examples
Where the process of calculating your charges gets more murky, is the status under which they are imported. For the examples given on the Bahamian customs pages, under both accompanied and unaccompanied baggage declaration forms (C17 or C18), you may be entitled to exempt $300 of a $400 television’s value for fee calculation. That means rather than paying the 35% import duty and 7.5% VAT on the full $400 value – you’d only be paying these charges on a value of $100 instead.

In contrast, examples on their website for courier/parcel list baggage declaration filing (C18A), do not show any such exemption. Therefore, duty and VAT are calculated using the full $400 value of the television.

Why Filing Status Matters
What’s the upshot of these different figures? When able to exempt most of the TV’s value under C17 or C18 filing – you’ll pay just $50.50 USD for duty, the environmental levy and VAT combined. When not able to exempt any of the TV’s value under C18A filing – you’ll pay the much higher $194.13 USD for all of these charges combined (5).

As you can see, filing status makes a profound difference on the total amount that you’ll pay. While a television was used in their examples, the differences in fee rates for different filing statuses, apply to many different items in your shipment.

Different Duty Rates For Specific Items
In addition to the varying total cost (dependent upon how you file and whether you can exempt most of the value of an item) – some specific items have different duty rates assigned to them. These changes were made after the recent implementation of VAT, and they can make the process of determining your import fees extremely complicated indeed.

For example, batteries are charged different rates, depending upon the exact type. Deep cycle batteries carry a 35% duty rate, whereas lead acid or automotive batteries are charged a 65% duty. The full list of items is extremely detailed, with barbeque sauce being charged just 5% duty but aluminum foil incurring a 30% duty. See here for a complete list of items, along with the rate they are charged.

Some Items Are Duty-Free
While duty exemption for your entire shipment isn’t offered, certain items are duty-free. The list is diverse, with items as different as computer printers and condensed milk both being exempt from import duty. See here for the full list of items.

Speak With Customs
With all of these intricacies in the duty and VAT calculation process, it’s vital that you learn beforehand the best filing choice for your shipment – and on what value these charges will be assessed. With such widely different final costs being possible, the best route is to speak to Bahamian customs for yourself. This will allow you to clear up any confusion, and determine how import duty, the environmental levy fee and VAT will be calculated on your shipment.

You will also need to work closely with a professional international moving company, who should help guide you through the process without any errors or missteps.

What Documents Will You Need?

Importing Your Household Belongings and Vehicle Into the BahamasExuma, The Bahamas

While our discussion of fee calculation was quite involved, fortunately documentation requirements to import your shipment are refreshingly simple. When bringing in your personal goods, you’ll need to provide customs with your passport and entry visa. A packing list and a separate inventory list are also required. Also needed is a letter giving your shipping company or other third-party agent, permission to work with customs to clear your shipment (called a Letter of Authorization) (6).

You may also need receipts, your Original Bill of Landing or Air Waybill and possibly your driver’s license. A Home Consumption Entry Form (C13 Form) and a Declaration of Value (C43 Form) may also be required (7). Contact customs to determine the exact paperwork you’ll need to bring your items into the country.

Duties On Your Vehicle

Importing Your Household Belongings and Vehicle Into the Bahamas One of the Famous Swimming Pigs in Staniel Cay, The Bahamas

In most countries around the world, your vehicle will be handled differently when attempting to clear customs. The Bahamas is no exception, and the import duty rate is based on the vehicle’s value. For a vehicle worth $10,000 USD or under, you’ll pay a 45% import duty. For a vehicle between $10,000 and $20,000 USD – this rate goes up to 50%. Finally, if your vehicle is worth greater than $20,000 USD, then a 65% import duty will be assessed (8).

Bear in mind, that an additional 7% stamp tax on your vehicle is reported by reputable sources (9). However, with the implementation of VAT in the Bahamas, stamp tax may have been rescinded or reduced. Again, you’ll fare far better if you speak with both Bahamian customs and your shipping company – to learn the exact fees that will apply to your specific situation.

Documents For Your Vehicle

Importing Your Household Belongings and Vehicle Into the BahamasNassau, The Bahamas

The paperwork required to import your vehicle into the Bahamas, includes a Certificate of Title and Registration from your country of origin (copies are acceptable). You’ll also need the purchase receipt or invoice, if you bought the vehicle not long ago (10).

According to experienced international vehicle shipping company A1 Auto Transport, Inc – you’ll also need your passport, customs declaration form, Original Bill of Lading and proof of valid insurance. Once your vehicle is cleared for entry by customs, you’re also required to get it inspected, registered and licensed by the Bahamian Road Traffic Department (11). Registration charges are based upon the vehicle’s weight, and you’ll pay anywhere from $160 to $760 USD (which is virtually the same in Bahamian dollars at the current exchange rate) (12).

In order to process your vehicle, the Bahamian Road Traffic Department will need to see your Road Traffic Vehicle Information form – along with your driver’s license from your origin country. Be aware that while your current license will authorize you to drive in the Bahamas for the first three months after moving, you’ll then need to obtain a Bahamian driver’s license to legally operate your motor vehicle (13).

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Caribbean Comeback: Top Vacation Destination is Better Than Ever After Hurricanes

Caribbean Destination is Better After Hurricanes

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“I hear from clients all the time, today, who think the entire region is decimated, no power, nothing open, no flights,” said one of the thousands of luxury travel advisors attending the annual Virtuoso conference in Las Vegas two weeks ago told me, shaking his head in disbelief.

Totally not true.

In fact, most islands were unscathed by last year’s horrific hurricane season, and even those hit hard are nearly back to the hotel, villa, restaurant and flight levels they enjoyed before the storm. But what may surprise many high-end travelers is the silver lining – because so many hotels rebuilt partially or completely, taking advantage of the opportunity to expand, improve or update, many of the Caribbean’s top resorts are better than ever. Another surprise – occupancy for the coming peak holiday, winter and spring break season is nearly back to normal levels, so don’t expect bargain, and if you are waiting to see what happens and book last minute, you will likely get shut out. For the most part this winter the Caribbean will see business as usual – only better.

Anguilla is a perfect example. One of the most traditionally luxurious islands in the Caribbean, it is home to five top tier luxury resorts and countless deluxe villas, a favorite way to stay on the island. Even after Anguilla was ravaged by storms last summer, owners managed to get 70% of the villas reopened before last Christmas season. Most of the rest of the work was done in the first quarter of this year, and currently the vast majority of the villas, 95% of the island’s restaurants, and three of the five top hotels are already open. The remaining two resorts, the Belmond Cap Juluca and Auberge Resorts’ Malliouhana, are both reopening in time for the holidays. These are two of the best luxury properties in the entire Caribbean and they will essentially be brand new.

Read full article by on www.forbes.com