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Honeymoon spot?

Dana Point...
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Honeymoon spot?

My fiancé and I are getting married in mid April. For our honeymoon we are looking for a great beach - quiet with the opportunity to do lots of different water sports - as well as the opportunity to do some interesting hikes and experience some culture. A travel agent recommended the Bitter End Yacht Club on Virgin Gorda. We were thinking of going for about 13 days.

Neither of us have ever been to the Carribean and we do not personally know anyone who has been to VG or BEYC. We've read a bunch of the posts as well as the forums. From them, I cant quite tell if this would be a good homeymoon spot, or whether it is more family oriented. Also wasn't sure if 13 days would be too long there. Any opinions from those who live there or have been there? If not this place, any other suggestions?

Wantagh, New York
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1. Re: Honeymoon spot?

Virgin Gorda is fantastic. 13 days at BEYC may be too much but you could split it up with another part of the Island or a different close Island. If you are there during the Easter break then you might have more kids. BEYC is separate from the mainland and you need to use there ferry to get to other places....Saba Rock, Leverick, Gun Creek, rent a car for a day a drive to the other sites on VG....the baths, Gorda Peak.....VG is basically very quiet, with beautiful beaches.

ACB
Rhode Island
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2. Re: Honeymoon spot?

The Bitter End is well known among families. Many children have had their first sailing experience there. That does not mean it should be discounted as a honeymoon destination. You just need to recognize that there will be children there.

When you say "water sports" what do you mean? Specifically, are you talking about sailing, snorkeling. diving, sea kayaking? Are you including motorized water sports as well - water skiing, jet skiing, para sailing?

You want a place with interesting hikes? How much hiking do you wish to do?

One of the first things you mentioned was "a great beach". Bitter End has access to great beaches but I would not call the one they have immediate access to "great". How important is that to you?

Lastly, in my opinion, neither the USVI or the BVI would be considered destinations I would visit to experience Caribbean culture. Not that they don't have any, but it has blended into the dominant US mainland culture to an extent. Love it or hate it, Jamaica has a remarkable culture. Grenada, Trinadad, St Lucia - all islands with vibrant cultures. Puerto Rico and the Spanish Virgins seemed to have maintained a strong cultural idenity. How much does seeing and experiencing a different culture figure in to your idea of the perfect honeymoon spot?

I am sorry to have to bother you with all of these questions, but before I start making suggestions I really want to know what means the most to you. It is your honeymoon - you deserve to have it as close to your ideal as possible!

If you are willing to play and answer all

Dana Point...
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3. Re: Honeymoon spot?

SOUP ER & ACB - Really appreciate your thoughts and comments. We will be traveling the last 2 wks of April and Easter is Apr 8 so shouldn't be too bad. To give you context, we are both mid-40s, arguably a bit older than your avg 1st time honeymooners, but very active and love outdoor sports. My fiancé is an avid surfer, but that is not a requirement for this trip. That said, he loves the water and any associated sport. He just doesn't want to be 'nickeled-and-dimed' on every activity, like paddle boarding or kayaking or snorkeling. Sailing would be nice and access to a small boat to get to good snorkel spots is a bonus. Jet skiing and parasailing not a req't.

We live in Southern Cali and so are used to great hiking in the foothills and mountains. Thiis would be an activity to break up the water sports and see another part of the island's beauty.

In terms of a 'great beach' I guess I envision getting up in the morning, having cup of tea, taking a walk on the beach and maybe going for a short swim before breakfast. Or maybe just sitting on the beach relaxing. Tough to do if the beach is rocky or rough.

Culture is a bonus. I've traveled to 17 different countries (counted one day while bored on a plane) and love to experience and respect the differences each has to offer - food, history, landscape, people. I am not really used to staying in a resort the whole time, but open to new experiences too. Sounds like this island may not have a lot of that. We have to travel through San Juan and maybe we should take a few days there - although neither of us has been there either. Or perhaps we should take the advice of those who suggested doing a multiple-day boat trip to see other islands through Traveltalkonline.com? Or perhaps split it up by going to a resort like Sandals on St. Lucia to get a change? I have this dream of a beautiful island honeymoon, but there are almost too many variables! I'm planning tthe wedding and my fiancé is in charge of the honeymoon, but he's looking for guidance and I appreciate any advice so I don't steer him wrong. Thanks so much.

Charlottesville...
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4. Re: Honeymoon spot?

The BVI are an excellent honeymoon destination, and we spent 10 days on Virgin Gorda at Little Dix Bay on our honeymoon a # of yrs ago. Watersports are a big draw at BEYC, but the better beaches on VG are in the center and southern part of the island. I'd definitely recommend considering staying at a couple of different places over 13 days. Peter Island is an excellent honeymoon island, with a very good dive shop. Perhaps the best beach in the BVI is White Bay on JVD, and there is a very good dive shop on Jost that also does eco-trips. Tortola has a # of excellent beaches on its northern shore, and will have the largest variety of activities, since it is the largest of the BVI. Anegada has miles of pristine beaches, a couple of places to stay and a few restaurants, but very little in the way of water sports. One more idea, Little Dix Bay has a sister resort, Caneel Bay, on St. John, and they arrange packages to stay at both places. We've never been to Guana Island, but it is another highly regarded honeymoon destination.

May you two have a blessed union, alashas

http://www.youtube.com/user/honeymoon2

ACB
Rhode Island
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5. Re: Honeymoon spot?

Thank you for the extra information. It helps alot!

Alashas gave you excellent advice as usual. I think you mentioned something as well that might work well with your trip. I would definately consider staying for a day or two in San Juan and enjoying Old Town. That is an outstanding cultural experience. I think it breaks up your trip very well so that you don't have to do all your travel in one day. You might even want to head up to Rincon and get your fiance a surf fix. That area has world class surfing.:

http://images.search.yahoo.com/images/view?back=http%3A%2F%2Fsearch.yahoo.com%2Fsearch%3Fei%3DUTF-8%26p%3DRincon%2Bsurfing&w=160&h=106&imgurl=www.bing.com%2Fimages%2Fsearch%3Fq%3DRincon%2Bsurfing%23focal%3D34521d60d81fb57eb876bc1e0413360a%26furl%3Dhttp%253a%252f%252fwww.wavepals.com%252fimages%252fsurf-puerto-rico%252fwaves%252ftres_palmas_beach.jpg&size=&name=search&rcurl=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.bing.com%2Fimages%2Fsearch%3Fq%3DRincon%2Bsurfing%23focal%3D34521d60d81fb57eb876bc1e0413360a%26furl%3Dhttp%253a%252f%252fwww.wavepals.com%252fimages%252fsurf-puerto-rico%252fwaves%252ftres_palmas_beach.jpg&rurl=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.bing.com%2Fimages%2Fsearch%3Fq%3DRincon%2Bsurfing%23focal%3D34521d60d81fb57eb876bc1e0413360a%26furl%3Dhttp%253a%252f%252fwww.wavepals.com%252fimages%252fsurf-puerto-rico%252fwaves%252ftres_palmas_beach.jpg&p=Rincon+surfing&type=&no=1&tt=115&oid=http%3A%2F%2Fts1.mm.bing.net%2Fimages%2Fthumbnail.aspx%3Fq%3D1450812914132%26id%3Dde8058099ba7961735f2799686e21bd2&tit=Surf+Camp+Puerto+Rico+%7C+Waves+in+Rincon+%7C+Surfing+Holiday+Central+...&sigr=15oudr12s&sigi=15htej3jq&sigb=11oel9ajs&fr=att-portal

I also think the idea of staying at Caneel and Little Dix is a good one. Caneel has seven beautiful beaches to enjoy on an island that is known for its national park, lovely beaches, fine snorkeling, and extensive park hiking trails. Here is a website that will give you some ideas:

http://seestjohn.com/

The other good thing about being on St John is that it gives you easy access to Jost, which as alashas noted, would be a fun place for you to visit. It is in the BVI but closer to St John than to Virgin Gorda.

Virgin Gorda gives you easy access to other islands of the BVI via day trips and sailings. Here are two companies I have used and highly recommend, and one I have not used but have read consistent good reviews:

www.divebvi.com/dive-sites/virgin-gorda/

http://www.spiritofanegada.com/

http://www.doubledbvi.com/trips.htm

I also agree with alashas that Anegada is worth visiting. The beaches, snorkeling, and famed beach bars and lobster dinners are help make this a great day trip.

On all of the islands mentioned you don't have to worry about renting a boat to go snorkeling. It is available to you just off shore. All you need are fins and masks. I also would strongly suggest renting a car to explore and appreciate each island at your leisure.

If I may make one other suggestion, consider renting a villa instead of using a resort. The privacy is optimal. Some people feel the need to cook when they rent a villa, but you don't have to. You can either get a private chef whenever you need one or simply enjoy the many local dining establishments. Virgin Gorda is blessed to have several rental properties with immediate beach access. We often stay at a small house located directly on Spring Bay on Virgin Gorda. My wife gets up in the morning, makes coffee, walks fifty feet , and sips her coffee alone on one of the most drop dead gorgeous beaches you will ever see.

Hope that helps some. I need to go back down stairs and do some more Christmas dinner prep. Happy holidays!

Wantagh, New York
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6. Re: Honeymoon spot?

Like the suggestion given to split up between Caneel and LDB...We always stay in a villa in Mahoe when we go to VG but LDB would be great...with 2 nights in San Juan for that culture fix.

Kama'aina Wannabe...
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7. Re: Honeymoon spot?

Since you live in CA, I would imagine you've already been to Hawaii, and am thinking that is why you are looking elsewhere for your Honeymoon as the Hawaiian islands certainly meet your requirements, with water sports, hiking and culture.

We've been to St. John twice (love it, especially Caneel Bay, which would be great for a honeymoon) and will be going to Biras Creek on Virgin Gorda for the first time next week, but if you have 13 days you could easily do 2 Hawaiian islands with great hiking on Kauai and Volcanoes National Park on the Big Island. We live on the East Coast and feel Hawaii is more exciting and varied, but if we only have a week we go to the Caribbean.

As far as nickel & diming for water sports- paddleboarding, kayaking, snorkeling equipment and excursions as well as Boston Whaler motor boats are all included at Biras Creek. There is a good deal for Biras on luxurylink.

Finally, if your fiance loves to surf-Hawaii is the obvious choice, imho.

North Carolina USA
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8. Re: Honeymoon spot?

13 days on one island is too long. My husband and I (early 50s) celebrated our 25th and did 3 Islands (15 days). Please read our trip report. I also think Villas versus resorts is the way to go.

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g147353-i545-k4836…

North Carolina USA
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9. Re: Honeymoon spot?

For our 20th we went to the South pacific and that is heaven on earth.

tripadvisor.com/…4872792

Boston
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10. Re: Honeymoon spot?

Personally I would not want to stay at either the BEYC or Biras because they are too isolated and as Alashas says the better beaches are not on that part of the island. Also, to go to a restaurant off premises from either of these two resorts requires a long trip. I consider both Alashas and ACB's advice spot on(as usual!) and agree with what they have said. A few days in Old San Juan is a great idea and would break up the long trip from the west coast.

I would have a look at Guana Island as well as Little Dix Bay. Also, there is some surfing on Tortola at Josiah's Bay (not too far from Guana).

Good luck and happy planning.

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