A Travellerspoint blog

By this Author: Steffi Kay

One day in Aruba

The ABC islands are part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. However don’t expect to be able to pay in Euros everywhere, you might be disappointed. They are not part of the European Union.

Planning and what to do

Aruba is famous for the beaches.

It’s very warm year around (between 25 and 30 degree Celsius) with few and short rain falls. Don’t forget the sunscreen.
I’m not too much into tanning, generally I stay pale anyway. Therefore I searched for other things to do. I found some interesting rock formations – Ayo and Casibari Rock Formation. The Arikok National Park also includes some beautiful beaches, a natural pool and some caves with Indian drawings. The Quadirikiri Cave and Blackstone Beach are also part of the national part, however I didn’t see them – lack of time. The Quadirikiri Cave has some holes in the roof that illuminates the whole cave with sunlight. The Blackstone Beach is of organic origin and the only beach in Aruba with black stand.
If you are interested to see Dutch Colonial Architecture, you have to visit Oranjestad. I had my fill on it in Curaçao.

I did a 4 WD tour around the Arikok National Park

It was a bumpy ride.

Some views of the Coast:

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This is the Baby Natural Bridge

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The Natural Bridge collapsed in 2005, it looks like this now:

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Bushiribana Gold Mine

This gold mine looks like a fort. This is a good and original way to protect a gold mine.
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Ayo Rock Formation

We did a little hike through the rocks.
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Natural Pool:

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I always try to find some souvenirs from my different trips. They are displayed in my living room either on the wall or on the shelves. Well except for the ones I eat or bring my friends. As a souvenir I took a hand-made MOPA MOPA art piece - an owl for my wall - with me. The burrowing owl is one of the national symbols of Aruba that can be found on coins and some postal stamps.

Posted by Steffi Kay 03:29 Archived in Aruba Comments (0)

One day in Curaçao

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Beaches

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Curaçao has a lot of beaches, including the

Playa Lagun

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Klein Knip

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Grote Knip

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Playa Grandi

You can swim with turtles at Playa Grandi (you will also find the octopus tree there)
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Christoffel National Park

You can hike the Christoffel Mountain, but in that case you should be there by 10 am, though earlier is better. I didn’t have enough time to do it, or at least to start the hike early enough.

Shete Boka National Park

It’s next to the more famous Christoffel National Park. It is a Costal National Park with some beautiful hikes the name means seven inlets/bays.
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Hato Caves

My Mum was at Curaçao before, however she had a dizziness spell in the Caves. Therefore she wanted to visit them again. They are nice, but I didn’t find them too fascinating. It’s only allowed to make photos in one room therefore I can’t show you many pictures.
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View from Queen-Emma-Bridge in Willemstad

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We were told that even though it is not far from one of the ABC islands to another, there is no ferry traffic between the islands.
I took some Curacao blue (a liqueur that is made from bitter orange peels) with me for me and my friends. I don’t like the curacao blue from Bols, but love the original that you can only get in the Caribbean or one of the few countries it is imported to. Luckily for me one of them is the Netherland. I didn’t take anything for my wall, since I already have a Chichi figurine that my parents brought with them for me on their trip to Curaçao.

Posted by Steffi Kay 04:15 Archived in Curaçao Comments (0)

One day in Bonaire

It’s famous for its underwater beauty.

I was told there is not much at land to see. I decided to verify that and wanted to see the salt pyramids.

The salt pyramids and slave huts

They are historically interesting. It shows the condition of the salt trade in the past. You can still buy the salt for example as a souvenir.
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We also visited the Groto Lake to see some Flamigos

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Washington Slagbaai National Park

It wasn’t my kind of National Park. It was a plantation that was sold to the government on the condition that it was made into a national park. I thought that it was too very tame and looked too constructed to me. I love wild nature, with preferably not much human influence. The Groto Lake borders on the National Park, so maybe if you have more time you can hike to it and get better pictures of the lake and the flamingos in it.
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I will remember Bonaire for the caves.

Most of the caves are hidden and might need a guide or GPS coordinates to find them. There are no entrance fees however the entrance is sometimes more of a hole in the ground than a big entrance. They are very natural with no artificial lights and no flat grounds. I loved it, however you should take a head lamp and the flash for your camera, which I didn’t. You are allowed to use the flash, which I was not used to in limestone caves, since normally you’re lucky, if you are allowed to do photos at all. I’m not sure if it is good for the cave, but there seems to be no rules about the caves. We will see, if it changes in the future. We visited three caves, one of them with a bit of water. You also had to climb to get to the third cave.
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I did some snorkelling at the 1000 steps Beach.

You can reach the corals from the beach and don’t have to do an exclusive snorkelling tour.
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You can also do a boat tour, sometimes with a view (i.e. glass bottom), to Klein Bonaire. Klein Bonaire is an uninhabited island a few minutes from Bonaire. You can also do some snorkelling from there.
If you want to see mangroves you can visit Lac Bay.

Posted by Steffi Kay 05:20 Archived in Caribbean Netherlands Comments (0)

One day in Grenada

We were told it is also called “Spice Island”. You can get necklaces with spices or just some normal spices as souvenirs. You can also get chocolate, as there is a chocolate factory in Grenada.
Grenada has two seasons the rain season between June and December and the dry season that is the best travelling time.
It was the first green Caribbean Island we saw.
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Concord Waterfalls

Only the first waterfall is accessible by car. The Concord hike takes you to three waterfalls, however the hike takes around 5 hours. Therefore the first waterfall was all I visited.
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Annandale Waterfalls

An easily accessible, very beautiful small waterfall.
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Seven Sister Waterfall

We only went to the first two waterfalls. It is possible to go farther, but I read that in that case, you have to jump the falls on the way back. Not sure, if that’s true, but as I’m a chicken I didn’t want to find out. The walk to the first two falls is about 30 minutes.
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Grand Etang National Park

It includes the Grand Etang Crater Lake.
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Interesting for divers is the Underwater Sculpture Park.
From Fort Frederick is a nice view over St. George

Posted by Steffi Kay 09:10 Archived in Grenada Comments (0)

One day in Barbados

What to say about Barbados, it is one of the most famous Caribbean Islands. It is known as a hot spot for the rich and powerful. We were told a lot about some residence of someone famous, and were shown where Rihanna grew up. Unfortunately that meant we did not have enough time at Bathsheba.
Barbados seemed a lot more expensive to me than the other Caribbean Islands, I also didn’t take any souvenirs. My mum took some rum, however as it is made from imported sugar cane molasses for me it wasn’t the right country to buy rum from. I took quite a few photos to make up for the lacking souvenir.

Harrison’s Cave

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You take a train through the cave, which stops at the most interesting spots for photos.

Animal Flower Cave

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It is a sea cave that gets its name from small animals (sea anemone) that look like flowers.

There are only two intact sugar mills on the Islands. One is the Morgan Lewis Mill on Barbados

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Bathsheba – the soup bowl

It’s a nice spot for surfers however photographers will like the rock formations.
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Cherry Hill Tree is the highest point of the island with a nice view over the east coast.
We were told than in Barbados most of the crop damage is done by monkeys. We even saw a monkey damaging a papaya before it saw us and fled without eating it. What a waste. Hopefully it came back later.
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Of cause Barbados has a lot of beautiful beaches including Horse Shoe Bay Beach, Freights Bay and Worthing Beach. Crane Bach is a hidden beach cove.
Bridgetown is the capital and largest city in Barbados with St. Michael Cathedral.

Posted by Steffi Kay 10:42 Archived in Barbados Comments (0)

One day in St. Lucia

The most famous sights are the Petit and Gros pitons – two volcanic peaks. You can hike them however you will need some time. I was told the grand Piton is easier, even though it’s higher and that you had to take a guide.
As a souvenir I took some cocoa sticks with me. You can make Caribbean Cocoa Tea with them - tasty.

Castries is the Capital of St. Lucia with the Immaculate Conception Church.

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From Morne Fortune you have a nice view over Castries Harbour.

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On the way to Soufriere you have some nice views of the Pitons.
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Tet Paul Nature Trail with a nice view of the Pitons.

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Sulphur Springs

It is advertised as the only drive in volcano in the world. You can drive to the edge of the springs and walk on wooden pathways. In the past it was possible to walk towards the pits, however after an accident with a guide, it was decided that it was too dangerous. You can also take a mud bath.
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View of Marigot Bay

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Botanical Garden

I wanted to go there because of the Diamond Falls, however I was surprised at the beauty of the botanical garden.
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The Diamond Falls always look a little bit different because of the mineral sediments. This is how they looked in January 2020.
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Toraille Waterfall

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On the way back we stopped at a cliff and our guide made a sign to make some guys cliff dive. I didn’t get any good photos, however this is a picture of the spot.
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Another Spot I was interested in is a sheltered bay named Anse Chastanet. Pigeon Island also sounded interesting.

Posted by Steffi Kay 12:12 Archived in Saint Lucia Comments (0)

One day in St. Vincent

I did a tour to the east coast, because I wanted to see the Owia Salt Ponds. The ponds are beautiful, however the rest of the tour…
I didn’t take any souvenirs, there are lots of pens, magnets and so on with Grenada on them, but I didn’t see anything typical to take with me.
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Colonarie Beach

I’m not sure that is the right name, but it is a black beach near Colonarie, so you will be able to find it.
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Black Point Tunnel

I personally found it a disappointment a smelly tunnel with an access to the sea, which was difficult to reach because of some rocks. Historically it might be interesting, but it wasn’t mine.
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Black Point Beach is next to the Tunnel and very beautiful.
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Sandy Beach

A beach near Sandy Bay, I'm a bit uncertain about the name as well.
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Owia Salt Pond

It is very beautiful - the rocks form a bathing pool. You need some water shoes though, otherwise it might be too slippery (flip flops) or too many sharp edges (barefoot)
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View of Kingstown

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Other sights:

Falls of Baleine only accessable by boat
Dark View Falls are two waterfalls. The first fall can be reached in a short easy walk, the second is also short, but a bit more difficult.
Trinity Falls are accessable by an easy 45 Minutes walk
Wallilabou park with the main attraction Wallilabou Falls
Tobago Cays a paradise for divers
Soufriere Volcano is one of the most active volcano of the Caribbean.
Montreal Estate Gardens has some nice views of the surrounding mountains.

Posted by Steffi Kay 13:19 Archived in St Vincent/The Grenadines Comments (0)

One day in Dominica

Dominica is my favourite island in the Caribbean. There is a lot you can do. Unfortunately I didn’t have enough time.
We tried to take some chocolate with us, but the factory was closed and the shops didn’t have any. There was a small market that I saw a wooden parrot that I had to take with me. It was handcrafted and very beautifully made with lots of small details. Perhaps not the typical souvenir, however the Sisserou parrot is the national bird of Dominica and a national symbol, so it counts.

Morne Trois Pitons National Park

Emerald Pool

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Other sights in the national Park are:

Boiling Lake - It is a 6-8 h hike to the boiling lake
Middleham Falls - It is a 3 h hike to the Middleham Falls and starts at the same point as the hike to the boiling lake

Spanny Falls near Trafalgar Falls

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Jacko Falls

It’s a small but steep hike from Spanny Falls, however I was told it is also possible to access it from the road.
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Salton Falls

The waterfall can be reached by a very bumpy ride or a slightly longer hike. The path was not well cared for, but we had the fall to ourselves.
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Trafalgar Falls

They are also called Mother and Father Falls. The mother fall is the wider lower fall. The viewpoint is easily reachable.
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Titou Gorge

You can swim through the gorge to a waterfall. It was also a filming site for one of the Pirates in the Caribbean movies.
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Other things to do, that I haven’t mentioned yet:

Morne Bruce with a nice view over Roseau the capital of Dominica
Morne Diablotin National Park named after Morne Diablotin , which is the highest mountain in Dominica. There are some parrots on the mountain that are a national symbol of Dominica.
Champagne Reef is a snorkling spot
Dominica also has some beaches like the Mero Beach

Posted by Steffi Kay 14:28 Archived in Dominica Comments (0)

One day in Guadeloup

Guadeloupe consists of two islands Basse Terre from volcanic origin and Grand Terre made of limestone.
I took some rum with me, couldn’t leave the Caribbean without rum. Guadeloup makes the rum out of sugar cane, that grows on the island, instead of imported sugar cane molasses.

I decided to visit Grand Terre:

Cemetery Morne-a-l'Eau is a world heritage site

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Viewpoint de la Grande Vigie is the northernmost point of Guadeloup

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Port d'enfer (Gate of Hell)

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Pointe des Chateaux is the easternmost point of Guadeloup

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There are also some beaches like the Anse de Souffleur

Basse Terre includes the following highlights

Chutes du Carbet

Three Waterfalls, one (20 m high) can be reached in a 45 Minutes hike, though I read that there are often landslides, so be careful and find out, if you can do the hike upfront. Afterwards you can go back to your car and drive 1,5 km and then walk 20 Minutes to the second waterfall (110 m high). The highest waterfall can be reached in a two hour hike. If you want to reach the summit, you should reach it in 3 h.

Cascade aux Ecrevisses

a little jungle waterfall that you can reach in 5 minutes.

Posted by Steffi Kay 14:55 Archived in Guadeloupe Comments (0)

One day in Antigua

It was the end of the trip and I already had enough souvenirs. Also Antigua was nice, but not my favourite island. The highlight was:

Viewpoint Shirley Heights

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Nelson’s Dockyard is a historic dockyard

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Sugar Mill Betty’s Hope

is one of the only two intact sugar mills on the Caribbean Islands.
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Devil’s Bridge National Park

Devil’s Bridge

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Blowholes

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Indian Town Point

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We were at a beach. I’m not sure what it was called; it might have been Long Bay Beach. There are too many beautiful beaches in Antigua to be sure.
Half Moon Bay is also a great sight, if you only had unlimited time.

Posted by Steffi Kay 15:05 Archived in Antigua and Barbuda Comments (0)

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