Valentine’s day is here. Again. Not my favorite day. In all honesty I have grown quite disgusted with this so-called day of love. Not that I have anything against love. It’s just that I can do without the whole commercial part of V-day. This day has quickly become more about how much money you can spend on the one you love, rather than the actual love between you and your mate/partner/wife/husband. Whatever.
I choose to still believe in the actual love and bond between myself and the person I decide to give my heart to. I do not need a cheesy teddy bear with an “I love You” shirt and a dozen roses cruelly cut before their prime to tell me that my husband actually loves me too. Besides, if he really wants to show his appreciation for our love and marriage he knows no teddy bear, chocolate or roses will do, but a ticket to an exotic Caribbean island just might 😉
We try to make at least two trips a year together. The rest of the time I travel by myself. This year thanks to fucking Irma, I will probably be celebrating Valentine’ s day at our bar, eating burgers and drinking too many glasses of Prosecco, drowning my sorrow and wallowing over the fact that I’m not traveling.
Anyway, before I depress you with my depressing anecdote of my deplorable current travel status, let me just get to what this blog post is really about: My current most romantic Caribbean island.
Back in November of last year, I spent 5 whirlwind days on Bonaire. Way too short if you ask me. Then again, it’s never long enough when you’re having fun. I definitely left on a high and haven’t been able to stop thinking about my 5 fantabulous days on the island since.
They say that if at first you don’t succeed, try and try again.
This is my second attempt at organizing an all girls getaway, my first group trips of many, I hope. I figured that with my background in event planning and the many questions I receive weekly from readers wanting to visit the Caribbean or asking what to do on specific islands, a well organized girls getaway would be beneficial to many.
So I started planning my first girls trip last summer. Everything was set. We were heading to Anguilla in October 2017. Then Irma happened and everything changed in the blink of an eye. But now 4 months post-Irma, I’m ready and excited to go on three Girls Trips this year. So, who’s ready to travel with me this year?
Before I begin telling you about this little island, which in comparison to my 37 square mile rock is really not that little (Bonaire is 113 square mile), I need to first tell you that Bonaire has long been a place close to my heart. My heart is filled with happy childhood memories of vacations spent here with my parents and siblings, and this little flamingo filled paradise was also one of my three choices when I decided to move back to the Caribbean from the Netherlands in 2001. I ultimately picked St. Maarten but to keep it short, Bonaire is damn special to me, even though it has been 22 years until now.
“The best way to help the Caribbean is to visit the Caribbean this winter”
This seems to be a rather controversial saying that has sparked many debates. Some say exposing visitors to the current status of the damaged islands will only hurt tourism, while others, like myself can only see the benefits of opening the islands up to visitors as soon as possible. My personal opinion is that we cannot afford not to. Tourism is what we are and what we do here in the Caribbean and further delaying our tourist season is only going to hurt our already fragile economies.
I had the pleasure and immense honor of attending Anguilla’s first ever Folk & Blues Festival on the gorgeous beach of Rendezvous Bay last month. It was an amazing experience, made even more memorable when I combined it with exploring unknown parts of the island in my rental car and eating fresh fried fish, while enjoying Anguilla’s other more popular blues, that of its clear waters.