Southern Caribbean Cruise – Part 2

After spending a leisurely day in the beaches of Barbados, Mike and I were looking forward to another adventurous island visit.

Our forth stop of our excursion brought us to the gorgeous jungles of Grenada.  This tiny, quaint island provided some incredible natural scenery.  We booked a trek for the day which began with a roller-coaster bus ride through the winding little town of St. George.  We hiked with a tour guide who enthusiastically showed us every spice (nutmeg, ginger and cinnamon) and tropical plant life (banana tree, cocoa seed and aloe plant)  growing freely along our path.  The end of our trek brought us to the cascading Bamboo Falls, a popular destination for tourists and locals alike.

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Fun times on a muddy trek through Grenada
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Bamboo Falls – Grenada

We were told Grenada boasts some of the finest chocolate in the world due to the pure properties of the cocoa seed they harvest from their island.  We decided we must try this delicious treat and easily found chocolate bars in many different flavors for sale in the shops nearby the port.  We selected hazelnut-infused and dark sweet chocolate bars.  Similar to a Hershey’s #pip, the candy was divided into mini bricks, and it did not disappoint.  The chocolate was rich and flaky, giving us the perfect pick-me-up after our long tropical hike.

After Grenada, our cruise diverted from the casual island-vibe, Bob Marley feel to a more formal, crisp, Dutch colonial atmosphere.  We made our way to the colorful city of Willemstad, Curacao on day 7, reaching the port in the early afternoon.  We again decided to experience the island’s favorite beaches and took a quick taxi to Playa Porto Mari.

While this beach was much more rocky than we were used to, it provided amazing snorkeling opportunities with all the diverse reefs collecting among the shoreline.  While Mike was searching for marine life, I made friends with a group of blonde, blue-eyed Germans from Hamburg.  They spoke extremely fluent English, and actually communicated to each other in Polish.  This was their first visit to the island and they were loving their vacation as much as we were.

Since our schedule at this port began later in the day, we weren’t departing until 9 that evening.  Mike and I were excited to witness a bit of the night life on the island and enjoyed a long walk through the city after leaving the beach.  We took a ferry to the main hub of the city and found a casual seafood restaurant where we dined outside and sampled fried tilapia and scallops.

On our walk back to the cruise ship, we crossed the Queen Emma Bridge which is actually hinged to open for boats passing through.

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Indulging at Playa Porto Mari
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Rocky beaches of Playa Porto Mari
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Viewing Willemstad from the Queen Emma Bridge
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Queen Emma Bridge, all lit up

 

Our final destination brought us to the sleepy little town of Kralendijk, Bonaire.  We arrived bright and early on day 8 and ventured out to our last beach stop.  We discovered a wind-surfing hotspot in Sorobon Beach and posted up on our lounge chairs.  The beach was surrounded by a natural, government-portected reef, keeping the waters calm and full of wildlife.  We were again in awe of the incredible clearness of the water and spotted many tiny fish swimming happily around our toes.

While at the beach, we drank pina coloda smoothies with rum and feasted on fried cheese, a Dutch favorite.  Our bartenders were two young girls from Denmark, working the island on their holiday break.

After the beach, we took the 20 minute taxi ride back into town and marveled at the rows of multi colored shops and restaurants packed into the city streets.  Famished from our day at the beach, Mike and I stopped into a local Dutch brewery for a pint and their delicious take on Swedish meatballs (essentially fried sausage and cheese).  YUM.

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Sorobon Beach – Bonaire
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Windsurf Boards piled high on Sorobon Beach
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Sampling local fair 

After departing the lovely island of Bonaire, we had almost three days of travel at sea before arriving back on American soil in Fort Lauderdale.  We spent the trip home debating our favorite islands (we still can’t decide), favorite excursions, and favorite hotspots.  We’re already planning our next trip back!

Mike and I had a honeymoon of a lifetime and we couldn’t ask for a better way to begin our lives together.

 

 

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