September 12, 2005
View of the Atlantic from Anegada
A view from Lavenda Breeze on Anegada, looking out over the Atlantic.
September 10, 2005
Devil's Bay, The Baths, Virgin Gorda
A turbulent day on Devil's Bay.
August 13, 2005
White Bay, Jost Van Dyke
One of the world's best beaches - and home of the Soggy Dollar - White Bay, Jost Van Dyke. Thanks again to Debbie Warren for this photo.
August 03, 2005
Peter Island, BVI
Here is a photo submitted by Susan S. of my home state, NJ. Thanks Susan -
August 01, 2005
Anegada Trip Report
We spent June 19th to 23rd on Anegada. This report is a little late coming but the memories are all good! We flew over on our own charter from St. Thomas with Island Birds. Their service was excellent as were the pilots. When we got to Anegada on Sunday morning, Dean Wheatley of D.W. Jeep Rentals (284 495-9677) was waiting for us with our car and a big smile. A friendlier guy I don't think you'll find. Customs was a breeze. Laura of the fantastic Lavenda Breeze was also there, and we followed her out to the villa to drop our bags (we had arrived earlier than check in so we planned to leave our stuff at the house and have a snorkel and swim at Loblolly Bay and lunch at the Big Bamboo until the house was ready). The rest of the report is below, with comments after each photo. I was a little lax with the picture taking - I hope the few I chose to show here are okay! (A couple of the photos are from a day trip in February)
Jane & Alice in the Aztec
Here are my two girls, Jane & Alice, as we are getting ready to leave St. Thomas for Anegada. I am pretty sure we were in a Piper Aztec.
Road to Loblolly
This is one of the pictures from my day trip to Anegada in February - I am posting it again because I love it and I think it really gives the feel of the stark beauty of the island.
Beach Benches, Loblolly Bay
As you walk out to the beach from the Big Bamboo this is your view. Loblolly Bay is just stunning, with the turquoise water trapped by the barrier reef. The snorkeling here and off the beach at Flash Of Beauty was awesome. Huge coral formations, deep drops, huge fish, great visibilty, caves, shafts of sparkling sunlight... just a snorkelers paradise.
The Big Bamboo
The Big Bamboo. A really neat place, right next to the beach at Loblolly Bay. We had our first lunch here, lobster of course!
Path to Loblolly Bay
Looking towards Lavenda Breeze
Standing on the beach at Loblolly Bay near the Big Bamboo and looking East (generally). The red roof in the distance is Lavenda Breeze, where we stayed. The roofs you can see to the right of that I believe are those of the Loblolly Beach Cottages. We didn't see any sign of life coming from there during our stay though.
Lavenda Breeze from the beach
Here is Lavenda Breeze from the beach. What a fantastic beach house! You can find much better photos and a floor plan on their website. The house literally had everything - including an ice cream maker (we didn't use it)! My friend who was on the trip with us and rents villas on St. John was very impressed (we both were simply stunned that someone even built a home in such a remote location - the power line ends at the house). If you are looking for a peaceful and quiet vacation, where the only sounds you will hear at night are the surf and the breeze in the Sea Grapes, this is the place. I loved the feeling that we were nearly at the end of the world. It is the only house out on this part of the island, and you have fantastic, endless views out over the Atlantic ocean. We really loved the set up too, with the living spaces up and the bedrooms down, and the fact that each room had it's own outside shower.
House with beach chairs
Standing on the beach looking at the house. Those Adirondack style beach chairs are really cool - they are made out of plastic! We had a nearly full moon the whole time we were there, and one night we came down here with a bottle of champagne and some chocolate chip cookies. The moon was so bright I was tempted to put my sunglasses on.
Cow Wreck Beach Bar & Grill
On Monday we took the first of our island tours and for lunch ended up at the Cow Wreck Beach Bar & Grill (284 495-9461 VHF Channel 16 Email email@example.com). We had a good lunch and a nice relaxing swim. What a beautiful spot, huge white sand beaches stretching in both directions.
Beach at Cow Wreck Bay
More Cow Wreck
On the North shore
Not exactly sure where this was - if Dean knew we had the car out there we may have been in trouble. I think it is Windlass Bight, looking towards Soldier Point. See the Anegada map for those locations.
Neptune's Treasure is a neat looking spot, just down the beach a bit from the Anegada Reef Hotel (heading west). They have rooms and one small cottage available. Pam's Kitchen is also on the premises here. Visit their website for more information.
Pam's Kitchen & Bakery
This is the famous Pam's Kitchen & Bakery. We had a great breakfast there one day, and they also have fresh baked bread, rolls, hot sauces, jams, ice, etc. We met Michelle and Tom who I think are running the place now - Pam is Michelle's mom (I hope I have that straight - if someone else knows different send me an email).
The Purple Turtle
This is the brand new Purple Turtle Boutique & Gifts (284 495-8062 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org). If I got my story straight this is owned by Sue Wheatley, who also has a place (Sue's Boutique) at the Anegada Reef Hotel. A really nice gift shop, with clothes, gifts, some frozen and canned food, a computer set up for internet access and a public phone. Right next door is the gas station (I am using these terms loosely here - in Anegada the "gas station" is a single pump that is open who knows when!). Next to the the gas station is another newer establishment, Lil Bits Cash & Carry and Lil Bits Snack Bar (284 495-9932 Email: email@example.com VHF Channel 16), where we bought most of our supplies (dry goods, fruit and vegetables, frozen food, drinks, etc.) that we didn't bring with us. All of these places are right down the road from the Setting Point dock and the Anegada Reef Hotel - this seems to be the up and coming "spot" on the island.
The sun sets on a giant cloud formation, view from the deck of Lavenda Breeze.
View to Flash of Beauty
Looking East towards Flash of Beauty from Lavenda Breeze.
Taxiing for takeoff
Marshall of Island Birds let's me wear the headphones of the co-pilot as we leave, it was cool. Marshall was a very nice guy who lives on one of the small islands off of Tortola - can't remember which one though!
We take off towards Loblolly Bay and go right over it before banking hard to the left and coming back around right over the airstrip. You can see the "runway" there on the left - the top paralell strip.
So - what did I forget? A lot! Traveling for me really is just being there sometimes. Even though Anegada is small, we definitely missed a lot, but that is okay because it gives me a reason to go back. Of course we were so busy before the trip that we really didn't prepare as much as we could have. I love Anegada, it has all I want from an island vacation, but I will say that it is probably not for everyone. Most of the tourist traffic seems to be yacht people and some day trippers. It is a remote, pristine place, and a place to come for quiet, peace, and natural beauty. The desert island landscape, the water, the snorkeling are all fantastic. The food can be expensive, and there really is no entertainment and shopping - I don't think there is any chance this place will become a cruise ship destination. If you want some solitude and friendly people, and lazy days in the sun, Anegada is for you.
Tips, websites, emails and phone numbers:
It is blazing on Anegada and there can be a lack of shade. Sunscreen, sun-shirts, hats, sun glasses and plenty of water are necessities. Our one disappointment - the flamingos were nesting somewhere on the remote East end and we didn't see one! My kids were all worked up for that and I let them down - again poor planning on my part. If you want to see them make sure you don't show up during nesting season!
We did bring in a cooler full of food which was definitely a good idea, as it is both expensive and limited on Anegada (we did patronize the local markets as much as possible too - ). At the airport the cutoms official asked what was in the cooler - I said mostly frozen food and he was fine with that, he didn't even look inside. We ended up cooking dinner at home all four nights. Steaks on night one, a leg of lamb the next, lobsters (call Laura from Bonefish Villa 284 495-8045) on Tuesday, and curried lamb (from the leg left overs) on Wednesday. I did all the cooking, thank you. The villa had enough spices (it looked like at least 2 complete sets) to last for years. We did bring some mayo, ketchup, mustard, etc.
Places to stay:
- Lavenda Breeze Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Toll free: 1-888-868-0199 or: 845-255-1616 Anegada contact: Laura Vanterpool 284-495-8045
- Bonefish Villa - you can book this villa from McLaughlin Anderson on St. Thomas or call them directly at 284 495-8045
- Neptune's Treasure information@NeptunesTreasure.com Phone: 284-495-9439 FAX: 284-495-8060
- Anegada Reef Hotel email@example.com Phone: 284-495-8002 FAX: 284-495-9362
- D.W. Jeep Rentals Phone: 284 495-2714
- Buffy's Mooring & Taxi Service Phone: 284 499-1309
- T & A's Bike Rental Phone: 284 495-8047
- Mitch's Taxi Phone: 284 499-6683
- JD's Taxi Service Phone: 284 443-6091
You can reach most of the above on VHF Channel 16
See the Caribbean-On-Line Airline page - scroll down for small inter-island carriers. There is also some ferry service.
June 24, 2005
Loblolly Bay, Anegada
Here is a shot of the beach at Loblolly Bay looking east. The house with the red roof in the middle of the photo is Lavenda Breeze where we just had the pleasure of spending 4 nights. More pictures and a trip report to come soon.
June 18, 2005
The Baths, Virgin Gorda
Long Bay, Tortola
June 11, 2005
The Bomba Shack, Tortola
The Bomba Shack, Tortola, British Virgin Islands. Famous for their full moon party - among other things.
June 06, 2005
Taxi Ride to Loblolly Bay, Anegada, BVI
Here is a photo from the taxi ride (minivan) to Loblolly Bay taken in February of this year. That dirt road is actually worn down coral covered in sand to smooth out the bumps - doesn't work too good. We are returning to Anegada soon for a 4 day visit and will have many more photos and a full report on everything to see and do while there.
May 31, 2005
The Baths, Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands
My wife and kids negotiating The Baths on Virgin Gorda. It has been over 2 years since we were there I think - time to go back!
May 24, 2005
Copper Mine Point, Virgin Gorda
The Coppper mine ruins on Virgin Gorda.
May 18, 2005
The Baths, Virgin Gorda
The Baths on Virgin Gorda. One of the coolest places in the world. This photo includes the bonus of my oldest, Jane Marie. She is 5 in this photo which was taken about 2 years ago I think.
May 12, 2005
Mr. Joe Wife, Tortola, British Virgin Islands
There is a shell collecting "museum" on Tortola, along the north shore road, east of Apple Bay. The lower half of a conrete house that seems to never have been finished is filled with thousands of shells, room after room of them, lots of other stuff gathered from the sea, and curious home made signs. This is one of my favorites.
May 07, 2005
Sage Mountain National Park, Tortola, British Virgin Islands
This is just a favorite photo of mine. I love the beat up, weathered, rusty sign. Very Caribbean. This sign is up on Sage mountain near the entrance to the park.