Island hopping; how to combine multiple islands in one vacation?

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Eilandhoppen Island Hopping

Island hopping; how to combine multiple islands in one vacation?

The Caribbean are ideal for island hopping; visiting several islands within a vacation. There are several ways of island hopping. What they are I explain below…

Cruise ship

First there is the cruise ship, a giant floating city full of entertainment which brings you from island to island, the so-called island hopping. Since I’ve never done a cruise, I’m full of preconceptions about cruise ship passengers. They always annoys me, most of them are somewhat heavy, but above all loud people. They are released on the island. In less than a workday they try to see as much of the destination. This is usually no more than the capital, and in particular the main street full of jewelers and gadget shops. Fully packed with their purchased goods and ready to go back on board, claimed to have visited an island, sniffed the culture and on their way to the next destination.

Does not sound very positive huh? This is my opinion based on observation. But I promise you that I going on a cruise in a foreseeable future, to see if the preconceptions are consistent with my experience or that they are totally negated.

By plane

So far my favorite way of island hopping is by plane. It is the fastest way to move yourself from island to island without losing precious time. A central island from where you can easily visit many islands is Saint Martin. From there you can reach the nearest island in less than 10 minutes flying and the farthest 2.5 hours at most. Ideal. And adventurous! Most flights are operated by small aircraft, which gives flying a new dimension. How about take off and land on Saba with its shortest commercial runway in the world? Or defy the Saint Barths cross winds? In short, adventurous, quickly and efficiently, and plenty of time left over for a nice vacation.

By ferry

A somewhat cheaper but more time-consuming way of moving yourself is by ferry. Big advantage is that lovely dwell on the beautiful Caribbean Sea. Disadvantage is that the Caribbean Sea is in open connection with the Atlantic Ocean, which makes the sea pretty rough. Once you have left the lagoon and the turquoise waters around the islands, you notice that the waves are getting higher and the sea wilder. Not for people who have a sensitive stomach.

Also you must be careful when you sit on the deck. Always keep in mind what the locals do, most of the time they’re all sitting inside, they do so for a reason. Think twice if you want to sit outside, how nice the weather is and how beautiful the view. Why? Several unexpected high waves have quite soaked my baggage, myself, phone and camera. Then such a boat trip takes quite a long time…

By yacht

That brings me to the last and most luxurious way of island hopping; by yacht. Nowadays you can easily rent a yacht in advance for a certain period and discover the Caribbean for yourself. How cool is that? And if it all needs to be even more luxurious, you can also hire a captain as well. Secretly I prefer to the latter option, though I’ll have to really experience first how it is to be on a cruise.

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