As a rum enthusiast, the Caribbean is my favorite destination to indulge in that amber elixir. Brugal in the Dominican Republic, Appleton Estate in Jamaica, Bacardí in Puerto Rico, and, the most illustrious, Mount Gay in Barbados.
“It is a land of love and wondrous beautyfrom The Prettiest Flowers by Tim Surrett
Where fragrant flowers ever will grow”
No matter how much of a city person you are, there is something magical that happens when you surround yourself in a lush landscape and bathe in the extraordinary colors of flowers in bloom. Luckily, in the Caribbean, you are never too far from being surrounded by natural beauty. Beyond the sun, sea and sand, the region also offers exquisite flora in must-visit botanic gardens and parks. These are a few of my favorite places that feature some of the most unique and picturesque vegetation in the world.
For as long as I’ve known my wife, she has asked me for one thing and one thing only: a monkey.
The beach has always been my happy place. The majority of my childhood was spent on the shore of Miami Beach and I learned to surf on the waves of Maui’s Ka’anapali. I got married on Smathers Beach in Key West and discovered my passion for travel on the black volcanic sands of Los Gigantes of Tenerife. Yet it’s the beaches of the Caribbean that bring me the most joy.
It was early November and the fall season air was already brisk. Sweaters and scarves, instead of sandals and spaghetti straps, were staples of my wardrobe. A few months prior I had moved to a new city and, for the first time in my life, I was four hours away from the nearest beach, instead of my usual hard-limit of no more than 45 minutes from door to sand. I needed an escape that required sun, swimming and frosty umbrella drinks, so I looked at a weather map kept heading south until I read 85 degrees and discovered my next destination: Oranjestad.