Taking a Road Less Traveled

I’ve been a travel agent for ten years now. I specialize in creating memorable vacations to the gorgeous Caribbean islands. They are pretty spectacular places beyond anything you can imagine in your wildest dreams of beauty and natural richness. Most everyone has one or two places on the top of their must see list. A vacation there is a real getaway, full of mystery and magic, and new things to explore. There is so much variety of cultures, languages, cuisines, and scenic extravaganzas. I love sending people off to sunny shores and soft sand and making that dream turn into a reality! At the very least, I hope to inspire people to consider the Caribbean at least once in a while. Meanwhile, through this blog you will get to know me a little and learn something of my day to day life.

Today, I wish to encourage travelers to be ready wherever they go to do their touring with some advance planning. You need a guidebook or at least notes from your travel agent and some basic gear on the road. What should you take with you in your trusty but cool backpack? I assume you will have a roomy one: most tourists do. They want to pack an extra shirt in case it rains and they get soaked, a bathing suit, a small towel, some sunscreen and suntan lotion, and a pair of sun glasses. A fold up rain poncho is a nice option. You can enjoy yourself more when you are out and about if you are not caught by surprise and are missing something vital. One thing that comes to mind is a broad-brimmed hat. They fold up into neat little packets and they are essential when island hopping.

In addition to the above items, you also will want a bottle or two of water, a granola bar when food is not readily available (as it is often lacking in those out of the way places), and some type of protein source such as nuts. You want to crank up your energy when it flags. People who are in the sun for long periods of time forget about nutrition and they can fall ill. So you have practical things and you can add some optional items like a digital camera (unless you are dead set on using your cell phone exclusively). I like the idea of an alternative in case the phone goes dead and needs recharging. Then you won’t miss some lovely photos that will serve as your vacation mementos. You may want a tablet or laptop if you like to work on location, but this adds a lot of bulk to your backpack, and you should ask yourself if all this is really necessary. Are you on vacation to see the sights or to work?

Island life is exotic and irresistible. I encourage clients to explore wherever they go. Knowing a bit about the culture in advance focuses the journey and helps you try to encounter it with an open mind.