First love, sorry, it's not about a woman here, it's about a place! It was back in January 1995 while I was still a university student. Back than, I was fortunate to spend a lot of time teaching golf for Club Med...while attending university full time! Well, internet was not widespread yet, but my uni books did travel a lot with me! And that winter of 1995/1996, I spent most of my winter cold nights between the Bahamas and Marbella (Spain). I know, that was rather cool!
I actually spent four weeks next to Governor's Harbour on Eleuthera. I know, most of you have never even heard of that place. Eleuthera is kind of well known for the pink sand beaches, yes, the sand is simply pink! I can tell you, that's something! This is the place where I also did my first dives. Confined water around Governor's Harbour, but one day we drove with friends up all the way to Harbour Island. We rented an old american huge car, and took the short boat ride to Dunmore Town on Harbour Island. Remember, I was a student, not specially the rich type, but more of the organized type. But diving
meant for me seeing not much. I had no contacts at the time, and no prescription mask, so I enjoyed the ride, but didn't see much during the dive. And for info, 2 dives at the time cost me 7usd, employee rate, not bad!
Since this day of January 1995, I remember Harbour Island. It was a quiet place, off radar for all on earth. Till few years later few celebs found the place, and decided to turn it into a playground for the rich and famous. Well, I had to come back, and yes this place is ultra romantic, so coming here with my love Mari was a priority!
So here we are, fast forward to today, 2nd of July 2011, 16 years after having found my first paradise. As you know, later on, I have been fortunate to visit few more paradises on the map, lucky me!
On the 1st of July, we had dinner in NY with Stephanie and Andras. Back to pick up our bags at around midnight to the hotel, spending next nearly 2 hours on the internet before making our way by metro to JFK. We did reach JFK at 3.30am
for our flight two hours later. By that time we would haven given a lot simply to sleep in a bed. Well, not really as we had our flight to Miami boarding soon. AA was nice enough to upgrade both of us to their funny "First". Three hours later...Miami airport.
And what do you do when you have some time in Miami airport? You have a drink with Mike. So now this is for the aficionados of Travelblog. Look at the pic and tell us if you know who is Mike. I admit, it would have been a lot more fun if Sofia, Tiffany and Leslie were there...one day we'll have this pic Mike! But I can tell you, even if our meeting was pretty short, it was great to meet Mike. Going to see you again soon I hope!
So it was soon time for our flight to North Eleuthera on a small propeller pack to the max. Don't forget, this is 4th of July week-end, it's big travel time for all the Americans this week-end!
We made it to the aiport, took the 2 minutes taxi ride to the small port. First rip-off, 10usd for
less than a miles by taxi! From there, we took a little taxi boat to the main pier. Good news, our hotel, the Landing, was sitting right there at the end of the Pier.
On Harbour Islands, there are really only two options. The first, Pink Sands Beach Resort, right on the beach, and seriously way too expensive for our budget. Second choice, the Landing. The Landing has only 12 rooms in three historic buildings. We pick the cheapest one, and had the all place nearly for ourselves. This place is amazingly romantic in old style caribbean athmosphere. don't tell you the hours we spent on our little terrace.
Over the next four days, we would spend a lot of time on the beach, enjoying the amazing scenery. Pink soft sand and amazingly clear water....wow!
For food, well, you have to be creative, the place is simply extremely expensive. Dinner at the Landing, no way, the cheapest main is 50usd! They are mad! So we enjoyed conch fritters and other snacks from the local take-away...and a lot of rhum too. As the place is duty-free, rhum really cost nothing....does anybody feed on rhum? Kidding!
went diving...euh, no cheap, 2 dives each cost me a whopping 230usd (that 4 dives total)! We dive with Valentines. They are in the business for money, not for diving. First dive was short, because the dive site was pretty deep so we did hit our decompression time. That's fine with me. The second dive, was back to my first dive site! Cool! Ok, didn't go deeper than 12 meters, but this is normal, I wanted to do "that" dive site again. This time I saw everything, thanks to my contact lenses! But guess what, the dive master decided that 35 minutes was enough. We were diving with a nice italian guy, advanced, and 3 of us had above 100 bars in our bottle. I can tell you, it didn't go well with me. We fight back till minutes 38...but by that point we were scared he would simply left us there, not a great idea! So the place is perfect for a day diving, more is pretty useless....but this was not about great diving, this was about coming back to my first love!
For four days we had the beach for nearly ourselves. It was impressive to
think that you are only 40 minutes by plane from Miami, on one of the busiest tourism week-end of the year, and yet, the place is yours! Great!
It was also pretty cool to walk the miles of the beach. Villas behind the palm trees are insane. Ok, 16 years ago I didn't see a single yacht, today, we say at least few of them in the millions, crazy! When you stop by posts at the local real estate agent, you cannot even imagine the figures, I would be retired way before those! And at the same time, people say good morning to each others on the street. The main way of going around is by golf carts, and even people on golf carts do say hello. You start a conversation straight on with locals while waiting for you take-way...and yes, sugar daddies and pretty younger things are all over. This place look like a very private club, where the gardener is as friendly as the guy with his private jet parked on the other side of the bay.
Did we see celebs, maybe, but as I have no idea who is who, nobody cares...we said hello, they
said hello, and everybody was enjoying a great time.
Don't think the place will change much over the years to come, the land is so expensive, that there is no way they will see huge buidlings coming in, and this is great like this.
So Harbour Island, the private jets, yachts, golf carts, pink sand and young beautiful things may be there for a while. Good news, the conch fritters were cheap, the rhum was cheaper...and the beach was free!
We had an amazing time, specially as the sun was there most of the time, not obvious at this time of the year....sun tanned, we are ready to explore more of the region....next entry, coming soon, in a way less posh place!
Tot: 3.271s; Tpl: 0.018s; cc: 37; qc: 133; dbt: 0.0471s; 3; m:saturn w:www (126.96.36.199); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.7mb