TAKE ME TO...BEQUIA - The Caribbean's Best Kept Secret


Laid-back, lazy, bright and blissful - Bequia is the perfect respite from the chaos of everyday city life!  If you are looking for a Caribbean vacation that promises quiet beaches, the freshest sea fare, superb spas and accommodations, this island delivers.  The Days seem to slip by as you soak in the sumptuous Caribbean sun, snorkel, snooze, eat fresh mango, and wish everyday could feel this good!  

Bequia is more off the beaten track of the remote Grenadine Islands and only seven miles long by 2 miles wide.  Life goes at a slow pace and the vibe is chill here.  More nature, not scene-ster. Caribbean clear blue waters, bursting sunlight, steep green mountains brimming with tropical flora and fauna and gum-ball colored houses make this remote slice of paradise bucket list worthy. 

 

World-class yachts swing in their moorings in the harbors while colorful little local boats sell ice and bread to sailors. Dressing the waterfront are stalls of bananas and raw nutmeg. Colorful wooden houses climb up the hills strewn with fragrant frangipani flowers that perfume the air and grow everywhere.

If you dream of good vibes all day everyday  then the options are plenty: laze on fine sand beaches, snorkel the island’s reefs and plan to take an hour boat’s ride to the comparatively busy island of St Vincent or a day trip to the Tobago Cays, one of the Caribbean’s most outstanding diving spots.  

 

Bequia's Colorful History

In 1717 Blackbeard refurbished a captured French vessel here, relaunching it as his Queen Anne’s Revenge, and Captain Bligh passed nearby with Tahitian breadfruit saplings, which still grow in these parts, along with mangos and sapodilla and creole plums. The Union Jack flew over the island for around 200 years. Before that it was French, and before that, home to a smattering of Caribs. The little port was renamed Elizabeth in 1937 after the then princess, but everybody still calls it the Harbour.  There have been sugar and cotton plantations here. New England whalers were frequent visitors. Bequians came to be some of the finest shipwrights in the West Indies.

Getting around

There’s an informal network of taxis, which can either be open sided trucks or minivans (often emblazoned with jazzy proclamations of faith). Hotels have bikes to rent, but the island’s main ridge is so steep that cycling is a serious work out. Bequia is also walkable – the island’s two coasts are only two miles apart and you won’t be the only one hitting the road.

How to Get Here

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Most international travelers come to Bequia through Barbados (BGI) or St. Lucia (UVF), two major international hubs with direct connections to the island. The easiest way to get there is to fly direct to Bequia from Barbados or St. Lucia.

Accomodations

Bequia Beach Hotel

For the pen-ultimate in chill-axin, a stay at the Bequia Beach Hotel will guarantee you are enmeshed in tropical luxury.  From their dreamy cottages and rooms to beach side massages and an epic breakfast bar you might find it hard to tear yourself away and explore other island locales. The soft, hot sand is eternally hospitable along with the warm native customer service, fresh fruity cocktails make for some serious lounging.  

In gardens of red cherry and coconut on mile-long Friendship Beach you’ll always have a wide stretch of beach to yourself, and the waterfront suites are close enough to the surf for the rhythmic thrum to give a sense of salty peace and freshness. There’s a bar on the sand and lobster-barbecue nights, and often dancing. Most guests treat it as a retreat, only rousing themselves occasionally to catch taxis to the harbour. The set-up is gorgeously relaxed; the hotel is owned by a genial Swede, Bengt Mortstedt, who first saw the bay some 15 years ago and in effect never left.

Address: Friendship Beach, Bequia, St Vincent & the Grenadines
Telephone: +1784 458 1600
Website: bequiabeachhotel.com
Price: Doubles from about $350 

Gingerbread Hotel

Gingerbread Hotel

For a more local, island vibe The Gingerbread Hotel on Admiralty Bay in Port Elizabeth offers simpler but clean and friendly accommodations and is in the heart of the port where there's more action.  Peaceful and quiet It has a great little outdoor cafe with incredible views of the harbor and they make a great cup of coffee.  There is no AC in the rooms but the ocean breeze, salty air and a collection of in-room fans seem to make it more pleasurable than a buzzing AC.  Steps from shopping, restaurants and the ferry dock.  

SUGAR REEF

Along the further-flung Industry Bay, this hideaway noses onto a narrow sprinkle of white sand, and serves the best rum punch on the island (mostly fresh lime.) It’s remote here, though. The keynote: stillness.

Address: Crescent Beach, VC0400 Crescent Beach, Saint Vincent & Grenadines
Telephone: +1784-458-3400
Website: sugarreefbequia.com
Price: Doubles from about $150.00

Food and Libations

Check out the Whaleboner Bar (good for sundowners) and the old Gingerbread Hotel has best ice cream on the island).  At Jack’s Beach Bar they’re mixing Piña Coladas with soursop and twisting okra tempura into biteable chunks allowing the day to slip by in floods of sunshine, but always with a breeze, so your head never aches, and you never feel restless.

Jacks Beach Bar

Insane Snorkeling & Scuba Diving

The reefs are plentiful and bursting with an array of neon tropical fish, bright red coral, purple sea fans and turtles which makes for great snorkeling or diving.  You can hop into the water right from your hotel and see amazing sea life or venture out on a scuba boat and dive some of the best reefs in the Caribbean.  

All in all a sojourn in Bequia is good for the soul and you will come back rested, peaceful & zen and with great social media pics and memories to boot.