Caught In The Polar Vortex? 5 Of My Favorite Places To Defrost
Living in the northeast recently has been anything but pleasant and, today, it seems that even our neighbors to the south are experiencing nightmare road conditions and frozen nostril hairs due to the polar vortex. I don't know about you but I'm done and am looking to get out, not only to warm up, but also to save my sanity.
Here are 5 of my favorite spots where the only thing frozen should be your beer mug or your margarita glass:
1. St. Barts: Of the islands I've visited in the Caribbean, it's my favorite even though it's expensive and hard to reach. However, once there, you won't care as the stunning beaches, amazing French cuisine and sightings of celebrities mesmerizes you. From the NY area, fly into St. Maarten, (several carriers offer direct flights), and either take the public ferry, if seasickness isn't a problem, or a quick ten minute flight to heaven. Save money by renting a villa, or stay in any number of glorious hotels ranging in price to fit most budgets. Don't miss: Saline Beach, my personal favorite beach anywhere, ever. It's indescribable.
2. Anguilla: Oh my....the Caribbean of your dreams. It features postcard beaches, some of the most wonderful people on the planet and delicious food. It has a very authentic Caribbean feeling and an awesome music scene as well. Like St. Barts, to get to Anguilla from the NY area, fly into St. Maarten and take a ferry or a small plane. The ferry ride here is MUCH shorter so it's a real option and $$ saver, in my opinion. There are multiple places to stay and villas are a great option as well. There are so many beaches that choosing where to plant your toes will be tough. Don't miss: The Dune Preserve, which is, to me, the definitive Caribbean beach bar and restaurant. Also, Blanchard's Beach Shack may just provide the best "feet in the sand" cheap eats anywhere.
3. Turks and Caicos: Easy to get to, easy to love, easy on the eyes. Several carriers provide nonstop flights to pristine beaches in a few hours and the Turks features some of the most well known and highly rated resorts and restaurants in the Caribbean. Every option for lodging is available including condos, villas and 5 star resorts. The water in the Turks is great for divers and snorkelers alike and if you like to walk long stretches of white powdery sand, this is your spot. Don't miss: Coco Bistro Restaurant; magical setting and fantastic food.
4. Cabo: Mexico has always been a favorite choice of mine for the culture, the cuisine and the abundance of tequila. For those of you on the west coast, Cabo is an easy choice, and from the east coast, although a longer trip from NY, several carriers offer direct flights. Cabo boasts culture, cuisine, and dramatic landscapes with a kaleidoscope of colors. It is also well known for its world- class resorts, making Cabo rich with some awesome places to plant those frozen toes. There are also many more than acceptable affordable options from which to choose and with it's great restaurants and fun land and water activities, Cabo offers a great bang for the buck. Don't miss: Lover's Beach. Swimmable and gorgeous.
5. Costa Rica: Costa Rica offers endless options in a "Jurassic Park" environment. The people are gracious and generous and are a testament to their ideals of "pura vida." You can visit rain forests, zipline through tree top canopies, learn to surf on the most unspoiled beaches I've ever seen, and see howler monkeys right off the balcony of your hotel. The choice is yours depending on where in the country you choose to be. There are two major airports and you will fly into one or the other dependent on your destination. Liberia services the northern areas. If you are heading to Arenal or other central areas, the San Jose airport is your best option. The weather at this time of year is UNREAL. I've been four times and it's never been anything other than 85 degrees and sunny. Go Now...Don't miss: Zip lining or staying in a tree top room in a rain forest. Unforgettable.
So where are some of your favorite places to warm up? I'm following my own advice and heading to Cabo. Call in your frequent flier miles, use those sick days you've been storing up and if you have to dip into the "emergency fund" money; I say the polar vortex more than qualifies. Bon Voyage. Enough is enough. "Tequila, baby..."
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