A Travellerspoint blog

Roatan Day 3: Land Critters

We did have a plan for today - a day trip around with island with Cleve Bodden. Cleve picked us up at the hotel in his van around 10a and brought with him some mango juice and an empanada for our breakfast.
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We stopped off for a pic at the Roatan sign.
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Then went for a visit at the butterfly garden and island animal sanctuary. One of the guides gave us a tour around the butterflly garden.
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Then for some bird interaction.
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After that, Brenda played with a few of the sanctuary inhabitants.
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Some were not allowed to come out and play.
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We learned why when this little guy grabbed Brenda through the cage and bit her.
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We left the sanctuary and resumed our drive, stopping for pics at a high point on the island.
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The next stop on the island tour was a boat ride through Oak Ridge, known for its houses built over the water on stilts.
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As we entered the mangrove area, the rain started to pour down.
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It didn't last long but we were soaked.
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Last stop of the day was at a nearby restaurant for some locally prepared shrimp, rice, and plantains.
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Before ending the evening, we closed the night out with a few drinks at the hotel bar.

Posted by zihuatcat 22:03 Archived in Honduras Tagged roatan brenda Comments (0)

Roatan Day 2: Ring of Fire

With no schedule, we didn't rush to get up the next morning but did make it up in time for french toast at the hotel. It came with a side of cat.
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The beach in Roatan is not the white, sandy beach you expect in the Caribbean. The sand is dark and the water is not turquoise blue (at least not in front of our hotel). But a beach is a beach so we walked it for a ways in front of the hotel.
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Our hotel from the beach.
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Flower next to the room.
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We decided to get into our snorkel gear and go for a snorkel off the pier.
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Even though the water wasn't as pretty as other parts of the Caribbean, the sea underneath was spectacular. Unfortunately, I didn't have an underwater camera to capture it.

After snorkeling and relaxing the rest of the afternoon, we got cleaned up for, you guessed it, more drinks at the hotel bar. This time we had a shirmp snack to go with it.
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That night's hotel entertainment was a fire show and once again, Ricardo.
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Posted by zihuatcat 21:14 Archived in Honduras Tagged roatan brenda Comments (0)

Roatan Day 1: Winner Winner Chicken Dinner

Little did I know, approximately one year ago, that the trip to Cayman would be the last trip I would take with Mike. Since then we divorced. It was a traumatic year and this trip was meant to be a rejuvenation for me....a new beginning. I wanted to share that with my lifelong best friend, Brenda. As a result, there was no itinerary. There aren't that many pictures and I couldn't be bothered to take any notes during the trip. This is the best re-creation I can manage based on the memory of a 40+ year old.

We flew separately to Roatan with Brenda going from Houston and me going from Dallas. She was supposed to arrive an hour before me. In typical Brenda fashion, something went wrong and she missed her flight. Luckily, and surprisingly, there was another one that came in about an hour after mine so we were able to meet up without much re-arranging. I never did get an explanation for that mishap.

Once she arrived, we took a taxi to Tranquilseas, a boutique hotel located in the Sandy Bay area of the island. We would be staying in the King Crab room.

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We had a prime view of the pool and ocean from our balcony.
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It was late afternoon, had been a long travel day (as they always are), and there weren't any other options nearby so we headed to the hotel bar for a pre-dinner drink. Here we met Ricardo, the local bartender who would charm us for the week.
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He served up some sangria and some laughs.
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We were getting hungry so we took a taxi into town to find a place for dinner. Town was crowded and busy and we had a rough time finding something that was open and didn't have a long wait. We finally settled on Creole's Rotisserie Chicken. It wasn't what we were wanting but hangry-ness was consuming us.
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We didn't stay in town long after dinner even though it was a Saturday night and the hotel bar was closed when we got back so off to bed we went.

Posted by zihuatcat 20:54 Archived in Honduras Tagged roatan brenda Comments (0)

Grand Cayman Days 8-10: Shop, Eat, Repeat

The next morning, we dropped Mike off for his last day of diving with Ocean Frontiers.
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Vi and I then drove to Boddentown to shop at Beach Bubbles where we both bought homemade soaps and body lotions. We made our way down the road to White Dog Art Studio where we saw the obligatory white dog. I bought a starfish print now hanging in my guest bathroom and Vi bought a bamboo sign.
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We then made our way to Wreck View Art Gallery where we bought caymanite jewelry for ourselves and for gifts to take home. By now we were getting hungry so we stopped in at Tukka for a snack and some waterfront drinks.
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Lobster spring rolls, coconut shrimp, conch and crocodile fritters
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Afterwards, I dropped Vi off at the house and went to pick up Mike. The dive boat was about an hour late getting back and Mike and I decided to stay for a pina colada at Eagle Ray's before heading back to the house to get ready for dinner.

Dinner tonight was at Eric Ripert's Blue at the Ritz Carlton.
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We didn't take pictures of the food unfortunately but we did enjoy a long, multi-course meal. It started with an amuse-bouche of snapper sashimi, tuna tartare with fennel, and sunchoke foam with crab.

First course - Vi and I had scallops poached with shitake mushrooms. Mike had salmon sashimi with beets and salmon roe
Second course - Vi skipped. Mike had the scallops we had in the first course. I had grilled and braised octopus.
Third course - Mike and Vi had poached lobster with wine sauce. I had crusted snapper with saffron.
Dessert - Mike had chocolate, Vi had coconut, and I had peach.
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Exhausted and stuffed, we went home to crash.
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The next day we all slept in a bit. Mike was having a flare up so Vi and I went shopping in Georgetown and left him at the house to rest. There were 2 Carnival cruise ships in town so we had a difficult time finding parking but eventually did.
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We stopped off at Guy Harvey's for a drink and some crab cakes.
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Then spent the afternoon shopping and walking around town.
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Mike was feeling a little better by dinner so we drove down the road to Eagle Ray's where he had some conch fritters and Vi and I had twin lobster tails with potatoes and veggies. We did some late night stargazing with pina coladas and Mike capped off the evening with a night snorkel in front of the house.
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It was our last full day on the island and we were planning to take it easy. Tink Tink got some tuna for breakfast. We stuck to bacon and eggs.
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We had a lot of leftover beer so we drove down to the dive shop to give it to the dive guides there. They deserved it.
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We made a quick stop at Wreck View to get some more caymanite jewelry then wandered down to the blowholes for some pictures.
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We spent the rest of the afternoon lazing on the back deck and cleaning/packing things up.
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Dinner that night was at Tukka. I had fish.
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Mike had the twin lobster tails.
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Vi had grilled shrimp.
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After dinner, it was early to bed for the long travel day home tomorrow and the sad goodbye to Tink Tink who I hope is still charming guests at the house today.

Posted by zihuatcat 01:46 Archived in Cayman Islands Tagged cayman mike vi Comments (0)

Grand Cayman Day 7: Happy Birthday Horseback Riding

Happy 60th birthday to Vi!
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We had a lazy morning relaxing around the condo and after lunch, drove to Pappagallo for horseback riding in the ocean. We met the van and followed it down the road to the horse trailer. Then we walked a path to get to the beach where we'd be riding.
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Vi was on a black horse named Cayman Time. Mike was a on a brown/white horse named Cinnamon and I was on a brown/white horse named Lady. Cinnamon and Lady had some obvious animosity towards each other and kept snickering back and forth. We had to keep them a bit separated.
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We rode along the waterline for a ways then tied up, removed the saddles and our dry clothing, and got ready for the ocean ride.
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We rode the horses into the ocean bareback, squeezing our legs together in order to stay atop. It was more difficult than I thought it would be. We went deeper and deeper until the horses were swimming. When they swam, they made a strange breathing noise. It was like a guttural, labored breathing. Mike and I loved this but Vi was terrified and honestly, I'm not sure how much the horses enjoyed it either. The swim lasted about 15 minutes and then we returned to shore and saddled up again to finish the ride.
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For Vi's birthday dinner, we had reservations at a restaurant called Aqua in Georgetown.
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We started with an appetizer of beef carpaccio to share.
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Vi had the grilled lobster and shrimp.
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Mike had the ceviche sampler of classic, baja, and cayman ceviche.
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I had a medley of octopus with olive and avocado, tuna, and classic ceviche along with grilled tiger shrimp.
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Of course, we had to sing Happy Birthday to Vi and she enjoyed a dessert of chocolate cake and ice cream.
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After dinner, we went to Havana Club where Mike had a Cuban cigar and entertained us with karaoke (Wonderwall and Hey Jude). We stayed there a couple of hours, enjoying the drinks and the music before moving on to the Attic to play pool with the locals. We closed the place down and then made our way home to crash.

Posted by zihuatcat 00:52 Archived in Cayman Islands Tagged cayman mike vi Comments (0)

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