Visiting the BVI, You Must SEE Anegada
- October 30th, 2014
- in Lifestyle
A Tourist in My Own Town – Taking My First Safari to Anegada
Photography by Caribbean Images Tours Ltd. and SkyVisions VI courtesy of Anegada Beach Club
In the Virgin Islands, there are a lot of ‘first-time’ scenarios.
On the wholesome side, it might be the first time you sail, snorkel, dive, kiteboard, paddleboard, or simply lie on a beach enjoying the multitude of colours in a magnificent sunset.
On the more wild front, it could be your ‘virgin experience’ hitting the Caribbean cocktail scene – the alcohol measures in this tropical paradise are often what bartenders call ‘free pour’, which effectively means you get a lot more value than you bargained for. This can end with interesting consequences; like when you’re in a bar drinking up heartily with your friends and you return from the restroom to order yet another Painkiller. Five minutes pass. Perhaps even ten. You look down only to find that you forgot to pull your trousers and boxers up when you left the toilet. This is not a confession. But you certainly hear a lot of epic fables from visitors and residents passing through our attractive haven.
The specific ‘first time’ I speak of, is actually a series of events that occurred in a single excursion in September:
It was my first time visiting ‘the drowned island’ or the name it is known by, Anegada. It was also my first time riding the BVI Adventure Tours— a new activity offered by Caribbean Images Tours that will see guests escorted over to Anegada with a grand tour of the island. On top of this, were a multitude of other novel experiences – seeing the strange geographical settlement of Anegada, catching the sight of a speedy eagle ray, viewing a graceful shark live in the wild and not behind several inches of glass, observing the variety of colours of the Anegada reef, staying at the tranquil and luxurious Anegada Beach Club, and of course, hanging out with a vast group of die-hard Jack Reacher fans (I must stress, fans of the books not the film).
It must have been approximately 11 of us that made our way across to Anegada on that phenomenal day. I was excited because like I have repeated on so many occasions, each BVI is vastly different. No exaggeration.
I had heard much about Anegada, which I have considered ‘the forgotten isle’ as it is often ignored. I’ve known of people born in the BVI, who have not made the trip – I would declare that this as a huge misfortune after visiting the island.
Our two RIBS sped across the water from Tortola as we discussed the enigmatic fact that Anegada is invisible until you grow extremely close to the location. It was literally like an aspect out of the famous novel The Northern Lights when I first saw the island appear; a world materialising out of nothing as we approached. The myriad of dramatically changing colours in the water was astonishing as the RIB bounced across the water.
Reaching the East End of the island, I was amazed by the large piles of conch shells, some even forming islands – from a distance, it looked like an eerie homage to an Indiana Jones film. Now, it could have been great luck or the fact that Anegada is known for its abundance of wildlife, but the first thing we saw was a shark –I know what you might think, but this isn’t Jaws and from the collective knowledge of the people that surrounded me, the power of Hollywood films has really muddled perceptions of the marine world.
Suffice to say, you are perfectly safe and it is a fantastic sight. At another flick of the head, there was the jet-fast gliding of an Eagle Ray, darting through the water. Unfortunately, I missed its famed jump out of the sea, but the screams of amazement from the others was sufficient proof that it had occurred.
By the time we reached Anegada Beach Club, we were all excited but it was not anticipated that everything about this retreat would surpass expectations. I honestly was not expecting a room to myself of its size nor the elegant, contemporary appearance. The service was great and it was literally a weekend getaway where we all relaxed. No excursions, no exercise. Just resting by the pool, great beverages, and fantastic food – I consumed one of their gigantic pizzas for dinner, that also served as breakfast.
I believe one of my favourite moments was when I got a call on my room phone the following morning from Simon Wood, one of the partners involved with BVI Adventure Tours.
“It’s time to go?” I said.
“Nope,” he said. “Everybody is staying for another night and you are too.”
The spontaneity was welcome as Anegada Beach Club is a very pleasant experience as is travelling and relaxing on this unique island.