Accra Beach - The Post Card Beach
Our day in Barbados started with a cab ride from the port to a beach that we randomly picked from the map and was recommended by our taxi driver. That beach was Accra Beach. Without knowing anything else we were dropped off at what is now one of our favorite beaches in the world. But when we got there we noticed something peculiar. There was hardly anyone there except for a few people who were renting one of the nearby condos. The entire beach was ours.
Of course, when you have a whole beach to yourself you cannot just waste your precious minutes laying out in the sun or swimming in the surf, you must explore! For the first half of our day we walked on almost every inch of the beach and a fair bit of the nearby boardwalk with only seeing one or two other travelers nearby. Out of nowhere came the surprise - a bunch of palm trees that would go on to redefine our standard for what a beautiful palm tree should look like. One of which stood out in particular, and has henceforth been referred to only as The Tree.
There are only a few occasions in all of my travels where the shape and flow of a palm tree has ever been so perfect. When considering that the only other souls that were around at that particular moment were the travelers who were renting the condo whose property the tree resided on, we realized that no other traveler from our cruise got to experience the beauty of the tree. Just the way we like it.
Then we decided to go snorkeling with sea turtles just to keep the ball rolling, because that is what you do when you only have 8 hours in paradise.
Almost Hugging a Sea Turtle
While the number one draw for visitors to Barbados is most definitely the beaches, we were excited about visiting the island nation for another reason. We had heard that snorkel tours with the sea turtles off the coast of Barbados is rivaled by none, but until we tried it out for ourselves we were a bit skeptical of this claim.
Most snorkel tours in Barbados start off with an amazing catamaran ride along the coast until you reach a good stopping point where you and your guides jump into the water to find some turtles. Finding the turtles is not very hard for the tour operators, as they entice them over with ample amounts of food and snacks for them to munch on. Of course, there are strict rules against touching or startling the turtles as they may swim away if they are being bothered too much, so we tried our best to be respectful and get out of the way when needed.
For around 45 minutes you are able to float on top of the ocean and watch several turtles swim by while eating their mid-day snack. During our time we saw at least 3 turtles, if not more, and had to move out of the way many times during the feeding frenzy as these semi-graceful creatures do not reciprocate the no touching rule. If you are in the way, you are literally in the way, and you may have a turtle coming right at you at a moments notice. Not so fun if you get whacked, but good if you want to catch a great photo like the one I got below where the turtle was, quite literally, within a foot of my face.
With photos like this, its no surprise why our annual longing for the Caribbean comes back when the winter blues reach their peak. While we stay stuck in the snow, we keep asking ourselves, wouldn't it be better to be snorkeling with the turtles and lounging under The Tree for another few days? The answer is always yes, but somehow, we haven't committed to making it back yet. One day.