Our Blue Lagoon

St. John is a unique Caribbean experience.   Given that 2/3 of this Caribbean island is reserved as a National Park, there is no other island we have found quite like it.  No mega-development here.  No concrete high-rise timeshares, no fast-food, no traffic snarls.  Nothing but pure, unadulterated natural beauty.  And if you can get there, Little Lameshure Bay is a noteworthy stop on your visit to St. John.

Recently we headed out from Cruz Bay, determined to find all of the must-see destinations on this beautiful island. We had hit the bus stop destinations of Trunk Bay,  Cinnamon Bay, and Waterlemon Bay in our clockwise circumnavigation of the island.  But in the end, we sought to find something a little more obscure.

Coral Bay on St. John's East End
Coral Bay on St. John’s East End

Meandering towards the east end of the island, we eventually turn Southeast, working towards our destination of Lameshure Bay.  Our unfailing guide source told us this would be a great spot, but difficult to get to.  The narrative was fine, as far as it went, but it fell far short of giving fair indication of the conditions ahead.  Let me just put our own little emphatic spin on this.  Do not attempt this route if you are not in a four-wheel-drive, and if you do not have rugged, battle tested kidneys.

Image Credit www.seestjohn.com
Image Credit www.seestjohn.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These little fellows are about the smoothest thing you will find along the trail!

Donkeys along the Trail  -credit Google Earth
Donkeys along the Trail -credit Google Earth

The setting is rather quiet and nondescript, though there were a few sun dappled picnic tables.  The appeal lies in its peaceful solitude.  We spent a couple hours on this quiet hideaway and we’re the only living creatures insight. If you’re looking for a quiet romantic hideaway, consider this as My Island tested, My Island approved.

Little Lameshure Bay Beach, St. John
Little Lameshure Bay Beach, St. John

So if you find yourself in the mood for a little solitude on St. John, grab your partner, pack a couple beach towels and nice picnic lunch, and wind your way around to Little Lameshure Bay Beach.  Drop us a comment, and let us know your favorite Blue Lagoon.  We’ll add it to our growing Beach Bucket List!

Live the Lifestyle,
JVbytheSea

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The Caribbean -A Palette of Inspiration

As we have traveled throughout the Caribbean, and met with countless numbers of artists, we often ask where they draw their inspiration from.  Almost unanimously they tell us that they selected this life in the tropics, not only for its enviable climate, but because the calming colors are an inspiration to their artist’s spirit.  We have to say we can certainly see the attraction.

In this issue of our Lost in a Lifestyle Blog, we wanted to give you a glimpse of the color that to be experienced in the Caribbean, virtually at every turn  From scenic overlooks, to pristine beaches, to flora and fauna, take our quick tour of the Colors of the Caribbean!

Blog 5

 One of our favorite overlooks is this aptly named scene in St. Martin called Paradise View.
It has served as inspiration for several of our featured artists, and can be found on a number of the products in our catalog.

Blog 1Beautiful Trunk Bay in St. John is blooming with natures colors.

Blog 2This sunset palette reveals the greatest artist of them all.

Blog 3Even a trip to market is a vision for the senses.

Blog 4This final view of Shoal Bay East even served as the inspiration for the colors found on our logo when we updated early this year.

You see beauty is in the grand and in the everyday, but there is no denying that the Caribbean is indeed a palette of inspiration.  Share your comments below and tell us, What colors of the Caribbean inspire you?

Lost in a Lifestyle,
JVbytheSea

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From the Blogosphere – Week in Review 042013

After the week that was, we’re definitely needing some time away from the headlines.  We continue to remember those touched by the tragedies in Boston this past week, and pray for healing of both the body and spirit.  Stepping back from the horrific scenes,  here’s a look back at some interesting blog postings we found through the week that was.
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Charles at Big Kahuna took us on a tour of the eco-friendly resort Concordia on the island of St. John.  From the Eco-Tents, to the community aspect, and even the Work Exchange Program, this small resort on the east end of the island appears to have plenty of appeal.  Read more in Big Kahuna’s Eco Friendly.

Big Kahuna - Eco Friendly[rule]

If your thinking of a girls outing for the Ultimate Shopping Trip, check out this post by Pirates Paradise Adventures on the great shopping in St. Thomas.  Heads up guys, this could put a serious dent in the plastic!  Read all about it in this tale of Best Virgin Islands Shopping St. Thomas.

Havensight
The Waiting Game played out at Havensight, St. Thomas
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Do you love Kenny Chesney and  love to party?  If you’re in or around the Dallas area, you chesneymay want to check out the special tailgate package being offered by the gang over at Team Cocktail.  A full day of fun in the sun is scheduled for May 11!  Believe me, these guys give you bang for your tailgating buck.  Get all the deets at Kenny Chesney Ticket & Tailgate.

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Parrot Cay Resort
One more stunning resort is introduced to us by Laura from Caribbean Travel News.  In this update, Laura reports on new additions to the Parrot Cay Resort in the Turks and Caicos.  Designed to make your friends jealous, check out all the images of this beautiful layout in Parrot Cay Resort.

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Be sure to check out our Caribbean blogging friends.  These guys truly help to put us in an island state of mind!  And until next time, go get…

Lost in a Lifestyle,
JVbytheSea

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From the Blogosphere – Week in Review 041313

Slackards!  That’s us, just a bunch of lazy beach bums.  But we’re back again, with a bit of news from the best Caribbean bloggers on the web!  We save you the daily grind, and we’ve done all the heavy lifting for you.  Filtering through the many bloggers we follow, here’s some interesting site postings we found through the past week.
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rum acc
If you’re a foodie, or a spirit aficionado, you’ll want to check out the newest release from Carlton Grooms of Coastlines & Tanlines.  His newest book Rum & Contemporary Cuisine is now available on iTunes.  It’s a cooking show and a cookbook combined into one, and now available for your iPad.

 

 

 

 

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Our friend Patrick from Uncommon Caribbean introduced us to Sandy Point Beach.  The Bennett brothers are always proud to show off their home island of St. Croix, and their home-town pride comes across loud and clear in this Wallpaper Wednesday special.

Sandy-Point-St-Croix1-2048x1280

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Wendy at My Irie Time wrapped up a really great alphabetical survey of all things Caribbean with this final posting in the series, “Z is for Zymurgy”.  We really enjoyed this series.  If you missed it, go to her site and check it out, and follow the Caribbean from A-Z.

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burger

 

And finally, highlighting a Lunch of the Week is this St. John favorite at Skinny Legs!  This Burger of the Day” features smoked bacon, pepper jack cheese and a thick slice of pineapple.  Bon Appetit!

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As always, we encourage you to check out our blogging friends.  Follow along with the ones that pique your interest, and soak up a little bit of the island vibe!  And until next time, go get…

Lost in a Lifestyle,
JVbytheSea

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New To MIA – Old Mango Photography

At My Island Art we are uber excited today to formally announce a new photographer to our fold, and to now make his works available to the great customers at My Island Art.  Many of you know him by his frequent Facebook posts, and his twitter updates, and like us you’ve probably wondered, just how does he do that?  Well we’re not giving away any trade secrets, but we are thrilled to announce, available exclusively to My Island Art, select photo works from

William Torrillo, Old Mango Guide to the Islands!

Devil's Bay, Virgin Gorda
                                      Devil’s Bay, Virgin Gorda, by William Torrillo

We first became introduced to William in the same way that many of you have, by drooling every day at his stunning photographs posted on his Facebook Page Old Mango – Guide to The Islands.  We’ve watched his posts and followed his tweets, and dreamed of one day adding his works to our gallery.

In 2012 while sitting at the Cruzan Beach Club at Secret Harbour, St. Thomas, I noticed a new photo from Old Mango had just been posted to his Facebook Page.  What caught our attention was that the caption revealed that it was just taken only moments before, and at the exact same location we were now sitting.  We quickly spun around trying to locate the identity of the now mysterious photographer.

Salomon Bay, St. John
Salomon Bay, St. John, by William Torrillo
Cinnamon Bay, St. John
Cinnamon Bay, St. John, by William Torrillo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At long last I finally narrowed down the short list of bar patrons, surely it couldn’t be that geriatric woman at a corner booth, and eased up to a table.  “Are you William” I asked.  Meeting William was a real treat for us.  We sat for a brief time as he awaited the arrival of a business partner, and visited about our common love of the islands, and the lifestyle of a Island Boy.  I loved hearing him speak about his love of the islands, and his passion for capturing its beauty.

William has a wonderful eye that captures the true island beauty and warm tranquil settings, each so life-like, that you can almost hear the surf at your feet.  My Island Art is proud to be the exclusive outlet for this set of fine art images.  Our offerings are printed with the lab exclusive Pearl Print process, that highlights the image saturation and lighting captured by the artist.  Each is double-matted, and ready to frame and hang.  Included in our selection are images from Cinnamon Bay, Cruz Bay, and Salomon Bay, St. John; Devil’s Bay Beach, Virgin Gorda; Long Bay Beach in Tortola; and the famous Soggy Dollar Bar on Jost Van Dyke.  See the full collection of this catalog at Old Mango Pearl Photo Prints.

Old Mango Art Cards
If you are a frequent visitor to the Virgin Islands,
or if you just love beautiful island settings, you will want
to add these images to complete your tropical decor.
We also offer a limited number of sets of Photo Art Cards.
These are packets of six (6) cards depicting some of his
most popular images.  These cards are even suitable for framing.
These look awesome in a small grouping!

 

If you’re an Old Mango fan like us, drop us a comment below and let us know how much you appreciate his work.  And let us, Bring the Islands to Your Door!

Live the Life,
JVbytheSea

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Week in Review – From the Blogosphere #4

Take a moment to check in on some of the best travel writing from the week that was!  And by all means, if you have a favorite blogger you’d like us to feature, be sure to drop us a line!

Shawn Martin of Coastlines & Tan Lines got the weekend started right with their final in a series of posts about St. John.  Read this great wrap up of 7 Days in Paradise!

Bob’s Arrival in Havana

Bahama Bob from the Rum Bar in Key West gives us a great peek behind the veil in his accounting of One Day In Havana.

 

We love the name of this blog, Sand & Stilettos.  Check out their brief photo essay about Aruba in Aruba: Renaissance Island.

In Key West and looking for something different to do this weekend?  Check out the Team Cocktail event, Conched in Key West.  Proceeds go to help Reef Relief.

From Caribbean Pot, Carrot Pineapple Muffins

And to wrap up this week’s review, we wanted to give you a little something to chew on, Litterally.  Here’s a little something for the sous chef in you.  Try these Carrot Pineapple Muffins from Caribbean Pot.  Yum!

 

 

 

Sit back and relax, and live a little of the Island Lifestyle with these great bloggers.  Cheers!

Live the Life,
JVbytheSea

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Week in Review – From the Blogosphere #2

In our blogosphere update this week, we look back on another great week of travel writings.  From an historic look back at Saba, to a Celebration of National Rum Day, it was another great week to read from some of our Caribbean friends.

Our friends at Uncommon Caribbean have done it again!  Take a journey back in time and experience Saba from the 1930’s.

MySeaStory Sees All!

 

Joana at MySeaStory reminds us in this dive story, that sometimes what goes on beneath the water can be just as exciting as above the water line!

 

 

Kirani James wins Gold!

 

 

From a Track and Field Stadium completely destroyed by Hurricane Ivan in 2004, read how this island nation celebrated Gold in London 2012.

 

 

Well they finally did it!  After months of planning, Ken and Chery from Mid-Life Cruising got the house on the market, and they’re ready to pull the plug.  Could you do this and really get off the grid?

It looks like the cat is out of the bag.  On-St. John features a video tour of beautiful St. John.

 

Celebrating National Rum Day, Eatocracy gives us a run-down of this historically Caribbean spirit.

 

Take a moment to check in on some of the best travel writing from the week that was!  And by all means, if you have a favorite blogger you’d like us to feature, be sure to drop us a line!

Live the Life,
JVbytheSea

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An Island Tour – St. John

Sometimes you have all the time needed to take life at a most leisurely pace, and sometimes you have just enough time to snap the obligatory Kodak moments before the taxi departs.  Such was the two-week, six-city tour of Europe a couple years prior, but that’s a story for another day.

Recently we had the opportunity to spend but a day on the beautiful island of St. John in the United States Virgin Islands.  So what do you do to get the most out of a single day on the island?  We suggest you follow our lead, and super-size your island stay!

Car Ferry St. Thomas to St. John

The first obstacle we had to overcome is the abbreviated ferry schedule.  The car barge ferry from Red Hook, St. Thomas stops it’s daily schedule at 6:30PM.  Barely enough time to watch a proper sunset, much less enjoy any of the local bars, restaurants, and nightlife.  However the passenger ferry continues it’s daily runs until 11:30 PM.  So since we took the car ferry over, what is the proper solution?  We parked our car at a nearby retail center, and spent the evening hoofing around Cruz Bay.We just picked up five hours, problem solved!

Now with a morning arrival and a hearty breakfast behind us, where do we start, and what do we see?  This is one beautiful island, absolutely littered with stunning beaches.  So we set off from Cruz Bay for a clockwise circumnavigation.

Beautiful Cruz Bay

Heading out in a clockwise direction along North Shore Road, the first vista we encountered was of beautiful Caneel Bay.  Nestled in a quite protected cove on the western edge, this beach was a white sand paradise!

Caneel Bay

Quite by accident, my “navigator” spied a sign that pointed out a trail heading towards Peace Hill.  The petite parking lot was void of even a single car, so of course that was invitation enough.  At the top is a retired sugar mill that offers a picturesque view of Trunk Bay.

Trunk Bay from Peace Hill

Following a stop in and a refreshing drink at Trunk Bay, our next encounter was the stunning sands of Cinnamon Bay.  Quieter than Trunk, this beach was a perfect stopover for lunch and a brief swim.  Why does a simple fish sandwich and fries taste so darn good down here?

Cinnamon Bay

Ever the entrepreneur, a couple thoughts did occur to me:  I would love to have the Jeep commission here, and I’d love to set up shop with SUP (Stand Up Paddle-board) rentals to unsuspecting tourists!  Gotta get that Business Plan written!

It’s a Jeep Thing…

 

Hawksnest Beach

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Completing our tour along the northern end as we began a southern trek, our last stop was at Water Lemon Cay.  We first stopped in and took a brief walking tour of Annaberg Plantation.  The historian of period Caribbean beginnings that I am, it was a treat to trace the steps of the early slaves in this historic mill.  You then walk along a long, but beautiful shaded trail along the shore, leading eventually to the crystal clear waters of Water Lemon Beach.  Several families were all splashing and playing in the shallow waters.  Like us, each were equally oblivious of anyone around them.

Water Lemon Cay

We concluded our tour with views of Coral Harbour…

Coral Harbor

…and the perfectly quiet and secluded Little Lameshur Bay.  As we rounded the corner of the last stretch of path leading to Lameshur, we passed a tour “Bus” heading out and leaving the beach completely and perfectly empty.  With a vigorous wave and a hearty “Thank You”, we settled in and enjoyed this beautiful beach all to ourselves.  Did I mention secluded?  We prefer to think that we are the lone inhabitants, and no photos here, you’ll have to find that one all on your own!

Heading back to Cruz Bay, we spent the evening watching the sunset and praying the moments would last.  We then took to walking the streets and taking in a little shopping, and in general just relaxing and enjoying the nightlife.  We stopped in for a bit and took in some of the live music at one of the local watering holes.

That, in a nutshell, is our quick “Island in a Day” tour.  In the final analysis, we decided it really didn’t do this particular island justice.  So, we’re busy planning a return soon to expand our look at this beautiful island.  It can’t come soon enough!

Live the Life,
JVbytheSea

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