I received so many questions before, during and after my trip about the boat we were on, where we went, what we did, etc, so I figured it might be good to lay it all out in one blog post for ya! Below are some of the questions I received, along with my answers for each and some in depth information about my trip that might be helpful to those of you looking to do something similar!
WHERE DID YOU STAY?
This was actually our second family trip (third for some! see some amateur photos from my first trip in 2011 here) to the British Virgin Islands, and every time the family has chartered the Cuan Law. We’ve got a big family, so with it being the world’s largest sailing trimaran it really is perfect for our group. There are ten staterooms aboard for guests, each of which can be configured as one queen bed or two twin beds – so really great for any kind of group: couples, kids, siblings, etc.
So in addition to sleeping on the boat each and every night of the trip, every single meal but one is also aboard the boat. Luckily we had an amazing chef on our trip this year (shoutout to @ChefPWilly – thanks, Patrick!!), and every meal was incredible. There were options for every meal too. At breakfast you could expect some kind of egg dish (scrambled, quiche, poached, benedict), potatoes and meat (bacon, ham, sausage), fruit, a more carb-heavy option (french toast, pancakes, etc), and a delicious bread item (cinnamon rolls, pumpkin bread with chocolate chips). There was even a different fresh fruit smoothie on the table each morning! And that was just breakfast. EACH meal is like that! Needless to say I came home a few pounds heavier.
While large families and groups like ours charter the Cuan Law, many of their trips are with groups who scuba dive every single day, multiple times a day. The group that is on the boat this week is actually three groups of strangers that all go to the same dive shop in the US! We did have some divers in our group, but it was definitely more of a leisurely group than what the crew said they normally hosted… hopefully we gave them a bit of a break!
WHAT WAS THE BOAT/CREW LIKE?
The boat is amazing! There are so many things to do on the boat, even if you’re not a big scuba diver. They have several kayaks, a paddle board, snorkeling gear and flippers for everyone on board, two hobie cats, and more! They even include these soft mats for laying out on top of the boat.
The decor and interiors of the boat are not stylish or what I’d call five star accommodations, however. As I say further down: the beds are hard and the pillows are just as bad. It’s an old boat, and the interiors do show that age… but like I say below again, you’re rarely in your room or inside at all!
The crew is also outstanding! On our trip there was a captain, two stewardesses (they cleaned our rooms and helped the chef prepare meals), a chef, and three people who helped with scuba diving, helped the captain with things on the boat, drove us to shore, etc. They all work really well together, are super friendly and fun to be around. Several of them even partied with us at the bars a few of the nights out!
WHERE DID YOU STOP/WHAT DID YOU DO THROUGHOUT THE WEEK?
Where the boat anchors and stops is completely determined by the weather that particular week. For example, one day we had planned to go dive in a really cool area, but had to reroute to avoid a big storm! The captain was very good at finding us great places to go regardless of the weather scenario each day. On this trip we went to Jost Van Dyke, the Sandy Spit, the Rhone, White Bay Beach (where the Soggy Dollar Bar is!), Scrub Island, Cooper Island Beach, Virgin Gorda for the Baths and lunch on the beach at Spring Bay, and more! Unfortunately the Soggy Dollar Bar wasn’t serving alcohol the day we went due to it being election day – so we didn’t get to try their original Painkiller! I’m still sad about that… haha. A few of the bars we went to at night included Foxy’s, Cooper Island Beach Club, Willy T’s, and Marché at Trellis Bay.
I’M ABOUT TO GO ON A SIMILAR TRIP… ANY TIPS FOR AVOIDING SEA SICKNESS AND STAYING COMFORTABLE ON THE BOAT?
For being on a boat, I feel like the rooms themselves are a good size – sure, they’re small compared to actual hotel rooms… but the only time you’re actually in your room is to sleep and shower. While the boat itself is nice, the beds are a little hard and the pillows aren’t great – I’d known that from my last trip, so I just packed a pillow in my checked luggage this time! That helped a bunch. The only other thing I wasn’t a fan of was the shower-over-the-toilet situation, which is fairly standard on any boat… so that’s to be expected of any trip like this! Obviously not a huge deal, just not something I want to do every day.
As far as avoiding sea sickness goes, try to spend as little time inside the boat as possible when it’s moving/sailing. If you look out on the horizon outside it feels a lot less uncomfortable than sitting inside with no view of the water. The only two days I feel nauseated were the days we started sailing before I woke up. The other days I managed to get up and outside before the boat started rocking severely. Also, Dramamine is life! I’d suggest buying both the regular and non-drowsy options for nighttime and daytime use.
Finally, bring your own sunscreen! While the crew did have a few bottles, we ran through it super quick and eventually had to buy bottles at various tourist shops… which naturally were 2-3x the normal price.
See more photos from our trip below! Since I was really trying to take a break from actually working, I took most of these photos on my phone and not my professional camera. I’ll be sharing more of my outfits soon, so stay tuned…