7 paradise islands where you can still travel without breaking the bank

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Want to go for a dream trip in a paradise destination? You want to play Robinson on an island (more or less) deserted, and enjoy the blue sky, fine sand and turquoise water

The problem is that often paradise destinations are expensive. This is understandable: a sense is part of the myth. If everyone could snap their fingers and spend their holidays on a tropical island, they would probably lose their appeal. And we would end up looking for vacations elsewhere.

Three islands paradise to enjoy the Caribbean without breaking the bank:

When you think of ‘paradise destination’, you immediately imagine the Caribbean, its blue sky, its fine sand, and its coconut palms. And I will not contradict you: the Caribbean is full of beautiful islands, treasures of nature, and romantic beaches for a paradisiacal holiday, cocktails and bathing in warm and translucent waters.

Below are some ideas for spending a dream holiday in the Caribbean with a tight budget.

The Pearl Archipelago, Panama

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The Pearl Archipelago is about two hours away by ferry from the capital, Panama City. If you are on road trip in Central America, it is really the right plan to discover a real corner of paradise without ruining you in accommodation (less than 30 USD per night) or in food (small restaurants between 10 and 15 dollars

Important: there is no bank or ATM on the paradisiacal island of Contadora (nor on others, to my knowledge). Make sure you have a small amount in cash before you arrive, to be sure to be able to meet your needs on site (most establishments will accept the credit card, but you are never too careful

Island of Vieques, Puerto Rico / United States

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United States to see a paradise island?  you are going to have a hard time believing me: except Hawaii and its surfers, there is nothing that comes to mind spontaneously. And yet … Here is Puerto Rico! The island is part of the Commonwealth, and to get there, the formalities are exactly the same as for the United States.

Puerto Rico may be considered an American territory, it really does not feel like being in the United States, believe me. It really feels like a little tropical paradise, singing Caribbean Spanish accent included.

I recommend Vieques Island, a former American military base in the middle of the 20th century, which is a short distance east of the island of Puerto Rico. It is one of the most beautiful Caribbean beaches (especially Blue Beach, a must!).

Caye Caulker, Belize

 

Belize is a tiny country stuck between Guatemala and Mexico. Independent of Great Britain since 1981, it is not the place that comes to mind spontaneously when one thinks to leave in Central America

Yet, Belize has many paradise beaches and plenty of interesting spots to share with passing travelers. Starting with Caye Caulker, a lively, vibrant, cheap island (it’s easy to find nice places to sleep for 25/35 dollars a night, which is increasingly rare in this corner of the globe).

Explore it by bike, then at the end of the day go for a head in its translucent waters. Lovers of diving and seabed will be delighted here: multi-coloured fish await you. An ideal place to recharge the batteries without breaking the bank after a backpacking tour through Central America!

Southeast Asia: paradise of paradise islands

The Perhentian Islands, Malaysia

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Southeast Asia, and this time take the direction of Malaysia, a few hundred kilometers further south.

There are two main islands: Kecil and Besar. The first, the smaller of the two, is also the most lively. If you want a spot to enjoy the marine activities during the day and go out or basically party in the evening, this is ideal. Besar on the other hand is quieter, more suitable if you are looking for tranquility in a heavenly corner.

The Perhentian Islands are famous for snorkelling: its seabed is absolutely superb: you will have put your nose in the water (well, with a tuba eh), that you will discover fish of all colors and corals to be absolutely unique.

Koh Chang, Thailand

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Koh Chang is the most accessible paradise island of Thailand from Bangkok (at least by road, otherwise the flight to Phuket is very efficient). Ideal to unwind at the end of the trip, before returning to France, if you fly from the Thai capital, as was my case during my last trip to Asia.

The prices are very reasonable as long as you do not stay in the luxury resorts. There are plenty of guesthouses where you can bargain prices and have a cozy, comfortable room, frankly not much (twenty- five dollars per night big max, if you go in the high season and you are not Hyper at ease with bargaining).

Kanawa Island, Indonesia

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The island of Kanawa is a tiny island that you can walk around in less than an hour (walking a good walk, anyway). It is right next to the island of Flores, much more known and tourist (a quasi-obligatory passage in Indonesia).

Kanawa is a real piece of paradise. The island is quiet (you will not find any cars), relaxing. People are warm and welcoming.

The seabed is there still absolutely superb and, rare in Indonesia, preserved from mass tourism.

The icing on the cake: the cost of living is really affordable on this island. It takes only a few days if you are in roadtrip mode in Southeast Asia, and it is only one stop before your next destination, but a full week is very nice if you just want to enjoy Sun, way ‘holidays in paradise’.

The paradisiac islands of Africa

For example, the Zanzibar archipelago, for example, offers an enchanting setting off Tanzania to rest after a safari or road trip in East Africa. Off the coast of Senegal, Cape Verde is worth its weight of peanuts as well. And it is still a very little tourist destination.

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Mnemba Island Lodge

And, of course, Mauritius which will delight all travelers in search of fine sand and turquoise water.

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6 travel destinations to celebrate Christmas in the sun

 

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What if we celebrate Christmas in an unusual place this year? Why not swimsuit with a cocktail in hand on a beach at hundreds of miles from home?

Guadeloupe

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Plage de la Guadeloupe

Spending the Christmas holidays in Guadeloupe can really change you every day, with local specialties: pudding, ham with pineapple and coconut, but also the famous local song “sung Nwèl”, tradition of the West Indies. You will of course taste the local Ti Punch and party all night. With an average temperature of 29 ° C at this time of the year you will not be cold for Christmas!

Canary Islands

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A few hours from Paris only, you could settle on the beach to make your castle in the sand or to taste the famous trucha de batata. In Yaiza, you can even test a camel ride like a King Mage! To spend Christmas in the Canaries is a nice option and not too expensive.

Mauritius Island 

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The end of the year is very touristic in Mauritius, especially for the New Year, but at Christmas it is very pleasant to discover the traditions of the island. You can find Christmas gifts in the market of Port Louis and bring back some local spices for your kitchen. Of course it is a bit more expensive than other destinations as it is very popular.

Bali

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The advantage to Bali as throughout the southern hemisphere, you will not need sweaters in your suitcase. If you come a few days before Christmas you will enjoy the amazing flora and fauna and a temperature around 30 ° C. Perhaps you will enjoy a coconut milk trek for Christmas, as it is one of the Indonesian specialties.

Cape Verde Island

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Cape Verde is the ideal destination if you want to enjoy the turquoise water and fewer tourists to spend a relaxing Christmas. There are some celebrations organized on the beaches for the New Year, but otherwise it is a fairly quiet period. Know that Merry Christmas in Cape Verde is called “Boas Festas”.

Crete island

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Did you like Crete in summer? Are you interested in a Greek Christmas and have your visited Crete Island  yet. Fewer people are still under the sun at this time of year. Put your suitcases in Heraklion, the heart of Crete, to eat the famous Vassilopita cake and admire the huge pine tree on the square with the Christmas village for children. Kalä Hristoügénna!

Bora Bora, the mythical island

The mythical island of Bora Bora in Polynesia, has not stolen his nickname “Pearl of the Pacific”! Known worldwide for its magnificent lagoon and its variations remarkable colors, Bora Bora is a gem of wonder. Island of romance , it has everything you could want to celebrate your love. Experience unique moments in Bora Bora!

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Bora Bora, the earthly paradise of Polynesia

Who has never dreamed he heard his name? Located about 50 minutes flight from Tahiti, in the heart of the Islands in French Polynesia, Bora Bora is a jewel of nature. And for good reason … Its lagoon is reputed to be one of the most extraordinary in the world: it offers sublime shades of blue depending on the depth of the seabed and is home to dozens of species of tropical fish and beautiful coral that will the delight of diving enthusiasts. In this Polynesian natural aquarium, you can observe manta rays, whale sharks and sea turtles all year and humpback whales from August to September.

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Enjoy the white sand beaches you will not see anywhere else and begin your relaxing stay on the beach of Matira, THE most beautiful beach in Bora Bora, located south of the island. The sand is very fine, almost white and coral pushed on shore like a sea foam … a warm, gentle breeze, in charge of tiare fragrance lulls this magical paradise where the sunsets are magnificent! As for accommodation, Bora Bora has a varied hotel infrastructure that fits perfectly to the exceptional scenery of the island. The overwater villas is a must: typical Polynesian, it offers a level of exceptional comfort, from your private balcony, direct access to the crystal clear lagoon and the privilege of enjoying your breakfast delivered on board a canoe.

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A multitude of activities to do during your stay in Bora Bora

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There are no better than Bora Bora place to enjoy water sports enthusiasts will be thrilled by the possibilities. The queen activity is of course diving. A test version of snorkeling or scuba diving. In addition, you can enjoy many excursions to go around the island within the lagoon: a semi-submersible submarine or catamaran (ideal to discover the island for those with the sailor as for those less experienced). The possibilities for walks on the lagoon are many.

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More extreme, you can also go jet skiing in the crystal clear waters, discover the Polynesian island in another way thanks to parasailing or witness the spectacular “shark feeding” safe. Bora Bora also allows for many shore excursions: tours in 4×4, on foot, by bike and quad or horse … In the Heart of the Journey recommend renting a car to move on to Bora Bora the coastal road and stop at the three main villages on the island or on archaeological sites and viewpoints offering unusual views of the lagoon and surrounding Polynesian islands.