Tropical: Nevis

January 13, 2014 10:25 am Published by

Called Dulcina: the Sweet Island, Oualie: Land of beautiful waters in every language of every era Nevis is the Queen of the Caribees.  Nevis, the smaller of the two islands which make up the Federation of St. Kitts and Nevis, is situated in the Leeward Islands of the Caribbean, roughly 1,200 miles from Miami.  Dominating the centre of Nevis’ 36 square miles is Mount Nevis, the dormant volcano popularly known as Nevis Peak.  Its summit is almost perpetually cloaked in mist, giving it the appearance of being snow-capped.

History

Nevis’ name is derived from “Nuestra Senora de Las Nieves” which means “Our Lady of the Snows because of the frequent cloud cover over Nevis Peak.  Nevis archaeology shows signs of stone tools used by the indigenous natives predating European influence.  By the 1700’s Nevis was a British holding with sugar plantations providing its chief export.  Alexander Hamilton was born on Nevis in 1757 and after travelling to North America to attend college became embroiled in the American Revolution.  Horatio Nelson established his headquarters on Nevis in 1780 where he met and married Francis Nisbet the daughter of a plantation owner.  Nevis achieved associate statehood with St. Kitts in 1967 and in 1983 became part of the sovereign state of St. Kitts and Nevis.  Having been a part of the British Empire for over two hundred years English is the principle language.

The sea and the mountain provide the two most breathtaking backdrops for Nevis.  Hiking the island provides the best opportunity to view the landscapes and seascapes trails are accessible but local officials recommend guided tours to ensure visitor’s safety.  The island has over half a dozen tour guides all of whom offer a variety of tour packages highlighting ecotourism, wildlife, and historic tours.  Mountain biking is another great way to view the sights and sounds of the island.  Snorkeling and scuba diving the coral reefs and ship wrecks are also available.  All levels of experience are accommodated at Scuba Safaris Ltd www.fishnevis.com.  Wind surfing is at its best with Nevis location astride the trade winds which would take the windjammers to and from Europe.  The coral reefs provide sheltered waters for the less experienced and the narrows between Nevis and St. Kitts provides wind and waves for the bump and jump for the more advanced, visit www.windsurfingnevis.com for more details.

Newlyweds with sports in mind can find the 18-hole Robert Trent Jones golf course at the Four Seasons Resort.  Several of the Hotels have tennis courts.  Netball is played year round, previously a woman’s sport both men and women now enter tournaments played in Charlestown.  Soccer is played in September and October in Grove Park in Charlestown and of course the premier British sport Cricket played between January and mid July.  Deep sea fishing and bottom fishing are available through charter from several charter services  game fish, such as Wahoo, Dorado (aka dolphin fish) Tuna, Blue Marlin, White Marlin, Sailfish and Kingfish.

If you’re planning a more relaxed honeymoon explore Nevis in a carriage ride tour or on one of several horseback riding tours.  Explore the streets of Charlestown and see some of the last remaining examples of early Caribbean architecture.  Many of the tours take you through both restored and ruined sugar plantations of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.  Two museums feature exhibits detailing the islands history and Nevis famous son Alexander Hamilton and Admiral Lord Horatio Nelson.  Late afternoon to evening sea tours will take you out to view humpback whales (January to April) and dolphins.  Spend an afternoon at the races held each month at Indian Castle Race Track sponsored by the Nevis Turf and Jockey Club.  Along with the races music and barbecue food in a carnival atmosphere, the horses are thoroughbreds along with para-mutual betting.  Before going to the races spend a relaxing morning on any of the miles of beaches and after the races are over enjoy a Caribbean sunset you will remember for the rest of your lives.  Relax and be pampered at Compassionate Touch Spa and Salon and discover techniques from all over the world designed to smooth away all the tensions your body absorbed visit their website at www.compassionatetouchspa.com for a complete list.

The people of Nevis offer restaurants featuring West Indian cuisine for the local flavor but also continental, Chinese, vegetarian, but let’s face it no matter where you go in the world there are times when you need a good pizza or a burger you will find them too.  The Hotels and Inns also have excellent restaurants with chefs providing a variety of West Indian and continental menus.  After dinner you will want to check out the night life, music and dancing.  The Hotels and Inns have specialty nights with Caribbean sounds, jazz, calypso, and for the brave karaoke.  Local clubs and bars have music and dancing and beach parties and bonfires.  Music is provided by local bands striving to keep alive the unique culture of Caribbean music.

Where to stay

Four Seasons Resort is Nevis premier five diamond resort with its own 18 hole championship golf course designed by Robert Trent Jones.  196 deluxe rooms and suites have either an ocean view or view of the golf course.  Also available at the resort is three dinning rooms and three retail shops, other activities include sail boating, snorkeling, scuba diving, waterskiing, and windsurfing.  Romantic intimate accommodations are available in the restored sugar plantations the Golden Rock, Nisbet Plantation Beach Club, Hermitage, and Montpelier Plantation Inns.  Each feature rooms and or cottages, pools local activities such as horseback riding self guided nature tours and incredible views.  Local hotels include Mount Nevis Hotel, Old Manor Hotel, Oualie Beach Hotel, Pinney’s Beach Hotel, Inn at Cades Bay, and Hurricane Bungalows.

For the destination Wedding

If you are planning a destination wedding prepare yourself for an unforgettable experience in one of the most stunning backdrops in the world but prepare for the paperwork!  Most of the Hotels will be happy to assist with planning and preparations; help finding a minister or priest, flowers, and photography, catering, music, and accommodations for the wedding party.  For more information contact the Nevis Tourism Authority at 407-287-5204 or email info@nevisisland.com.

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This post was written by sperling