Christmas in Vieques

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S

omehow I accidentally posted this yesterday before I had added photos. Which is just shocking considering I am a tech supergenius and I have a thorough understanding of the ins and outs of the internet. So, sorry about that.

Never one for punctuality, I waited until mid-late February before sharing pictures from our gorgeous trip to Vieques, Puerto Rico. But do not take my delay in posting these as anything less that a huge, ringing endorsement for a tropical getaway to this beautiful and remote island. My only wish is that we had scheduled the trip for February (a.k.a. right now) so that the warmth could've provided the much needed respite I am craving from the hellscape known as PolarVortexSnowpocolypseWinter 2014. Anywho.

8 Things to know about Vieques:

1. You don't need a passport and your cellphone will work. You can piss off everyone you know with all your braggy instagram shots. Yippee.

2. It's relatively close (in the scheme of things) and easy to get to. We flew direct to San Juan and then took a tiny (TINY) plane to the island of Vieques which is about 20 miles off of Puerto Rico mainland. It took about a half an hour. In case I'm being unclear, de plane held 8 passengers and they asked each of us how much we weighed. If we're dealing with individual weights we're dealing with a tiny ass plane. I may have low balled my weight ever so slightly but luckily the extra ten pounds didn't cause us to crash.

3. The island is small (20 miles x 4 miles) but you need a car. The roads are coocoo bumpy in some places so you need something with four wheel drive. We ended up with a fun red Jeep and my boyfriend looked very cute 4-wheelin' around that island.

4. There are some hotels and even a W resort but we rented a house. Since there were five of us this was cheaper and we had a kitchen so we cooked a lot of our own meals and made lots (and lots) of our own cocktails, both frugal choices. We rented the house through these guys and they seem to own pretty much everything on the island. The house was stupid nice. We might as well have been on our own episode of Cribs, And I should mention, it also had a private pool and was about sixty seconds from the ocean. Poor us.

5. There are two towns on Vieques; Isabela Segunda and Esperanza. Both are relatively tiny but there are enough cute open air beach bars and quaint restaurants to fill your time. If you want to cook there are a couple of grocery stores with plenty of stuff and a nicer gourmet shop that delivered a huge food order for us before we even got there. Because everything has to be brought in from the mainland you can't get anything/everything. It wasn't really all that noticeable except for fresh produce which is harder to come by than we're used to. There's a weekly outdoor market that draws a big crowd so you can definitely load up there.

6. The beaches are stunning. Stunning. But what's even more amazing than how beautiful they are is how you can easily find your own private piece of paradise where it's just you and all that gorgeousness. Not another soul in sight.

7. The Bioluminescent Bay is probably the biggest draw to Vieques and it is not to be missed. There are five bio bays in Puerto Rico but the one in Vieques is the best example in the entire U.S. There are organisms in the bay that emit a bright glow whenever disturbed which is what creates the bioluminescence. This was one of the coolest things I've ever seen. It exceeded my expectations. Nature, man. Nature.

8. My four travel companions and I had the best time. If you have a hankering for a getaway to a warm, non-touristy island that's a bit off the beaten path well my friends, this is it.

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