Showing posts with label beaches. Show all posts
Showing posts with label beaches. Show all posts

Great Places to See in Barbados in 4 hours

welcome to Bridgetown, Barbados

Exploring Barbados in 4 hours? 
It might sound too optimistic, but sure you can!
That's exactly what I did when I had a 6-hour transit in Barbados, after finishing my meeting at Kingstown, St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
And there are great places to see in Barbados in 4 hours indeed!

I was super lucky, in a way, that I have to have to transit on my way back to NYC.
From New York, I was flying to SVG through Trinidad and Tobago, but it was a short transit so I did not go outside of the airport. 

But heading back home is another story.

I had an early flight at 7 AM with Liat Airlines from SVG, transiting in Barbados, then headed back to NYC with JetBlue. I arrived at Grantley Adams international airport (BGI) at aroun 8 AM. Super early but I have no complaints. 

Since I haven't been to Barbados, I was super excited!
I know 4 hours is the maximum time I can get, and perhaps I can't go swimming or snorkeling, but at least I can just relax for a while and snap some pictures here and there while exploring this beautiful city. I have done a bit of browsing and consult Trip Advisor, where I am one of its Level-6 Top Contributors ;), as well as one of my newly acquainted colleagues who are posted in this very country .

Determine where you want to go and what you want to see will definitely help maximizing your limited time while visiting one place. And as I was traveling around alone this time, I just list down the places I'd like to see, compare the prices for renting the car and the local guide (I guess I had a great one), and pray for the best!.

So as I got my luggage, headed out to the arrival gate of the airport, I directly went to the taxi stand and asked around. They actually have the list of the official taxi rate, which is very helpful. But I directly asked whether there was someone who could take me around to see the city in 4 hours. 

That's when I bumped into Keith, a lovely grandpa of 4 who has been in the tourism industry in Barbados for the last 30 years :). As soon as I had a short conversation about what I wanted to see and how much time I need, he understood completely and he agreed for Barbadian Dollar 150 or USD 75 to take me around for 4 hours! That's quite a bargain I guess :). I took my luggage to his van, set all my cameras and off we went exploring Bridgetown, Barbados's capital. And Keith is such a sweetheart!

Meet Keith, my guide :)

I have set my heart on seeing some of the beautiful places Barbados has to offer and with Keith's help, here they are!

First destination ... to the beach!

Our first stop was actually to the ATM, as I have no Barbadian Dollar :).
But right after that, we went straight ahead to the Pebbles Beach, right in front of the Government Building or the Cabinet Office of the Barbados.
Can you imagine working at the office right across beautiful white, sandy beach with clear, turquoise water?
I was sold! I would definitely miss my work or move all my meetings to the beach :)

Here at Pebbles beach, I was just standing there, enjoying the breeze and dip my feet to the water. I was super tempted to go swimming but my back was still hurt and burn after my almost full day swimming and snorkeling at Bequai, the Grenadines.

I certainly took a lot of photos and videos here. 
And feeling those powdery sands on my bare feet and looking at the clear blue sky making me missing INDONESIA, my homeland, more and more :).

Independence Square

The next stop is the Independence Square!
As the name suggested, this is where Barbados' Independence was pronounced.
Such a beautiful garden in the middle of the city, with perfect view to the Heroes Square and the Parliament Building right across the street.

The Constitution River is flowing to the sea, across the Chamberlain Bridge.

From the Independence Square, we can see the Parliament Building right across the street.
The Chamberlain Bridge and Parliament Building a far..

Parliament Building and Museum

So we continued exploring the city and as I mentioned to Keith, my guide, I need to buy some souvenirs as well. He then parked the car at the Heroes Square and showed me the way to the shopping center, the Cave Shepherd. But before shopping, he pointed the Parliament Building and Museum which would be interesting to photograph.

Keith had been looking at my gears and ensured that I didn't miss those photogenic parts of the city!  

There is a museum near this complex but as time was limited, I skipped it and headed to the store to grab some souvenirs.

Down town shopping

And voilaaa...there I was!
Around the Broad Street, you will find Norman Centre and the Cave Shepherd, the duty free, as well as local shops for you to enjoy.

Comfortably stepping in the Cave Shepherd (I love the name!), I was cooly welcomed by the full blow of air conditioner. Great! I know I was just spending around 1.5 hours under the sun but already I have to cool my self down, while exercising my favorite activity, shopping!

I guess I bought a lot of stuff there and happy to bring them home!
For sure I have many fridge magnets, shooters, t-shirts, salt  & pepper shakers, and postcards with stamps, so that I can send them home to NYC as well as to Indonesia.

From shopping, I have another round to the beach.
We passed Brownes Beach, Accra Beach, and back to Pebbles Beach as well as Needhams Points. I was really overwhelmed by those beautiful beaches.

Enjoying local food at Pug's Bar and Restaurant

Finally, time to go back to the airport. 
But I was super hungry and I asked Keith to take me to the local restaurant near the airport.
Right across the airport entrance, we stopped at Pug's bar and restaurant.
There was a long line of people already as it was lunch time.
But pretty quick, we both got what we want.
Can you guess what we had?

my plate of fried fish and creamy potato! Oh my God..soooo goood!

And I tried fried king fish a la Barbados, with creamy, butter potatoes that tasted like mash potatoes, with hot pepper sauce and fresh slices of cucumbers!
Heavenly yummy for sure.

the restaurant

Happy, sleepy and full, I was heading back to the airport and started to check-in.
I was actually tempted to visit the Concorde Experience but I didn't want to miss my flight.
Beside, I still have to get stamps and send the postcards to my family and friends, including my dearest Em(b)ak Ceria :)).

Thank you so much, Keith, for a wonderful half-day trip in Barbados!

Hopefully I can come back here again one day!

Next round, it will be with my dearest family.

Do you enjoy transiting somewhere while traveling?

What do you usually do while transiting?

Picture Perfect Barbados

Merci ya Rabb for giving me the chance to enjoy Your magnificent creation.
Picture perfect Barbados

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Jones Beach, New York, in Pictures

We have been enjoying beautiful beaches  in NYC and the surrounding cities.

One of the latest one we visited was Jones Beach. Located in Wantagh, New York, it took us around 40 minutes by car to here.

Jones Beach is one of the state parks of the New York state and it's beautifully facing the Atlantic Ocean. Its wide open ocean and deep sea is pretty tempting to those who enjoy a good swimming session.

welcome to Jone Beach
Its soft, white sand beach streching around 6.5 miles or approximately 10.5 km in length certainly makes Jones Beach a popular destination in summer. There are six spots where you can get the parking spots and beautiful lines of beaches.
Jones Beach is also famous for its swimming pool at West Bath House pool. Too bad when we were there it was almost close, so we didn't to get a chance to try the pool.

care to swim with me?

Apparently, around 6 million people visit this lovely spot every year. When we were there on one sunny Saturday, it was quite packed with visitors enjoying beautiful day with the family and loved ones. Happy kids were running around and screams of joy were heard as people welcomed the cold waves of the ocean.

enjoying the wave

My kids truly enjoyed our time on this beach. Running and swimming around, taking pictures here and there, eating snacks and fruits, and even rolling down on the sand were parts of our itinerary that day. It was awesome!

Bo enjoying the beach

Bo et Obi at Jones Beach

mango time :)

Near the beach, there are a few cute wooden houses.

read the rules...

At the end of the day, we just sat down and enjoyed the sunset.

Glorious sky will always be fascinating to see. Always.

welcoming sunset

Join us on Skywatch Friday and enjoy beautiful skies from every corner of the world.

4 Pantai Asyik di sekitar New York City

Siapakah yang mengaku anak pantai di sini?
Acung tangan tinggi-tinggi :).

Lahir dan besar di Lampung, yang nota bene terkenal dengan jajaran pantai cantik, laut biru nan jernih dan wisata bahari yang mempesona, julukan anak pantai memang klop buat saya. Apalagi sejak mendapat lisensi untuk menyelam tahun 2011 yang lalu. Tambah deh menjadi-jadi main ke pantai, pulau, dan laut setiap ada kesempatan. Kalau tidak sempat pulang ke Lampung, pantai di Jakarta dan sekitarnya.

Sejak pindah ke New York City, kecintaan saya akan langit dan laut biru tidak berkurang.

Bertambah malah.
Walaupun memang, frankly speaking, cantiknya laut Indonesia susah dikalahkan. Tapi karena kita sedang tinggal di the Big Apple sampai at least 2 tahun mendatang, kami pun semangat menjelajahi pantai-pantai yang ada di New York City.

Jangan salah ya, semangat memang tinggi tapi karena banyak kesibukan lain seringkali kami harus membagi waktu untuk memastikan #myitchyfeet bisa terus eksis #eaaaa.

Jadi, kembali ke judul, ada pantai apa saja sih di New York City dan sekitarnya?
Banyak, karena memang sebagian New York City, terutama Queens, terletak di pulau yang bernama Long Islands. Sounds familiar? 
Tapi bukan Thousand islands ya hehehe..karena nama salah satu salad dressing ini memang beneran ada tempatnya :).

Ini dia beberapa pantai cantik yang pernah kami kunjungi selama musim panas ini

Coney Island

Bisa jadi, pantai yang satu ini adalah pantai paling populer di New York City.
Selain karena pantainya yang relatif bersih dan berpasir lembut, meskipun bukan pasir putih, Coney Islands yang terletak di Brooklyn ini sejak lama terkenal karena aneka theme parks atau taman permainan dengan berbagai wahana seru, termasuk yang sukses buat kita menjerit sepenuh jiwa raga karena serunya. Luna Park adalah salah satu theme parks seru yang penuh dengan aneka atraksi heboh itu.

ready to try this one :)

Belum lagi tempat jajanan hotdog yang super ngetop, Nathan's, ada di sini. Setiap tahun, Coney Island menjadi tuan rumah kontes makan hotdog terseru di New York City dan juga mermaid parade atau parade 'putri duyung' yang penuh warna. Coney Island juga menjadi tempat New York Aquarium.

Coney island juga relatif mudah dikunjungi karena terhubung dengan transportasi umum, yaitu subway N dan Q. Persis jalur subway yang lewat rumah kami :).

Walaupun kami berenang saat musim panas, tetap saja airnya lumayan dingin untuk ukuran badan Indonesia seperti kami sekeluarga :). Biasanya, kami berenang tidak lebih dari 1 jam di sini. Sisanya main di theme parks, nongkrong cantik atau menikmati jajanan sambil mendengarkan aneka atraksi hiburan jalanan yang tidak kalah seru.

Rockaway Beach

Pantai yang satu ini terletak di ujung Queens, salah satu borough atau setingkat kecamatan yang ada di New York City. Letaknya relatif paling dekat dari rumah kami di Astoria, Long Island City, karenanya kami pun sering menghabiskan waktu di sini.

Pasirnya yang putih dan lembut dan pantai yang tidak terlalu landai menjadikannya tempat berenang ideal untuk Bo et Obi. Tentunya sambil terus diawasi oleh Mama dan Bapak :). Dan memang Rockaway beach selalu ramai saat musim panas atau setiap cuaca cukup hangat untuk berenang. Enaknya, Rockaway tidak sepenuh Coney Island, jadi cukup tempat untuk semua dan tidak perlu berebut kamar mandi atau toilet. Namun memang tempat jajan di sini tidak sebanyak pilihan di Coney Island. Hmmm..ini mau berenang atau mau ngemil yah >_<.

Jones Beach

Jones beach adalah salah satu pantai favorite yang belum lama ini kami kunjungi.

Terletak di Wantagh, New York, pantai ini memang sedikit agak jauh dari New York City atau sekitar 50 menit perjalanan dengan mobil. Saya belum sempat mengecek jalur transportasi umum ke sini, namun saya yakin pasti terhubung dengan baik juga karena saya sempat melihat banyak bus stop  di sepanjang jalan menuju pantai.

Selain pantai bersih berpasir halus, Jones Beach juga terkenal dengan West Bathhouse dan pool alias kolam renang di tepi pantai. Hanya dengan tiket masuk $5 untuk dewasa dan $3 untuk anak-anak mulai usia 6 tahun, kolam renang dan segala fasilitasnya bisa dinikmati.

Oya, dan sunset di sini cakep bangeet juga lho :).

Plumb Beach

Meskipun pantai ini tidak begitu ideal untuk berenang karena airnya yang agak muddy dan pantainya yang relatif kotor dibandingkan pantai lainnya, tapi Plumb beach lumayan seru untuk tempat nongrong cantik sambil menikmati matahari terbenam. Letaknya relatif dekat dengan kota karena masih masuk kawasan Brooklyn, berbatasan dengan Queens.

Sebenarnya masih banyak lagi pantai asyik yang bisa dikunjungi, namun kami belum sempat mendatanginya.
Waktu di Jakarta, saat tidak pulang ke Lampung, kami sering mengunjungi Pantai Marina di Ancol atau ke salah satu pulai di jajaran Kepulauan Seribu. 

Selain perlengkapan 'perang' untuk berenang, seperti baju berenang, sunscreen, ban dan pelampung anak-anak, baju ganti, sabun dan sampai, serta masker dan snorkel sampai fin, tidak lupa kami bawa perlengkapan 'perang' untuk perut hahaha. Apalagi kalau bukan stok air putih yang banyak, makanan berat dan cemilan. Yuuuup..never forget!

Biasanya saya dan keluarga selalu mempersiapkan perlengkapan perang ini dari rumah. Tapi kalau di Indonesia sih tidak masalah, karena keperluan yang kita butuhkan banyak tersedia dan mudah didapat, apalagi untuk urusan cemilan :).

Pernah suatu ketika kami mendadak memutuskan main ke salah satu pantai di Lampung. Dengan pedenya kami langsung menuju tekape tanpa bawa apa-apa. Tapi tenang saja, karena di sepanjang perjalanan menuju pantai, ada banyak tempat yang menyediakan keperluan kita di pantai. Usaha ritel Alfamart salah satunya. 

It's very handy to have it...

Saya ingat pernah membeli sunscreen dan goggle untuk anak-anak di salah satu usaha ritel Alfamart yang terletak di jalur menuju pantai. Apalagi untuk urusan cemilan, komplit deeeh pokoknya. Dan memang, banyak tempat usaha yang tersebar di berbagai tempat strategis ini sangat membantu konsumen seperti saya dan keluarga.

So, that's our story saat menyusuri pantai di sekitar New York City.
Teman-teman suka menjelajahi pantai juga?
Di mana tempat favoritmu?

Tanjung Bastian Beach, Atambua, East Nusa Tenggara

Tanjung Bastian Beach, Atambua...

My memory was thrown back to 2013 when I had the priviledge to cross the border of Indonesia and Timor-Leste.
Taking a tiring but beautifully rewarding road trip from Dili to several border crossing points across the line between the the two countries, I really enjoyed our 5-hour trip.

Along the way, my eyes were feasted with the endless beauty of the nature.
Raw...but mesmerizing...

on our way to Atambua, East Nusa Tenggara...
And oh so clear blue sky..

I just found more snapshots I got during my visit to this eastern part of my beautiful homeland, including this traditional hut in Atambua.

And as always, I am drawn to the beach most of the time.
At that time, we stopped at Tanjung Bastian beach.
As much as I was tempted to plunge myself to the cool water, we didnt't really have enough time to do so. So I just took pictures while others were sipping their coffee :).

To the majestic blue sky and the alluring turquoise sea....

me back in 2013 :)

Tanjung Bastian Beach, Atambua, East Nusa Tenggara 

Do you like the blue sky as well?

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South Beach, Miami, Florida

Look up and smile...
Such a beautiful day at South Beach, Miami, Florida..
Another stop we have in this summer's road trip :).
I will get back with more stories et more pictures, promise !

Meanwhile, let's celebrate this breathtaking nature...

How can you not love the sky..
Then love its mighty Creator ;)

enjoying the beach :)

Join us on Skywatch Friday and enjoy the sky from every corner of the world ;)..