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Nevis: A Caribbean gem

Nevis Peak soars out of the turquoise waters of the Caribbean Seatopped with a halo of white clouds. It is the island’s showpiece andfigurehead, a proud symbol of peaceful, eco-friendly living. Nevis isone of the Caribbean’s best kept secrets.

Nevis Peak soars out of the turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea topped with a halo of white clouds. It is the island’s showpiece and figurehead, a proud symbol of peaceful, eco-friendly living. Nevis is one of the Caribbean’s best kept secrets.

Located 3.2 kilometres from the shore of neighbouring St. Kitts, the government of Nevis has been careful not to allow the crush of time share complexes and hotel chains to ring its beaches.

Known as the Queen of the Caribees, Nevis has a rich heritage of old sugar plantation ruins and is the birthplace of Caribbean tourism. The Bath Hotel opened in 1778 and became the playground of the rich and famous. You can still take a dip in the healing mineral hot springs at the base of the old hotel that now houses government offices.

Getting there

The most efficient route from Canada is to fly direct from Toronto to St. Maarten or Antigua then take one of the connector flights like LIAT to Nevis. LIAT (liat.com) flies to 22 destinations in the Caribbean. Another option is to fly to St. Kitts and take a short ferry ride over to Nevis.

What to do there

For the adventure seeker, you can hike uphill through the tropical rain forest until you reach the top of Nevis Peak. Afterwards, you could lunch at the Golden Rock Estate taking in its stunning vistas of the Caribbean Sea and Montserrat.

A trip to the Botanical Gardens where rainforest flora and fauna intermingle with seventy varieties of orchids would be a good excursion, along with a visit to the Nevisian Heritage Village.

Shopping in the capital of Charlestown might beckon you but if the beauty of Nevis is still calling, you could go horseback riding or deep sea fishing. But the ultimate thing to do in Nevis is to crawl into a comfortable beach chair or hammock, stare at the calming turquoise water and do — absolutely nothing.

Where to stay

There are no all inclusive hotels on the island but what you will discover are amazing four and five star resorts and guest houses. One of the most famous is Nisbet Plantation Beach Club. The luxurious resort features 36 cottages lining the perimeter of the Avenue of the Palms that leads you down to the white sand and ocean.

The Great House, built in 1778 has been lovingly restored and dining there is an inspiring infusion of Caribbean, West Indian and North American favourites.

Nisbet Plantation is an experience to be savoured and was recently named the Caribbean resort of the year by Travel and Leisure Magazine.

Where to dine

When Stedman Graham and long time steady Oprah tell you to open a restaurant, you make it happen.

At 84-years-old, Miss June is still enchanting people who come to dine at her beautifully appointed Nevisian home. Long known as the finest cook on the island, Stedman and Oprah raved about Miss June’s delicately spiced West Indian curries, mouth watering fish and vegetarian dishes and convinced her to go into business.

Miss June’s is only open once or twice a week and reservations are essential. It is a Nevisian gastronomic delight and definitely one of Oprah’s favourite things while visiting the island.

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