Academics & Adventure on Island heaven:Jamaica

April 1st, 2014

Inspiration Writing ContestJamaica

Frankland WaterfallsAcademics and Adventure

It was through my educational pursuits that the twin islands of St. Kitts and Nevis struck my radar. Though small in size this quaint island shaped like a juicy chicken leg on Google maps, is a masterpiece of sculpted volcanic peaks and mountain ranges protruding above the massive plains and low lying peninsulas.

Amidst my studies I had to integrate some adventure, because all work and no play…well you get the point. The very next day after my arrival, my roommate and I were escorted on an island excursion. We were immediately met by the picturesque Atlantic Ocean views. Perched in the interior of the island sat an uninhabited volcanic mountain chain that dominates the center of the island. We soon met upon acres of Sugar cane and learned about the sugar industry that thrived for over 350 years there. We ventured off track to numerous side roads and interacted with welcoming local residents.

From there we headed to the east where the placid turquoise Caribbean Sea seemed to be beckoning us in for a swim. The views were ever changing; the black sandy beaches in view of the solemn Atlantic Ocean and colorful village homes peeping through the hills of the lush vibrant rain forest. I had discovered a real Jewel of the Caribbean that would cater to both nature lovers and the easygoing spirit.

We finally made our way home in less than two hours, but we had yet to explore the peninsula to the southeast and let’s not forget the sister island of Nevis. So many adventures to be had already and I had yet to unpack my luggage.

With each new semester, I sought to balance academics and adventure. I wasted no time in finding my way to Brimstone Hill ‘the Gibraltar of the Caribbean’. Perched 800 feet atop a volcanic remnant, the views are effortlessly breathtaking from central mountain peaks to small villages that slope down to the coast. In the distance neighboring islands are like specks of green moss atop the vast ocean. Even after three visits I’m still in awe.

On exploration to the southeast end of the island, Frigate Bay is the Hub for Tourist Attractions boasting Fancy Homes, Hotels and beachfront bars notoriously called ‘The Strip’. You can never be bored on the strip as the music never sleeps. Once on the peninsula the concept of the word Pristine finally became clear. The views are unrivaled and the numerous sandy oases are ready to accommodate your every desire.

I was fortunate to find a wonderful family while on the island and they have become my extended family. Together we went to Nevis via Ferry from St. Kitts. Nevis is like a miniature replica of St. Kitts with volcanic peaks, vibrant rain forest, miles of pristine beaches and cultural remnants. But beware, the hypnotizing tranquility will lure you to return, I did. We also went to the Black Rocks attractions. I was unsure of what to expect but upon nearing the steep cliff I found the eighth wonder of the world. The simplicity of hardened black lava formations sitting along the coastal cliffs with white waves crashing against it was indeed unforgettable!

On my last visit to the island I visited Frankland Waterfall which is remotely nestled high up in the interior of the rain forest. The tedious path leads over mammoth boulders, up steep inclinations, under towering evergreens and through flowing streams and pools of icy cold water. I had no idea what I had signed up for but on reaching the pinnacle the minor bruises were worth it. At the summit the only sound is the rhythm of the uninterrupted essence of life free falling from the unknown. And yes, I would do it again.

There was a myriad of other adventures like Visits to the National Museum and Cruise Port, Exploring old plantations ruins,Indulging in Local craft exhibits, hiking adventures and even acquiring agricultural skills (yes I had a brief farming stint). Wait a minute; I have yet to explore the Botanical Gardens of Nevis, or ascend Mount Liamuiga, or circle the island On the Scenic Railway,or zip line the Sky Safari, or go skydiving, or snorkel in Coconut Tree Reef, or sunset cruise on the Catamaran or ride the Party bus or….

As this article only allows up to 800 words I must conclude but your journey has only just begun, don’t take my word for it, I said Go! After all anything that enhances your life experience can leave you with no regrets!

About the Author: Jennel Tucker is a college student with a passion for adventure and writing.Her travels across the Caribbean and also within the US and Canada has helped to heighten this passion and brought on new appreciation for cultural distinction.

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