Virtuoso Traveler 2018 February Ask the Advisors: What's Your Favorite Island Escape?

Ask the Advisors: What's Your Favorite Island Escape?

A view from the Galápagos
A view from the Galápagos
Photo by Paul Vowles/Getty Images
There are thousands of isles scattered across the planet’s oceans, with almost as many ways to experience them. Here, Virtuoso travel advisors share a few of their top getaways, both nearer to, and distant from, their homes.

Tiffany Layne - New York City

Closer In: “My nod goes to Barbados for its eye-popping beauty, vibrant culture, and thriving culinary scene. The beaches are gorgeous, and the Bajans (locals) welcome you like family. Sandy Lane resort, just minutes from the trendy new restaurant Cin Cin by the Sea, is tops for hospitality.”

Farther Flung: “The Galápagos Islands are a nature lover’s dream. A small-ship expedition cruise is the best way to immerse yourself, but for stays on terra firma, Santa Cruz Island’s Pikaia Lodge offers an intimate perspective on this Ecuadorian paradise.”

Mark and Cyndi Worgan - Austin, Texas

Closer In: “While most travelers hear ‘island’ and think ‘tropics,’ one of our favorite destinations is Vancouver Island in British Columbia. Arriving by cruise ship is particularly enjoyable; choose one that docks in Victoria to explore Butchart Gardens and indulge in high tea at the Fairmont Empress hotel.”

Farther Flung: “Besides the magical islands of Tahiti, Moorea, and Bora Bora, every Paul Gauguin Cruises’ voyage to French Polynesia visits the line’s private islet, Motu Mahana. Guests can swim, snorkel with colorful fish, or simply soak up the day on white-sand beaches.”

Cheri Ramberg - Ancaster, Ontario, Canada

Closer In: “I like Aruba for its mix of Dutch history, Latin culture, and atypical flora and fauna. It’s worthwhile to go beyond your resort and experience the local food and shopping; the excellent transportation system is an added bonus.”

Farther Flung: Hawaii Island’s primal topography, black-sand beaches, lava tubes, and waterfalls make this isle as close to Eden as I can imagine. Look for sea turtles basking on rocks and surfers communing with nature, and don’t miss Banyan Drive’s enormous trees and Old Hollywood flair.”

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