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Trip Report July 13-20th

Algonquin, Illinois
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Trip Report July 13-20th

We made our first trip to Eleuthera and had a great time. We've been to many Caribbean islands, some of our favorites are St. John, Anguilla and Virgin Gorda because of their beautiful beaches. This islands stands out, not only because there are many truly spectacular beaches, but they can be so extremely different from one another. The colors of the water, the waves, the depth of the pink colored sand, all change as you venture from beach to beach. That being said here are my suggestions!

You must rent a car because this island is 110 miles long and there are great beaches in all directions. Get the Beach Book through Amazon or another site before you go because it gives you specific directions to every beach. We would have been lost without it because beaches are not marked and many times you are traveling on paths with no signs. The book will likely fall apart because the binding is not good, but it's worth every penny. Walking and getting around on a golf cart isn't going to work unless you want to stay in Governor's Harbor and not see many beaches! Even then, I didn't see anybody on a golf cart.

We stayed at Buttonwood Reserve, a condo development about 15 minutes north of Governor's Harbor. It's location is superb because it's a quick drive to great restaurants and beaches north and south. The pool is heated, the condos new, and our unit was on the second floor and we had ocean views from all windows/balconies. There are golf carts to get to the Atlantic beach on the property which has a high surf. Extras like kayaks, bikes, coolers come with the condo. The rental agent Matthew Simon is phenomenal.

Our meals were all good to great. I read a lot of negative things about service, but we really couldn't complain. Tippy's, The Beach House, The Rainbow Inn, Da Perk, the Fish Fry, Sip Sip on Harbour Island were all super. I posted some separate reviews.

Rental cars are the worst part of the island. We went through 3 different cars. I wouldn't rent from this particular person again as other people at our condo seemed to have a lot better vehicles. Our first car died and was literally falling apart (240K miles), the second vehicle wasn't a 4x4 and we were going to Lighthouse so got rid of that in a day too. The third one made some funny noises and had various warning lights on, but it ended up being okay. We paid $65/day cash.

Bugs............we were okay for a few days and then we did get bit by the Noseeums even using baby oil etc. I think we got bit when we were sitting at outdoor restaurants, but it's hard to tell. My youngest son didn't get a single bite the entire trip, go figure. I think he needs to be sent to a lab and tested so we can bottle whatever it is that repels them!

Some of the beaches we really liked, again using directions from that Beach Book, aka the Bible for beaches, were Ten Bay, Between Two Rocks, Ji-Kan, Lighthouse Beach North (different than the Caribbean one), French Leave, Next 2 Rocks, and Pink Sands Beach on Harbour Island. Don't miss going over to Harbour Island for a day, it's fantastic. If you are afraid to drive to Lighthouse beach, you can always do one of the boat trips that are offered that usually includes lunch.

This island is very undeveloped, more so than any other island we have been to. I hated seeing garbage thrown on some of the beach areas and wished I could have set up trash cans every where. Still, it doesn't take away from the beauty of the beaches, the color of the water and the quality of the pink sand. If you like mega resorts and crowded beaches, this isn't the place for you, but if you enjoy having privacy on a spectacular beach then book your trip now.

savannah sound
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1. Re: Trip Report July 13-20th

Your youngest son is lucky...he probably did get bitten, but has an immunity, therefore...no reaction to the bite...lucky guy.

Does anyone know how to pronounce 'Ji-Kan'...the new name of some beach, somewhere. Who named it, anyway?

Does it rhyme with 'chikken'?

Is it Ji as in Jim?...and Kan, as in...well...kan?

Or is it Ji, as in GYroscope...and Kan as in...well...cane?

Or is it Ji as in Jimenez? and Kan, as in...well...con?

Or some other combination??

Dublin, Ireland
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2. Re: Trip Report July 13-20th

The no see um's thing has me a bit baffled i also don't get bothered by them at all , they land on me and are a bit annoying but no bites, I wonder ! we get something in Ireland we call midget's that seem to be quite similar always appear at dusk and usually near water if i am river fly fishing they are most always around if its warm enough. Ji- Kan I'am pretty sure it is also called something else , passed Tippys maybe 3/4 mile drive down lane on left it looks like at one time there may have been a public toilet there.Maybe the public toilets were called Ja's Can !

Edited: 24 July 2014, 22:02
tireboy
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3. Re: Trip Report July 13-20th

Probably 70 % of the garbage on the beaches is not "thrown" on them by locals or visitors but is washed up from the ocean.....it is a very international mixture of garbage thrown off of various ships and from all around the world...trash from Europe Africa. Etc etc.

Patrick, South...
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4. Re: Trip Report July 13-20th

Thank you LindaF, wonderful TR, sounds like you had a great time & really get Eleuthera.

Hope you'll be back.

I wonder who made up all the new names for the beaches, I haven't seen the new book so?

I don't know if I like it or not, gotta think about it while DH thinks about the pronunciations.

Algonquin, Illinois
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5. Re: Trip Report July 13-20th

Hmmm, interesting DH on the immunity and funny comments on the Ji-Kan name!!!

Yes, I took a photo of that toilet in the little stone building just up the hill by Ji-Kan and Next 2 Rocks beach, definitely didn't get too close!!

There is a new slimmer version of the Beach Book available now and the binding problem has been fixed. Beautiful photos in that book.

Southport, North...
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6. Re: Trip Report July 13-20th

There have been some reports of the bindings of the book breaking down prematurely. If that happens to you just contact the authors directly. They are very happy to offer replacement copies from a different print run. You can Google their website and email them directly.

There is a blog on the website which also discusses the naming conventions used.

Ji-Kan is pronounced "High Can" after the abandoned toilet on the hill than DonK refers to. The names were used just to make it easier to remember.

Algonquin, Illinois
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7. Re: Trip Report July 13-20th

Well, now we don't have to wonder how to pronounce Ji-Kan........."High Can" is much easier to remember!

The author of the book contacted me and is sending a replacement copy, yeah!!!

Columbia, Maryland
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8. Re: Trip Report July 13-20th

Great trip report! We've traveled to many of the same islands and agree that Eleuthera is really special. We tried to clear trash from the beaches we visited. Most had a plastic milk crate or similar, we would load it with debris and drive it back to our house.

Conneaut Lake...
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9. Re: Trip Report July 13-20th

Linda, your trip report just helped me decide to visit Eleuthera this winter, sounds exactly like my cup of tea! Thanks!

As far as noseeums go, I have been using a natural product that I love called Cactus Juice---it works great! I'm going to stock up on it before this trip.

Algonquin, Illinois
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86 posts
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10. Re: Trip Report July 13-20th

Glad I could help bellaterra, it really is a wonderful island. I'll have to try the Cactus Juice as well next time. Have a great trip this winter!