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The Best Vacation I’ve Ever Taken – Caneel Bay St. John Virgin Islands

By: Donna Chaffins | Date: August 1, 2013 | Categories: Fun, Giveaways, Money Talk, Summer, Travel

I was thinking about the best vacation I’ve ever taken and while looking back over the photos we took I can remember the week so vividly. In March of 1998 my husband and I went to St. John, USVI for a 7 day/7 night vacation. It was heavenly.

We stayed on Caneel Bay at the Rosewood Resort. The resort has 7 white sand beaches with crystal clear blue waters. Caneel Bay is an island and the resort is the only thing on the island. So it was a week of pure relaxation and fun.  The rooms have no phones or TVs…. no technology.

No distractions. No hustle and bustle. No pressures or deadlines.

This was before we had our son and while we were there I don’t think we saw more than 3 kids on the entire island. They do welcome families, but I think it is more targeted towards couples.  There is a lot of peace and quiet for sure. And at least one of the beaches is very isolated. So you can take a picnic lunch and have a whole beach to yourself, if you time it just right.

I’ve enjoyed many vacations before and after the Caribbean vacation, but I’m not sure if any will ever top it. Plus another reason that made it so wonderful was that my husband’s employers at the time paid for everything. I mean everything. We did not spend a penny from the time we arrived at the airport and back home after the week long vacation.

Nothing beats rest, relaxation, a beach, delicious 4-course meals, and being treated like royalty for free.

Here are a few photos from our St. John/Virgin Island vacation:

Leaving St. Thomas for the boat ride to St. John's Caneel Bay

Leaving St. Thomas for the boat ride to St. John’s Caneel Bay

Caribbean, St. John, Virgin Island

The boat ride to St. John Caneel Bay

Caneel Bay, St. John, Caribbean, Virgin Island

Arriving at Caneel Bay

Sunset Cruise, Virgin Island, Caneel Bay

Sunset Cruise

Caribbean Virgin Islands

It really was breathtaking…

ruins St. John

You could have a private dinner for two inside the ruins… very romantic

snorkeling Caribbean Virgin Islands

This is one of the top 5 best experiences of my life

Virgin Island snorkeing star fish caribbean

Star Fish 🙂

snorkeling caribbean virgin island st. john

Loved this beautiful blue fish 🙂

snorkeling caribbean virgin island, st. john

School of fish. They were almost translucent.

caribbean virgin island St. John

So peaceful…

sailing caribbean virgin island st. John

My husband had so much fun!

caneel bay St. John Virgin Island

We heard a tapping sound at our cottage door one night and open the door to find a donkey. He let us pet him. 🙂

Leaving St. John to St. Thomas and back home. A wonderful vacation and a little (okay, a lot) sad to leave.

Leaving St. John to St. Thomas and back home. A wonderful vacation and a little (okay, a lot) sad to leave.

We’re looking forward to going back to St. John on a second honeymoon, maybe.

What was your favorite vacation?

43 Responses to The Best Vacation I’ve Ever Taken – Caneel Bay St. John Virgin Islands

  1. Mary Happymommy says:

    I haven’t traveled that much. Going to the Bahamas with my husband just after we were married was probably the best vacation I ever took.

    • Tricia Hope says:

      The best holiday I ever had was when my family joined my brothers’ family and my sister and Cal for a housebat4 day cruise on a houseboat through the Shuswap in 1990

  2. Sheila says:

    My favorite vacation was when I took my two daughters to Miami and Key West. I am a single mom and I had the best time with just the 3 of us. We spent a week and did all kinds of great activities. We will never forget that one.

  3. michelle hebert says:

    the most exciting vacation i have ever taken was camping beside a river for 2 weeks did lots of fishing and swimming in the river was pretty cold lol lots of fun

  4. Before we were married, my husband and I took a trip to the Adirondacks. We camped in the woods and had a blast!

  5. Vicky McCarville says:

    The best vacation I have had so far was a trip to Puerto Rico 2 years ago. It was so much fun!

  6. Donna Martin says:

    i went to bali last year with my family and friens

  7. CipBtRO says:

    going to the mountain vacations are the most beautiful!

  8. My favorite vacation was a cruise to Alaska!

  9. nicholas theodore says:

    Best Vacation was to Greece had the tome of my life

  10. Denise Smith says:

    most exciting is when i went to vegas

  11. Julie Lynn Bickham says:

    Most exciting vacation was our trip to Disney World.

  12. I’d have to say the trip I took to Washington D.C. during the ’88 presidential election! I was there for a week at the age of 17. It was a lot of fun. Spent time seeing the sites with my high school classmates and just walking around the city. Was a small town girl and it was an amazing journey!

  13. Amy says:

    to Catalina Island with my husband

  14. Nicole Balogh says:

    My most exciting vacation was an RV trip with my family through Arizona, Colorado, and California.

  15. ellen chevarie says:

    I have never been on a vacation,so I cant comment on but i dream about it all the time.

  16. Michele Mascia says:

    My best vacation was a trip in Turkey

  17. steve weber says:

    we drove to Florida when I was younger.. that was the most memorable trip for me.

  18. Alex says:

    Pacific Ocean, Vladivostok, 3 years ago

  19. Barbara says:

    The best vacation I have had so far was a trip to Parigi, 20 years ago!

  20. Bunny Weatherhead says:

    My husband took me to Barbados for our honeymoon in 1969, and that was the most memorable trip for me. I would love to repeat this trip today, and renew all of the friendships which we made on that trip

  21. Anna says:

    I enjoyed my one-month stay at a beach resort in Marinduque island, Philippines. 🙂

  22. John Agwazim says:

    Thanks and kudos………

  23. Elizabeth K says:

    The best vacation I ever had was a 3 week road trip my husband and I took with our 5 kids to the East coast of Canada and U.S.

  24. Kaitlin says:

    The most exciting trip I’ve ever taken was a 2 week solo backpacking trip through northwestern Argentina. I went with my gut and explored and ended up meeting my husband in a bar on the last night before I went back to Paraguay where I was living at the time.

  25. Rust says:

    My best vacation was a second honeymoon to London.

  26. darlene bohannon says:

    my best vacation was going to ky and seeing my family.

  27. Sandy Crane says:

    My favorite vacation was a trip to Cedar Breaks with my two year old for his first camping trip! We didn’t do very well on his first trip! There was a flash flood near Navajo Lake where we had stopped, and freezing rain. [Memorial Day Weekend 2009!] We were in a Toyota Camry and were trying to get out of there before the mud got any deeper. We high-surfaced when trying to back up and go the other direction, and we were stuck!!!! I got out in my flip-flops to see if I could help push my hubby’s car. The mud was knee deep. Who knows where my flip-flops ended up. I couldn’t even walk over to try and help. We were just going deeper and deeper into the mud. I got back into the car while my hubby and I looked at each other in a panic. It was a holiday weekend, and there was one officer on patrol, and we had seen him leave an hour or two earlier. There was no phone connection, so we couldn’t call anybody. We laughed for a minute, and then really got worried, because it was starting to get dark! We were worried about how we would keep our baby warm overnight if we had to. Even worse…[because we thought we were just taking a 30 minute drive], I had no diapers, the baby only had flip-flops, we had left the blankets and food/snacks, etc. back at camp. We were all in shorts and tank tops!
    Most excitingly, Navajo lake looked like it had been abandoned! We got out of the car and thought we might try walking to Duck Creek that was nearby before it got dark, but the mud was getting above our knees and the ground was just soggy! Trying to walk with a two year old on my shoulders in freezing cold rain in knee deep mud? No fun! Wasn’t going to happen!
    A little while later, by the Grace of God, there were some people driving up the road who had come to spin their trucks in the mud for fun! What they didn’t know was that even their great big tires would sink in it! They didn’t get in too deep before they decided to get out of there, but they did see that we needed a desperate rescue. Two guys hopped out of the trucks and helped me carry my baby to their truck while my husband and I trudged through it. They gave us a ride to Duck Creek where there was a hose that we could wash off with! However, there were no cabins or apts left there, and no available campgrounds. Their phone was out of use. The camp host couldn’t get the sheriff on the walkie talkie…and we were out of luck! Nowhere to go! Whether you are a religious person or not, I was in one of those moments where I started to think about the birth of the Christ Child, and his mother! No room in the Inn! I had a scared and cold baby [but brave], who was waiting for his mom and dad to get us back to camp. After not being able to find any help, one of the guys who had picked us up in the truck offered to take us back to camp [30 minutes away] in freezing rain and icy roads. He said that he couldn’t watch us in our situation without doing something! When people need help, you help them! You never know when you might be in the situation!
    The ride back to the KOA was scary, but we got there safe. When the guy dropped us off, I offered him money and he said No! When I asked his name, he wouldn’t tell me, and told us to keep safe!
    Amazed by the kindness of this man, I prayed that he would get safely back up the mountain. When we got back to the KOA, the camp host told us that there had just been a storm that dropped an inch and a half of rain that just came flooding down the streets, so our stuff might be a little bit wet.
    We got to our tent, and sure enough, our bags were wet, our blankets were wet, and we still had our car stuck up on the mountain. Wow! Not the vacation we had planned. In true luck though, the baby’s blankets had been set on top of the diaper bag, and it was dry. The diapers were on the top of the bag, and they were dry. So, I sat with my hubby in 40 degrees all night holding my baby close to stay warm while we all tried to sleep as best we could. My baby slept soundly.
    In the morning, by luck of the draw, there was one sheriff who answered, and one tow truck who was willing to attempt the deep mud and pull us out! Three hours of trying, and the car was back in town.
    Our now six year old still remembers his first campout as being panicky and stuck in the mud! So sad!!!!

  28. Sandy Crane says:

    Why was this the best trip??? Because it was one of the most memorable lessons EVER of somebody putting an entire family he didn’t know ahead of his own life to take us to safety, and then refused reward for it! It also taught me to go everywhere PREPARED…even if it is only a 15 or 30 minute drive! You never know what kind of situation you will be in!

  29. Paula V says:

    Williamsburg, VA….I love the history.

  30. Jenna O says:

    I loved my trip to Thailand <3

  31. Alexandru Rusu says:

    I haven’t yet travelled to another country 🙁

  32. My anniversary trip to Chicago in 2009. I hope to go to Germany soon day soon though, and then I’ll have a dream come true

  33. Darlene Martin says:

    I’m still working on having a best one yet. Mine have all been ordinary!

  34. jules p says:

    when I was a kid, my family went to New York. That was such a neat trip. I am glad I have memories like that…cause I haven’t had or been on a vacation in 23 years! 🙁

  35. Eliza-Ligia says:

    Must have been one time I went on the mountains with my friends, hiking about 60 km one day.

  36. Loreena says:

    I could really use a get away I haven’t had a vacation for a couple of years

  37. Rayshawn Shallow says:

    I spent last summer Negril, Jamaica. I was fantastic.

  38. Christina says:

    Hi my best vacay was earlier this year to the Holy Land. I felt like I was at my second home! Such a lovely place!

  39. richelle bowers says:

    last spring break we went to san diego

  40. veronica lee says:

    My visit to the US! It was surreal! That was my very first trip out of the country and my very first plane ride!

  41. Best vacation was to Chincoteague, VA

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