Living in The United States for three years has caused me to believe that fall/spring are my favorite seasons. However, growing up on an island has shown me that nothing beats the season of summer.
Even though summer may rightfully start from June until September; every day is summer in the Caribbean – 365 days of summer. The temperature is on average 65 – 80 degrees, and the sun is in it’s element on most days (There’s a rainy season). It’s no idea why the islands in the Caribbean are one of the most sought out places to visit during the winter months.
I’m here however, not to sell my island as a tourist destination for during the winter, but to show you how summer is different.
1. The Beach
Now you may think, what’s so special about my beach when Americans can find beaches on the West Coast? Well first off they’re definitely not as rough as beaches in California, and they’re mostly crystal clear. The island I grew up on Antigua, which has a sister isle, Barbuda main tourism sales line is 365 beaches, one for every day of the year. It may be a small island, but we’re surrounded by water so very much possible. Whereas, Barbuda is known for having pink sand (may be seasonal, but it’s there.) Going to beach is a regular for college students or just regular every day people. It can go from having a picnic at one beach, to water sports at another, or a bar lime or even a bonfire. There’s a wide range of activities one can get involved with at the beach. My favorite is just relaxing and enjoying a peaceful swim.
2. The Nightlife
I assure you nightlife in the Caribbean is totally different to that of America, from the music to the general atmosphere. Yes, we have a few clubs, and listen to hip-hop and mainstream music, but most of our nightlife during the summer comes in the form of “Fetes”. According to Wikipedia a fete is “an elaborate celebration, festival or party.” Well, I guess that sorts of explains it; fetes are basically large parties held outdoors, usual drinks inclusive with multiple bars, and a stage for performers as well as DJs. Fetes happen no matter the time of year, but the major ones happen during the summer because of reason #3 below. Our nightlife doesn’t only consists of feting though, there are bar crawls (bar hopping), house limes, and anything which usually involves music and alcohol!
Depending on where you’re from you may be familiar with this word, whether Canada, Atlanta, England, Houston, Brazil, and the list goes on. However, Carnival originated from the islands, and it is our biggest festival throughout the summer. As mentioned before there are a lot of fetes held during summer, and are usually pre-fetes for carnival. But Carnival itself is a week long festival with a range of various activities. It all starts with an opening parade, then there’s a queen show, soca monarch, calypso show etc. The main event of Carnival however are the last two days which are known as parade days or mas day! On parade days thousands of revelers gather in the streets decked out in costumes with feathers, beads, sequins, whatever they can find to showcase their colors. This may not sound like much, but you can always check it out on YouTube “Antigua Carnival Parade” or any other island for a matter of fact. To tell you the honest truth, last year was the first time I played mas, and it was AMAZING. I had a blast, and can’t wait to do it again!!
That’s all folks! The top 3 reasons why summer in the islands is a must do. However, don’t think that this is all the island has to offer during the summer, because there’s a wide range of activities to do while you’re not feting in the night.
[Sorry for my lack of pictures showcasing the nightlife and carnival experience, didn’t want to include any of myself for personal reasons, or just steal one from the web.]
See you soon!