The short version: This was an amazingly unforgettable experience that we would not hesitate to do again! We could not have asked for a nicer and friendlier crew, better food or a cuter vessel. A+ experience overall! The all-inclusive package was awesome, so we didn’t have to worry about mooring fees, fuel, beverages, etc. The hardest decision we had to make all week was what we felt like drinking and if we wanted to snorkel or just sit in the sun. Thank you, Dianne and Kelly, for being such great hostesses and new friends!!!
The long version: From the moment Kelly picked us up in Red Hook and delivered us to Mango, where Dianne was waiting, to the time we got off in Tortola, we were so spoiled. Our 4-night itinerary included stops at Jost Van Dyke, Sandy Cay, Virgin Gorda, Marina Cay, Cooper Island and Norman Island. It was the perfect balance of seeing the sights every visitor wants to see when they come to BVI, like the Baths, and seeing other more out-of-the-way spots that honestly we’d never even heard of before we got there. So glad we gave them full control of our itinerary, because these ladies truly know their stuff. No matter where we explored or were moored for the night, they had suggestions to keep us entertained and happy… but there was plenty of quiet time for chilling and relaxing when we wanted it.
Our favorite stops: Sandy Cay for the beautiful white beach and easy, pretty hiking. Cooper Island for the rum rum rum rum, and there is truly nothing like the Baths. On a typical day, we would get up, eat breakfast, snorkel a bit, then take off for a destination to explore. Then we’d head to where we would moor for the night.
Now on to the best part… The food! The rest of the trip while we were in a villa on Tortola, we kept saying “I miss the food on Mango” and joked that we were going to set out to find them again. Not only because it is so nice to be pampered and have three gourmet meals a day, but also that Dianne and Kelly are super familiar with the islands and it shows. it’s not always easy to find the best grocery shopping if you don’t know where to look, and I know some items can be scarce in the islands — but everything they had was fresh and so expertly prepared. We really looked forward to mealtime every day, because it was nice to chat with our hosts too. Our favorites: the steak with mushroom pasta, the basque salad, and the adorable coconut cocktails. Oh and the scampi! And the guava tarts! Maybe too much to list…
Mango itself is a really beautiful sailing vessel, and it never felt cramped. It is very well cared for, and decorated so cute! It is perfect for one couple plus crew, and if everyone’s very good buddies then maaaayyybe even two couples! Your days will start early with the sunrise (who wants to miss a moment of daylight in such a gorgeous place?!) and, if you’re anything like us, you’ll be ready to kick back on the trampoline and enjoy a few drinks before an early bedtime. We learned that the “sailor’s midnight” is around 9:30 p.m. Being a catamaran, the boat feels very level and secure all the time, so if like us this is your first trip like this, fear not.
Some more random highlights:
-Washing my hair in the ocean, what a fun feeling… it’s the little things
-All the great snorkeling… can’t say enough what gorgeous underwater landscapes we were able to see! And no darn jellyfish will spoil those memories.
-The fun dinghy rides
-Sleeping out on the trampolines under the stars
-The caves at Norman Island
-Every sunrise and sunset!
There was no point where Captain Kelly and First Mate/Chef Dianne didn’t go above and beyond… they even helped us pick out the best spots for our second leg of the trip, when we stayed on Tortola. Arriving home to a nice folder of great photos they took for us was such a nice way to remember everything. If it’s ever feasible to take a second honeymoon (hey why not?) then we’ll see you again, Mango!
~The Burness group