Where to Paddle in Palm Island, St Vincent & the Grenadines
The Caribbean is the perfect place for stand up paddle boarding (SUP). The calm, crystal blue waters are friendly to beginners and experienced paddlers, alike. I’ve been paddle boarding in Jamaica, St. Lucia and the Dominican Republic, but none of them compare to St. Vincent & The Grenadines (SVG). It may be my favorite place on Earth. It’s like this wonderful place you’ve discovered and want to share – but also want to keep a secret!
I’ve visited SVG twice staying at the Palm Island Resort on Palm Island each time. Palm Island is located a short boat ride from Union Island and it’s the perfect place for stand up paddle boarding (SUP). The Caribbean side of the island provides calm waters, a wide area to paddle and beautiful views of the nearby islands. If you stay at the resort, the use of their stand up paddle boards is included – and they are quality boards. It was quite a trip to get there – Chicago>Miami>St. Lucia>Union Island>Palm Island - but it’s absolutely worth it. The short prop plane trip from St. Lucia to Union Island is a tour of SVG itself.
Palm Island is a private island with one resort and a few private homes scattered around the island. I can’t say enough about how much I love the Palm Island Resort. If you are a repeat guest, you’re invited on a sunset cruise with the amazing staff while enjoying delicious appetizers and cocktails. Every room is great, but I highly recommend the Island Loft rooms, specifically the Beach Lofts. There are only two Beach Loft rooms on the resort and they essentially include your own beach. Not to mention, it’s a short walk down the beach to the spa or one of the scenic hiking trails.
There are several beaches around the island with numbered hammocks and I recommend hammock #3. For a small price, you can have lunch delivered to your hammock picnic area at a designated time. We did this twice on our visit and had the beach to ourselves each time – along with the signature island iguanas. It’s truly amazing. The island also includes three peaks with hiking trails to absolutely breathtaking views.
The resort offers several boat excursions, but the Pink Lady is my personal favorite. It’s an old wooden sailboat that takes trips to the Tobago Cays. Alright – so I said SVG was my favorite place on Earth, but specifically, the Tobago Cays. I visited the Tobago Cays for the first time in 2013 in hopes of swimming with sea turtles. The Tobago Cays are an archipelago made up of five uninhabited islands with expansive coral reefs and are known for their population of sea turtles.
The excursion on the Pink Lady includes a relaxing sail to and from the Cays and a lunch cooked by the boat crew – grilled fish, chicken, the best chickpea salad, potatoes, salad, cookies, wine, beer – pretty much whatever you want and it’s been one of my favorite meals of the entire trip each time.
Side note – the resort also has a beach cookout each week that includes grilled fish, lobster, chicken and steak – it’s also one of my favorite meals of the week.
When we booked the Tobago Cays tour, we requested a couple of stand up paddle boards so we could paddle the Cays! I was so excited at the thought of chasing sea turtles on my paddle board rather than choking on my snorkel while the turtles swam away from me - like last time. Upon arrival at the Cays, we unloaded the paddle boards from the boat and were free for a couple of hours. It’s one of my favorite SUP experiences, so far.
The water is so crystal clear that it was easy to track the sea turtles – most of which were outside of the designated snorkel area! We paddled amongst the other sailboats enjoying the views.
I’d love to spend some time sailing the waters of SVG. I’d visit all the islands and anchor in the Tobago Cays - maybe someday. Until then, I’m perfectly happy dreaming of my next visit to Palm Island. Who knows – maybe they’ll invite me to teach yoga and SUP for a week or two? A girl can dream - I’d be in heaven.