All posts by Divi Resorts

Tips for Taking Great Instagram Photos on Vacation

When you go on vacation, you’re probably taking photos—and you’re probably sharing them instantly. At Divi Resorts, we see dozens of vacation photos every day as we keep tabs on our social media accounts. We thought you might enjoy a few “best practices” from the Caribbean vacation experts on how to make your trip photos really pop. Your friends and family back home won’t believe what you’re posting on Instagram.

#1 Your photo deserves to be framed!

Take a look at your surroundings—sometimes you’ll find a great way to frame your shot, like with the roof of a palapa. Your Instagram followers will be jealous.

#2 It’s the little things.

Try taking closeup shots of the small, unexpected things that really define your vacation—the quirky items that give your trip its personality.

#3 Switch up your angles.

It’s fun to look at life from a different perspective! Experiment with unusual angles—high, low or from a vantage point that isn’t often photographed (make sure to be safe, though!).

#4 Go off-kilter.

Photography has a “rule of thirds” for a reason. Just place your subject slightly to the left or right of center, and bam—your photo is more stunning already. Good job, you!

#5 People are more than poses!

Putting your friends and family in the photo is one of the best ways to keep your vacation memories alive. Make sure to get a few shots of the entire group together, but photos of people can be more striking when they’re candid.

Good luck out there! We love seeing what a great time people are having at our resorts. If you’d like to share your awesome photo with us, follow us on Instagram @DiviResorts and tag us!

Divers, This Is How to Persuade Your Non-Diving Partner to Get Certified

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Rule number one of diving: always have a dive buddy. It’s pleasant enough to dive with someone you’ve just met on the dive boat, but your experience can be so much more fun and enriching when your dive buddy is someone you already know. And if your romantic partner is also a diver—well, you’re lucky indeed.

PADI has published a blog post recommending some gentle ways that divers can persuade a non-diving significant other or friend to enroll in a certification program. Keeping in mind that non-divers will most likely enjoy the process more if they come to it on their own terms, the dive organization recommends visiting an exotic location where the underwater life is abundant and the water is clear and warm.

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That sounds a lot like Bonaire. The small Caribbean island is known for its world-class, yet easily accessible diving. Bonaire is the perfect setting to learn how to dive, and it offers plenty of exciting dives for more experienced divers as well. Divi Dive Bonaire at Divi Flamingo Beach Resort teaches certification courses for all levels, and provides a wide variety of boat diving, shore diving, and truck diving packages. Shore diving is accessible 24 hours a day, 7 days a week—just grab your tank from the end of the pier and dive morning, noon, or night. Your partner can get certified, and the two of you can enjoy your first dive together in one of the best and most beautiful dive spots in the world.

Check your preferred dates for availability and search the best available rates for Divi Flamingo Beach Resort at this link. Divi Resorts is currently offering a 30% off promotion—don’t miss this opportunity to explore Bonaire’s underwater paradise with your partner!

Meet the Celebrity Chef Coming to Windows on Aruba

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It’s Aruba Restaurant Month, and we’re celebrating throughout October at Divi Resorts. In addition to the special menus on offer throughout the month at Windows on Aruba and pureocean, Windows on Aruba is hosting the award-winning New York chef Seamus Mullen for a one-night-only dinner on Friday, October 14.

Chef Seamus is a chef, restaurateur and cookbook author who is best known for his inventive yet approachable Spanish cuisine. He has appeared on the Food Network’s The Next Iron Chef, as a featured judge on Chopped and Beat Bobby Flay, and as a guest on The Today Show and CBS’s This Morning. 

Seamus opened his first solo restaurant Tertulia in Manhattan in 2011, which was awarded two stars from The New York Times, and was named a finalist for the James Beard Foundation Award for Best New Restaurant. In 2013, he opened El Colmado, a Spanish tapas and wine hall in New York’s Hell Kitchen. He has been named a semi-finalist for Best Chef New York City by the James Beard Foundation three years in a row.

The VIP dinner at Windows will feature a prix-fixe menu created by Chef Seamus. Each course will be paired with a different wine from the restaurant’s extensive selection. The dinner will be available at a rate of $120 per person. Advance reservations are required, and can be obtained by emailing clubhouse@diviresorts.com or calling 297-523-5017.

Chef Seamus will also make an appearance at the 2nd Annual Bartender’s Brawl the following day, Saturday, October 15. The event is hosted beachside at Divi Aruba All-Inclusive Beach Resort, and is also part of Aruba Restaurant Month.

Interested in visiting the island during Aruba Restaurant Month? Take advantage of last-minute deals on October stays at participating Divi Resorts! Enjoy 30% off accommodations—as well as complimentary breakfast for two—at Divi Aruba Phoenix Beach Resort, Divi Dutch Village Beach Resort, and Divi Village Golf & Beach Resort.

Find details on the special offer here, and details on Chef Seamus’s VIP dinner here. Windows on Aruba is located at Divi Village Golf & Beach Resort.

8 Unforgettable Beaches of St. Maarten

The island of St. Maarten is home to 37 beaches, all of them stunning in their own way. The sheer variety of beauty on the island can be surprising, considering it’s only 34 square miles. These are some of the most unique beaches.

#1 Simpson Bay Beach

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Photo credit Alljengi

Simpson Bay Beach is one of the longest and prettiest beaches on the island, with pure white sand and small waves. It offers great views of Saba and St. Eustatius, and on clear days, you can see all the way to St. Kitts. There are no water sports or resorts there, just the sound of water gently lapping at your feet.

#2 Maho Bay Beach

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Photo credit Kara Phelps

Hands-down the most famous beach on St. Maarten, Maho is also one of the island’s most exciting beach locations. Swimmers splashing in the water can experience the unusual thrill of airplanes passing right overhead as they take off or land at Princess Juliana International Airport (SXM). Bring your camera for some unforgettable shots, and expect strong gusts of wind from the jet blasts!

#3 Little Bay Beach

Little Boy at Divi Little Bay

Little Bay Beach, home of Divi Little Bay Beach Resort, is the perfect beach for families with its calm, clear waters. When you stay at Divi Little Bay, you’ll have easy access to its water sports rentals and beachside restaurants!

#4 Mullet Bay Beach

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Photo credit Richie Diesterheft

Mullet Bay Beach is a picturesque beach with a long stretch of white sand, well-known for its fabulous snorkeling. It’s easy to spend a full day there.

#5 Cupecoy

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Photo credit Bruce Tuten

Sandstone cliffs line the beach at Cupecoy, producing naturally beautiful coves and caves. Since this beach faces southwest, it also provides striking scenery at sunset. The surf can be strong, but the wind is blocked by the many rocks. Since this beach lies near the border with the French side of the island, its dress code is French-influenced and clothing is optional.

#6 Ilet de Pinel

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Photo credit Alljengi

This uninhabited island offers some venues that are open during the day, and it is a great spot for snorkel trips and picnics. Located on the northeastern French side of the island, it’s a short ride in a beach taxi from Cul de Sac, or a bit longer from Orient Beach.

#7 Orient Beach

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Photo credit Craig Stanfill

Despite being on the windward eastern coast, Orient Beach is one of the gentlest beaches on the island because of the protection afforded by the reef running from Green Cay to Pinel. The southern end of this beach is clothing-optional, and the reef running southeast from the start of the clothing-optional section is home to many fish.

#8 Dawn Beach

A beautiful beach that is well-protected, Dawn Beach offers a great location for snorkeling. If the surf’s up, there’s also good boogie boarding to be had.

Guests of Divi Little Bay Beach Resort can ask the Front Desk for details on any of these beaches. It’s also easy to rent a car to explore both the Dutch and French sides of the island. What’s your favorite beach on St. Maarten?

Get Ready for Aruba Restaurant Month!

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Foodies rejoice! Aruba Restaurant Month is a very special time of year on our One Happy Island. During the month of October 2016, tourists and locals alike have been invited to explore the rich culinary variety available on Aruba. The theme this year is “Eat Local,” and more than 60 restaurants will be participating with limited-time menus highlighting their best takes on Aruban and Caribbean cuisine.

Windows on Aruba and pureocean are both joining in this year, with special menus spotlighting local Aruban flavors and traditions with a twist.

If you’re looking for a last-minute decadent getaway, this is the perfect opportunity. In honor of Aruba Restaurant Month, Divi Resorts is offering 30% off room rates, as well as daily complimentary breakfasts for two, for reservations on Aruba now through October 31, 2016. Choose from Divi Aruba Phoenix Beach Resort, Divi Dutch Village Beach Resort or Divi Village Golf & Beach Resort for a culinary vacation fit for a foodie’s dream.

4 Hidden Gems of Barbados

Barbados is home to stunning natural beauty and a unique style of Caribbean culture you won’t find anywhere else. We rounded up a few ways you might not expect to experience the best of the island’s landscapes and people.

Divi Southwinds Beach Resort is the perfect home base for your exploration of the island. Centrally located on the St. Lawrence Gap in Bridgetown, it’s easy to rent a car and experience Barbados firsthand. The island is only 21 miles (34km) long and 14 miles (23km) wide, and many vacationers choose to see it all in a single day, returning to Divi Southwinds by nightfall. If you’d rather take your time, however, the island will reward you with breathtaking views and rich cultural experiences.

#1 Bathsheba Beach

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Photo credit Kara Phelps

Bathsheba is a striking white-sand beach located along the East Coast, scattered with rock formations that seem to be boulders—but are actually the only remnants of an ancient coral reef that eroded long ago. The view is dramatic and unforgettable. Enjoy a picnic on the grass at Bathsheba Park, and walk along the beach for truly incredible photo opportunities.

#2 Oistins Fish Fry

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Photo credit Dan Costin

Tourists and locals alike flock to Oistins Fish Fry every Friday night, just a short drive from Divi Southwinds. Flying fish is a Bajan tradition, and you’ll find plenty of it here, as well as a huge range of other local fish. All of the fish platters have generous portions and come highly recommended, although you’ll want to arrive early—the lines for food can get long! You’ll be able to shop for local handicrafts in nearby stalls, however, and maybe even enjoy a breathtaking sunset from the pier.

#3 Farley Hill National Park

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Photo credit Kara Phelps

Farley Hill is an out-of-the-way spot toward the northern tip of the island with an impressive view overlooking the inland forests all the way to the northeastern coastline. Mahogany trees, native to the Caribbean but overharvested on other islands, are a protected species on Barbados, and this park has an entire grove of them. Farley Hill is also home to the beautiful ruins of a mansion destroyed by fire in 1965—now a backdrop for evening concerts and other events.

#4 St. Nicholas Abbey

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Photo credit Travel Junction

St. Nicholas Abbey is a former sugar cane plantation that was recently renovated into an active rum distillery. Tour the house and the grounds for a fascinating glimpse into architectural history as well as many Barbadian artifacts from the 17th century onward. The rum production facility is also open to the public—St. Nicholas Abbey prides itself on using traditional small-batch “pot still” distillation methods. Visitors can also view the bourbon oak casks used in the aging process. Make sure to leave time for a rum tasting and a pleasant meal outdoors at the on-site café.

Barbados is full of hidden gems, and we’ve barely scratched the surface. Where are your favorite off-the-beaten-path spots on the island?