Guest Report

125 room budget all-inclusive hotel at Great Courland Bay (listing)
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Pauline Marshall

Guest Report

Post by Pauline Marshall »

I enjoyed my stay at this hotel. Maybe I'm not fussy but the accommodation had everything I needed and was comfortable. The food was great with good choice and plenty of it! You could return for 'seconds' as many times as you wanted and there was a great supply of fresh fruit at all meal times. (Fresh as in cut up and prepared in front of you.)

The great thing about this hotel is that it really is right on the beach, and you can be there in minutes. Geographically it is very well situated. Being on the Caribbean coast, the water is warm and generally calm, a marked contrast to the rocky Atlantic coast with its cold rollers. The prevailing wind brings rain in from the Atlantic which it then drops on the rainforest high in the middle of the island. By the time the clouds get to Turtle Beach they have more or less disappeared. However, I seem to have been lucky as I did hear from another guest that the week before I arrived it was colder and wet and after I left there were great storms. During one storm a dead turtle was washed up on the beach where it then lay rotting for days. Evidently the stench was shocking but I think this situation was unusual.

Although too early in the season really to see turtles we did have one young female come up the beach one night. We were told to watch silently and to not use flash photography but unfortunately some people couldn't resist using their cameras. Whether it was this that put her off or, as someone suggested she was too young to be laying eggs and was just on a practice run we don't know but she went back to sea sooner than expected.

I was travelling on my own but met other people on trips and at meal times. I was also able to take the sailing dinghy and kayak out, although the staff did seem to take a bit of persuasion to actually let me do that, and wouldn't let them out at the slightest sign of a swell. Quite understandable when they know local conditions so much better than the visitors. The boats were built for safety rather than excitement but still fulfilled the purpose of providing an enjoyable leisure activity.

The pool was very much a recreational pool but very pleasant - and clean.

I have only two reservations. Firstly, I bought the holiday on a BA offer which included flights and accommodation only. Although the starting price was very reasonable, by the time the single person supplement was added and then the meals as well, it all added up.

Secondly, we were told it was a safe island but I had a couple of experiences that, although no harm was done, warned me to be careful and I would advise caution. The hotel and beach are guarded full time by security men so while you're in the area of the hotel you are in danger of no more than locals trying to sell you a range of crafts and services.

There was a good number and range of organised trips including round the island tours, including a walk in the rainforest, a trip to Trinidad and boat trips to wonderful coral reefs.

Yes, I would go again!

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