Isle of Pines: the Jewel of the Pacific

Isle of Pines Travel Blog

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The Isle of Pines has been dubbed the Jewel of the Pacific for a very good reason. It’s picture-perfect. Anyone with a point-and-shoot camera could take a postcard-worthy photograph. Imagine a tropical paradise, made unique by the presence of towering pine trees, and you have the Isle of Pines. Many of you have probably seen a photo of the natural swimming pool - search Flickr for it if you haven’t. I didn’t see the pool, but the bay we spent the morning in was perfect enough.


Being experienced cruise shippers by now, Al and I decided to head to shore as early as we could pull ourselves out of bed. We swallowed whole bananas as we rushed downstairs. Success: we caught one of the first tenders ashore.


We had at least a few hundred metres of beach to ourselves - that was more like it! We cast our towels on the sand, donned our snorkelling masks and plunged into the water.

At first the sea floor was covered in sea grass. The only fish we could see were long, thin, barracuda-like fish with snouts that looked like pipes. They were still, and were the colour of the water, so, often we didn’t see them until we were almost on top of them.


Eventually we encountered more coral. Suddenly, fish of all kinds appeared out of nowhere: butterflyfish, angelfish; a clownfish defending his sea anemone; and more thin barracuda-like fish, except these stayed near the surface and had sharp, pointy snouts. And there were plenty of other colourful fish I don’t know the names of. I was surprised at how they materialised out of nowhere, but I heard later on that someone was feeding them, so perhaps they were hanging around us in anticipation.


The highlight of our snorkel was seeing a small octopus. We must have swum too close to it without seeing it, because its skin turned black and it shot across the coral. When it settled, its colours mutated, making it look like its skin was changing texture. It flickered through different patterns and colours before settling on one that looked just like the coral that surrounded it. I turned away for a split second, and couldn’t find him again - he was that well camouflaged.


When the beach started to fill up, we returned to the boat and again, enjoyed the relatively empty poolside.

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Thats me!
That's me!
Isle of Pines
photo by: Chelsea