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  • 7 / 13 2017

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    COORDINATES ENVY: GUATEMALA, 14.6349° N, 90.5069° W

    Guatemala is getting our love right now as we uncover places with more understated appeal, like best kept secret kinds of places. Whether its rainforests or volcanoes or Ancient Mayan ruins, there’s so much beauty in Guatemala that it’s definitely on our bucket list.

    Why envy it: Guatemala is lush, lovely and filled with friendly people. The culture is just as vibrant as the hues that color the well-kept Spanish colonial style buildings in Antigua, a small, volcano-surrounded city beloved for its quaintness. Antigua’s also known for celebration when the time comes. For Easter week, better known in Guatemala as Semana Santa, elaborate processions of floats—and people—fill the streets, and vivid carpets laid lining the parade route are part of the tradition. But it’s perhaps at Lake Atitlán where the best of the country’s beauty comes through. It’s been dubbed among the world’s prettiest lakes and it’s surrounded by three volcanoes, the grandest reaching nearly 12,000 feet above the lake. Beneath all that beauty rests a sub-aquatic city said to be an ancient Mayan city center that would have been bustling around 1000 B.C.

    High Season: Anytime between November and May, the dry season

    Hotspots: Antigua for Spanish colonial architecture, Mayan ruins at Tikal and Iximche, and Lake Atitlán for views of one of the world’s most beautiful lakes

    Cool to-dos: Haggle on some hand-woven textiles at Chichicastenango markets, eat fresh, hand-patted and ever-abundant tortillas, visit Antigua during Semana Santa, watch the sunrise, or set (or both) over Lake Atitlán where the sun either peaks out from, or slips between the volcanoes.

  • 6 / 19 2017

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    COORDINATES ENVY: BERMUDA, 32.3078° N, 64.7505° W

    With America’s Cup ongoing, we haven’t been able to get sailing—or Bermuda out of our brains. From the perfectly turquoise beaches to the subtly pink sand and a spirit all its own, there are so many reasons to love Bermuda.

    Why envy it: Bermuda is 138 islands and islets of pure, unadulterated beauty. It’s the kind of place you go to but never really leave. Maybe you’ll wake with the sun rising over a pink sand beach, or jet ski into the Bermuda Triangle and wonder how a place so stunning could come with such a mysterious story. Maybe you’ll swim with brightly colored fish in crystalline coral reefs or try to find the bar serving the best Dark N’ Stormy cocktail or simply drive around admiring the candy-colored white roofed homes that make Bermuda Bermuda. Whatever you find to fill your time on the island, it will be an experience to write home about, it will cause major Instagram envy and it will make you start scheming how to get back to Bermuda again. And again.

    High Season: Anytime between May and October, which are the hottest, best beach weather months since Bermuda is sub-tropical

    Hotspots: Horseshoe Bay, Hamilton for nightlife, Tobacco Bay for pristine waters and sunset bonfires, the Bermuda Railway trail for biking and the best of the outdoors

    Cool to-dos: Scope out the pink sand—formed by red marine organisms called foraminifera—at Horseshoe Bay, do Carnival Bermuda style during Bermuda Heroes Weekend in June, chow on a massive fish sandwich at Art Mel’s Spicy Dicy, the island’s best

    Image credit: Tara Donaldson

  • 5 / 22 2017

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    COORDINATES ENVY: BARBADOS, 13.1939° N, 59.5432° W

    Wedding season is upon us, and besides white dresses, cupcakes and Coordinates Bridal jewelry—that means honeymoons. And honeymoons usually mean beaches and beauty, and Barbados delivers on both in a big way.

    Why envy it: In Barbados, there’s more than 70 miles worth of beaches to bask in on the Caribbean island, and many of them are the kind of beauties that make world’s best beach lists. Plus, with powdered sugar-soft sands and waters clearer than crystal, you’ll hardly ever want to leave. But should you decide to, pass through Bridgetown, Barbados’ capital and port city known for its colonial architecture, to get a taste of the island’s history. From there, focus on the flying fish. It’s an island specialty found in both haute cuisine and roadside shacks (which locals know is best). Barbados’ pure beauty puts it on the map as a major honeymoon hotspot, but there’ll be lots to love on the island whether you’re there for that or not.

    High Season: Anytime between January and April, which is dry season (so more sun, less rain) or in August for Crop Over, the island’s carnival celebration

    Hotspots: Crane Beach, St. Lawrence Gap for nightlife and dancing away to island tunes, Cuz’s Fish Shack for cutters

    Cool to-dos: Eating a flying fish cutter, a sandwich made with the island’s national fish, beaching until you can’t beach anymore, donning a feathered costume to parade through the streets for Crop Over’s Kadooment Day fest.