Happy St. Patrick's Day! While we did prepare for the holiday with a rainbow inspired craft, we aren't doing anything special today. That is unless you consider Noah wearing a green St. Patrick's Day shirt to school today as special. Thank goodness his teachers have a few fun and festive things planned today. In the past, we've always gone to a St. Patrick's Day parade, but this year we were away for it. While I was a little bummed we couldn't go, I couldn't really complain since we were living it up in Turks & Caicos :)
One of the things I love most about traveling is going out to eat and trying new things. Needless to say, I was pretty excited to be going to an all-inclusive. At Beaches in Turks & Caicos, there are 20 restaurants located through the resort. We obviously didn't try them all, but I definitely walked away with a few favorites. Our daily routine consisted of a buffet brunch, smoothies at the beach or swim up bar, a buffet lunch, and then a sit down dinner.
First up, the smoothies! The three of us drank multiple smoothies each day. We had them with breakfast, lunch, and as a random treat on the beach or swim up bar. Noah's favorite was the banana smoothie while mine was the strawberry banana. Noah loved requesting certain colored straws and thought it was pretty cool when we'd tie the super stretchy part in a knot.
One of my favorite restaurants, for food and location, was Barefoot by the Sea. It is an outside restaurant with the tables sitting in the sand! You were encouraged to take off your shoes and and wiggle your toes in the sand while you eat :) We had dinner there our first night and went back later in the week for breakfast. I'm not usually one to order fish at home, but I'm happy I did here... it was delicious! This was the one restaurant where we didn't need to bring the iPad or coloring books to keep Noah entertained. Instead, we brought some sand toys and he played right next to our table. Noah had so much fun and didn't want to leave... it was nice to be able to chat and linger after eating.
On Wednesday night, we went to Kimono's, a hibachi restaurant at the resort. It was the only place that required a reservation, but it was definitely worth it. It's very comparable to the hibachi restaurants we have at home, complete with the cooking show and singing. Here, there wasn't really a menu to choose from, rather there was a tasting menu so you got to try a little of everything. Rice, veggies, mahi mahi, chicken, steak, and shrimp. You definitely don't leave there hungry... everything was delicious! I think Noah had his best meal that night... he loved the rice!
For breakfast and lunch, we mainly stuck to the buffets. We did opt for a "menu" breakfast one morning, but in general it was easier for Noah if we just went to a buffet. We were able to get a variety of fruit, cheese, and bread for him and had a greater chance of him actually eating. Chris and I really liked the buffet breakfasts too. I prefer a lighter breakfast of fruit, yogurt, and pastries anyway and Chris really liked their omelettes and french toast. For lunch, a buffet just made sense. When you are in your bathing suit and coverup, it's preferable to grab a casual lunch without the fuss. And thankfully the resort had buffet lunches scattered throughout, so that no matter where we were, we could find a quick lunch. Our favorite places for buffet breakfast and lunch were Giuseppe's (right near our hotel room), Mario's, and Arizona's (had some great outside tables right near the beach).
While I wouldn't describe the food as five star dining, that's not really what I'm looking for when traveling with a young child. We much prefer going to restaurants with good food for both the adults and the kids. I really appreciated that they had a variety of delicious dishes on their menus while still offering the basics most children enjoy. I found the food to be very comparable to what you would get on a cruise ship.
Have you ever been to an all inclusive resort or on a cruise? What did you think of the food they offered?