Location: Necker Island
Today, a couple of us woke up bright and early and made pancakes for the rest of the boat. Around 6:30 a.m., we set out for a long sail, but the staff refused to tell us where we were going; they said it was a surprise. The water was really rough, so we sat on the bow and got soaked by the waves that were crashing under us. A few hours later, the staff said that we had arrived at our destination, and they pointed to a tiny island surrounded by crystal clear water, with one house sitting upon it. No one knew what was going on. Once we pulled up to the dock and unloaded, we were told that we had arrived at Necker Island, an island privately owned by Richard Branson. We were all introduced to a man named Vaman, who was head of the wildlife on the island and gave us a tour of the entire property. To begin the tour, he brought us to an area with hundreds of flamingos and many beautiful white and scarlet ibis. On our way to the next stop, Vaman mentioned the fact that there were 600 Anegada iguanas on the island, even more than the island of Anegada has. Next, we saw a giant tortoise that was 600 pounds and is 67 years old but can live to be 240 years. We all took turns riding the tortoise and feeding it leaves. Then, we took a tour of Sir Richard Branson’s house, which was unbelievable, and we jumped into two of the many pools on his property. Finally, to end this amazing day, Vaman not only showed us the lemur enclosures but let us go inside and feed them as they crawled all over our shoulders and heads. This day was so surreal, and I cannot even put into words how fantastic this experience has been.