Paradise by the Sea: A FTF Blog Event 7/13/2011

I was elated when I learned Kristy Eléna (of  Full Time Fabulous) selected a beach/sea related theme for the July FTFCommunity blog event. Yes, the photographer in me loves beaches for obvious reasons, but more than anything I was excited because I knew it would give me an opportunity to share a bit about myself with you.

Regular readers of my blog already know that I have a soft spot for the Caribbean.   What they don’t know is that my love for the sea/ocean goes back much further than the cruise I was on.  It goes all the way back to a small Dalmatian town named Karin where my mother was raised.  Let’s start there.

Karinsko More (aka, the Karin Sea)

This was basically my mother’s backyard when she was growing up:

Breathtaking.  Spectacular.  Amazing.  None of those words even begin to describe what it is like in person.  Karin is a Dalmatian seaside town bordered by the Karin Sea and Velebit Mountain range.  And it’s the place my mom (and most of her ancestors) was born and raised.

The town itself is rich with history. It used to be a seat of one of the Roman strongholds and was an important area during the Turkish Wars.  Remnants of those times remain in the ruins that are sprinkled throughout the area.   The area was ravaged by war in the 1990s and many of the inhabitants were forced to leave, but life is slowly coming back.  You almost wouldn’t guess that the 90s were so tough, save for the “Warning. Danger of Live Mines” signs that you come across here and there.

Despite the war, the coast itself remained largely unspoiled.  It is a breathtaking in its beauty and remains fairly untouched because tourism is at a minimum.

It is my absolute favorite spot on the planet.

Budva, Montenegro

The last time I was in the former Yugoslavia we decided to visit the coastal town of Budva in Montenegro:

Unlike Karin, Budva is an extremely popular tourist destination.  It is one of the oldest cities on the Adriatic coast (over 2,500 years) and the town is home to some amazing Mediterranean architecture.  The riviera is nestled between the amazing cliffs and mountains of Montenegro and the Adriatic Sea.

The top left photo is actually of an exclusive private resort called Sveti Stefan (St. Steven) that is located in Budva.  We didn’t stay there, but just seeing it was amazing.  It’s basically it’s own little private island.

Just beautiful.

The Western Caribbean

I couldn’t do a post about beaches without including some shots from my 2010 Caribbean Cruise.  More info on the cruise can be found here and here, but these are a few new (mostly)  shots I haven’t posted online before:

Top (from left): Roatan, Snorkeling in Roatan (top), Stingray City in Grand Cayman (bottom),  Cozumel.  Bottom (from left): Sunset from cruise ship, Snorkeling in Roatan (top), Roatan, (bottom) Grand Cayman

The Caribbean really is in a class of its own.  Each place we visited was as unique as its beaches.  And each place was more amazing than the last.  I’ve said it before but I’ll say it again: Roatan, Honduras was my absolute favorite stop!

Beach-Inspired Fashion

As I was putting the collages in this post together the images kept reminding me of  fashion shoots I had come across recently.  I decided the post wouldn’t be complete without one last collage.  These are just a few of my favorite 2011 beach-inspired editorials:

Top (from left): Karmen Pedaru for Vogue Paris, Myf Shepherd for Elle Spain (top), Eva by David Shields (bottom), Lindsay Ellingson for Allure.  Bottom (from left): Eva by David Shields, Christine Teigen for Vegas Magazine (top), Linda Votjova for El País (bottom), Karmen Pedaru for Vogue Paris

What are some of your favorite beaches and memories?

Have you come across any beach-inspired editorials you love?


Thank you to Kristy Eléna and Sunglass Hut for hosting this FTF Blog Event!  If you would like to read Kristy’s own response and check out the other entries, please click here.


NOTE: All images were taken by me or used courtesy of ZAC Fashion. Top left and bottom right header images: Karmen Pedaru for Vogue Paris and Lindsay Ellingson for Allure

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  • Linda D. Morehouse July 22, 2011, 10:10 AM

    Wow love your photos, thank you for sharing!

  • Audrey Allure July 19, 2011, 9:27 AM

    I love the beach/ocean as well – I could just sit by the water all day & be completely happy. These collages are gorgeous & I wish I could just be in one of these photos!

  • HS July 19, 2011, 7:14 AM

    it a great beach sea for spend vacation with lovely person, uhhh i need one


  • Clark Minn July 18, 2011, 7:23 PM

    These pictures are really great!!!Thanks a lot for sharing…It can inspire a lot of people to travel…

  • Bonnie July 17, 2011, 10:35 PM

    All of these travel pictures makes me wish that I traveled. But I don’t because I am lame balls.
    This is why I am always super stoked when my blogger friends post pictures of outside worlds. I can live vicariously through them and their amazing images.
    So thanks. 🙂
    Twitter: @GlamKitten88

  • fuyume July 17, 2011, 12:00 PM

    Beautiful photos B. I especially love the photos from your mothers hometown.

  • Metsy July 17, 2011, 2:35 AM

    Those pictures are fantastic. Oh I wish I was going to a beach sometime soon. I’ll just live through your photos for now. 🙂

  • Kyla July 16, 2011, 8:47 PM

    As an FYI, I thought I should come over here and inform you that I did a blog post today about blogs I love and this blog was listed. I linked everyone over to this site. I hope you don’t mind, but I really wanted to share this great blog with everyone. I love your pictures, your topics, and your ideals.

    I really hope you don’t mind. Have a great day!

  • Kristin July 16, 2011, 12:23 AM

    You have no idea how excited you got me for my upcoming tropical getaway!!

  • Any Second Now July 15, 2011, 3:11 PM

    B, your pictures are gorgeous! Your descriptions of these places make me want to just pack up my bags and book a flight or cruise. After I go to London next year, my next big family trip I want to plan is a cruise. But I want to do it when Dominic is older because the paranoid mommy in me worries about my little boy on a big ship, lol.

    My favorite beach memories are right in my town of San Diego. Lots of fun in the water, picnics and memories of times when my father was still alive and took us boogie boarding. Great memories!


  • sweet July 15, 2011, 1:07 PM

    all the photos are beyond perfection…I am totally in awe with the magnificent white sand…now I am missing Cebu even more…thank you for making us part of this wonderful journey my dear…for taking us to these wonderful beaches…


  • THE-LOUDMOUTH July 14, 2011, 11:42 PM

    My God.

    These photos are orgasmic.

    If I ever have a chance to visit even one of these places, I will explode with satisfaction.

  • Kirstin Marie July 14, 2011, 8:48 PM

    Oh my gosh, I want to go to every single one of these places you’ve mentioned. They all look gorgeous!!!

  • Kyla July 14, 2011, 4:59 PM

    I LOVED those pictures! Thank you so much for sharing a piece of your past with us, but the pictures are what blew me away. They were gorgeous!

    Great blog post, and thanks for taking the time to share! Have a great time on your trip!

  • Anna July 14, 2011, 2:10 PM

    One day I want to visit the Dalmatian Coast. I’ve heard that it has very nice cities such as Dubrovnik and Split. The Carribean is another story! I planned to go with my friend this year until she found out she had no days off left! bummer…but one day…I hope…

  • Jenmarie July 14, 2011, 11:41 AM

    I can’t imagine having an ocean in my backyard! The resort that my husband and I went to on our honeymoon was right on the beach, so when we walked outside there were outdoor restaurants, pools, sand, and the water! I was amazed at how close it was and it was so beautiful (although the water wasn’t very blue at the time). I almost forgot about your Carribean Vacation! That must’ve been so fun! Did you see any Pirates? 😉

  • jessica July 14, 2011, 6:31 AM

    What a beautiful post, B. I have always been inspired by a sea view and that is why I think Im so lucky to live close to the water (even if it isnt warm enough to go in, ever) I have always wanted to go to the Caribbean, I dont think Ive ever seem a picture that didnt make me fall in lve with it. It must have been very hard to leave!

  • Sanja July 14, 2011, 5:59 AM

    My father was also born and raised in Dalmatia (Šibenik) but I passed Karin so many times on my way there so I know what you’re talking about 🙂 It’s such a cute little town..
    The entire adriatic coast is so beautiful… I just hate the fact that people throw so many garbage around especially in Dalmatia..
    I’ve been on my prom trip (typical thing to do when we finish high school) to Budva, Montenegro… It was just gorgeous… Your pictures remind me of so many beautiful memories from back then 🙂 Great job…
    The Carribeans are still on my wishlist… so one day…

    Beautiful pictures… I just want to look at them 🙂

    Love, Sanja

  • kristy July 14, 2011, 4:50 AM

    so. many. beautiful. photos!!

    umm… so can we like… go hang out in your mom’s former backyard?! holy freakin’ awesome location.

    and each of these places you chose to feature is fantastic. i see what you mean about the former yugoslavia reminding you of the corfu pics i posted. i totally get that vibe too.

    i love seeing pictures from around the world, so this was definitely a treat! thanks love!! =)

  • Heidi July 14, 2011, 1:26 AM

    Gorgeous pictures! I love the beach and all these pictures make me want to go on vacation now! haha 🙂

  • Cate July 14, 2011, 12:58 AM

    you need to find your way to Trinidad. if you love beaches, you’ll love it here. 🙂

  • Fabienne Jach July 14, 2011, 12:34 AM

    Just beautiful, B! I was bummed that I didn’t have the bandwidth to participate, having been raised on the Mediterranean I’m a sea girl through and through. These images are breathtaking. The sea is my personal heaven on earth. Thank you for sharing parts of your story 🙂
    xo, f
    The House in the Clouds

  • Jamillah July 13, 2011, 8:25 PM

    STOP IT YOU!!! Karin looks like a dream! I’ve evernoted it in my places to visit it looks so peaceful. I have to say it is wonderful seeing the place where your mom is from and learning more about you.

    Your photography is beautiful…I have a love for the Caribbean too!!! Whenever I go anywhere in the Caribbean honestly I forget my whole life, lol. I die for all the fashion you highlighted.

    Really wonderful post, B. Love you!

  • Oh to Be a Muse July 13, 2011, 8:14 PM

    i’ve been to those places in the western carib and they are so lovely. and your mother definitely had a beautiful backyard to grow up with! my family is from jamaica so i always enjoying taking trips back home and soaking up the Caribbean sun!

    loved this FTF post–you have the best collages. 🙂

    Oh, i don’t know why it wouldn’t let you comment on the contest–i guess it was being weird. but thanks so much for voting for me hun!

  • Casee Marie July 13, 2011, 7:29 PM

    Absolutely amazing. I don’t even know where to start – I agree with Marissa, clearly I just need to visit them all. I love when you share your photography, and these were obviously perfect subjects for your talent. I especially love that capture of the stingray, totally one of those once-in-a-lifetime shots. And as for the beaches, all I can say is wow. The history you gave with each one was fantastic, too. So nice to know a little more about you!

    Loving that fashion collage, too! The David Shields one is my favorite. It really reminds me of something Kristy would do, actually. Gorgeous.

  • caramellitsa July 13, 2011, 7:14 PM

    the collages you made are amazing!!
    i loved you ftf event post!!!


    kisses <3

  • Gabrielle July 13, 2011, 7:00 PM

    Your photos make me want to go to the beach so badly! I live in California and rarely get to the beach. I guess it’s because I’m up north, but I’m jealous right now. lol I wanna go…

  • FASHION TALES July 13, 2011, 6:05 PM

    Spectacular is absolutely correct B! I see your love for the Caribbean & agree it’s in a different class of its own. These images are so wonderful I had no idea that you loved it so much… it makes sense beautiful surroundings for a great photog as yourself. Dalmatian looks amazing, I’m interested to go visit. Love these inspiring photos.

  • Marissa July 13, 2011, 5:39 PM

    B, this isn’t fair – you’ve given me way too many beautiful beaches that i need to visit! But, seriously, these are incredible photos, and I love seeing where your family is from. I wonder why the Dalmatian Coast and Montenegro aren’t more popular with American travelers (like Croatia). Apart from the landmine signs, they sound like absolute paradise.