Ayurveda: finding the balance | Be well

Practised for millennia in the Indian subcontinent, traditional ayurvedic medicine, with its focus on achieving both physical and spiritual balance, was brought to the Caribbean in the nineteenth century — and recently has been more widely adopted as a form of “alternative medicine.” Cate Young learns more, and talks to two practitioners who say ayurveda has helped them bring their lives and health into equilibrium

Photo by frank60/Shutterstock.com

The secret life of sunscreen | Green

The blazing rays of the tropical sun can take a heavy toll on your skin — which is why most beachgoers and swimmers in the Caribbean slather on a layer of protective sunscreen before they disrobe. But the very chemicals that protect human skin can be toxic for corals — and the Caribbean’s reefs pay the price. Erline Andrews investigates

Photo by photopixel/Shutterstock.com

Jaws of life | Green

Pop culture has given sharks an undeservedly scary reputation. What’s truly frightening, reports Erline Andrews, is a sea without sharks, vital for a healthy marine ecosystem. And after decades of neglect, the countries of the Caribbean are finally waking up to the importance of shark conservation — for the environment, but also for their economies

Photo by Fiona Ayerst/Shutterstock.com

Clearing the trail | Escape

Dominica’s Waitukubuli National Trail is the jewel in the Nature Isle’s ecotourism crown. 2017’s Hurricane Maria devastated the trail — along with the rest of Dominica — but now an unusual breed of “voluntourists” are helping restore it. Paul Crask meets two of them

The Boeri Lake Trail in the high montane forest of Dominica’s Morne Trois Pitons National Park is one of several iconic hiking routes now clear and recovering. Photo by Paul Crask

The games are afoot | Snapshot

Video games aren’t just for teenagers to have fun — globally, they’re a highly lucrative business, requiring state-of-the-art technical know-how, creative flair, and significant investment. Mark Lyndersay meets the minds behind Couple Six and Coded-Arts, video game developers in Barbados and T&T, whose agenda includes creating games that reflect the culture of their home islands

Aloe vera: the thorny balm

The spiky Aloe vera plant is a favourite of Caribbean gardens, its bitter gel used as a moisturiser, stomach remedy, and ingredient in healthy tonics. You might imagine you could build a whole industry around this handy plant — and Aruba has done just that. Shelly-Ann Inniss visits the island’s biggest aloe farm, and learns how this wonder of the kitchen and medicine cabinet is an economic wonder, too

Caribbean volcanoes: fire down below

Shaped by subterranean forces, the islands of the Lesser Antilles are an arc of volcanoes — some extinct, some dormant, some still active. And among their dramatic forested peaks, crater lakes, and hot springs, amateur vulcanologists (and ordinary tourists) can find ample evidence of our planet’s restless energy