It was the vacation envied around the world. Okay, so maybe not everyone envied it, but if you did (as many Americans did), no one is stopping you from following in the tropical getaway footsteps of Barack and Michelle Obama. The former president and first lady spent their post-White House vacation on Necker Island; the private British Virgin Island owned by Richard Branson. This beautifully secluded island is a celebrity hot spot due to the privacy it affords (it was visited by Princess Diana with her sons in 1989, for instance).
The Obamas enjoyed their time participating in water sports and soaking up the sun. They definitely deserved it after Barack’s eight stressful years of running a country; but your stresses also deserve to be put aside for a while as you enjoy some much-needed rest and relaxation. So kick of your shoes, grab your shades, and start planning your tropical trip — but take notes from Obama’s book and keep these few things in mind when you head out on vacation.
Pick an Island
The more secluded the better, but let’s be honest here, unless you’re a public figure you’ll be fine on any Hawaiian, Caribbean or British Virgin Island. Unless you’re in Nassau or Honolulu — or going during college Spring breaks — crowds shouldn’t be a problem.
If you’re really trying to get as far away as possible and can take more than just a few days off, venture out to the Maldives for a truly serene vacation.
Ditch the Work Clothes
Once you’ve set the destination, first things first: start acting like you’re on vacation and ditch those dress shoes for flip flops, the suit for a t-shirt, and the watch for a hat (no schedule, no watch). Leave all your worries at home with the blazers or neckties and embrace your vacation plan — however long it is — by packing light. All you really need is a few items of casual beach attire.
Stay in Luxury
To truly vacation like the Obamas, you’ll have to do so in style. You may not be best friends with Richard Branson, but you can still find a taste of luxury on any island you choose. Check out our list of all-inclusive resorts around the world for ideas.
Hit the Water
Do more than just lie out on the beach. Sure, that’s a relaxing activity to do for a bit, but then let your hair down and live a little; go kitesurfing, water skiing, paddle boarding, or any other activity that’ll get your adrenaline pumping and help keep you cool.