Looking for the best Caribbean beach vacation? Hey, I love sharing the highlights of
all the places I visit and learn about. Below you'll find my top 10 picks for a great
beach vacation with examples of what's special about them. Then you can decide which one
you think would be the best beach vacation in the Caribbean for your trip!
This place is for those that like a non-stop vacation with lots of restaurants, bars
casinos. The beaches are gorgeous, the water is wonderful and it hardly ever rains. The
scuba diving is awesome with great opportunities for photography. The fishing is pretty
Your troubles will simply wash away in the soft island serenity of this great beach
vacation destination. Brighton Beach is a great place to stay for your Caribbean beach
vacation and the most popular here. If you want a little more privacy you can get secluded
villas around the island. Taking that horseback ride on the beach will feel as if you're
in a movie and I would highly recommend trying it. Probably my second favorite beach
Turks and Caicos Islands:
Like long beach walks? At 12 miles long, Grace Bay is simply a phenomenal stretch of soft
white sand with smaller luxury resorts, spas and great restaurants perfect for a beach
honeymoon vacation. And the water color is the most vibrant translucent turquoise... I
love it! Seems that many movie stars and rock stars like it too with several owning homes
and vacationing here on some of the 8 secluded islands all with fantastic beaches. Turks
& Caicos has long been a diver's paradise with great deep-sea and bone fishing too!
Taking the kids? Well, Beaches Resort consistently gets high marks as one of the world's
best family beach vacation spots.
Technically not in the Caribbean, but with so many beautiful beaches I had to add it to
the best beach vacation list... it's close enough. Paradise Island is great fun especially
swimming with the dolphins, which is an experience of a lifetime. The diving here is
fantastic because of the calm waters and enjoying the nightlife is all kinds of fun. For a
secluded romantic get-a-way try the pink sand beach on Harbor Island.
British Virgin Islands & U.S. Virgin Islands:
Both make great beach vacations, especially for island hopping. Having a chance to easily
enjoy not 1, 2, but potentially 3 islands or more each with it's own charm make for one of
the best beach vacation spots. Trunk Bay on St. John is particularly gorgeous and popular
with calm waters and an underwater snorkeling "trail."
A very entertaining destination with odd things like feeding iguanas grapes while dining
at a restaurant. Definitely worth it for the pictures! Three islands in all, its another
great place to island hop and enjoy waterfall climbing, extensive shark diving, and
swimming with the stingrays and shopping, shopping, shopping.
Here is a place you can go for a cheap beach vacation and still enjoy all the splendid
beauty of a Caribbean island. Have a great time scuba diving, swimming with dolphins, deep
sea fishing and hiking. Fabulous beaches too!
A fun Caribbean beach vacation to tell your friends about. It's the only area known in the
Caribbean to have beautiful white sandy beaches deserted during peak season, which makes
this a great place for couples to enjoy. Especially with activities that include
windsurfing, scuba diving, and snorkeling. Oh, and if you love seafood, all I can say is,
"The best chefs in the Caribbean!"
A honeymooners delight. Think jazz music, small island, secluded and intimate and that is St. Lucia. Beautiful beaches, lush tropical foliage, scenic
mountains, spectacular sunsets and typically many great all-inclusive packages are
offered. It all makes for a very seductive beach honeymoon vacation.
Hey, I could add a couple more since the Caribbean is full of beautiful and interesting
places. Some may offer a little better snorkeling or fishing, larger or smaller hotels,
more seclusion or more nightlife, but all are wonderful in their own way. You really can't
go wrong with these when planning and dreaming of your next Caribbean beach vacation!
Author Ryan Burden loves the beach. Ryan is a self-professed expert beach
bum, traveler and publisher of Turks and Caicos Beach Vacation.com a guide for planning
all your Turks & Caicos adventures. Like Ryan, maybe YOU would like to turn
your passion into online profits. Learn how easy it can be with Websites
A holiday to the Caribbean offers you the chance to visit some of the most spectacular
beaches in the world. Virtually every island of the Caribbean will have beaches that
amaze; with crystal clear blue seas, sugar white sand & palm trees.
To help you choose where to go and more importantly what beach to choose, we have compiled
a list of the top 10 beaches in the Caribbean.
1/ Palm Beach (Aruba) Idyllic beach
setting with superb white sand.
2/ Grand Anse Beach (Grenada) 3km beach
with sugar-white sand, lots of space & shallow waters.
3/ Johnsons Point (Antigua) Made up of secluded coves; these white
soft sand beaches are a must for snorkeling & swimming
4/ Pink Sand Beach ( Bahamas) One of the
worlds most photographed beaches, often voted worlds best by travel
publications. 5kms of salmon pink coloured sand, due to red plankton that has mixed
with the fine white sand.
5/ Crane Beach (Barbados) Often voted as
Barbados most beautiful beach. Imposing cliffs, a natural coral reef and soft white
sands make for a perfect beach.
6/ Negril Beach (Jamaica) Laid back atmosphere and Jamaicas prettiest
beach. A lot quieter than Seven Mile beach.
7/ Englishmans Bay (Tobago) A
sheltered beach with fine white sand, crystal waters & surrounded by a palm jungle.
8/ Grace Bay (Turks & Caicos) Part of a national marine park, this beach
has fine white sand, calm turquoise waters and is protected by a barrier reef.
9/ Trunk Bay (US Virgin Islands) A beautiful beach with crystal clear
waters, considered one of the best places for snorkeling in the Caribbean.
10/ Shoal Bay (Anguilla) Put Angullia on the tourism map; sugar-white sand,
crystal clear blue waters & coral reefs.
provides you with the latest holiday offers, essential information & reviews on
Planning your Caribbean honeymoon shouldn't be as complex as planning your wedding...
Right! But with so many enticing options, where do you start? Well, start here of course
and let me help you discover the best of the best honeymoon destinations.
Certainly you're looking for a romantic adventure where you'll experience many "first
time" events together and every couple wants something a little different. I had a
fabulous Caribbean honeymoon and have taken some great trips in my lifetime. Check out
these top picks and what makes them special. One of them is perfect for that memorable
trip you've been dreaming of!
This island is absolutely gorgeous and you will definitely leave feeling spoiled. Stay at
the secluded 110-year-old Crane Hotel for nostalgic romance or at the Peach & Quiet
for a budget honeymoon. It's the adventurous couples dream with clear blue waters for
scuba divers, windsurfers, and sightseeing from the air in a helicopter or underwater in a
mini-sub. You'll find decent beaches here, but not the best of the bunch.
Turks & Caicos
If you like small secluded luxury hotels with world-class spas and great restaurants, then
you'll love it here on any of the eight inhabited islands. The uncrowded beaches are
absolutely fabulous. You may even end up sunbathing next to a movie star as many vacation
in the Turks & Caicos. Go horseback riding, sail to one of the many deserted islands
and play "Lost" for the day, see flocks of flamingos or thousands of iguanas on
Little Water Cay. The scuba diving and snorkeling are phenomenal as is the deep-sea
fishing and bone fishing. Kite-boarding, windsurfing and other water sports are also
popular. A definite favorite for a perfect beach honeymoon vacation!
This island is straight out of a fairytale with lush tropical scenery and twin mountain
peaks covered in rain forest serenity. The locals are very friendly and seeing the St. Lucia Soufriere volcano from the inside will leave you in
awe. Taking a day to tour the island on horseback is one of the major reasons this is in
the top ten places to take a Caribbean honeymoon. Also, many hotels really cater to
honeymooners with all-inclusive packages. Go in May and you'll catch the Jazz Festival,
which is way fun!
A great choice for a budget honeymoon that still had beautiful beaches and lots to offer.
Taking a catamaran ride to the enchanting Saona Island is just one of the ways to enjoy
this romantic getaway. Add a visit to the 600-acre Ecological Park enjoying a dozen blue
lagoons is nothing short then a romantic getaway in heaven.
A great romantic get-a-way, yet for some reason it's still underrated compared to the rest
here. Inhale the French culture along with the tantalizing scents of the beautiful flowers
that consume the entire island. Take a canopy tour and go hiking in the rain forest
canyons before getting a taste of superb Creole cuisine, going shopping and sampling the
fairly lively nightlife.
When people choose a Caribbean honeymoon this island is over-looked more times than not. I
have no idea why because its built for couples to enjoy. You won't find much
commercialization here, the nightlife is pretty low-key and water sports are not a big
draw. But you'll have dozens of fantastic beaches to explore and the fine dining is
possibly the best in all the Caribbean.
British Virgin Islands (BVI)
You have several islands to choose from with many hotel options for a secluded romantic
retreat. Ride a yacht to the famous Baths of Virgin Gorda or find a hidden beach for you
and your loved to enjoy all alone. The beach bars on Jost Van Dyke are a fun hangout
popular with sailors.
US Virgin Islands (USVI)
All beautiful areas here, the fact that they're all considered part of the United States
makes things more convenient. St. John has the best beaches and diving while St. Thomas is
known for excellent dining and shopping. Of course, St. Croix is cheaper and also has
casinos, so you pick or hop around. The variety of USVI makes it one of the best honeymoon
I absolutely love Ocho Rios. The Dunn's River Falls has got to be the coolest adventure
climb on any island. Climb the waterfall and jump back down into the water... amazing!
Horseback riding on the beach, a little reggae music and rum at sunset and you've got
yourself a nice romantic getaway plus it's great for a budget honeymoon.
Saving this for last simply because if you want to take a romantic Caribbean honeymoon and
still feel like your back home this is the closest thing you'll come across. With many
American themes you won't feel too far away, but taking in some of the best snorkeling and
scuba diving in the Caribbean will be breathtaking. Also, if you are into shopping and
eating well, then the Caymans have got to be a top pick for you
Now that you've got some good ideas, you just have to decide which is the best honeymoon
destination for you. Hopefully this list has got you excited and also helped narrow down
your choices too. Good luck and have fun. Whichever one you decide on, I hope you two have
a wonderful wedding and a romantic honeymoon!
Author Ryan Burden loves the beach. Ryan is a self-professed expert beach
bum, traveler and publisher of Turks and Caicos Beach Vacation.com an insider's guide
for planning all your Turks & Caicos adventures. Like Ryan, maybe YOU would
like to turn your passion into online profits. Learn how easy it can be with Websites
The Caribbean islands are the best place for people who enjoy water sports. Whether
your own preference is on the water or below it, Caribbean water sports have something to
offer you including swimming, waterskiing, sailing, snorkeling, kayaking, and so on.
Snorkeling is probably the most popular of Caribbean watersports because swimmers of
all ages can enjoy it. Going snorkeling means getting personal with the wonderful and
colorful marine life found in the Caribbean. Due to the immense popularity of this
activity, there are many well-marked snorkeling trails across many islands in the
Caribbean. Most of the better resorts and hotels in offer snorkeling equipment as well as
Windsurfing, surfing, and kiteboarding are all forms of board sports. These Caribbean
watersports enjoy a lot of popularity because the trade winds in the Caribbean provide
unlimited opportunities for them. Kiteboarding is actually the same as windsurfing except
that it uses a relatively smaller board. As to surfing, if you are not going to Hawaii
then you had better go to the Caribbean. The water is warm, the surf is good, the bays are
sheltered and there is always one trade wind or another making waves, what more could you
possibly demand? Due to the combination of ideal conditions, the Caribbean attracts
surfers from the world over. Instruction and equipment is available through most hotels or
through vendors along the beaches.
If you are not the type for on-water or below-water sports then you have this third
option among Caribbean watersports. Facilities for training and equipment are available
through your hotel or through vendors along the beach. Going parasailing means getting a
unique view of the Caribbean with the whole vista of white beaches, clear waters, blue
skies, and the wildlife spread below you as you soar on the wind.
Waterskiing or jetskiing has become quite popular recently. Jetskiing is especially
very convenient with many people renting jetskis for a single rider experience or wave
runners that can take on 2-4 riders at one time. As usual, your hotel or the beach front
can offer you the vendors for this Caribbean watersport.
Canoeing and Kayaking
There are several guided tours for people who prefer the calm and tranquillity of
canoeing or kayaking to the other motorized means of traveling on water. The Caribbean is
liberally supplied with mangroves and lagoons.
Spend a day on a powerboat, catamaran, sailboat, or trimraran and enjoy sailing in the
Caribbean. You can opt between bare boat and crewed boats and there are even special
charters for people who are interested in learning how to sail.
If you wish to go a step beyond snorkeling then go scuba diving and you will see yet
another unique perspective of the Caribbean. There are several popular diving spots in the
Cayman Islands and Curacao. Go swimming with tamed
stingrays in Stingray City. Do not forget the Buck Island Reef National Monument that has
250 species of fish.
There is something special about a waterfall that seems to draw us. Maybe it is the
sight of the water flowing over the edge or maybe it is the raw power that the water
represents. The ancient Amerindians believed that with so much power the waterfalls were
gods. Or maybe it is just that we are drawn to waterfalls because of the refreshing
coolness that fills the air around the waterfall. Whatever it is, there is an attraction
to waterfalls and the Caribbean has its fair share of waterfalls, from the awe inspiring
power of Kaieteur Falls in Guyana to small cascades where you simply slip under the flow
and feel the water pummel your shoulders and back.
Grenadas mountainous nature and pristine environment gives rise to several waterfalls. Wherever you stay in Grenada, there
is a waterfall close by. Concorde Falls is a waterfall that is reasonably close to
Grenadas capital, St Georges, being approximately 45 minutes driving time. The road
to that part of the island is good and goes through areas with luxuriant green foliage
clothing the hills. The Falls are easy to find as there is a large sign on the main road
pointing to the waterfall. From the Main Road to the waterfall is approximately 3
kilometers and takes about 5 minutes to drive. This waterfall is in the mountains and as
you stand on the road above looking down at the falls, there are mountain peaks towering
above you. Around the waterfall tropical growth springs from the soil in abundance, with
towering stands of bamboo, nutmeg trees climb the hills and in between mangoes, pomerac,
grapefruit, avocado and banana dot the hillsides. For the truly adventurous there is a
larger waterfall that is approximately 45 minutes hiking beyond the first waterfall. Known
as Au Coin, this waterfall is bigger and taller with a pool for swimming. A third
waterfall in the Concorde valley is Fontainbleu which cascades down a 65 foot cliff into a
crystal clear pool and is approximately 2 hours hiking up the mountain.
Dominica is a true Caribbean nature island with an unspoilt
natural landscape and a variety of waterfalls. One of popular waterfalls in Dominica is
called the Three Rivers Waterfall and it is reached after a half-hour walk from 3 Rivers.
The trail is both beautiful and extremely easy, and involves a well made track and a
little river walking. You can bathe under this 100-foot high cold shower and hear the
sound of your screams echoing all around. The water drops close to a massive tree which
forms a junction between three rivers. Advanced hikers will enjoy the seven (7) hour hike
to Boli Falls. The trail begins in the beautiful village of Casgory, near La Plaine and
passes through unspoilt rainforest to arrive at 3 stunning waterfalls and some gorgeous
natural pools. There is even a local legend that a mermaid exists in the pools.
St Lucia seems to have waterfalls everywhere you go. Not only does St Lucia have waterfalls but it has variety in its
waterfalls from cold water to warm water to even hot water waterfalls. The most visited
waterfall in St Lucia is Diamond Waterfall in the town of Soufriere. Here in the midst of
a lush well maintained tropical garden bursting with brilliant flowers, the water falls
from a height of 45 feet laden with minerals from underground sulphur springs. While
bathing under the falls is not allowed, adjacent to the falls are mineral baths where it
is said that bathing removes the aches and pains of age and makes you young again. For
those who want to combine their waterfall viewing with more rugged hiking then EnBas Saut
Waterfall will fill your passion. Getting to these waterfalls requires a two hour hike
along a 4 kilometer trail through Rainforest and Cloud Forest. At the base of the falls
you are greeted by the sight of two cascading falls and pools.
Trinidad is another Caribbean island that has numerous waterfalls. One of the
waterfalls that people often enquire about is Maracas Waterfall. Part of the curiosity
about these falls is the mistaken belief that the waterfall is at Maracas Beach. The
Maracas Waterfall, which is a little over 91.5m. in height, is situated in cool, beautiful
surroundings in the Maracas St Joseph valley. From the car park on Waterfall Road it is
2.4km. to the waterfall. The hike to the waterfall is an uphill walk along a very wide
track lined on both sides by Balata trees. After approximately 15 minutes, there is a fork
in the track and the track on the right leads to a cascade consisting of three tiers of
mini waterfalls with two large pools that are suitable for swimming. A further 20 minutes
of walking leads to the main waterfall. There is no pool for bathing at the base of this
waterfall. A very popular waterfall in Trinidad for weekend hikers is known as Rio Seco.
This trail winds through pathways lined by stately Mora trees along the North Eastern
coast of the island to a waterfall and deep, emerald green pool. Upriver of the pool, on
the banks of a tributary are the Rio Seco sulphur springs.
You can learn more about the waterfalls in the Caribbean by visiting the Island
Adventures Page on the Caribbean Outdoor Life web site and by visiting the Trinidad
Waterfalls Page on the Outdoors Trinidad web site.
Blue skies, golden sand, azure water and swaying coconut trees is an image etched in
the minds of many when they think about the Caribbean. This image often fills the mind
with a desire to visit a tropical island but then thoughts about whether it will be too
expensive begin to intrude and dampen the desire. This article will look at ways to lower
the cost of a Caribbean vacation so that you can visit those glorious beaches.
Very often throughout the year there are special offers of reduced prices on airfare to
various Caribbean islands. If you check regularly you can find a great deal on airfare.
However that great deal may not be for the island that you want to go to or may not be at
a time when you want to travel. If that is the case, one way you can reduce the cost of
airfare is to be flexible on your travel days. On the major airlines flying to the
Caribbean, flights on week days, especially mid-week are priced lower than flights on
weekends. If you are also flexible in terms of the time of day you will find that where
there are multiple flights to a destination, flights on off-peak hours are even cheaper.
You will also find that multi-stop flights are priced lower than direct flights. You can
achieve further savings on airfare by booking early, at least one to three months in
advance of your departure date.
One of the major cost items in a Caribbean holiday is the cost of accommodation. One
way to lower the cost of the accommodation is to consider staying in a house rather than a
hotel. Throughout the Caribbean there are numerous villas, houses and cottages available
for rental as holiday accommodation. By using a house, you can go on vacation with friends
and share the cost of the rental, thus lowering the cost of your vacation.
There are beautiful villas in the Caribbean with all types of amenities including
Jacuzzis, swimming pools, maid service, cable TV in every room. Before renting a villa,
consider your activities (what do you plan to do) and therefore how much time will you
spend in the villa to make use of the amenities. If you plan a very active vacation with
plenty of outdoor activities, then you may find that you do not spend much time at the
villa other than for sleeping. You may therefore not need a villa with all the amenities
and houses with fewer amenities will cost less.
No friends who want to accompany you or maybe you desire privacy and an intimate
setting then consider an apartment hotel or self catering hotel. Many self-catering hotels
provide all the conveniences of a regular hotel room with the added benefit of a decent
sized kitchen or kitchenette. By being able to prepare some of your meals (at least
breakfast) you can reduce your vacation food bill. When choosing self-catering hotels,
look at the photos of the kitchen area to determine if it will be adequate for your needs.
Caribbean beaches are a major attraction on all islands
and most visitors when thinking about a Caribbean vacation think about staying on the
beach. Another method to save money on a Caribbean vacation is to consider a location away
from the beach as such properties will cost less than accommodation that is directly on
the beach. Make sure however that the house is within walking distance of the beach as you
do not want to spend on transportation to get to the beach all the money you have saved on
accommodation. If you are considering a house or self-catering hotel, find out if there
are any supermarkets within walking distance of the property, so that you can easily
purchase items. When you visit the supermarket, buy local or regional brands rather than
European or North American brands as you will generally find that local brands cost less.
Research the sights and places of interest before you travel. Very often tour guides
take you to places that you could have easily gone to on your own. By researching you will
know which places of interest you can easily find and so save the cost of a tour guide.
The Internet has made researching sightseeing attractions much easier and one of the
places you can learn about the places to visit on different Caribbean islands is at the Island Adventures Page of the Caribbean Outdoor Life web
Many of the attractions on the various islands charge a fee for entrance. There are
however many other attractions that you can visit for free, particularly historic
buildings especially churches, the smaller forts and government buildings. The capital of
each island is one location where you are certain to find historic buildings and monuments
that are free places to visit.
Renting a car is a great way to do your sightseeing. Many of the attractions on each
island can be found once you are armed with a good road map. In addition, having a car
allows you to widen the circle of places where you can choose to have dinner. In deciding
to rent a car however you should think of the amount of time the car is parked in the
parking lot while you are relaxing on the beach in front the hotel or villa or taking an
afternoon siesta. While the car is parked and you are not using the car you are still
paying the rental for the car for that entire period.
One method of having the benefit of a car and still save some money is to plan your
holiday in advance by researching the sights. Once you have completed your research you
make a list, then rent a car for only 2 or 3 days and do all the sightseeing on those
days. In this way you save on the car rental. On the days that you have the car you can
choose to visit restaurants that are not in walking distance of your hotel. Another
potential vacation saver can be found in the area of car rental insurance. Check if your
home auto insurance or credit card will provide insurance on a rental vehicle while you
are on vacation in the Caribbean, thus saving you from purchasing insurance from the car
On the other days when you do not have a car you can use local transport for getting
around. All hotels either have taxis at the hotel or arrangements with taxis who will
quickly come to the hotel once they receive a call from the front desk. A much cheaper
alternative however is to use the local bus service. The front desk staff can usually
provide you with directions and advice on using the bus service.
One of the pleasures of a Caribbean vacation is dining, as there are numerous
restaurants on each island serving all types of cuisine. One way to save money during your
Caribbean holiday is to eat where the locals eat. You will invariably find that the prices
at these establishments are lower as these places cater for locals who do not have the
purchasing power of tourists. Part of the benefit of a vacation is to experience the
culture of the island and local cuisine is a great way to experience local culture. How to
know where to eat; use the time tested method: if it is lunchtime and there are many
people lining up then the food must be good and the price must be reasonable.
Street Food is a great way to get a quick meal at a low price and also experience local
culture. The Caribbean has great street food, whether it is doubles in Trinidad or
bar-b-cued pigtail in Barbados or jerk chicken in Jamaica. Before buying street food
however, look at the cleanliness of the surrounding and of the person serving the food.
Although the idea of a vacation is to get away from it all, in today's world most
people want to stay connected to the persons at home, even if it is to tell them how much
they are enjoying themselves. One of the hidden costs on a vacation can be the cost of
Internet access. Many hotels will advertise that they have internet access but this comes
at an additional cost. Fortunately the number of places that are offering free Wi-Fi
access is increasing. You can check sites like wifi free spot to find outlets at your
destination that have free Wi-Fi, and Travel Post for a list of free Wi-Fi carrying
airports in the Caribbean. If you do not have a free Wi-Fi hotspot near to where you are
staying you can look for an Internet Café. A directory of Internet cafes can be found at
cybercaptive. In choosing an Internet café look for places that don't seem to cater to
tourists as their prices will generally be lower. Another source of low cost internet
access is usually the public library. In some countries, internet access at the library is
free, while at others there is a charge but it is significantly lower than at hotels of
When to go
Any time of year is a good time to visit the Caribbean, however the biggest cost saving
on a Caribbean holiday is found by visiting in the summer. During the summer months,
hotels and airlines significantly reduce their rates. As such you can save on the cost of
your vacation and when combined with the other points in this article you will
significantly lower the cost of your Caribbean vacation.
Many people only consider a Caribbean vacation during the months of November to April.
This period, known as the winter season, is traditionally the peak period for Caribbean
vacations. For many individuals it is a chance to escape the snow and ice of the northern
hemisphere with a holiday in sunny climates. The other months are often called the summer
season or as known in Caribbean vacation circles, the low season because of the low
occupancy at vacation properties. Yet the summer and fall months are a great time for a
Caribbean vacation with several activities that are only available during the summer.
One of the reasons some persons do not consider a vacation in the Caribbean during the
summer months is a fear of hurricanes. This concern over hurricanes is however somewhat
misplaced. In fact only a few islands are ever affected by hurricanes in any one year.
Some islands because of their geographic position, such as Trinidad, Aruba, Tobago,
Curacao, are considered below the hurricane belt and so are not hit by any hurricanes.
The summer months in the Caribbean are filled with music festivals. You can listen to
world renown international artists under sunny skies with an ocean view or against a
backdrop of star filled skies with balmy breezes. Among the more popular music festivals
are the St Lucia Jazz Festival, Barbados Gospelfest and the Aruba Music Festival in May,
the Ocho Rios Jazz Festival, the Bonaire Jazz Festival, St Kitts Music Festival and
Grenada's Spice Jazz Festival in June. If you are looking for music a little later in the
year, there is Reggae Sumfest in Jamaica in July and Dominica's World Creole Music
Festival in October.
Summer is also the time for the pulsating rhythms and colorful costumes of Carnival on
many islands. In July, it is Carnival time on St Vincent, St Lucia and Barbados, while
Antigua's carnival is in August. A summer holiday on any of these Caribbean islands gives
you the chance to experience the splendor of the carnival costumes with the relaxation of
a beautiful Caribbean beach.
The summer months are also ideal for Caribbean outdoor recreation adventure and each island
offers a range of outdoor vacation adventure. Hiking is one of those outdoor adventures
and in the Caribbean you can on the same hike alternate from untouched beaches to
unspoiled forest. Within those lush untouched natural forests are tall cascading
waterfalls, hidden fern grottoes, mountain lakes, boiling lakes, hot springs and
mysterious regions of volcanic activity.
Summer is also the time of turtle nesting with May to September being the prime months.
During these months thousands of giant marine turtles heave themselves out of the ocean
and on to the sandy beaches to lay their eggs. Giant Leatherback turtles, some weighing as
much as 1,000 pounds, along with Hawksbill and Green turtles visit these sandy shores.
Viewing this rite of nature while on a summer vacation is an experience of a lifetime.
The waters of the Caribbean Sea are wonderful all year round but the warmest water
temperature is during the summer, making it ideal for snorkeling. The sparkling blue water
provides a world of adventure below its surface. The Caribbean is one of the top regions
for scuba diving and snorkeling with breathtaking marine life, shallow coral reefs, new
and old wrecks.
Probably the best reason of all for visiting the Caribbean during the summer months is
that this is the time of the lowest prices at hotels and airlines have special reduced
airfares, so you can have a vacation on a budget.
So if you are thinking of where to go for your summer vacation, consider the Caribbean,
it's great in the summer.
A vacation in the Caribbean can be fantastic; so many beautiful sights and sounds, so
many places to discover and explore. Everyone who goes on holiday in the Caribbean wants
to capture those magical moments to be able to remember them for a lifetime and also to
share them with friends and family. In this article we provide some tips to help you take
good photographs during your vacation in the Caribbean.
Most people will carry their camera when they are going to visit a famous landmark or
historic site because they want to record their visit. At other times the individual will
often leave their camera in their hotel room or in the car because they may think that
they are simply going for a short walk. Sometimes on that short walk, the most fantastic
scene appears or unusual event occurs and you do not have your camera to be able to take a
picture. The number one tip for taking good vacation pictures therefore is to always carry
your camera with you, because you never know when you will encounter a good scene. By
always having your camera you avoid missing an unforgettable moment and thus will have a
unique photo to share with family and friends.
Allied to always carrying your camera with you is to keep it close at hand. Very often the
elements that make a good photo, such as a person in a colourful outfit walking past an
old building, pass quickly and if you are searching for your camera you could miss the
opportunity for a unique photograph. By having your camera close at hand you give yourself
those extra few seconds to properly compose the elements in the photograph and thus take a
picture that fully shows all the important elements in the scene.
Individuals on a Caribbean vacation often sleep late. Indeed a vacation is a time for most
people to get some much needed rest. As a result persons on a Caribbean holiday often go
sightseeing during the midmorning or immediately after lunch. The midday sun in the
Caribbean is very bright and there is a lot of reflected glare causing objects in
photographs to have sharp angles and harsh shadows. The best time for taking pictures are
early mornings and late afternoons. Photos taken at this time usually appear very rich and
dramatic. The sunlight is more of a golden colour bringing out the richness of the colours
in the scene you are photographing.
Caribbean beaches are a
favorite location for vacation photos. Those glorious white sand beaches with a backdrop
of sparkling blue water and possibly a pretty yacht sitting on the water, is the type of
scene that most people want to capture in a picture as a vacation memory. Yet for many
individuals the resulting photo does not seem to capture the beauty of the moment. The
culprit is in fact that dazzling white sand and sparkling water. The sand and water
reflect that bright Caribbean sun creating glare in the picture. This is especially the
case when persons on holiday visit the beach during the middle of the day. Unfortunately
for some persons, such as those visiting a Caribbean island on a cruise ship, the middle
of the day may be the only time they have for going to a Caribbean beach. One approach for
dealing with this problem of excessive sunlight in Caribbean beach photos
is to position yourself with your back to the water so that you eliminate the reflected
light from the water. Another approach is to change the angle from which you are taking
the picture. Instead of aiming directly across the sand and water you can angle yourself
so that shooting across the scene. This change in position can reduce the amount of
reflected light that appears in your photograph, thus improving the quality of the photo.
Caribbean beaches are also a favorite location for vacation photos because they are the
scene of rich tropical
sunsets. The golden tones as the sun lights the sky for one final time before it sinks
below the horizon is a sight not easily forgotten. There are some beach bars that have
become world famous because their location allows romantic tropical sunset photos to be
taken. What is important for persons who do not live in the Caribbean to remember is that
the time for sunset does not vary by more than two hours throughout the year. During the
summer months the sun may stay slightly longer in the sky but by 7.30 in the northern
Caribbean (Jamaica and the Bahamas) the sun is setting. As you go further south in the
Caribbean the sun set takes place early so that by 6.30pm in the summer the sun is setting
in the southern Caribbean. During the winter months, the sunset is earlier, so that by
5.30pm the sun will begin to set in the southern Caribbean. To ensure that you capture the
sunset at its richest, you should take note of the approximate times of sun set and then
seek to arrive at least 15 minutes early. This is important because the sun does not set
at a specific time and there is variability in the moment of sunset. By arriving early you
ensure that you are on time to capture the magical moment of sun set. In addition by
arriving early you give yourself time to find a good vantage point and to properly set up
for taking the picture.
The development of digital cameras means that it is now possible to inexpensively take
many pictures while on a Caribbean holiday. To ensure getting good vacation photos you
should therefore take many pictures when you see something that you want to photograph.
The advantage of taking many photos is that if something unwanted crossed the scene,
unknowing to you, it is unlikely to be in all the photos. Although you would have taken
many vacation photos, you can easily delete those vacation pictures that you do not like.
Although you would have taken many vacation photos, you can easily delete those vacation
pictures that you do not like. In addition to taking many vacation photos you should use
different angles and different distances to add variety to your photographs.
Finally, before leaving for your Caribbean vacation remember to pack extra batteries and
extra media cards. By having these extra items you ensure that you are able to use your
camera at all times and avoid having to purchase a cheap camera that may not give you
pictures of as good a quality as your own camera.
The name Caribbean is almost synonymous with Sea, Sun and Sand. Magnificent beaches
abound ranging from dazzling white sand, to pink sand to rich golden brown through to
beautiful black sand beaches. These beaches seem to call you to dive into the sparkling
blue water and then relax on the beach soaking in the sun and admiring the beauty of the
scene. For those who want more activity at the beach than reclining on a lounge chair
sipping a cold drink, Caribbean vacations offer a range of beach activities. On almost
every island you can find jet skis, ocean kayaks, parasailing, surfing, wind surfing, kite
surfing, water skis and banana boat rides at the major beaches.
Barbados is the surfing paradise of the Caribbean. The island's location far out in the
Atlantic Ocean allows waves to travel thousands of kilometers across the sea before
finally unleashing their power over Barbados' coral reefs. Barbados receives waves to surf
from all directions thus providing for unlimited surfing conditions all over. The number 1
surfing location is the Soup Bowl in Bathsheba, which is internationally recognised. All
over the island however there are beaches suited to
surfing, from Brandons Beach near Bridgetown to Accra Beach. South Point Beach has a
fairly powerful and clean wave while the shorebreak at Inchcape on Silver Sands Beach
seems to break 365 days a year.
The Dominican Republic is known as the kiteboarding capital of the world and for the
past four years the Kiteboarding World Cup has been held in the Dominican Republic town of
Cabarete. Along this region of the North Coast of the Dominican Republic, nature has
created the perfect blend of wind, water and waves to generate incomparable kiteboarding
and windsurfing conditions. In June of every year, Windsurfers also flock to Cabarete for
the annual World Cup Windsurfing Competition.
As fun-filled as Caribbean beaches are, today there is much more to a Caribbean
vacation, both beyond and behind the beach. As
you move beyond the beach there is a range of activities including deep-sea fishing,
Dolphin/Whale Watching and Diving.
Fishing is a recreational pastime on every Caribbean island and throughout the
Caribbean certain pelagic game fish can be found with some of the more sought after
species being sailfish, marlin, tuna and wahoo. As these species are migratory fish they
are more abundant at certain times of the year on each island but there are other species
that can usually be found year round at different islands. The game fishing off the waters
of Tobago is a sport anglers dream with some of the worlds most exciting game
fish, including blue marlin, white marlin, swordfish, wahoo, tuna, barracuda, dolphin
(mahi-mahi) and shark. Jamaica's northern waters are also well-known for deep-sea and
sport fishing. Anglers can hook a large number of fish, including mahi mahi, wahoo, blue
and white marlin, sailfish, tarpon, barracuda, and bonito. The fishing is usually constant
year round with a peak in Marlin in the Fall and Winter months.
Visitors can now go whale and dolphin watching in a number of Caribbean countries
including: Antigua & Barbuda, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guadeloupe, St.
Kitts & Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent & the Grenadines. In fact, there are an
amazing thirty species of whales and dolphins in the Caribbean. The most frequently
spotted species include humpback and sperm whales, and bottlenose, spotted and spinner
dolphins. Whale watching vessels are usually medium to small-sized vessels carrying less
than 75 people, which offer an excellent opportunity to get a great view of the whales.
Dominica has become known as the "Whale Watching Capital of the Caribbean" and
boasts a 90% success rate in spotting whales or dolphins during a whale watching
excursion. The island offers excellent year round whale watching opportunities including
spectacular sperm whale mother-calf pairs, whose spouts can sometimes even be seen from
Those sparkling blue waters that provide so much enjoyment topside also provide a world
of adventure below its surface. The Caribbean is one of the top regions for scuba diving
and snorkeling with breathtaking marine life. The Cayman
Islands are one of the top areas in the world for diving with crystal clear turquoise
waters that run deep with wondrous walls, shallow coral reefs, new and old wrecks and some
of the most dynamic marine life. Tobago is another island that offers a myriad of diving
opportunities for both the new and experienced diver plus the holiday snorkeler. Home of
the elusive manta rays and the Caribbean's largest brain coral, Tobago is a year round scuba diving destination.
Behind the beach on each Caribbean island there is also a range of vacation activities
that can include hiking, bird watching, river tubing, visiting natural attractions,
history tours and enjoying a vibrant nightlife.
The natural landscape with abundant rain forests makes hiking a popular vacation
activity in the Caribbean. Trinidad has a range of hiking opportunities with hikes varying
in difficulty from 1 to 8. There are tour guides for those who want guided tours and
almost every weekend hiking groups visit various natural attractions. The 32-kilometer
trail from Blanchisseuse to Matelot on Trinidad's north coast is considered a jewel. Along
the hike one alternates from unspoiled rainforest to untouched beaches. The trail rambles
over a succession of small ridges, crossing several small streams and passing through
abandoned estate lands with cocoa, coffee, tonka bean, nutmeg and papaya (pawpaw).
Dominica, lying in the Eastern Caribbean between Martinique and Guadeloupe, calls
itself the Nature Island and rightfully so. Its landscape is covered with lush untouched
natural rain forest. Within those forests are tall cascading waterfalls, hidden fern
grottoes, mountain lakes, boiling lakes, hot springs and mysterious regions of volcanic
activity. All these natural wonders within a 29 mile by 16 mile island
that has almost 300 miles of footpaths, so that in almost every part of the country,
trails weave their way into gorges and across valleys, climbing up to 4,000 foot
mountains, creating a hikers paradise.
In Dominica, there are trails for every level of hiker, varying from easy 30-minute
walks to more moderate 45 minute to 2-hour hikes to strenuous 6-hour treks. All of these
in a land that seems to bear fruit everywhere, so that all over you see oranges,
grapefruits, lemons, limes, bananas, papayas, guavas, star fruit, breadfruit, passion
The natural landscape of the Caribbean allows bird watching to be another popular year
round vacation activity. Trinidad and Tobago has some of the most diverse bird species to
be found in one location with over 460 species in a combined land area of 1,868 square
miles. Asa Wright Nature Center, is Trinidad and Tobagos premier birding location
and it has been widely recognized as one of the most successful eco-tourism stories in the
world. Asa Wright, with a listing of 159 bird species, is a 270-acre conservatory, located
on a former cocoa-coffee-citrus plantation partly reclaimed by secondary forest and
largely surrounded by impressive rainforest. The center has several cottages that are
available for rent and one can choose to spend a night, a weekend or even longer. There
are numerous trails throughout the property and very knowledgeable guides. Two of the
highlights are the short walk to the manakin leks to see these beautiful little birds
dance to attract a mate and to see and hear the Bearded Bellbird. Another special
attraction of the Asa Wright Nature Centre, is a breeding colony of the nocturnal Oilbird,
or Guacharo (Steatornis caripensis). Located in Dunston Cave, this is the only known
easily accessible colony of this species. These visits must however generally be booked in
advance as the number of visits and visitors is limited.
Wet, wild and wonderful are the words that describe yet another popular outdoor
Caribbean vacation activity; River Tubing. On Grenada's Balthazar River, Dominicas
Layou River, Jamaicas White River or Great River you can spin and swirl in large
modified tubes as the river currents take you on a thrilling ride down river. Along the
way you can enjoy the scenery of natural untouched rain forest and at the end of your ride
you can swim in the rivers natural pools.
Nature has blessed the Caribbean in innumerable ways and provided it with a host of
natural attractions. On the island of Virgin Gorda in the British Virgin Islands is a
national park known as The Baths. Here giant granite boulders are scattered about a beach
lapped by the blue Caribbean Sea. Standing almost 50 feet tall, these massive boulders
form a series of grottoes in which to play and explore. Within this seaside labyrinth are
many placid pools that create a truly romantic locale.
St. Lucia boasts of one of the most unique Caribbean natural attractions with what is
probably the worlds only drive-in volcano. Located at La Soufriere you drive your
car to the semi-active volcano and from there you take a guided tour. The five acre wide
hissing crater is a red, blue and green tinged landscape, which has 24 steaming vents,
that hint at deposits of iron, copper oxide, magnesium and others minerals bubbling to the
surface. The entire area gives a fascinating picture of what the earth must have looked
like 400,000 years when the dome of molten lava collapsed.
The bioluminescent bay found at Puerto Mosquito (Mosquito Bay) located on the southern
shore of the island of Vieques, Puerto Rico has to be rated as one of the things you must
see before you die. A trip into the bay on a balmy night is a magical experience because
when the calm waters around the bay are disturbed, the microscopic organisms in the bay
emit a blue-green light and so swimming or kayaking in the bay is like floating among the
stars. This magical bioluminescent bay has been officially declared the brightest recorded
in the world by Guiness Book of World Records 2008.
The Caribbean was considered desirable property in the 17th and 18th
century, which led to numerous battles between France, England, Spain and Holland and many
islands changing ownership several times. The need to protect these islands resulted in
numerous fortifications, while the change of ownership led to varying architectural
styles. Many of these historic sites are well preserved and provide interesting glimpses
of the past. Two of these sites are Brimstone Hill in St Kitts and the Garrison Historic
District in Barbados.
The Brimstone Hill Fortress has been converted to a National Park and is a UNESCO World
Heritage Site of historical, cultural and architectural significance. It has been
described as "a monument to the ingenuity of the British military engineers who
designed it and to the skill, strength and endurance of the African slaves who built and
maintained it". The fortress is considered one of the best preserved historical
fortifications in the Americas. Tours of Brimstone Hill are conducted daily, and
highlights include the hospital, ammunition stores, artillery officer's quarters, the
Prince of Wales Bastion, and the Citadel of Fort George. In addition to learning about the
historical significance of the fort, a visit affords one the opportunity to enjoy
attractive panoramic vistas of forested mountains, cultivated fields, the historical
township of Sandy Point, and the neighboring islands of Nevis, Montserrat, Saba, St.
Martin and St. Barts.
The Garrison Historic Area in Barbados surrounds the Garrison Savannah, which is the
center of much of the sporting and recreational activity in Barbados. The Savannah however
is a historic location for much more than sport. The historical significance of the
Garrison Savannah goes back to 1650 when Charles Fort was erected in the area and then in
1705, St. Anns Fort was added. This area developed into a military complex and being
the site of a military complex, numerous buildings were constructed from the 1660s
to the 1800s. These buildings today give the Garrison area much of its historical
and architectural interest. On any walk around the Garrison area you cannot miss seeing
the numerous cannons that are located in the area. These form part of the National Cannon
Collection, which constitutes the largest cluster of 17th Century English cannons in the
world. One of the prominent buildings in this area is the Main Guard building facing the
racetrack. This elegant Georgian building from 1802 with its handsome clock tower and wide
verandah is now an information centre and houses exhibits about the West Indian Regiment.
As you continue around the Savannah there are numerous 17th- to 19th-century military
buildings constructed from brick brought as ballast on ships from England and also several
memorials. Another significant building in this area is the Barbados Museum, which is
housed in a compound that was formerly a military prison, and centered around a large airy
courtyard with trees and flowering shrubs.
When night falls your activities do not end as the Caribbean has an array of bars,
clubs and world class restaurants. For true local flavor however, the weekly street
parties are unmatched. On the island of St Lucia the fishing village of Gros Islet
transforms itself every Friday night into a colorful carnival scene, featuring soca and
reggae music and a "jump up" (dancing in the streets). The Fish Fry on
Fridays in Grenadas village of Gouyave provides you the opportunity to sample
an array of freshly caught local seafood to the backdrop of calypso rhythms. Not to be
outdone the Sunday School in Tobagos Buccoo Village held every Sunday night allows
you to dance to the music of the steelband while looking out on the fishing boats gently
rocking in the bay.
With so much to do on a Caribbean Vacation, your only difficulty is to choose an