Did you know that there are over 7,000 islands in the Caribbean? Although the vast majority of them are uninhabited, privately owned, abandoned or just not open for visitors (sigh), the ones we can visit are nothing short of total beach paradise. Believe it or not, each of the Caribbean islands has something unique to offer–no matter how close some may be to one another!
Planning a beach getaway to one of the Caribbean islands? Here’s a quick guide to help you decide which island is right for you!
Antigua is for Beach Bums
Haven’t you heard? Antigua is the island with 365 beaches–a beach for every day of the year. From the white sands of Dickenson Bay to the pink sands of Half Moon Bay, there’s a beach to suit every beach bum’s fancy!
Barbados is for Rum Aficionados
Barbados has been known to produce some of the world’s finest and strongest rum for more than 350 years. So, to say this Caribbean island has perfected this international favorite is an understatement. Embark on a world-class rum distillery tour or stop in the colorful rum shops scattered across the island to have a drink or two with the locals.
Bermuda is for Living Like a Local
Bermuda is more than just a cruise port and its popular Royal Naval Dockyard. Its old town streets and colonial history help make the island well-worth exploring. Be sure to explore the historical town and colorful buildings of St. George–they have some of the cutest local shops and cafés, too!
The Cayman Islands are for Adventure Seekers
Calling all adventure seekers! Although the majority of visitors come for the stunning beaches and aquamarine water, the real fun is in all the other adventures you can go on. Experience the Cayman Islands’ bioluminescent bay (1 of 12 in the world), the East End Blow Holes, the crystal caves, Stingray City, Starfish Point and (obviously) so much more!
Cozumel is for Aquatic Life Enthusiasts
When you think of islands in the Caribbean, Cozumel probably isn’t the first or second to come to mind. But it’s not one to overlook! With its stunning, crystal-clear, aquamarine water, the marine life surrounding Cozumel is an incredible experience for everyone. Some of the most popular snorkel and dive sites include Palancar Reef, Paradise Reef, Columbia Reef, El Cielo and Chankanaab.
Curaçao is for Culture Lovers
You’ll instantly fall in love with this charming, European-influenced Caribbean island. Curaçaco’s Dutch Caribbean culture is part of what makes the island so unique and a popular destination among the Caribbean islands. From the capital’s pastel-colored architecture, the floating Queen Emma Bridge and its vibrant local markets, you’ll want to experience this unique culture!
Grand Bahama Island is for Fishermen
Fish like Ernest Hemingway in his favorite fishing spot of the Caribbean. Grand Bahama Island is known for its world-class fishing, especially from nearby Bimini, where you’ll often find a fair share of marlin, tuna and wahoo during prime season, from April to September. The island also has a healthy population of bonefish–so much so, that Grand Bahama has even hosted the Bonefishing World Championships. The flats off Deep Water Cay is also a popular flyfishing spot if you’re up to the task!
Puerto Rico is for Foodies
“Puerto Rican food is just okay…” said no one ever. Puerto Rican food is unlike any other–with bold flavors, local ingredients and genius combinations you may not find elsewhere. Check out some of our favorite dining spots in Puerto Rico. Some must-try, traditional dishes include tostones, arroz con gandules, alcapurrias, mofongo, pernil, pasteles, pastelon and the list could go on!
St. Lucia is for Shopaholics
Known for its luxury, world-class accommodations, St. Lucia is also home to a wide selection of shopping–specifically in the island’s capital, Castries. Here, the streets are filled with local vendors, shops and international stores selling pretty much anything you can think of. Locally-sourced products such as clothing and jewelry are among the most popular items tourists leave with. You’ll also want to browse near Castries’ central waterfront for souvenir shops, and the Craft Market for local, hand-made pottery, art and other items.
St. Maarten/St. Martin is for Night Owls
Little do most people know, St. Martin has quite the entertaining nightlife. The island is fantastic to explore during the day, but as soon as the sun goes down is when the parties really get started! St. Martin boasts dozens of lively pubs, casinos and nightclubs that all feature a variety of local entertainment in indoor and outdoor venues. Whatever you’re in the mood for, there’s a fun spot with great drinks for you to hang out!
Turks & Caicos is for Luxury Lovers
Nearly everything about Turks & Caicos screams luxury. From its world-class, luxury accommodations, fine dining and even the World’s Best Beach, there’s a reason the Turks & Caicos are a little on the pricey side. It’s beauty and luxury have even brought countless celebrities to vacation there such as Tom Cruise, Julia Roberts, Eva Longoria, Madonna, Paul McCartney, Hugh Jackman and the list could go on!