If you can break out of the monotonous everyday drudgery and escape to the smoldering and irresistible tropical paradise of the Caribbean, it will probably end up being one of the best decisions you ever made. In fact, you do not have to choose a specific hotspot right off the bat – the Caribbean Sea has countless natural treasures hidden in its azure bosom, and you can spoil yourself by taking a pick out of the whole assortment of hotspots. To that end, lose yourself in the sunny paradise as you read on about all the locations for sun and idleness in the Caribbean.
1. The majesty of the Lucayan Archipelago
Just like Cuba, the Bahamas are not all that far off the coast of Miami. It is a picturesque archipelago that consists of circa 2,000 isles, including the dreamlike coral reefs that rise out of the water, known as cays. If you decide to visit the Commonwealth of the Bahamas, you won’t have too much trouble with getting around, as natives mostly speak English (though with a heavy dialect) and the US dollar is widely accepted as the currency. The crime rates are low to non-existent and Nassau is a spectacular, colorful city.
Turks and Caicos Islands
You have never seen a more vibrantly turquoise sea than the one that surrounds the Turks and Caicos Islands. This British Overseas territory boasts two main islands and the representatives of their respective groups – Providenciales of Caicos Islands, and Grand Turk of Turks Islands, and the entire grouping teeters on the edge of the Caribbean (technically, it is in the Atlantic Ocean). But it’s easy to put these technicalities aside once you take a parting glance at the amazing tropical landscapes in front of you. Just spend a hot summer day on Providenciales’ Grace Bay, and you’ll be sold for life.
2. The hedonism of the Greater Antilles
Even though it is mostly known as the birthplace of Bob Marley, we would be doing a disservice to Jamaica and its incredibly lush biosphere if we let it come down to just that. Nine Mile is a favorite rite of passage for Marley fans, but you should also visit Montego Bay, the second largest city of Jamaica and the 1494 landing spot of Columbus himself. Mingling in the capital Kingston, hiking to Dunn’s River Falls and zipping on Mystic Mountain are only some of the “must do” Jamaica activities.
If you want to go on a diving adventure, then look no further than the Cayman Islands. This small grouping of three islands has some of the world’s hottest (and most diverse) diving spots. Going on a Grand Cayman scuba diving trip is a popular option for casual explorers, but you should know there are hundreds of spots in the Cayman’s vicinity, including incredible reefs and haunting shipwrecks.
Finally, there is the largest and arguably the most popular Caribbean island only 145 km south of Florida – Cuba. Its capital Havana is mostly regarded as a decadent playground for people of means, and its rustic appearance and bohemian feel will disarm anyone. Other towns like Trinidad, Baracoa and Santiago de Cuba are other incredible urban areas that highlight the cultural diversity of the island.
3. The beauty of the Windward Islands
If you are considering locations that truly are “hidden gems of the sea”, look no further than Dominica – an adorable isle which stands on the border between the Caribbean and the Atlantic. This spot is most widely known as the Nature Island of the region due to the incredible variety of flora and fauna. If you want to have your breath taken away as you hike through some of the most beautiful national parks in this part of the world, head straight to Dominica.
Trinidad and Tobago
On the southernmost end of the Windward Islands lies Trinidad and Tobago, the grouping of two islands just off the coast of Venezuela. The official language is English, but you’ll also hear Spanish, French, Hindi, and Chinese as you walk the streets of Port-of-Spain, the capital city on the (significantly) larger of two islands – Trinidad. The main advantage of this group lies in the fact that tourism is not all that developed – which means there is a lot more unspoiled natural beauty to explore and see.
If you want to have an amazing vacation in the Caribbean, you have an endless list of islands, both famous and hidden, to choose from. This tropical escapade can be almost anything you want due to the sheer variety of ports, cultures, beaches and topography these incredible nuggets of paradise have to offer.