Rejuvenate on island time.

The islands throughout the Caribbean are an established type of hideaway, equipped with all of the beach hut necessities, as well as all of the finer things in life. However you decide to travel in the Caribbean, good food, good people, and stunning beaches will be not far out of reach.

There is something magical about travelling to an island. Somehow, it evokes this deep burning desire to connect back to the land and ourselves, which is almost instantaneously fulfilled when our toes dig into the sand and the sun kisses our face.

With over 7000 islands in the Caribbean, the question always comes up – “which island should I choose?”

Each island offers something slightly different and instead of simply listing off the unique features of each island, we sometimes find it easier for travellers to pick out their personal areas of interest, and then have those interests lead them to a destination or two.

We have broken down the Caribbean Islands into six categories:

Beaches

In an earlier blog, we discussed the top 10 beaches in the Caribbean. There, we established that the Bahamas has some of our most favourite beaches throughout the Caribbean (and those that are most popular with clients).

Pink Sands Beach, located on Harbour Island, is one of the more stunning/well-known beaches because of its unique pink sand created by foraminiferal shells. However, throughout the 700 islands that make up the Bahamas, there are countless untouched, private beaches (such as Rose Island) that genuinely awaken a sense of wonder within any traveller.

Cuisine

Jamaica has to top the list for culinary specialties throughout the Caribbean. Known for jerk chicken and the famed salty fish, Jamaica has a vast variety of food from sweet to salty to spicy.

It seems as if the local culture revolves around the creation and sharing of food, in a fun, friendly, social way. As you watch locals prepare fresh seafood and traditional dishes, there is a sense of love that goes into each and every meal.

Of course, the island has a lot more to offer that fresh cuisine. Some highlights include white sand beaches, snorkeling, resort living, history, and jungle adventures.

Culture

Often overlooked, Curacao is an appealing destination year-round known for its diverse culture. Curacao gained independence in 2010, and has a robust Dutch influence noted in the currency, architecture, language and cuisine.

To best see some of the impressive architecture is to head over to the UNESCO World Heritage Site in the heart of Willemstad, the capital of Curacao. Here you can see an abundance of the colourful homes created as a fort in 1634.

TierOne Travel specialist Dick Snel recommends Curacao as a top destination in the Caribbean due to its unique culture and great non-stop flights from Toronto.

Luxury

Are you looking for something a bit more upscale? Anguilla is small, at 40 square miles but will not disappoint the upscale traveller. This little British territory within the Caribbean offers some of the world’s most stunning remote luxury.

What has helped this little island stay exclusive is the fact that there are no direct flights to Anguilla from the US or Canada. It was also fortunate enough to get a development bill passed in 1980 restricting overdevelopment and large-scale resorts.

All of these factors in combination create a pure nirvana on the island. Anguilla is home to some of the best restaurants in the Caribbean, boasting bo-ho chic vibes that ooze decadent luxury in a small boutique kind of way. Definitely one to experience.

Recreation

All of the islands throughout the Caribbean have an abundance of activities to explore. Being surrounded by the Caribbean Sea creates a plethora of adventures including scuba diving, snorkeling, swimming, surfing, kayaking, etc.

When looking at the best range of recreation, we had to go with Barbados. On this island, there is something for everyone, which makes it an ideal location for families. The relatively stable weather conditions make it an appealing year-round destination. Surfing, golfing, snorkeling, hiking, exploring history through UNESCO World Heritage sites and beach strolls are just some of the options recreation options in Barbados.

TierOne Travel Specialist Melanie Hersom suggests Barbados as a top destination in the Caribbean for its magnificent beaches, wonderful snorkeling, and friendly people.

Have a few islands in mind?

Sometimes it’s hard to pick just one of the amazing 7000 islands within the Caribbean, and that’s okay! Many itineraries include two or more islands that are entirely feasible within any timeline. Cruising is a great option for those looking for something a bit more diverse.

If you have a few areas of interest or are looking for something that is not listed above, contact one of our TierOne Travel Specialists today and start planning your summer getaway that encompasses all of the things you are looking for, within the budget you need.

TierOne Travel