The Caribbean islands can be absolutely astonishing at times. You can have endless miles of white beaches and clear blue sea that often seem too good to be true. Even the name, Caribbean, is synonymous with beaches and vacations but with so many on offer, how do you choose which beaches to visit? It all depends on what you are looking to get from a beach holiday. Some people want the VIP treatment, some want disco-dancing and some just want to be alone. This list comprises of the best beaches in the Caribbean to meet any expectations you might have from a wonderful Caribbean adventure.
15. Varadero, Cuba
Around 100km due east of Havana, strutting out into the Caribbean Sea, lies the popular Cuban beach resort of Varadero. This area is so huge that even in peak season, when the hotels are in full swing, you are guaranteed to find a quiet spot to read Hemmingway and relax. If you want more than a quiet read on the beach, Varadero has many options to choose from; watersports, volleyball courts and fishing trips are always available. Parque Josone is a park near the beach that plays host to many live performances. Varadero is a great, all-round beach venue for friends, travelers, families and partygoers alike.
Image credit: Dikarka
14. Shoal Bay, Anguilla
If celebrity spotting is your thing, Shoal Bay in Anguilla is certainly the place for you. Teenage heartthrob Robert Pattinson of Twilight is rumored to be looking to get married on the beach here although no details have yet been confirmed. The small British Overseas Territory has long been a favourite of the upper-classes due to its gorgeous beaches and clear seas. Don’t expect too much disco dancing but the island is especially well-known known for its culinary delights.
13. Palominos Island, Puerto Rico
Palominos Island is a luxurious retreat and a firm favourite amongst those who can afford to come here. This beach is only available to guests of El Conquistador Resort and a catamaran ferries guests to the exclusive island for sunning, massaging and pampering; or you can just relax and enjoy the isolation with a cool Caribbean cocktail. They have snorkeling and other activities available but most people come here for the beauty, the sun and the exclusive VIP treatment.
12. Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands
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Virgin Gorda is the third largest of the scattered Virgin Island and has a national park in the center of the island, where you can enjoy a little Caribbean nature and some thermal springs. Pristine sandy beaches surround Gorda, with huge boulders breaking up the scenery and creating unique views. You can explore this interesting landscape and take some brilliant photography on the picturesque coast. The rock formations also create natural caves and crevices, ripe for exploration for the intrepid explorer. They have do have nice restaurants, hotels and bars but this island is about nature rather than the parties.
11. Pinney’s Beach, St Kitts and Nevis
St Kitts has been a popular location for weddings and honeymoons for a very long time, and with good reason. The beaches are clean, the water is blue and you get the authentic Caribbean feel that is sometimes missing from the bigger resorts. Pinney’s Beach is great for partying with the locals as most people end up at the beach, especially on a Sunday, and you can listen to live Caribbean music whilst eating fresh fish and drinking cool beers. The area is fairly big, so if the festivities are not your thing, you can always find a quiet spot with ease.
10. Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Visitors returning from Punta Cana will always say the same thing; the sand is unreal. The sand at Punta Cana has led to many believing that it might be fake or imported but it is truly genuine. The hotel resorts close to the beach are completely mixed and you can find a hotel to suit any budget or choice. Some like the luxurious accommodation and some do not want to stay in the hotel. The hotels provide everything that is necessary for an amazing vacation. Water sports are on offer, good food, good nightlife and some award winning golf courses to choose from.
Image credit: Skeeze
9. Warwick Long Bay, Bermuda
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Those who have an affinity with the sea will love this location. A coral island can be found a little way offshore and guided snorkeling tours are available to explore the wonders of the ocean. If you’re not a sea-person it doesn’t matter because Warwick Long Bay has tranquil beaches, with all the amenities you might wish for. Great for families and couples to stroll along the soft sand whilst taking in some of the best the Caribbean has to offer.
8. Cane Garden Bay, Tortola, British Virgin Islands
This beach is one of the most popular beaches in the British Virgin Islands and with good reason. Guided diving and snorkeling tours are available throughout the year and the restaurants and bars make this venue very exclusive. It might get a little crowded during peak season, but the sports on offer are top class and the beach is extremely well looked after. The hotels near the beach are all very exclusive, so you might find yourself sunbathing next to your favourite football star.
Image credit: Legis
7. Anse des Pitons, St Lucia
This place might not have the genuine feel because the sand has been imported, but it truly is one of the most idyllic locations on the list. The beaches at Anse des Pitons are extremely peaceful, extremely beautiful and extremely unique. Kayaking and windsurfing are available if that is your thing, or just relax and watch a gorgeous sunset in a magical location. You can see large mountainous areas behind you, formed millions of years ago and you can even explore them if you feel adventurous.
6. Horseshoe Bay, Bermuda
Horseshoe Bay is the second offering from Bermuda to make this list. It is known all over the world and recommended by everyone who visits Bermuda. For this reason, it can get a little busy but it has everything you might expect from an award-winning location. Clean sand, great facilities and brilliant restaurants. It is a great location for the family to visit, but also for those in search of sports and partying. The beach is famous for its pink sands, formed by crushed and eroding shells which look truly magical in the Caribbean sun.
5. Governor’s Beach, Turks & Caicos
“Governor’s Beach is the best beach on Grand Turk. This beach may have the sparkliest ocean water of any coast in the country.” A secluded location that has the perfect balance for everything you might need from a beach, Governor’s Beach wins many accolades. Its serene enough to find a quiet spot for tanning and reading, but if you want to surf, kayak or snorkel – that’s fine too and you’ll be able to source the equipment you need locally. No wonder the big boss of the island in British terms, the “Governor” chose the beach as the location for his mansion, the “Waterloo“, which is located nearby. Visitors to the beach will also immediately notice the wreck of the Mega Triton One, a vessel that ran around during Hurricane Sandy in 2012. Here’s a close look:
There are also some stray dogs around the place, but we are assured that these canine nomads are chilled (although don’t push the theory, guys). Set slightly back from the beach, there are some exquisite fish restaurants (if you weren’t already a seafood lover, we’d wager you’ll be at risk of becoming one) which you really ought to try. A taxi to Governor’s from town is about USD 5.00.
Image credit: BB and HH
4. Taylor Bay, Providenciales, Turks & Caicos
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Providenciales is a gorgeous area on the east coast of Turks & Caicos. It has some great hotels, classy restaurants and some spectacular hidden retreats, just a little off the beaten track, such as Taylor Bay. You can walk out to sea for hundreds of meters, in the clear shallows, and spend hours turning over curious looking shells that you wouldn’t find anywhere else in the world. Starfish are also very commonly found this way. The beach, which straddles a narrow pennisula next to Chalk Sound, is beautifully serene. While you won’t find any restaurants right on the beach, but therein is the charm for wild wanderers (the hotels are all perched on the point). You might want to take an umbrella if you plan on staying a while because there is not a great deal of shade.
3. Seven Mile Beach, Cayman Islands
Consistently voted the best beach in the Cayman Islands by U.S News, Seven Mile Beach gives you a little bit of everything you might want from a prefect holiday. Gorgeous white sand that arches around a seven mile bay, clear seas that are perfect for snorkeling and fantastic restaurants for when the sun goes down and your tan is fully topped up. It gets busy in peak season but you will never struggle to find the perfect spot for however you want to spend your time.
Image credit: Fevi in Pictures
2. Harrismith Beach, Barbados
At the time of writing, this beach is a hidden gem. For those looking for a romantic, idyllic retreat, Harrismith Beach is the perfect location. Further down the coastline you might find the huge hotels, popular bars and the disco-dancers, but here at Harrismith, you’re on your own. You will descend a set of steps through an old plantation and onto a clean, white beach where you watch the gorgeous Caribbean lap gently at the soft sand. Take your own food and enjoy the peace and tranquility that the sea can bring.
Image credit: richtyea
1. Maho Beach, Cruz Bay, St John
A beach has to be pretty special to be crowned the best beach in the Caribbean; Maho beach is exactly that. Every single visitor that comes here will have nothing but wonderful words to describe the location. The nature is incredible, with interesting fish, lizards and birds coming and going as they please. You might even see a turtle or two, casually doing their thing in the warm waters. The facilities surrounding the beach are top notch and the location is always very clean. But, the reason this beach is so special is because of the noise; there is none. You can get crazy bars and disco dancing anywhere in the world, but to find a truly peaceful location with beautiful views and splendid nature is truly a rare find.
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