Sunlight dancing on an azure sea; waves breaking playfully on white sand beaches; crystal clear coves with colourful tropical fish and coral reefs; the peaceful Caribbean is an enchanting place to vacation and get away from it all. Apart from these natural scenes, there are lively towns and cities to enjoy, new cuisine to try and plenty of attractions and activities to experience. The Caribbean is certainly an inviting choice for your winter getaway.
Eastern/Western Caribbean Gems
From Mexico, Belize and Honduras in the west, to the island of Antigua in the east, this stretch of the Caribbean encompasses some of the most popular Caribbean islands including Grand Cayman, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, the British and US Virgin Islands, St. Maarten/St. Martin and the Dominican Republic.
There are many highlights in the region and plenty of things to see and do. You won't want to miss these fun and fascinating activities:
- Hit the beach for some sun and relaxation. There are fabulous beaches on every island with several recognized as the best in the world; Seven Mile beach, Grand Cayman; Half Moon Bay, Antigua; Trunk Bay, St John and Cane Garden Bay, Tortola.
- Use the water sports facilities available at resorts and beaches around the islands. From parasailing to windsurfing to snorkeling, there's no shortage of activities to enjoy on the water. See the Water Sports page for articles on the best islands for snorkeling and windjamming options in the islands.
- Tee off at the many golf courses with seaside locations and stunning views, or try a game of tennis. Pros are on hand to help with your game at resorts like Casa de Campo in the Dominican Republic, one of President Bill Clinton's favorites.
- See how the Caribbean heats up when the sun goes down at casinos and nightclubs like the lively casinos and nightclubs of San Juan; Hedonism II disco and the hot Jungle nightclub in Negril, Jamaica and Caribbean nightclubs with calypso music and steel bands in Antigua.
- Try the local cuisine like the hot, spicy food of Jamaica and Spanish-inspired dishes of the Dominican Republic. Don't miss the local rum and rum cake found on many islands and of course, the renowned Blue Mountain coffee of Jamaica.
- Discover the fascinating history by exploring Mayan ruins in Mexico; the Spanish fort, El Morro, in old San Juan; plantation homes on Jamaica and Nelson's Dockyard National Park, Antigua. The oldest city in the New World is Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic which dates back to the 1600's. Walk cobblestone streets in the Colonial City and visit many well preserved historic buildings in Spanish Colonial style.
- Go shopping at the local markets and duty free shops for a combination of local specialties and well priced designer goods.
Your Home Away from Home
So where will you stay while in the islands? Our partners provide a wide range of options for you to consider from luxury hotels and villas to all inclusive resorts for every budget:
- Totally private villas with from one to eight air-conditioned bedrooms, tropical gardens, breezy pavilions and most with their own swimming pool and deck. Hilltop locations have exquisite views while waterside locales are just steps from the beach. There's a range of luxury amenities while some even have a chef available to prepare meals. These gracious homes are certainly your ultimate private tropical paradise.
- Couples only resorts with lavish suites, top rated sports facilities, spa, haute cuisine and premium wine and spirits. Daily activities and nightly entertainment keep you busy while excursions let you explore the island.
- Family oriented, beachside resorts with all meals and snacks, wine and drinks and tips included. The resort facilities offer everything you could want for active family fun; glass bottom boats, water sports, golf, supervised kids activities, water parks with waterslides, fitness centers and more.
- Distinctive hotels and resorts in premiere locations are a part of our hotel collection. We offer these special amenities at our member hotels:
- Upgraded room at time of check-in, if available.
- Early check-in, late check-out, if available.
- An Exclusive Amenity, such as breakfast daily, resort credit, afternoon tea, etc.
The Caribbean is the number one cruising destination in the world. Ships sail from island to island letting you experience the delights of several different places in one vacation.
- Ships depart from Miami, Ft. Lauderdale and Tampa, Florida; New York City; Bayonne, New Jersey (Cape Liberty Cruise Port); Baltimore, Maryland; New Orleans, Louisiana and Galveston, Texas to the Eastern or Western Caribbean.
- The Western Caribbean itineraries will include ports in some of these destinations: Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Belize, Grand Cayman, Jamaica and Key West.
- Eastern routes call at some of these islands: San Juan, St. Thomas, St. Croix, St. Maarten/St. Martin, Dominican Republic, Antigua, Turks & Caicos, St. Barts, St. Kitts, Jost van Dyke, Tortola and Virgin Gorda.
- A port in the Bahamas is often included on both routes.
- Longer sailings of 10 days or more may include Eastern, Western and Southern Caribbean ports of call.
- Ships range from intimate yachts to massive behemoths which are destinations in themselves.
- There's a wide range of pricing depending on the ship and type of accommodation you choose.
We can narrow down the choices and help you select the best cruise for the experience you want in the Caribbean.