The Best Caribbean Island For Every Type Of Traveler
We recently ranked the Best Caribbean Islands, but it can still be difficult to determine which island is best for you.
From family-friendly locales to romantic island getaways, here are the best Caribbean islands for every type of traveler.
Best For A Romantic Getaway: Martinique
Martinique combines the romantic sensibilities of the French with the natural beauty of the Caribbean.
The French island has secluded white sand beaches, luxury resorts, and enough privacy to make it an ideal honeymoon spot.
Best For Families: The Bahamas
Just south of Florida, the Bahamas are one of the most accessible island countries from the US. They're also one of the most family-friendly countries, with tons of all-inclusive resorts.
The most famous resort is The Atlantis, which has its own water park, aquarium, movie theater, kids' club, game room, and dolphin cay.
Best For Singles: Puerto Rico
Old San Juan is one of the best places for nightlife in the Caribbean, which means that it's great for singles. Nightlife in the historic walled city starts late: The clubs start hopping with salsa, Latin, or rock music after people emerge from their late dinners.
But many of the big hotels around San Juan, and the rest of Puerto Rico, have their own hot restaurants, clubs, and casinos.
Best For Foodies: Anguilla
The British territory of Anguilla is home to the CuisinArt resort, a luxury resort owned by kitchen appliance company CuisinArt. In addition to housing several fine restaurants, the resort offers gourmet cooking classes, wine tastings, and its own hydroponic herb garden.
But the small island also has laid-back bbq joints, likeSmokey’s at the Cove, which serve fresh seafood, ribs, and burgers.
Best For Budget Travelers: Dominican Republic
The all-inclusive resorts in the Dominican Republic regularly offer such great deals that the country has become a budget destination. Punta Cana and Puerto Plata are both full of all-inclusive resorts that have everything from water sports to evening shows, and of course food and beverage, that are included in the price.
Best For History Buffs: US Virgin Islands
The US Virgin Islands — St. Thomas, St. John, and St. Croix — were a prominent shipping port and slave trading post in the 1600s. Slaves were freed in this area in 1848, after which time the local economy declined. The US purchased the islands from Denmark in 1917 for $25 million, and since then the USVI has turned into a popular tourism destination.
Today, you can still visit many historic sites, like the St. Thomas Reformed Church and St. Thomas Synagogue, Fort Christiansvaern, as well as the ruins of several sugar and rum plantations.
Best For Golfers: Bermuda
While it's not technically in the Caribbean, Bermuda is an honorary Caribbean Island that's part of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM).
It's one of the best golf destinations in the world, with eight world-class courses, including the Port Royal Golf Course and Mid Ocean Club, with gorgeous views over the Atlantic Ocean.
Best For Divers: Curacao
Curaçao is the destination for serious divers, who will love exploring Curaçao Underwater Marine Park or several underwater wrecks, like the Superior Producer and Tugboat. But don't worry: non-divers will also love the remote white-sand beaches that abound here.
The nearby island of Bonaire is also a world-class diving site.
Best For Boaters: British Virgin Islands
The British Virgin Islands — Tortola, Virgin Gorda, Anegada, and Jost Van Dyke — are best explore by boat. The best way to get around the chain of British islands is by sailboat, which allows you to explore the hidden cays and beaches around the islands.
Tortola is the main island, but Virgin Gorda has some of the most luxurious hotels in the Caribbean.
Best For Millionaires: St. Barths
The luxury set and celebrities love Saint Barthélemy, a small French island that just oozes sex, money, and beauty.
Celebrities like Beyonce and Jay-Z, Alessandra Ambrosio, and Gwen Stefanie spend their vacations here, while regular, non-famous folks also love to sail around the coast, sunbathe on the island's nude beaches, or relax in a luxury villa. It's expensive though — the average hotel room costs over $300 per night.
Best For Music Lovers: Jamaica
Jamaica is the birthplace of Bob Marley and reggae, so it goes without saying that the island has a strong music scene. But that scene has morphed into something new today, with hot new artists creating a new spin on reggae and Dancehall songs.
Music is all over the island, from the dance halls of Kingston to street musicians wandering the beaches.
Best For Shoppers: Cayman Islands
This British Territory, which is comprised of three islands — Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac and Little Cayman — is famous for its duty-free shopping, meaning that bargain hunters can score a great deal on jewelry, watches, and luxury goods. But there are also craft markets where you can find local goods, like art and crafts.
After hitting the malls and markets, check out world famous Seven Mile Beach on Grand Cayman.
Best For Health Nuts: Turks and Caicos
Here, guests can unwind and escape with yoga, pilates, spa treatments, and private villas.
Best For Outdoorsy Types: Dominica
Dominica is one of the most unspoiled, natural islands in the Caribbean. It doesn't have tons of beaches, but it does have gorgeous rain forests, waterfalls, dive sites, and hundreds of miles of hiking trails.
The few beaches it does have are black sand beaches, but that doesn't deter the outdoorsy types who love hiking, kayaking, swimming, and exploring the lush "Nature Island."
Best For Kitesurfers: Aruba
The steady trade winds make Aruba the best place to go kitesurfing in the Caribbean. Kitesurfers from all over the world head here to hit the waters on their boards, which means that the sea is always dotted with bright sails from kitesurfers.
But non-kitesurfers will also love spending time here, either just relaxing on the beach, windsurfing, or dining in one of the island's hot restaurants.
Best For Beach Bums: St. Maarten/St. Martin
This island, which is divided equally into two countries — St. Maarten (Dutch) and St. Martin (French) — has 39 gorgeous white sand beaches and nearly 60 kilometers of coastline.
One of the most famous beaches here is Maho Beach, which is directly next to the airport, meaning that beach-goers get an up-close experience with aircraft landing nearby. Don't worry though: The rest of the beaches on the island, like Orient Beach or Pinel Island, are much calmer.
Now see which island is definitely the best.