The Most Beautiful Caribbean Islands To Put On The Bucket List

 The Most Beautiful Caribbean Islands To Put On The Bucket List. Having been confined to our homes for over a year, the idea of a Caribbean getaway has been occupying our thoughts. Dave and I have been fortunate enough to explore numerous islands in the Caribbean, and in order to ignite your desire for a trip down south this winter, we have decided to share a list of the most breath-taking islands in the Caribbean.

Beautiful Caribbean Islands To Visit This Winter

The Caribbean serves as our preferred winter destination. Canadians have a fondness for traveling to these islands to indulge in the delights of white sandy beaches, gently swaying palm trees, and pleasantly warm weather. To inspire your imagination, we are gathering a collection of the most stunning islands in the Caribbean. So, without further ado, let's dive right in, shall we?

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The Most Beautiful Caribbean Islands To Put On The Bucket List

Top 10 most beautiful islands in the caribbean

1. St. Lucia

St. Lucia can be argued as the most exquisite among all the Caribbean Islands, mainly due to its iconic Gros and Petit Pitons, both designated as UNESCO World Heritage sites. These majestic mountainous volcanic plugs significantly enhance the island's natural beauty. With its pristine white sandy beaches, lush jungles, and a coastline adorned with private villas, St. Lucia stands out as the top choice for honeymooners and couples seeking a romantic Caribbean getaway.

For those seeking a private villa experience in St. Lucia, we recommend exploring two exceptional resorts where we had the pleasure of staying. Calabash Cove is a luxurious boutique resort and spa that offers all-inclusive amenities exclusively for adults. Our stay here was truly memorable, as it provided everything we could have wished for in a romantic vacation. Another remarkable option is Stonefield Villas Resort, which offers breath-taking views of the Petit Piton. This locally owned and operated resort was one of the first establishments to open near Soufriere and showcases the authentic charm of the island.

2. Jamaica

Undoubtedly, Jamaica holds a special place as our beloved Caribbean Island. While we were tempted to rank it as the topmost beautiful among the Caribbean Islands, it comfortably secures a close second position.

When it comes to beaches, Jamaica's offerings are unparalleled. From the breathtaking 7-mile Beach in Negril to the tranquil and secluded Treasure Beach in the South, not to mention the renowned beaches of Montego Bay, Jamaica has it all. The island boasts a diverse range of natural wonders, including dense jungles, dramatic sea cliffs, cascading waterfalls, and pristine white sand. To delve deeper into the wonders of Jamaica, we highly recommend checking out our article on the 33 best things to do on the island.

Where to Stay in Jamaica

Throughout our visits to Jamaica, we have had the pleasure of experiencing various accommodations across the island. Here are a selection of our preferred resorts in Jamaica.

Located in Montego Bay, Hyatt Zilara Rose Hall offers a fantastic central position, making it convenient for exploration. This resort stands out with its wide array of activities, including complimentary stand-up paddleboarding, kayaking, and sailing, all included with the booking.

Another noteworthy option is Hotel Riu in Montego Bay. This establishment presents a range of amenities, such as a refreshing freshwater swimming pool, Jacuzzi, sauna, well-equipped gym, and a wellness center, allowing guests to unwind and indulge in relaxation.

Nestled in Montego Bay, Half Moon is a sprawling 400-acre resort that boasts an impressive two-mile stretch of exclusive white sand beach. With three restaurants and five bars, guests are spoiled for choice when it comes to dining and refreshments.

For an authentic Jamaican experience, we highly recommend a stay at Jakes Resort in St. Elizabeth. Situated in the southern region of the island, this charming resort immerses you in the essence of true Jamaica, providing a genuine and immersive local atmosphere.

3. Exuma Cays Bahamas

As we flew over the Exumas in the Bahamas, departing from Nassau, we were captivated by the breathtaking sight unfolding beneath us. The Exuma Cays, comprising 365 islands and atolls, adorn the vibrant azure waters. Spanning an impressive 176 miles, these crystal-clear waters create a mesmerizing spectacle. Although technically located in the Atlantic Ocean, the Exumas are often grouped with the Caribbean Islands, and we simply couldn't compile this list without including our cherished island paradise.

The Exumas offer exceptional opportunities for animal encounters, making it one of the prime destinations in the Caribbean. Here, you can swim alongside sharks, meet the famous resident pigs, and explore the surreal Thunderball Grotto, a vibrant underwater cave teeming with colorful marine life. If you're searching for an excellent place to stay, we recommend considering Embrace Resorts on Staniel Cay. This locally owned and operated resort provides a delightful couples' retreat nestled in the heart of the Exumas.

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4. Cayman Islands

Regarded as one of the premier destinations for scuba diving in the Caribbean Islands, the Cayman Islands also stand out as some of the most picturesque islands we have encountered. With its renowned Seven Mile Beach, this paradise offers seemingly endless stretches of pristine white sand, inviting us to leisurely stroll along its shores, leading to crystal-clear turquoise waters.

The Cayman Islands are celebrated for their remarkably clear waters, creating an ideal environment for deep-sea explorations. The famous deep drop wall dives, such as the Cayman Trench, provide divers with the opportunity to delve into the depths of the ocean amidst the remarkable clarity and limitless visibility. During our visit, we had the pleasure of staying at the exquisite Ritz Grand Cayman, situated on the stunning Seven Mile Beach, an experience that can only be described as heavenly. If there's one destination where it's worth indulging in a luxurious Caribbean vacation, it is undoubtedly the Cayman Islands.

5. Cozumel

Mexico is undeniably one of our cherished Caribbean destinations, and the Island of Cozumel, located just off the coast in the Caribbean Sea, holds a special place in our hearts. Renowned for its exceptional scuba diving opportunities, Cozumel's Palancar Reef is unmatched in its beauty and underwater exploration.

As the second-largest coral reef in the world, Palancar Reef dazzles with its turquoise waters and pristine white sandy beaches, making it a must-visit destination for avid divers and ocean enthusiasts. When planning your Mexican vacation, Cozumel should undoubtedly be at the top of your list.

One of the highlights of visiting Cozumel is venturing to another captivating island called Isla Ballestas. Here, you can indulge in swimming in its crystal-clear blue waters and embark on a tour to witness the magnificent migration of whale sharks. These awe-inspiring experiences further enhance the allure of this Mexican paradise.

6. Cuba - The Most Beautiful Caribbean Islands

Havana, often regarded as the most exquisite city in the Caribbean, emanates a unique charm. Designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it exudes a captivating atmosphere with its pastel-colored buildings and vintage cars adorning the streets. Boasting pristine beaches, historic cities, and verdant forests, Havana has consistently ranked high on the list of preferred Canadian vacation destinations.

Despite facing its share of challenges, Cuba remains an enchanting island to explore, offering a myriad of attractions. Notably, the people of Cuba are widely recognized as the friendliest in the Caribbean, adding to the warmth and hospitality experienced by visitors. For an authentic Cuban experience, we recommend booking a stay at a Casa Particular, which allows you to immerse yourself in the local culture. Renting a motorcycle and embarking on an independent journey across the island is a fantastic way to discover the hidden gems of Cuba, and it is sure to ignite a deep love and appreciation for this captivating destination.

7. Curacao

During our Caribbean cruise, we were fortunate enough to explore the captivating island of Curacao, which left us awe-struck with its vibrant and colorful waterfront. As part of the ABC Islands (Aruba, Bonaire, and Curacao) in the Lesser Antilles, Curacao holds the distinction of being a Dutch colony, earning it the nickname "Amsterdam of the Caribbean."

The waterfront of Curacao is adorned with charming colonial architecture, creating a picturesque scene. In addition to its architectural allure, Curacao is also home to stunning beaches and tranquil coves. Thanks to the consistent trade winds, the island maintains a pleasant temperature throughout the year, and its location outside the hurricane belt ensures that there is never a bad time to visit Curacao.

8. St. Kitts

St. Kitts quickly captivated us, solidifying its status among the Caribbean Islands. Hiking Mt. Liamuiga provided breathtaking views of the lush rainforest, while a thrilling zipline adventure offered an elevated perspective of the vibrant jungle.

St. Kitts offers natural wonders like waterfalls, sandy beaches, and a cloud forest, making it a must-visit in the Caribbean. "Limn" or unwinding, is the best thing to do here. And a fascinating fact: St. Kitts is home to charming monkeys, adding to its captivating appeal.


9. Nevis

Situated in close proximity to St. Kitts, Nevis is a volcanic island often referred to as the twin of St. Kitts. This Caribbean gem is gaining popularity as one of the favored islands among many travelers, owing to its golden sandy beaches, historic plantations, and a delightful old-fashioned rustic allure.

Nevis offers an inviting coastline with crystal-clear waters, ideal for snorkeling and exploring the underwater world. Similar to St. Kitts, Nevis is also home to a population of African Green Vervet Monkeys, adding to the island's natural charm and allure. With its serene beauty and timeless ambiance, Nevis is swiftly climbing the ranks as a top choice among favorite Caribbean islands.

10. Aruba

Aruba, one of the ABC Islands in the Caribbean, together with Bonaire and Curacao, forms the westernmost trio in the Leeward Antilles. Unlike other Caribbean islands, Aruba enjoys the trade winds and lies outside the hurricane belt, resulting in consistent temperatures. With its iconic white sandy beaches and mesmerizing turquoise waters, Aruba embodies tropical beauty. The island also boasts captivating landscapes to explore.

Aruba is famous for its powdery soft sand beaches, all of which are open to the public, allowing for beach hopping and personal discovery of their beauty. Like Curacao, Aruba showcases Dutch colonial architecture in pastel colors, creating picturesque streets for leisurely strolls and shopping.

Top 10 most visited Caribbean islands

11. Dominican Republic

During our honeymoon, Dave and I fell in love with the Dominican Republic and have since developed a deep fondness for this captivating island. Its picturesque beaches in Punta Cana, Puerto Plata, and La Romana are complemented by luxurious resorts, creating a truly idyllic setting.

Beyond the stunning coastlines, the Dominican Republic offers a mountainous interior that appeals to adventure enthusiasts, perfect for outdoor exploration. History buffs will also be drawn to the colonial architecture of Santo Domingo, a city steeped in rich historical heritage. It's no wonder that Canadians have a strong affinity for traveling to the Dominican Republic, captivated by its irresistible allure.

12. Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico presents an excellent option for visiting the Caribbean since Americans can travel there without even needing a passport. This tropical haven boasts an array of attractions, including waterfalls, rainforests, and stunning beaches, along with a captivating heritage center. While Puerto Rico is a part of the United States, its ambiance and cultural diversity make it feel like an international destination.

Puerto Rico's cultural tapestry blends Spanish, African, and Taino influences. The island offers vibrant festivals, bustling markets, lively nightlife, and a distinctive culinary scene (don't miss the rum!). Including Puerto Rico in your Caribbean travel itinerary is a must.

13. Utila, Honduras - The Most Beautiful Caribbean Islands

Utila, located off the coast of Honduras, holds a special place in our hearts as the island where we embarked on our divemaster course a few years ago. It undoubtedly stands out as one of the most stunning destinations to explore in Honduras, offering secluded beaches and affordable diving opportunities. We were fortunate to swim alongside whale sharks and immerse ourselves in the vast underwater realm. We also enjoyed indulging in delectable seafood by the beach and relishing tranquil moments on hammocks while witnessing the mesmerizing sunset painting the sky.

14. Caye Caulker, Belize

Caye Caulker, an enchanting island in Belize, offers a remarkable laid-back atmosphere that we found truly captivating. We spent our days on this sandy haven, marveling at its natural beauty. While the neighboring island of Ambergris Caye may be more well-known, we were drawn to the relaxed and unhurried vibe of Caye Caulker. The island boasts some of the finest snorkeling and diving experiences in the Caribbean, with the renowned Shark Ray Alley located just off its coast.

What truly enchanted us about Caye Caulker was the absence of cars on the island. We delighted in strolling through the sandy streets, fully immersing ourselves in the island's paradise-like ambiance.

For more information and inspiration, check out our article on 16 amazing things to do in Belize. Additionally, during our visit, we stayed at Deb and Dave's Resort, coincidentally sharing the same names. They were kind enough to let us store our dive gear while we traveled around the country for a couple of weeks.


15. Turks And Caicos - Best Caribbean island for first timers

The Turks and Caicos Islands, comprising 30 islands and cays, offer a breathtaking sight to behold. While only eight of these islands are inhabited, Providenciales serves as the primary tourist hub. For a dose of history, exploring Grand Turk and Salt Cay is a must, while Middle Caicos beckons with its vast cave network, the largest in the Caribbean Islands.

As you might have guessed, the Turks and Caicos Islands are surrounded by the iconic turquoise waters and pristine sandy beaches that are synonymous with the Caribbean. This is a recurring theme across all the Caribbean Islands, which collectively make it such an incredible destination for vacationers. Grand Turk, in particular, stands out as one of the top diving spots in the Caribbean, offering a vibrant underwater world just a short boat ride from the shore. The beaches of the Turks and Caicos Islands owe their creation to coral breaks, resulting in the formation of beaches adorned with white sands and hues ranging from pink to peach.

16. Barbados - Caribbean island

Barbados is likely to be a top choice for many when it comes to envisioning their ideal Caribbean island. It holds the distinction of being the most easterly among all the Caribbean Islands. Interestingly, Barbados is not technically located in the Caribbean region but rather entirely within the Atlantic Ocean. Situated in the Lesser Antilles, Barbados enchants visitors with its soft sandy beaches hugging the turquoise waters.

Barbados offers a diverse range of attractions that cater to various interests. From tropical gardens and underground caves to a rich British heritage, there is something to captivate everyone on the island. Additionally, Barbados is one of the few Caribbean islands that is home to monkeys, joining the ranks of St. Kitts, Nevis, Saint Martin, and Barbados in this regard.

17. Grenada - Best Caribbean islands for couples

While we haven't visited Grenada ourselves, our well-traveled friend Parm has shared valuable insights about the island. Often overlooked, Grenada provides a unique opportunity to uncover its treasures as one of the first explorers. With pristine beaches, colonial cities, historic plantations, delicious chocolate, and clear waters, Grenada offers a diverse range of experiences that make saying goodbye difficult.

Driving through the Scotland District of Barbados, you will be surrounded by the natural beauty of the landscape. Make sure to stop at St. John's Parish for panoramic views, and don't miss the opportunity to explore the capital city of Bridgetown, where you can delve into the rich history of Barbados at the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Bridgetown's Garrison.

18. St. Maarten - Most beautiful Caribbean country

Saint Martin is divided into two territories, one French and one Dutch. St Maarten stands out with its thrilling airplane landings near the beach and is known as the culinary capital of the Caribbean. However, the island offers more than just pristine beaches, with exciting adventures like riding the world's steepest zip line and scaling Pic du Paradis Mountain. You can also explore nearby destinations like Anguilla, Saba, or St. Barths on day trips during your visit to St. Maarten.

19. U.S. Virgin Islands - The Most Beautiful Caribbean Islands

It's quite a source of jealousy for us Canadians that the United States has its own tropical islands. There was a time when Canada tried to acquire its own tropical island, a place where we could easily escape our winters, but unfortunately, Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau's attempt to purchase such an island was denied. Therefore, we can only look on with envy at our neighbors to the south.

The US Virgin Islands, consisting of St. Croix, St. John, and St. Thomas, boast some of the most breathtaking beaches in the world, characterized by their crystal-clear waters and soft white sands. Surrounded by verdant hills and mountains, these islands offer a stunning contrast against the turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea.

One of the reasons these islands hold great appeal for Americans is the fact that American citizens can visit them without needing a passport. Consider yourself fortunate in that regard!

20. British Virgin Islands - Safest Caribbean islands

The British Virgin Islands possess a collection of exceptionally scenic beaches within the Caribbean region. These shores exhibit white sands, turquoise waters, and abundant foliage, forming a breathtaking natural environment. The destination has gained recognition for its exceptional prospects for sailing and boating. The tranquil waters and consistent trade winds create perfect conditions, and numerous marinas and yacht clubs are available to accommodate boating enthusiasts.

There are more than 60 islands and bays on the island, and island hopping is a popular activity. Each island has its own character and charm, from quiet and secluded Jost Van Dyke to lively and cosmopolitan Tortola.

It is also committed to ecotourism, with an emphasis on sustainable development and conservation of the natural environment. Visitors can engage in activities such as hiking, bird watching, and visits to nature reserves and national parks.
There are also plenty of Caribbean islands to visit. It is impossible to cover them all in one article. While we haven't visited all of these islands yet, we look forward to exploring more and adding them to our list as we look for more amazing Caribbean islands to visit.

One of the joys of traveling is visiting places you've never been before. Which Caribbean island should we visit next?

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Conclusion : The Most Beautiful Caribbean Islands To Put On The Bucket List

The British Virgin Islands unquestionably deserve a prominent spot on your bucket list of the most beautiful Caribbean destinations. Their collection of picturesque beaches, featuring white sands, crystal-clear turquoise waters, and lush greenery, provides an irresistible natural spectacle. Moreover, these islands offer exceptional opportunities for sailing and boating enthusiasts, thanks to their calm waters and reliable trade winds. Boaters can take advantage of the numerous marinas and yacht clubs available.

The British Virgin Islands offer an unforgettable experience that leaves you in awe of their sheer magnificence, no matter if you seek tranquility, adventure, or a paradise to indulge in.

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