The Caribbean Beaches are without a doubt among the best in the world. Beautiful beaches with soul-warming sun, crystal-clear waters and white or even pink sand. Selecting the best ones isn’t an easy task with so many beaches to choose from. But here’s our list of the best Caribbean beaches.
Palm Beach in Aruba features white sand and excellent swimming conditions in calm water. All up and down this beach are resorts, which makes the area more crowded than some other beaches on Aruba, but also provides a lot of amenities and services. All resorts open their amenities and grounds to the public, including equipment rentals.
Orient Beach is St. Martin’s flagship beach and is often referred to as the “French Riviera of the Caribbean”. This expansive one mile beach is home to numerous beach bar and restaurants, who offer various menus, from formal French to pizzas, burgers and local fare. Be forewarned, this beach is divided into two sections. The northern portion of the beach is referred to as the “prude side” while the southern section is referred to as the “nude side”.
The Punta Cana coastline of sandy white beaches is considered the major resort area in the Dominican Republic. The majority of the resorts are very large and spread out, like small cities. The nightlife inside the resorts is very lively with Las Vegas-style shows mostly from native artists. Other tourist attractions include water parks, shopping malls and golf courses.
Although technically Bermuda is not a Caribbean Island it is in many ways Caribbean in spirit, so we’ve included it in our list of Best Caribbean Beaches. Horseshoe Bay is the most famous beach in Bermuda. A very popular tourist attraction, it lies on the main island’s south coast. The sand of the beach is very fine and displays a pink tint. Note that the weather here is not tropical but subtropical. It is quite warm from May until early October but then it is cool and rainy for much of the remainder of the year.
Playa Paraiso is located on Cayo Largo del Sur, a coral island belonging to Cuba. The beach, together with nearby Playa Sirena, is the most outstanding of the spectacular stretches of sand along the length of the island. Located on the more protected western end of Cayo largo, these are broad expanses of glistening, fine white sand, bordering the clear Caribbean Sea. There’s a simple beachside restaurant on Playa Paraíso, and not much else.
For the most part, St. Lucian beaches are relatively short, but with five miles of white sand on Rodney Bay, Reduit Beach is the place for a long stroll by the shore and a swim in calm waters. One of the most popular beaches on the island, it is fronted by the Rex St. Lucian, Papillon and the Royal St. Lucian hotels. There are restaurants and vendors renting water sports equipment and lounge chairs.
Sainte-Anne is one of the most popular tourist towns in Guadeloupe and boasts one of best beaches in the country. The beach is ideal for snorkeling, scuba-diving, windsurfing or relaxing. Sainte Anne is also home to a French-language so you can work on your linguistic skills during your trip to this French-speaking island.
The longest beach in Jamaica, Seven Mile Beach remains one of the island’s best. First developed in the 1960s, Seven Mile Beach is lined with resorts but maintains a touch of its free-love spirit with a number of designated areas for nude sunbathing. Harassment by vendors selling everything from hair-braiding to marijuana can be a negative at this beach, however.
Anguilla’s most famous beach, Shoal Bay, has it all: a wide swath of soft sand over a mile long, an extensive selection of beach bars and restaurants, a comfortable collection of small beach resorts and an offshore reef that attracts snorkelers and divers. Just to confuse first-timers, there are three Shoal Bays: East, Upper and West. All have excellent beaches. East is the widest and most popular, Upper offers similar attractions on a smaller scale, and West is simply beach, water and private resorts.
Palm Island in the Grenadines is a tiny island a mile from Union Island, and only accessible by boat. The island is currently home to a resort and about twenty private holiday residences. Since iguana hunting has been forbidden in 1999, Palm Island is home for thousands of them. Casuarina Beach is the prettiest of the five beaches on the island.
The 8 km (5 mile) long Grace Bay, with its brilliant white sand and shimmering turquoise waters is located on Providenciales, one of the islands of the Turks and Caicos. Grace Bay is where the majority of Provo’s hotels and resorts are located and where most of the tourism development is occurring although development here is still way behind most other Caribbean destinations. You’ll still find plenty of space on the most popular Turks Caicos beach.
A popular peninsula, Placencia has the best mainland beaches in Belize, plus some of the most amazing offshore coral cayes. The eastern side of the Placencia Peninsula is a long expanse of white sand beach. The western side is bounded by a long and narrow bay. The beautiful beaches together with the abundant, inexpensive accommodation, make it a great place to relax.
Perhaps Antigua‘s most beautiful beach, Half Moon Bay stretches for nearly 1.5 km (1 mile) on the southeastern coast, a 5-minute drive from Freetown village. The Atlantic surf can be rough, but that doesn’t stop a stream of windsurfers, heading out beyond the reef. The coral reef also allows snorkeling close to the beach. Half Moon Bay is now a public park and ideal for a family outing.
Pink Beach, is Barbuda’s centerpiece beach. Nearly eight miles of deserted oceanfront stretches from Spanish Point to Palmetto Point, and the snorkeling is fabulous. The champagne color of the sand glows pink thanks to the crushed coral in the mix. It’s possible to stroll the beach for miles without seeing another soul.
Los Roques Archipelago National Park was created in 1972 by the Venezuelan government to protect a marine ecosystem of exceptional beauty and ecological . It is the largest marine park in the Caribbean Sea. The almost untouched coral reefs host some of the most beautiful underwater fauna and flora of the Caribbean. The park has exceptionally beautiful beaches of white sand and multicolor, crystalline warm waters which make it a diving, sailing and fishing paradise.
Varadero is a relatively exclusive part of Cuba, abundant with private hotels, gorgeous beaches and the country’s only full golf course. The fantastic beaches with clear turquoise warm water makes this a popular package tour destination. Varadero is primarily visited by European, Latin American and Canadian tourists. The number of US. tourists visiting Varadero, although increasing, has been limited because of the restrictions that make it illegal for U.S. citizens to visit Cuba as tourists.
Located east of the Puerto Rican mainland, the island of Culebra is a popular weekend tourist destination for Puerto Ricans and Americans. Culebra has many beautiful beaches including Flamenco Beach (Playa Flamenco), which can be reached by shuttle buses from the ferry. The beach extends for a mile of white coral sand and is framed beautifully by arid tree-covered hills. The beach is protected as a Marine Wildlife Reserve.
Jost Van Dyke, the smallest of the four main islands of the British Virgin Islands, is home to some of the most picture perfect beaches in the Caribbean. The unspoilt White Bay Beach was a secret until recently but now some major publications are raving about it, and it has been selected as one of world’s top ten best beaches. The beach boasts calm, turquoise waters, and the sand is soft and white. Lush, green hills rise up behind the beach, capping off the splendid setting.
The Crane Beach is located along the south east coast of Barbados steps away from the Crane Hotel. It was named “one of the Ten Best Beaches in the world” by Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous. It is situated between protective rock outcroppings, making it a very secluded spot. The moderate waves make it excellent for body surfing and boogey boarding. It is everything a Caribbean beach should be, but with bigger waves and a stronger breeze.
One of the best beaches in Martinique, Les Salines features miles of white sand and softly swaying palm trees. There are no shower or bath facilities available at Les Salines. However, there is plenty of space to set up and enjoy a long, relaxing day by the water with terrific panoramic scenery. Weekdays are the least busy times while on weekends the beach tends to fill up fast with families and can become quite crowded, especially in the afternoons.
Grenada is home to dozens of stunning beaches and the serene Grand Anse is one of the best. Known for its serene and calm conditions, Grand Anse is two miles of white sand, on the western side of the island, sheltered from high waves, strong currents and winds. The beach is one of the most famous Grenadian landmarks and is overlooked by some of the island’s best hotels and grand houses.
Rated as one of the “Best Bahamas Beaches” by the likes of Fodors, Frommers and The Travel Channel, Harbour Island Bahamas is famous for its three and a half miles of picture perfect pink sand beaches. Warm clear ocean waters provide excellent diving, fishing and boating while outlying reefs provide safe swimming and snorkeling.
One of the Caribbean’s most famous beaches, The Baths are situated at the southern tip of Virgin Gorda, the third largest island of the British Virgin Islands. Huge granite boulders lie in piles on the beach, forming spectacular tunnels and grottoes that are open to the sea and flood at high tide. The sandy beaches are lined with tropical palms, adding to the dramatic effect.
Englishman’s Bay is a secluded beach on the leeward coast of [cl ranking=2]Tobago[/cl]. Although the bay does not draw the large numbers of beach-goers that Tobago’s western beaches do, it is considered as one of the island’s most beautiful. The beach itself is a classic crescent shape, capped by two heavily forested headlands. The sand starts immediately after the forest ends and is of a shallow to medium gradient and somewhat coarse grain. The waters are calm year-round and boast magnificent snorkeling and swimming.
Trunk Bay is a National Park beach on St. John in the [cl ranking=1]United States Virgin Islands[/cl]. Rated as one the world’s most beautiful beaches by the National Geographic Society and among the best beaches in the Caribbean it attracts hordes of cruise ship passengers. Amenities on the beach include a snack bar, showers and restrooms, a lifeguard, and, most famously, an underwater trail for snorkeling its coral reef.