The Caribbean is a bucket-list destination that most people dream of visiting at least once in their lifetime. A group of tropical islands situated off the coast of South America with warm turquoise waters and sleepy palm trees swaying gently in the breeze on a golden-sand beach, what's not desirable about it? But there are just so many islands it can sometimes be hard to pick which ones to visit and it's not always the islands that get talked about the most that are the ones worth a visit.
I've been visiting the Caribbean since I was 2 years old. Yep, that's right 2! I've seen a fair few different islands and have thus compiled a list of my favourites. I've also made sure to include islands that are all very different from one another. You get a completely different experience on each island. So, sit down, grab a cuppa and let's begin.
4. St Barth
St Barth is a small, French island. It's only a ferry ride from St Martin if you don't fancy staying here as it is a little pricier than other islands. St Barth is on my list for many reasons. First of all, the shopping is fantastic! If you want to do some shopping in the Caribbean, this is your island. There are also many delicious restaurants dotted all around the island. I would give you a list of my favourite restaurants but honestly all restaurants I visited were divine so I can't choose a favourite! If I had to, I'd probably say Nikki Beach bar.
St Barth is very different from any other island in the Caribbean that I have visited. It's got a rough, mountainous terrain and isn't quite as tropical as other islands. There's only a handful of beaches but the beaches it does have are beautiful. My favourite is the beach at Nikki beach. The food there isn't too shabby either! Another beach worth a mention is Anse De Grand Cul-De-Sac. It's certainly a scenic beach.
It's a fairly quiet and laid-back island with a nice bohemian vibe to it. The locals are all very friendly and there's a nice community feel in the capital.
For these reasons, the island is very unique, making definitely worth a visit. If you'd like to read more about St Barth, I have a whole section on my time here. You can read all about my experiences at various beaches and in the capital.
3. St Vincent and the Grenadines
Okay this is actually multiple islands but it's classed as one part of the Caribbean. St Vincent is a lush, volcanic island. It's coastlines are dotted in black-sand beaches with thick jungle behind them and jagged, rocky coastlines separating the beaches. It's a truly beautiful island. Unfortunately, I only spent a day at this particular island but I would love to go back and stay there.
This island featured a lot in the first 'Pirates of the Caribbean' film and when I visited, i got to see some of the key areas used in filming. You can see why they choose this island for filming. It had a mystical feel to it. Click here to read more about my thoughts on St Vincent.
The Grenadines are a group of smaller islands near to St Vincent. I went on a catamaran around these for my 10th birthday and it was a wonderful experience. Many of the islands are so small that they are uninhabited. I remember one was just a stretch of sand with a solitary umbrella in it! The boat would stop off at various islands and we would get off and explore. I felt like I was lost on a dessert island at times.
This is arguably the most popular and most visited island in the Caribbean but it's popular for a reason. The golden-sand beaches stretch for miles along the coast and the water is so calm and teeming with aquatic-life. I've visited Barbados the most out of any Caribbean island and it never disappoints me.
Because it's popular, there are lots of lovely restaurants and nice shops. But at the same time there are plenty of places where you can relax and unwind. There are so many beaches that it's very easy to find a nice, secluded spot. I love Barbados because there's the happy-medium of nice food, shops and activities and also a calm holiday-feel.
I've had plenty of amazing experiences on this island including: swimming with turtles, helping release baby turtles, horse-riding through the mountains, exploring caves, snorkelling shipwrecks, eating some amazing meals and even clubbing. Yep, this island has pretty much everything.
Drumroll please for number 1. Grenada has got to be at the top of my list. Like with St Vincent, I only spent a day here but I am dying to come back. Grenada is a lush, tropical island covered in thick forests and teeming with wildlife. When I visited Grenada, I hiked through the rainforest and swam in one of the island's waterfalls. It was such an amazing experience.
I got the impression that Grenada isn't as well-known as other islands so it's more rural and natural. I'd have to visit it for longer in order to find out but my first impressions of the island were great.
And that's a wrap! I'm sure there are plenty of other Caribbean islands that are worth a visit, I just need to get exploring them. The 4 islands mentioned in this post are vastly different from one another, each giving you a completely different perspective of the Caribbean. Each island carries it's own vibe and feels worlds away from the next. That's something which I love about the Caribbean. You just don't know what the next island will be like.