Tell your friends you are going to the Caribbean and they’ll guess your destination as The Bahamas, Jamaica, or maybe even Cuba. Rather than lumber along with the massive crowds, try out these 5 lesser-known yet equally fantastic spots for your next tropical adventure.
For the best dive locations in the Caribbean, land in Tobago – the smaller sister island of Trinidad. The marine life is easily accessible for professional and amateur divers, and reputable tour companies are available on this island of 62,000 residents. You may also want to dive at one of the three underwater shipwrecks for an exciting underwater adventure.
If you want to experience the mystical magic of tropical waterfalls, Grenada is your Caribbean destination. There are four locations on the island that allow swimming and walking behind these natural water features. While you are on the island be sure to visit the sugar sands of Grand Anse Beach or Bathway, La Sagesse or Levera Beaches for more seclusion. Be sure to buy a bit of nutmeg while in town. This is the ingredient that gave the island its worldwide spice reputation.
3. Grand Turk
This little island participated in one of humankind’s greatest accomplishments – sending a man into space. John Glenn and his Friendship 7 capsule were brought to shore at Grand Turk after splashdown in 1962. Snorkel with stingrays at the uninhabited island of Gibbs Cay; see Atlantic humpback whales at their southern turn-around point in the winter months; and learn about the bygone days and architecture of the sea salt industry. There are museums and botanical gardens, delicious local cuisine, and private cruise line beaches for your visit to this underrated Caribbean spot.
If you love to lounge in the sand, sun, and surf, then Anguilla is your destination in the Caribbean. There are 33 beaches of sugary powder sand that total 12 miles around the island. With only 13,500 residents, you can immerse in the local flavors of tropical life – both in the culinary and atmospheric senses! Explore the colonial architecture; fish in the turquoise waters at Island Harbor; watch the sunset at Crocus Hill; and ‘mash sand’ (dance) in the vibrant nightlife.
5. Little Bay, Montserrat
Perhaps the most underrated (and even relatively unknown) location in the Caribbean is Little Bay, Montserrat. There’s a good reason for this – in the 1990s’s the southern half the island including the capital city of Plymouth were buried by the Soufrière Hills volcano! Today it’s an eco-tourist’s dream. Left to recover, the island is a stark contrast of lush tropics and volcanic scars. For divers, underwater volcanic rock formations are a treasure. Birders and fauna enthusiasts can see endemic species (Yellow-shouldered volcano bat, et al.). Rock star history (Rolling Stones, et al.), and black and white sand beaches round out the list of attractions for everyone’s tastes. As my personal fave, this little island can be reached via helicopter from your cruise ship port in Antiqua.
Beat the crowds. Slip away for your own private tropical adventures at these top five underrated and definitely fantastic Caribbean locations!
Angela is a professional freelance travel writer and published indie author – AngelaMinor.com