It can be difficult to name the top seven pristine beaches in the Caribbean simply because there are so many beautiful shores amongst the thousands of islands. So this list is a starting point for secluded splendor where you can find tropical castaway adventures.
Little Bay Beach, Anguilla
Literally a spit of sand with cliffs on three sides (and the azure water on the fourth), this little bay is worth the effort to get there. A visit will require you to charter a small boat ride with a local; kayak; or climb down (and back up) a rope ladder on a 65-foot cliff face. Chances are quite good that you will have the beach to yourselves for a complete castaway experience. Remember to bring water, sunscreen, and a towel; and leave nothing behind when you depart.
La Sagesse, Granada
If the cliff and beach combination is your idea of pristine, be sure to visit La Sagesse in the Corinth area of Granada. There’s a nature center, an unspoiled half-mile curve of beach, almond trees, and coconut palm-covered cliffs. This is a true hideaway and popular destination for romantic getaways with those who appreciate the understated.
Vieques, Puerto Rico
This area of an island known for its 40 miles of white sand beaches is a step back in time. The beaches around this undiscovered retro-town remain blissfully unspoiled. Coconut palms, clear shallows, and surfing waves make this ‘secret’ destination a favorite for savvy travelers. While you are there, take a night-time boat tour on Mosquito Bay to see the light show of phosphorescence around the vessel – like floating on a wave of magical sparklers.
Nevis (and St. Kitts)
As the sleepy sister island to St. Kitts, Nevis is the perfect ‘unvarnished’ Caribbean island with palm-lined beaches. If you long to drop into a land where local culture is the standard, sweet bougainvillea tumble untended over colonial structures, and your eyes rejoice at the total lack of ‘manicured’ scenery, then Nevis is your destination. You can sail, swim, fish, and walk the 36-square-mile island with free ranging goats and donkeys as companions. And, you’ll want to simply relax with a cool beverage of choice and talk with the locals while you are here.
Guana Island, British Virgin Islands
For those who have a deeper pocket and long for the exclusivity of a ‘lonely island’ experience, Guana Island, BVI is your next stop in the Caribbean. It is a private island that limits visitors to 36 people. The 850 acres of this paradise are truly tropical with jungle vegetation and wildlife (with nature reserve status), papaya, coconut, mango, and banana orchards, and perfect white-sand beaches with turquoise waters. With an average of 30 acres of secluded tropical paradise per person, the regular patrons hope you don’t find out about this destination!
Manzanilla Beach, Trinidad
This treasure is a long strip of brown sugar sand on the eastern coast of Trinidad. Amid a history of coconut plantation estates, you can drive to the beach facilities accompanied by ranks of coconut palm trees (‘the cocal’), and flanked by the sea and the swamp on each side. Near the southern end, the Nariva River empties into the sea, which supports local fishermen plying the marshy waters in their traditional pirogues. Visit the working lighthouse for the best views of the island, and keep an eye open for manatees and leatherback turtles while at the beach.
Salt Cay, Turks and Caicos
For the ultimate choices of sand, rock, low cliffs, wetlands, calm seas, rough waters, and all the enjoyment each setting brings, visit Salt Cay (also called ‘key’). The beaches on the northern side of the 2.6 square-mile ‘island that time forgot’ have reef snorkeling. To the east, trade winds and rougher seas create the ideal beachcombing landscape. At the Northeast Point you can whale watch; and view the best sunsets at South District Beach. For those who love to explore, bird watch, and lose themselves in an unblemished tropical setting, Salt Cay is the location you seek.
Angela is a professional freelance travel writer and published indie author – AngelaMinor.com