Words by Rebecca Moore
With more than 7,000 islands and 28 nations, the Caribbean is one of the most popular holiday destinations in the world. Yet, with so many islands to choose from picking one to visit is the hardest part!
Okay, we know picking which luxury island to visit is hardly going to be a tough affair. After, all the Caribbean is home to blissful temperatures, stunning scenery, a delicious foodie scene and a culture which will probably mean you never want to come home. But, the islands do vary, and you want to ensure that the one you pick is the perfect choice for the type of holiday you plan on embarking on.
Are you looking for an adventure holiday? A chilled-out beach affair? Value for money? A family holiday of a lifetime? Or a romantic getaway? Well, the Caribbean has something for everyone, and we’ve rounded up the best of the bunch!
Situated just 50 miles from the Floridian coast line, the Bahamas is made up of 700 islands and 2400 cays, surrounded by coral and uninhabited paradise. From bustling Nassau, which is often filled with cruise ships and the largest number of visitors to the Bahamas, to the Out Islands (the islands which are outside of Nassau) where you’ll find secluded beaches and a more peaceful escape.
Why go? For a picture perfect holiday. The beaches are powder-soft and made up of limestone-white sands with shallow shorelines making it a picturesque destination. The Bahamas also benefits from around 340 days of sunshine per year on average, with the driest months between December and April. Visit in June to see the world-famous Junkanoo festival – it’s something not to miss.
When you say Caribbean one of the first islands to come into your mind is of course Jamaica. A destination which appeals to a variety of travelers – be it those who want to experience the home of reggae or those looking to take advantage of the golf courses on Montego Bay.
Why go? Bird watching. Yes really. Jamaica is home to an incredible variety of birds, including 29 world endemic species. Hiking up the mountains is also popular among travellers, and you can stop off at a number of coffee plantations en route.
Antigua and Barbuda
Colourful villages, sun-drenched beaches, and a glittering sailing scene (it’s home to the Caribbean’s major regatta and mega yachts), Antigua and Barbuda is perfect for those looking for a luxury holiday escape.
Why go? Barbuda is less developed than Antigua, but is home to beaches which rival its sister Antigua. However, Antigua is still home to some of the best beaches in the Caribbean – the beaches south-west of Jolly Bay are stunning. In fact, you could visit a different beach every day of the year!
If you’re looking for an island that you could get round in just a few days, then Anguilla is the perfect choice. Famous for its white sandy beaches (it has just 33 to choose from), and it’s laidback and relaxing atmosphere there’s no better place to unwind.
Why go? Street food! The Valley in Anguilla is home to some of the islands most famous food vans which offer everything from pizza, pasta, lobster and ribs – delicious.
St Kitts and Nevis
St Kitts and Nevis is a two-island nation and is home to a jungle terrain, and beaches with a mountainous backdrop. Plantation houses, rainforest hikes, bustling nightlife and relaxing beaches can call be found when you visit the country.
Why go? Unique activities. St Kitts is home to the Brimstone Hill Fortress National Park – a world heritage site which dates back to the 1690s. Plus, the St Kitts Scenic Railway allows passengers to travel along an 18-mile gauge line which previously transported cane.
Now, I know you’re now thinking about how incredible these destinations sound. So much so that you’re wondering how you can make the Caribbean your home. Well you can, through a Citizenship by Investment programme. However, Caribbean countries have recently tightened their regulations – yet, this simply shows the dedication to excellence that these countries are achieving.
Micha-Rose Emmett, Group Managing Director, from CS Global Partners offers her advice, ‘with increased global awareness of threats to security, governments take seriously the vetting of applicants that apply through their investor programmes, as it is key that the quality of the individual applicant be established. Currently, the Caribbean is the region with the world’s most stringent due diligence checks. It includes, for example, the twin-island nation of St Kitts and Nevis, which has taken it upon itself to strengthen its scrutiny measures and establish a platinum standard of citizenship by investment. I believe that other countries who wish for their programmes to endure the test of time will look to the Caribbean’s commitment to security, and imitate the measures it is putting in place.’
Now to choose where to go…