We’ve visited most of the popular Caribbean islands while on our numerous cruises over the years…I think the only ones we haven’t cruised to are St-Bart and Ste-Croix. One day we’ll make our way there.
Let’s take a look
This is one of my favorite island to go snorkeling. One of the 3 islands in the ABC group, it’s located in the Southern Caribbean, just North of Venezuela. It’s only 20 miles long and enjoys a warm, dry and sunny climate. The white sandy beaches are gorgeous and the water is calm. Points of interest are the lighthouse, the Antilla shipwreck, the Baby Natural Bridge, the ostrich and butterfly farms.
Barbados is NOT your typical exotic Caribbean port. It’s a ‘commercial’ one. As a result, you’ll see lots of containers. You have to walk quite a bit to get to the heart of town. The island produces one of the finest rum in the world. Points of interest are swimming with sea turtles in their natural habitat (we do this every time we go and it’s amazing), Harrison’s cave, Gun Hill Signal where you get a 360-degree view of the island, beaches, underwater adventures.
Located 6.2 miles off the mainland Yucatan peninsula, it is Mexico’s largest island, 30 miles long and 10 miles wide. Cozumel is a paradise for beach goers, divers, and history enthusiasts alike. It’s also a prime destination for bird watching. Points of interest are the beaches, Chankanaab National Park, snorkeling, water sports and excursion to Mayan ruins of Tulum.
Curacao is a long, arid, and generally flat island. It’s part of the ABC islands (others are Aruba and Bonaire) and is about 10 miles (16 km) at it’s widest point, and the area is about 180 square miles, therefore making it the largest island in the Dutch Caribbean Islands group. It is a very colorful and recognizable port with its bright and pastel houses. Points of interest are Hato caves, ostrich farm, Queen Emma Pontoon Bridge (a swinging footbridge), snorkeling at the sunken tugboat.
Situated Northwest of Jamaica and just South of Cuba, this British territory is composed of 3 islands: Grand Cayman Little Cayman and Cayman Brac. Because cruise ships have to anchor here, passengers will need to take a tender to go ashore. The town is right at the port. I found this island to be very clean. While here you might consider these points of interest: Hell, stingray city, Seven Mile beach, snorkeling and diving.
Grand Turk, Turks & Caicos
Grand Turk is a small island bursting with turn-of-the-century Caribbean charm. John Glenn splashed down near Grand Turk on his historic first mission to space. It is only six miles long and just over a mile wide with a population of only 6,000. There are miles of uncrowded, beautiful beaches. It is famous for its beautiful coral reefs surrounding the island, therefore great for snorkeling and diving. Points of interest are Grand Turk Lighthouse, Gibb’s Cay stingrays, beaches.
Roatan, the largest of the Bay Islands of Honduras, offers pristine coral reefs, beautiful beaches, and lush tropical foliage. It’s a long, narrow island measuring 37 miles in length, located about 30 miles from Northern Honduras mainland. The island is mountainous so it’s excellent for hiking opportunities. The island is picturesque and unspoiled. There’s certainly lots to do, such as visiting the iguana farm, snorkeling & diving, Mahogany Bay with its Magical Flying Beach Chairlift and its zip line adventure and beautiful beaches.
Recognizable by the famous Pitons, twin peaks rising over 2,600 feet above the Caribbean, St. Lucia is set in a peaceful setting. This beautiful island welcomes you to its exotic tropical landscape, superb beaches, crystalline waters, and colorful marine life. Points of interest are Pigeon Island, Marigot Bay which was called “the most beautiful bay in the Caribbean” by the author James Michener.
This island has a split personality, a Dutch one, and a French one. The cruise ships dock on the Dutch side in Philipsburg. There are no formal borders between the 2 sides, a simple welcome sign lets you know you are crossing from one country to the other. The French spell it St. Martin. The turquoise waters and white sandy beaches offer the perfect spot to relax. Points of interest are clothing-optional Orient Beach, Marigot, butterfly farm, snorkeling and kayaking.
Located in the Eastern Caribbean, just 1,100 miles southeast of Miami, St-Thomas is surrounded by clear blue waters. The average temperature ranges from 77°F in the winter to 83°F in the summer. Boasting one of the most beautiful harbors in the world, I think it’s also the most photographed and the port is the most visited on cruises. Points of interests are Magens Bay, Blackbeard’s Castle, golfing, hiking, and sailing. Just a few miles away lay St. John and Virgin Islands National Park.