• Caribbean

21 Hottest Caribbean Escapes

Nothing says vacation like crystalline blue waters, white-sand beaches and luxurious indulgence. That's why we're counting down the 21 best destinations in the Caribbean, where vacation is a lifestyle.

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St. Bart’s

St. Bart’s

Boasting some of the world’s top-rated beaches, as well as numerous spas, high end restaurants and luxury resorts, St. Bart’s offers a true escape from cold climate winters.  960 1280

Pierre CARREAU  

St. Martin

St. Martin

An island divided, the northern part of St. Martin is a French territory, while the southern part is Dutch. French St. Martin is known for luxury resorts and shopping, while Dutch St. Maarten is famed for its nightlife.  960 1280

Marka  

Curacao

Curacao

Nightlife and the anonymous blue liqueur draw many winter travelers to Curacao in the Dutch Antilles. The island’s coral reefs are popular among snorkelers. 960 1280

MyLoupe / Getty Images  

Tortolla

Tortolla

The largest of the British Virgin Islands, Tortolla is a popular destination for winter travelers. Visitors enjoy hiking and seeing the volcanic island’s historic sites. But Tortolla’s best known for the beaches along its northern coast, including Brewer’s Bay. 960 1280

DEA / DIEGO M.ROSSI  

Grand Cayman

Grand Cayman

Twenty-two miles long and eight miles across at its widest point, Grand Cayman is home to varied wildlife, beautiful beaches, and plenty of resort activities, especially along Seven Mile Beach, the most active tourist area.  960 1280

David Rogers  

Barbados

Barbados

Southern Atlantic or far eastern Caribbean? Who cares? Barbados continues to be one of the most sought-after winter island destinations. In addition to beaches, tourists can enjoy golf, the botanic gardens and visit historic plantations. 960 1280

DEA / A. VERGANI  

Jamaica

Jamaica

If you’re seeking a little culture with your Caribbean escape, check out Jamaica, birthplace of reggae and home to January’s annual Jazz and Blues Festival. Numerous other arts activities including dance and museums are available as well.  960 1280

DEA / V. GIANNELLA  

St. Lucia

St. Lucia

The most prominent natural feature of this volcanic island in the eastern Caribbean are the Pitons, two steep mountain peaks on its west coast. Famed for luxury resorts and pristine beaches, adventurers can also hike the trails of St. Lucia’s interior rainforest.   960 1280

philippe giraud  

Bonaire

Bonaire

Bonaire, the Dutch island off the coast of Venezuela, is widely regarded as a premier diving destination. Its coral reefs are protected by a national park and the island features 54 shore diving locations.  960 1280

ullstein bild  

Belize

Belize

Located on the eastern coast of Central America, Belize offers Caribbean beaches on its east and rainforest in its west. Adventurers can explore Mayan ruins, trek through the jungle or dive in Belize’s Barrier Reef.  960 1280

Andrew Hounslea  

Les Saintes Bay

Les Saintes Bay

With pure-white sand and azure-blue water, it’s easy to see why Baie des Saintes was voted one of the most beautiful bays in the world by UNESCO. Located in the northwest coast off the island of Terre-de-Haut, taking out a small canoe or fishing boat during the day is highly recommended. 960 1280

Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board  

La Cascade aux Ecrevisses

La Cascade aux Ecrevisses

Looking for an adventure? Well then, look no further than the Ecrevisses waterfall. Just a short 10-minute romp through the “jungle,” Ecrevisses offers a fun, fresh-water experience with a great swimming hole for relaxing and rock faces to leap from. 960 1280

Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board  

Plage du Vieux Fort a Marie Galante

Plage du Vieux Fort a Marie Galante

From sailing to canoeing, if you’re looking for a beach that offers ample opportunity to enjoy water sports, then Plage du Vieux Fort is for you. Want to enjoy the stars from the comfort of your own canoe? A sunset tour through the mangrove trees is the ideal way to enjoy relaxation in the Caribbean. 960 1280

Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board  

La Grande Soufriere

La Grande Soufriere

Although its last eruption was in 1976, this active volcano known as La Grande Soufriere is situated on Basse-Terre and is the highest mountain peak in the Lesser Antilles. 960 1280

Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board  

Plage de la Perle

Plage de la Perle

One of the finer family beaches in Guadeloupe, Plage de la Perle (Pearl Beach) is protected by coral reef and offers lush vegetation and picturesque landscapes in a mountainous backdrop. Pearl beach is also known for their blonde sand, horseback riding and strong waves, making it the perfect place to partake in water activities. 960 1280

Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board  

Sainte-Anne Market

Sainte-Anne Market

They say location is everything, and if that’s true, Sainte-Anne Market is definitely winning … by a lot. Positioned smack-dab in the center of the city, visitors flock to this open-air market on a daily basis. As well as selling fresh produce and spices, vendors also sell keepsakes and clothing. 960 1280

Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board  

Goyave

Goyave

Located on Basse-Terre island, Goyave, a commune in the city of Pointe-a-Pitre is known for their vast knowledge of agriculture, and in particular the cultivation of the tropical fruit guava. 960 1280

Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board  

Pain de Sucre Beach

Pain de Sucre Beach

Known by locals as the hidden gem of Terre-de-Haut Island, Pain de Sucre was named because of its similarities to the famed Sugarloaf Beach in Rio de Janeiro. A mainly residential destination, Pain de Sucre beach is also one of the most romantic beaches in Guadeloupe. 960 1280

Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board  

Jardin Botanique de Deshaies

Jardin Botanique de Deshaies

Containing over 1,000 various plant species from all over the world, Guadeloupe’s premiere botanical garden, The Jardin Botanique de Deshaies also plays home to several indigenous animals including flamingos, parakeets and parrots. 960 1280

Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board  

Eglise Saint-Pierre et Saint-Paul

Eglise Saint-Pierre et Saint-Paul

Located in Pointe-a-Pitre and nicknamed the Iron Cathedral, this traditional church is architecturally exquisite both inside and out. 960 1280

Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board  

Pointe de la Grande Vigie

Pointe de la Grande Vigie

The northernmost point of Guadeloupe, Pointe de la Grande Vigie is a rock-filled peninsula with large, vertical cliffs reaching up to heights of almost 260 feet. If you stand in the right spot, you can catch a glimpse of Montserrat, Antigua and La Desirade, 3 other beautiful Caribbean islands. 960 1280

Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board  

Sainte-Anne Beach

Sainte-Anne Beach

One of the most tourist-laden places in all of Guadeloupe, Sainte-Anne is a beautiful beach city comprised mainly of 4 different beaches -- Bois Jolan, Saint Anne, Caravelle and Gros Sable. Although still heavily reliant on their agriculture, its crystal-blue water and pristine-white sand offer visitors plenty of options to enjoy the warm Caribbean weather. 960 1280

Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board  

Bassin Bleu

Bassin Bleu

Bassin Bleu, or more commonly known as "Blue Pool," is a must-see diving pool located within the tropical rainforest on Basse-Terre. Easily accessible by foot, this electric blue pool is engulfed by an amazing landscape and includes a waterfall and natural slide. 960 1280

Guadeloupe Islands Tourist Board  

10: Hotel Maroma

10: Hotel Maroma

Thirty miles south of the crowded Mexican resort of Cancun, in the heart of the Mayan Riviera, you'll find the pristine, quiet area of Maroma. The Hotel Maroma has a mere 36 suites decked in handmade mahogany and bamboo furniture. A stay here is worth every penny. 960 1280

Macduff Everton, Getty Images  

9: Sandy Lane

9: Sandy Lane

Experience this Caribbean resort for a haven of tranquility, a luxury romantic retreat or the perfect location for families looking for an endless list of recreational activities. Sandy Lane is a luxury golf resort with 3 golf courses: The Old Nine, The Country Club and the world-renowned Green Monkey. For a more relaxing getaway, we recommend guests head to the 47,000-square-foot Barbados spa that provides a wide range of massages, facials and body treatments. So go ahead and indulge yourself! 960 1280

Peter Bischoff, Getty Images  

8: Atlantis

8: Atlantis

Rising up majestically from the Caribbean is Atlantis, a resort based on the mythical city that sank without a trace 11,000 years ago. Along the 3 miles Cabbage Beach's sugary sand, guests can snorkel, parasail, jet-ski or just lounge to their hearts' desire. Then there is the Leap of Faith: a 60-foot drop down a Mayan temple water slide that takes you to 1 of the resort's spectacular family attractions -- the aquarium. 960 1280

Pola Damonte, Getty Images  

7: Four Seasons Resort Nevis

7: Four Seasons Resort Nevis

The tropical island of Nevis sits a balmy 19 degrees north of the equator. While it's only separated from other islands in the West Indies by 2 miles of warm water, go there and you'll feel a world apart. One of the most remarkable aspects of the Four Seasons Nevis is that it has attained a 5-diamond rating. Getting a five-diamond rating from AAA is hard enough in the United States, but to get this rating on a relatively remote Caribbean island is a testament to the resort's commitment to service. 960 1280

Greg Johnston / Lonely Planet Images / Getty Images  

6: Ritz-Carlton St. Thomas

6: Ritz-Carlton St. Thomas

St. Thomas is part of the US Virgin Islands, just east of Puerto Rico. Blessed with breathtaking views, it's no wonder this island attracts tens of thousands of visitors each year. Combining Old World Colonial charm with a tropical setting, the 152-room Ritz-Carlton St. Thomas sits on 15 acres of impeccably manicured grounds and its stately elega  nnce attracts guests from all around the world. 960 1280

Macduff Everton/Corbis/VCG/Getty Images  

5: Beaches Turks & Caicos Resort and Spa

5: Beaches Turks & Caicos Resort and Spa

A visit to these beautiful islands will often cost you a pretty penny, but not if you stay at the Beaches Turks & Caicos Resort and Spa. Opened in 1997, this popular spot is an all-inclusive resort. 960 1280

Dimitrios Kambouris, Getty Images  

4: Little Dix Bay

4: Little Dix Bay

Set 90 miles off the coast of Puerto Rico, Virgin Gorda is 8 1/2 square miles of lush greenery and stunning crescent bays; it truly is a tropical wilderness. Little Dix Bay includes an amazing number of hiking trails and offers some of the best snorkeling in the Caribbean. 960 1280

Walter Bibikow, Getty Images  

3: Parrot Cay by Como

3: Parrot Cay by Como

Located 575 miles southeast of Miami, the 8 major islands and more than 40 keys of Turks & Caicos cover only a combined 196 square miles of sun-drenched shoreline. Stars like Paul McCartney, Demi Moore, Bruce Willis and David Copperfield have all said ahoy to this place. And unlike super-accessible mega-resorts, the exclusive 5-star Parrot Cay Resort and Spa can be reached only by small boat. 960 1280

Luis Sinco, Getty Images  

2: Caneel Bay

2: Caneel Bay

The island of St. John is a treasure trove of tropical jungle and enticing enclaves. It was once the playpen of gazillionaire Lawrence Rockefeller, who fell in love with this lush land in the 1920s. Caneel Bay facilities include 166 elegantly understated rooms, 3 restaurants, a 20,000-square-foot spa and a state-of-the-art tennis facility. 960 1280

Danny Lehman, Getty Images  

1: Hyatt Regency, Aruba Resort & Casino

1: Hyatt Regency, Aruba Resort & Casino

Set just 15 miles off the coast of Venezuela, Aruba is the westernmost island of the Netherlands Antilles. Here Spanish, Dutch and Caribbean culture blend as comfortably as your beachside cocktail. The Hyatt Regency Aruba is one of the region's premier resorts, because it has a lot of casual elegance and the staff combine that attribute with an incredible array of really fun activities. 960 1280

agustavop, Getty Images  

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