St Lucia

Bathsheba, Barbados

With its glorious weather, sandy beaches and lukewarm turquoise seas, the Caribbean islands are seen as a dream holiday destination for many people. Temperatures tend to range from a minimum of 20C in January to above 30C in July, so you can be sure of getting some sunshine whenever you travel.

The one problem that some tourists may have is deciding which island and Caribbean resorts they want to visit. Here Columbus Direct shares a list of five areas which should certainly be considered by any tourist who fancies veering off towards the Caribbean Sea…

Bathsheba, Barbados
Bathsheba, Barbados

Barbados

Barbados may be one of the smaller Caribbean islands, but it’s home to fun, adventure and paradise that belies its diminutive size. There are more than 70 miles worth of pristine white beaches on which to soak up the sun, enjoy a rum punch or try out some water sports.

The West coast really comes to life at night-time. Its delightful range of bars and restaurants create a carnival atmosphere wherein tourists can eat, drink and dance to jazz, reggae or traditional chart music.

Some of the biggest party nights occur during the island’s annual festivals. The three-day Barbados Food & Wine and Rum Festival begins on November 22nd, whilst the grand celebration of the nation’s independence takes place on November 30. What a perfect excuse to book an end-of-year holiday!

St Lucia

St Lucia could be the perfect choice for those who love the idea of exploring a tropical paradise. The island is covered with miles worth of glorious rainforest to trek through, with plenty of luxury hotels and tourists attractions camped within it.

Visitors are urged to go snorkelling at the foot of the iconic Piton mountains or join a guided tour on a hike up to the top for some of the most incredible views of their surroundings. There’s also the opportunity to try horse-back riding across the beach, take the whole family to a water park or explore the forest wildlife during a relaxing walk on the beach.

Ideally, tourists would visit the island during Carnival celebrations, which run throughout June and July.

Turner Beach, Antigua
Turner Beach, Antigua

Antigua & Barbuda

Antigua is another hugely popular tourist destination in the Caribbean. Once again, glorious coastlines, fine dining and friendly locals are the norm. Visitors have the opportunity to snorkel with stingrays, zip-line through tropical rainforests or relax on a luxury cruise.

Antigua has its own Carnival which takes place in July, yet others could be more excited by the prospect of National Sailing Week, which falls in April.

There are plenty of boat trips to nearby Barbuda as well. With a population of just 2,000 people, it’s often described as the Caribbean’s best kept secret. It can feel like your own personal tropical island getaway.

Dominican Republic

One of the largest and most vibrant areas of the Caribbean, the Dominican Republic is perfect for those who want their holiday to feature a bit of everything.

There’s 250 miles of coastline to enjoy, but so much see and do in the centre of the island as well. Try white-water rafting through Jarabacoa, exploring underground caves in Juan Dolio or riding a cable car almost 800 metres above sea level in Puerto Plata.

Experience the sights on top of the Caribbean’s largest mountain – the 3,000m+ high Pico Duarteis. Marvel at the beauty of the Caribbean’s largest lake – The Enriquillo. You can even cross the border and enjoy the attractions that neighbouring Haiti has to offer. It really is the island that has it all.

Jamaica

Visit Jamaica and find out that the stereotypical relaxed fun-loving stereotype of the locals is completely true to life. The culture is one of easy living, dance, fun and celebration.

The traditional tourist attractions to enjoy include beaches, bars restaurants and the world-famous Bob Marley museum. But the best way to get the most out of the island is to mix with the friendly locals in the capital Kingston, the party city of Montego Bay or the beautiful coastal region of Ocho Rios.

In truth, the majority of Caribbean islands make for the perfect holiday destination. Those who make the effort to visit any of these fantastic nations can consider themselves truly blessed.

 About the AuthorSam Jones is a full time writer who loves to travel to exotic places and experience some of the most unusual and brilliant places the world has to offer. Find him on Google+

 

In October 2011, George and I were the hosts for Meet Plan Go Los Angeles, part of 17 cities hosting events about Career Breaks, Mini-Retirements and Long Term Travel. We had traveled for nearly a year in 2008-9 and this month we left again for at least a year. Meet Plan Go National recently posted this article about our second career break: NOT WASTING TIME!

Time is now the currency. We earn it and spend it. The rich can live forever and the rest of us? I just wanna wake up with more time on my hands than hours in the day. – In Time (2011)

In Time is a movie that really spoke to me. In the movie, the main character, Will, is falsely accused of murder and must find a way to bring down a system in which time is money. While the wealthy can live forever, the poor have to beg, borrow, and steal enough minutes to make it through each day. At one point, a character gives his time to Will and tells him, “don’t waste my time.

How many times have you been in a pointless meeting thinking what a waste of time it is? So many of us waste time every day. We casually think that there will be time later. One of my strongest memories of seven years working on cruise ships was speaking to a widow who said, “we always planned to come here to Alaska together but there was always something that got in the way.” I heard over and over again, “don’t wait to make your dreams come true” or “you are so smart to travel like this while you are young.” I often felt like a character who had borrowed against time and was running to spend my time wisely traveling.

When my company went bankrupt after September 11, 2001, I thought I would never travel again.

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