With crystal clear waters, pristine beaches, swaying palm trees filled with coconuts, and relaxation as its top priority, it’s no wonder why the Caribbean has been a popular holiday destination for decades.
While you may be familiar with the big-name resorts and popular tourist locations, this slice of heaven is home to many untapped gems and hidden wonders waiting for you to visit. So back your best Crocs NZ and book your next trip to these unique attractions.
Different from many other islands and locations in the Caribbean, Curacao is a Dutch Island, meaning you won’t come across too many Americans on your travels. Mimicking a real-life storybook, business buildings, and homes are painted in bright and vibrant colors, giving this island its signature appeal. The only rule is you may not choose black.
Just a short drive out of the city takes you to crystal blue waters, coves, coral reefs and much more, all waiting to be explored. Known for some of the best diving areas in the world, get up close and personal with giant friendly sea turtles and other marine animals.
The Corndon Mangrove Beach Resort has a private beachfront, multiple pools, local beer on tap, and a water theme park for guests to enjoy.
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Canouan, an island located in the Grenadines, has a small population of just 1,700 people. Yet, it is one of the most luxurious places to visit in the Caribbean, with a famous hike up Mount Royal providing panoramic views sure to take your breath away.
The Mandarin Oriental is the definition of holiday relaxation from the moment you enter. This boutique has only 26 suites and 13 villas for guests to choose from, ensuring that your stay is serene and peaceful.
Grand Cul-de-Sac, St Barths
If you’re looking for a break from the busy port of Gustavia or the non-stop scene of St Barths, venture through the island hillside to a secluded area known as Grand Cul-de-Sac.
When the afternoon comes around, and the winds start to pick up, this beach escape is transformed into a kitesurfer’s dream, providing free entertainment from the comfort of your beach lounger, restaurant table or beachfront luxury suite.
This crescent-shaped beach is located on the northeastern side of the island. It is home to the spectacular Le Barthelemy Hotel & Spa, situated between picturesque nature reserves and bustling reef-protected waters. If you are lucky, you can spot one of the ten resident sea turtles that call this slice of paradise home.
If you want a holiday destination with easy and exciting day trips, the Dominican Republic is the place for you. Escape for a day spent on the boat or along the exquisite shores of Juanillo Beach to soak up the local atmosphere.
Sanoa Island might look familiar as scenes from the Pirates of the Caribbean and The Blue Lagoon were filmed here.
Choose the newly opened Margaritaville Island Reserve for the ideal place to stay. It has everything you will need to indulge after a day of adventure, from bonfires on the beach to delicious cocktails, live performances and yacht sailings. You may never want to leave this place of paradise.
The biggest draw to Bonaire is its famous Salt Pans and pink water. Gotomeer, a saltwater lagoon that is situated below the Salt Pans, is a government-protected area, allowing flamingo birds to nest, breed, and live without any human interference or threat.
Captain Don’s Habitat strives to have the smallest impact on the environment and lowers its carbon footprint by using solar water heaters and energy-efficient designs throughout the resort.
Visitors to this less-known Dutch Caribbean island can enjoy a day of sand surfing between admiring the native wildlife and landmarks.
Turks & Caicos
Turks & Caicos is a British territory that neighbors the Bahamas. Here, visitors have the unique opportunity to scuba dive along a spectacular 14-mile barrier reef, home to many different sea life species and coral.
Although this area contains 40 different islands, only eight are inhabited, with the largest being Providenciales, home to luxury properties, shopping malls and a bustling nightlife.
The Green Bay Resort has an extensive beachfront, with many suites overlooking the spectacular ocean. In addition, there are adult-only and family-friendly areas to enjoy.
Aside from the crystal clear waters that surround this magical place, Exuma is home to the famous Pig Beach and Iguana Island. The pigs are tagged and cared for by the local government board, and you will be mesmerized watching them roam the beach shore.
It is claimed that many years ago, a ship crashed off the coast, and the pigs found refuge on the island, as they are not native to it. The Grand Isle Resort and Residences will provide you with your own golf cart to roam the grounds and arrange daily trips to see the pigs and iguanas and swim with nursing sharks.
South Andros, Bahamas
Commonly known as ‘the island that no one has heard of’, the island of South Andros is home to just 2,000 people. Here you can find the largest number of blue holes, or ocean caves, and a barrier reef. When you arrive, expect to live exactly like the locals do, a far cry from your life back home.
In 2020, tourism was finally bought to the island through the opening of the Caerula Mar Club. The resort features only 18 suites and six villas. It offers you the chance for an elegant stay without compromising on an authentic local experience.
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