Travelwallets Guide to the Caribbean

Wondering which Island to choose let us help you. 


This is the Caribbeans finest treasure although it’s only 35  sq miles  with 33 pristine white sand beaches . It has some of the finest hotels and a long list of celebrity visitors. No Jet skis are allowed and hawkers are rare .There is a Carnival in August when the national lobster dishes are readily available in the 120 restaurants. However, this is an expensive island . 

Antigua and Barbuda

The ultimate escape with 365 beaches and first class hotels to match. These are well known as the winter destination for yachting world. There are a wide variety of activities all within 45 minutes away whilst the carnival is at the end of July.Non stop flights go direct from London .Every Sunday head to Shirley Heights for a BBQ this a fabulous way to meet up with the locals and highly recommended.Barbuda  is the sister island with 17 miles of beautiful pink sands and is one of the Caribbeans best kept secrets.

VICKI stayed in the Cove Suites at Blue Waters which are large suites set within a separate area sharing a private pool with 6 other residencies . Guests still have use of all the Restaurants and facilities of Blue Waters including a large selection of water sports.


Sixteen main islands with beautiful beaches .You can Swim with Pigs in Exumas .This is a busy island with lots of fun things to do . Now the Atlantis group have a massive hotel with many restaurants and water park. This is a great place for family fun. The American tourists , usually come here for short winter breaks .BA fly direct from Heathrow .

JANE stayed here twice on Paradise Island . The people were so friendly and loved the carnival atmosphere .You can easily get a speed boat out to isolated islands to swim and snorkel .


Voted best destination for activity and adventure holidays .The island is 21 miles x 14 miles.It has amazing luxury hotels and is a favourite for celebrities.The water is calm on the west side of the island the  south is best for wind surfing or sailing .Situated on the south side are Lawerence Gap and Miami Beach with many bars and restaurants.This  is a great twin centre as cruise ships depart from here and direct flights are available from both Gatwick and Manchester.

JANE stayed in Turtle Bay Resort in the south of the island, This resort is quite small with 2 pools and  2 restaurants .The here food was delicious with lots of traditional English puddings .

MAGGIE visited Barbados many years ago and loved the Island , she visited many hotels but her favourite by far was the  Fairmont Royal Pavilion. We had lunch in the famous Sandy Lane which is highly recommended , the pirate cruise is a must , real good fun . I felt that Barbados had a more cosmopolitan feel than other islands I have visited.

VICKI stayed at Fairmont Royal pavilion, Coral Reef Club and Colony Club during her few visits to the island. All of which are 4 and 5 star options if you wanted that little bit of extra , pure luxury .The highlight of the trip was dinner at the famous Cliff Restaurant, with breathtaking  views and the most amazing food , I cannot recommend this stunning place enough but reservations need to be made quite far in advance and you definitely need deep pockets! . It is however well worth it for a special occasion or just a one off 


This is  an island for authentic non touristy experience. Uncharted jungles to white sandy beaches and is home to the only Jaguar reserve in the world. This has over 400 tropical islands with  the second largest barrier reef in the world. If visiting you must see the giant submarine sink hole which is over 300 m and 108m deep.

British Virgin Island

Thus has a natural allure and mystique which beckons many to discover the BVI. It Comprises of 60 islands and cays( coral islands ) .This is well known as Natures Little Secret , explore the tranquil shores and discover your own private cove , magical .For the sailors amongst us this is truly an outstanding destination .The Baths at Virgin Gorda have  an amazing rock formation on the beach . Necker Island owned by Richard Branson is also located here .

Cayman Island

Consists of 3 islands ,cosmopolitan Grand Cayman ,adventurous Cayman Brac and idyllic Little Cayman and BA fly 4 times per week . There are 365 dive sites and many shipwrecks and the  island has Over 200 restaurants . In Grand Cayman there is plenty to occupy you ,if shopping is your thing there are plenty of large shopping malls .This is well known as the Miami of the Caribbean and is not a  barefoot hideaway . This also houses a huge expat community . Internal flights are  approx £50 return.

JANE stayed here on 7 Mile Beach .It is strange to see all the familiar banks and shops in the town.I had a great time snorkelling on  shipwrecks and swimming with the stingrays.


This is the largest island and home to several UNESCO reserves.The towns and cities vary greatly in architectural styles.There are over 250 museums and art galleries  every December Havana hosts  an International Jazz festival.

MAGGIE chose a beach stay in Varadero with an overnight stay in Havana. I went there when the charter flights had just started operating and Varadero was a relatively new resort. The beach was amazing, the sea changes colour throughout the day from one fabulous blue to another even more fabulous blue. The American’s have now started to go to Cuba as the embargos have been lifted so the availability will be tight and the prices we have seen have gone higher. Although this could all change now we have President Trump in residence! I loved Cuba and the people were so friendly.


There are more than 50 nationalities living on the Island so there is a colourful array of food and music .With a wide varieties of hotels from luxury to B&B . It is said to be the most beautiful and interesting island .It is 40 miles from Venezuela with pearly white beaches.A carnival takes place every February/ March. It’s good to hire a car and discover the island seeing the colourful houses of Willemstad (UNESCO site ) or hike up Christoffel Mountain.


It is known as the Nature Island  and home to the Trois Pitons National Park a UNESCO sites.Is a haven for the adventurous traveller offering hiking,cultural events ,festivals , diving and water sports, whale and dolphin watching and canoeing adventures. It is rated in the top ten dive sites and has a walking trail the length of the island .It is the only place where whales inhabit all year round. There are no All Inclusive hotels and the beaches have black sand , it also rains a lot.


Known as the “Spice Island”.This island is the same size as the Isle of Wight and English is its language . They also drive on the same side of the road .if you so wish you can marry after one day on the island . Grenada Is also home to the only underwater Sculpture Park. The island is a tropical paradise with many high calibre  hotels .Grand Anne Beach wows all beach lovers with over 2 miles of sherbet white sand.Direct flights from Gatwick .


This is a South American Island although English is spoken .Set between the Amazon and the Caribbean .You will find a mix of cultures plus rugged mountains, jungles ,sugar plantations and pristine unspoiled beaches . Kaieteur Falls are a single drop waterfall five times higher than Niagara.The accommodation ranges from basic rainforest retreats , ranches and guest houses.


You have the choice of 3 airports to fly into .It has over 175 activities to choose from including strolling along Montego Bay , the Hip Strip of entertainment and shopping or sun bathing on the beautiful Negrils Seven Mile Beach. You can even Bob Sled ride through the rainforest at Mystic Mountain . Jamaica is known for friendly people and reggae vibes.

JANE stayed here in Ocho Rios . I only stayed for a short time and did not go on many tours . I climbed the Dunnes Rivers Falls which was amazing , I was surprised that it was easier than it looked .

MAGGIE visited Jamaica staying in the iconic Jamaica Inn, a fabulous hotel right on the beach, great rooms, food and service with a massive repeat client bookings. We also stayed at Half Moon Bay in the wonderful Villas with our own butler and maid , so we would be bobbing around in our pool with a beer listening to Bob Marley, definitely the way to experience Jamaica. I like Jane climbed Dunnes Rivers Falls and actually managed to slip, thankfully someone caught me with a rugby tackle type manouver before I went right to the bottom, very embarrassing! Again I inspected several of the luxury hotels, having lunch in some.


It is a sanctuary for Dolphins which can be seen all year round .The island is 1100 sq miles with the euro as its currency and language French .The island has waterfalls,rivers,hiking,bird watching and horse riding to name a few. It is a magical island 


Its is known as the Emerald Island with its rich Irish heritage. It is known for a family holiday and nature lovers . It has dark sandy beaches as the former capital was buried in volcanic ash .Its unique niche is residential tourism and Villas .


It boast being the most unspoiled and relaxing island with a dormant volcano and rainforests. All buildings are no higher than a palm tree. Sea turtles and Green Monkeys play on the long empty beaches . Highly Recommended for honeymoons and the ultimate romantic getaway , our own Admiral  Nelson got married here .It has aristocratic plantation hotels housing hundreds Mango trees , the fruit season is in July .Friday night the whole island visits the Water Departments roadside BBQ for chicken  and Pinneys Beach.St Kitts is a hop away 

 Puerto Rico

It is a perfect blend of beaches and city life steeped in history and the El Yunque Rainforest .The accommodation range from 5 * Beach resorts to restored convents .It is recommended as a fly drive adventure with beguiling culture and natural beauty.The Pina Colada was invented here in 1954. There are 23 Golf Course on the island .It has a big American influence with multi lane freeways . A great twin centre as cruise ships depart from here . You can fly direct from Gatwick .

Saint Kitts

It is known as the Gibraltar of the West Indies with 3800 ft dormant volcano .You can visit UNESCO Brimstone Hill Fortress and Scenic Railway or sunbath on the unspoiled beaches . Great place if you like to explore with its own local history .Cockleshell Bay is the best Beach but there is no hotel until next year when the Park Hyatt opens . Direct flights from Gatwick .Nevis is a hop away with top class hotels and a good stop for the sporty traveller .

Saint Lucia

One of the most picturesque island with the stunning Pitons mountains , lush rainforest  and fringed beaches. You can choose from boutique hotels, villas or luxurious resorts. There are an abundance of activities or head for Rodney Bay for a great choice of restaurants and bars . You can visit the working cocoa plantations where they make chocolate .It has been voted as the leading Honeymoon destination 8 times but the real beauty of this island is the people . The best beaches are in the North west , for divers go to Soufriere and the best time to visit is April .A tip if staying in the north of the island is to get a helicopter to the airport . It is about 10 minutes and costs approx.£130 pp verses a taxi which take 3 hours and costs approx. £70

VICKI visited the island recently and stayed at Cap Maison, a beautiful boutique hotel in the North of the island. We took a Helicopter ride from the Airport to the nearby domestic airport in the North – The 12 minute flight took us right across the Rainforest, I can highly recommend this. Here at Cap Maison you have a choice of villa’s, ideal for families or just a group of friends with private plunge pools as well as the standard hotel rooms. The Hotel is perched on a cliff with fabulous views out to see. You can take the path down to the beach where the Hotel has a fabulous beach restaurant within the cove. This place does an amazing Rum Punch!I was also lucky enough to spend a couple of nights at the absolutely stunning Viceroy Sugar Beach, sitting right beside the Pitons so the views were out of this world, not to mention the beautiful all white rooms and villas, these come with private plunge pools and views over the Pitons from your own terrace. Free standing baths, huge double showers and ipads in your room to order your breakfast were just a few things that gave this place the wow factor.

MAGGIE went to St Lucia several years ago and I absolutely loved it, very green and lush just how you imagine the Caribbean to be. Some wonderful hotels, great beaches and very dramatic scenery, Banana & Cocao plantations just add to the greenery. The vibe I felt was very different to Barbados a lot more laid back, I would go back at the drop of a hat.

Saint Maarten/Saint Martin

It is known as the gastronomical capital of the Caribbean with 300 eclectic restaurants . The 37 sq mile island is shared by two nations of Holland and France .The capital Philipsburg offers duty free shopping and 14 casinos and many night clubs .Its is known as the friendly island and the destination to nourish mind and body. It’s the land of artist and poets with beautiful white beaches .

St Vincent and The Grenadines

There are nine islands in this group offering the truest luxury. Tobago Cays is the best sailing ground in the Caribbean and offers charming villages and bays.St Vincent has the oldest Botanical Gardens in the Western Hemisphere .Pirates of the Caribbean was filmed around these islands . 

VICKI has stayed on Mustique at the beautiful Cotton House. No two rooms are the same here, each one has something special to offer. The Hotel is Set in acres of land, roaming tortoises in the road is one of the many highlights, Basil’s Bar for sundowners and taking a Kawasaki Mule to explore the many beaches around the island stopping off for a picnic along the way.  

Trinidad and Tobago

Has many different sides from tranquil to vibrant and an eco destination Trinidad is the cultural capital famed for its carnival in February . The islands are below the hurricane belt . Pigeon Point Beach was the inspiration for Robinson Crusoe Trindad is the birthplace of calypso and soca .

 Turks and Caicos

Home to the best beach in the World – Grace Bay Beach . These 40 islands are the best kept secret with only 8 inhabited . Safe and quiet with world class accommodation ideal for romantic and family holidays .Every Thursday they have a Fish Fry night with music and food stalls .The third largest barrier reef can be found here .

MAGGIE went here and stayed in Grace Bay, the beaches are probably some of the most beautiful in the world. A great place for marine life and a top spot for snorkelling and diving and the islands have been  left untouched as the government is dedicated to protecting its natural beauty. Take a tour on the Undersea Explorer Semi Submarine a great way for non swimmers  to see the marine life. A fisherman’s paradise too ! Talking of paradise we had a day on Parrot Cay, a private island with rooms and villas to rent, just amazing.

Us Virgin Islands

The 3 islands each offer their own experiences from relaxing to extreme adventure. Island hopping is easy by ferry or seaplane . The rich history and culture on these island with white sandy beaches making it an exciting destination 

 Which ever Island you choose you will have a Dream Holiday