The Most Luxurious Islands In The Caribbean That You Should Fly Off To Nextby | August 05, 2019
Swimming with pigs, driving to volcanic sites, letting your hair down while windsurfing, and living in hotels carved out of limestone rocks—a vacation in the Caribbean Islands is so much more than the sun, sand, and scenery it offers on brochures. We put together a list of the ultimate luxe Caribbean islands with white sand beaches, turquoise blue waters, and lush greenery that don’t require any Instagram filters for your next vacation. With over 7,000 individual islands forming sovereign nations as well as dependencies, the sun-soaked Caribbean is a delight for beachgoers. We round up the best this slice of heaven on earth has to offer, but before that, here’s the 101 on the archipelago before you plan your Caribbean getaway.
How to get there: Various airlines fly to the archipelago and the flight duration is usually 20 hours plus stopovers.
Best time to visit: December to April
Season to avoid: Hurricanes usually hit the belt from June to November. August to September are usually the months that are the worst it.
Geography: The area comprises of over 700 islands, islets, reefs, and caves.
Population: Only 2 percent of the islands are inhabited and therefore only 40 million people occupy the region.
Most populated regions: Cuba, Dominican Republic, and Haiti
Languages: Spanish, English, Dutch, Haitian Creole, and Papiamento
Origin of the name: It’s derived from the name of the Carib people, the indigenous natives of the Americas, whom colonists believe were cannibals.
Movie trivia: Johnny Depp starrer, Pirates of The Caribbean was actually shot here. Even the first James Bond movie, Dr. No was shot in Jamaica.
Often referred to as the ‘Spice Island’ because of its numerous nutmeg, cinnamon, cloves, vanilla, and cocoa plantations, Grenada entices adventure seekers, luxury travellers, and honeymooning couples alike due to its picturesque landscapes and pristine beaches. This English-speaking nation boasts of a colourful history with French, African, and British influences. On a trip to this oval-shaped Caribbean isle, visit the Carriacou and Petite Martinique islands (a part of Grenada) for some of the most beautiful coral reefs in the world, take hikes to the Seven Sisters Waterfalls or simply tee off at the Grenada Golf & Country Club.
Stay: For a truly luxurious stay in Grenada, check into the sleek Silversands hotel that offers access to the Grand Anse Beach, spectacular sea views, and unmatched modern luxury.
Price: Starts at INR 62,000 per night
Anguilla, a British overseas territory is a popular hotspot in the Carribean because of its turquoise blue waters, palm-lined beaches, and scenic bays. Boasting of a laid back vibe, relaxation is the primary pastime on the island with lazy beach days, rejuvenating spa treatments, and luxe lounges for drinks. Unlike its busier counterparts, this Caribbean island pleases you with its understated luxurious touches as opposed to flashy resorts, all-inclusive cruises and other tourist traps. So if you’re in the mood for some subtle yet luxe touches, head to Anguilla and soak in its pristine beaches and a never-ending blue shoreline.
Stay: Four Seasons Resort And Residences Anguilla is a sprawling property spread over 35 acres, over 180 rooms, three pools (including a cliff-side infinity one), and access to distinct beaches— the serene, Barnes Bay and the lively, Meads Bay. Interiors by American designer, Kelly Wearstler ensure that these luxe villas feature interesting sculptural furniture and a minimalistic touch.
Price: Starts at INR 55,000 per night
One part of the two-island country that is Barbuda & Antigua, the former is a secluded pink and white sand-lined beach island. Geographically, Barbuda is separated from Antigua by 28 miles and is the largest breeding and nesting colony of the Magnificent Frigate Bird in the world. With ecological diversity, rugged natural beauty, and many lagoons, Barbuda is a delight for nature lovers.
Stay: Barbuda Belle, the only luxury hotel on this Caribbean island is a sanctuary for the discerning luxe traveller with eight private villas, locally sourced cuisine prepared by a French chef, and untouched sea-side beauty.
Price: On request
The Caribbean archipelago nation of St. Vincent and the Grenadines is home to many unimaginably beautiful islands, and amongst them is Canouan. This small isle has the Caribbean’s longest barrier reefs, gorgeous white sand beaches, and turquoise seas that are typical to the region. The island boasts of a 18-course golf course, Canouan Estate, designed by Jim Fazio with dramatic sloping hills, sea views at every turn (or swing), and one of the longest par-3 holes, at cds 305 yards, in the world. One of the more popular beaches on the island, Windward Bay is dotted with volcanic rocks and a captivating seashore.
Stay: The Mandarin Oriental Canouan is a part of the 1,200-acre private-villa colony at Canouan Estate that simply takes your breath away with its stunning landscaping. The hotel in itself impresses you with its massive 26 suites marble-encased interiors, sprawling bathrooms, private patios or balconies, and access to the Godahl Beach. From private butlers to fine-dining restaurants, the hotel offers all the luxuries you want.
Price: Starts at INR 1,08,000 per night
One of the Caribbean’s most glamorous islands, frequented by the swish set, St Barts or Saint Barthelemy attains legendary status with its yacht-filled harbour, high-end fashion boutiques and, of course, pristine beaches (and parties). This French Caribbean island during the day is a haven for the sea worshippers with white sandy beaches and water sports, while the nights are for creating a ruckus with glamorous, extravagant parties with citings of models, movie stars, and ‘It’ girls. Over 16 beaches run around this beach paradise and with private resorts that offer unmatched luxuries.
Stay: Stay at Hotel Le Toiny, a breathtaking retreat with 22 villa suites nestled in the tranquil hillside above Anse de Toiny. Each suite boasts of over 1000 sq. ft. of private space, a large heated pool, and terrific ocean views.
Price: Starts at INR 93,000 per night
Despite the terrible aftermath of Hurricane Maria in 2017, Puerto Ricco has picked up the pieces and is back on the map as a must-visit Caribbean island. The island is home to the famous Bioluminescent Bay, that glows in the dark due to the presence of tiny microorganisms called flagellates, making it a one-of-a-kind destination for couples, families, and adventure seekers. Soak in the culture in San Juan, a UNESCO World Heritage Site with its lovely colonial architecture and imposing forts. From postcard-worthy beaches to lush inland greenery, Puerto Rico has its own unique flavour that must be experienced.
Stay: Located on over 1,400 acres of lush land (formerly a plantation), the Dorado Beach resort (Ritz-Carlton Reserve) is one of the most luxurious properties on the island with discreet individualized service.
Price: Starts at INR 62,000 per night
Pigs can’t fly but they can definitely swim as observed all over Instagram at the Exuma island in The Bahamas. The famous Pig Island is a part of the Bahama archipelago and has captivated millennial travellers with its unique pig feeding, playing, and swimming excursion. As the adage goes, ‘life is better in the Bahamas’, and rightly so with one of the clearest waters on the planet the island has been a popular choice for beach vacations for many.
Stay: Accessible only by sea, the Tiamo Resort is an all-inclusive property along the South Andos beach. A secluded resort that lets you forget the hustle of daily life with its crystal waters and private beach.
Price: Starts at INR 70,000 per night
The twin volcanic peaks of Pitons add to the scenic beauty of Saint Lucia, an island that sits pretty between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean. Despite its volcanic past, the island impresses with its golden sand beaches, ecological wonders that make hikes a delight and underwater wonders surrounding the island. Plus, the island boasts of a bustling party scene that ranges from swanky clubs to overflowing pub streets.
Stay: A dream property for the luxe traveller, the Jade Mountain resort rises above its sister property, Anse Chastanet with stunning views of the Pitons. Architect owner, Nick Troubetzkoy has designed the property to blend in with the natural surroundings with unique touches like bridges leading to exceptional infinity pool sanctuaries and curvaceous dip pools forming a part of the suites.
Price: Starts at INR 96,000 per night
The country that gave the world Bob Marley and reggae music, Jamaica is a lush tropical paradise combined with the spirit and culture of Africa. Majestic mountains, gold-sand beaches, and a rich reef-life, this Caribbean paradise has long been in the public eye for its diverse attractions. Go rafting on the Martha Brae River, drink fancy cocktails in Montego Bay or simply spa at any of the luxurious retreats on the island, Jamaica has a lot to offer to the discerning traveller.
Stay: Perched on limestone cliffs overlooking the Caribbean Sea is The Caves Hotel dug into the rock of the Negril cliffs. This romantic adults-only hotel is the ideal place to sit back, relax, and listen to some Rastafarian tunes.
Price: Starts at INR 32,000 per night
One of the best-kept secrets in the Caribbean, Aruba is the island constituent of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The perfect destination for those looking for a luxe Caribbean experience, Aruba is all about the sun, sand, and waves. From palm trees and cacti to twisted divi-divi trees, the island boasts of a diverse flora that makes it a delight for eco-lovers. Those looking to experience a taste of the Dutch Caribbean medley can explore the unique architecture, shop for Delft Blue porcelain or simply walk the pier in search of culinary delights.
Stay: Take a gamble on the Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino and you will not be disappointed at this luxe resort that has a 24-hour casino and 400+ swanky rooms.
Price: Starts at INR 32,000 per night
Featured Image: Canouan Estate