The super six: Where to stay if you want to discover the Caribbean

The Caribbean is a dream holiday destination

The Caribbean is a dream holiday destination - Credit: Archant

With so many island adventures to choose from, Andrea Powell looks at six dream Caribbean destinations to help you plan your perfect trip.

Yachts at anchor

Yachts at anchor 177116344 - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

With the last mince pies eaten and the Christmas decorations down, the dreary rainy weather does little to help the mood.

Attention inevitably turns to holidays. At this time of year the azure crystal-clear waters, beautiful sandy beaches and gentle breeze that is the Caribbean seems an absolute world away.

But it need not be…..

We have all read about Barbados and St Lucia et al - and beautiful they are too. Here, though I’ve chosen maybe a lesser-known six Caribbean destinations that maybe receive less attention but were no less amazing to visit and also a couple of aspirations that I hope you do not mind but I just could not resist mentioning.

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1. Tobago

The experience

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For anyone who rides horses, a gallop along the beach with the wind in your hair, and the sound of thundering hooves on the sand, there really is nothing more exhilarating than a ride on an amazing Caribbean beach.

Maria la Gorda Beach

Maria la Gorda Beach 119924806 - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Being able to also take a cool dip whilst still on horseback, is an amazing step further.

As my horse powered through the waves I held onto the mane for dear life. But once used to this odd phenomenon I did manage to enjoy myself and was actually quite sad when it was all too quickly over.

Where to stay

Nestled in five acres of landscaped gardens, this resort is all about informal and relaxation.

Prices for a seven night stay, based upon two people sharing a standard room all inclusive costs from £939 per person, departing 14 March and including direct flights with British Airways.

2. St Kitts and Nevis

The experience

Taking a trip on board one of the Caribbean’s graceful catamarans to St Kitts’ nearby neighbour Nevis, I have always been a firm believer that seeing an island from the water really is often the way to go.

The beautiful beaches, lush green mountainous interior and rugged coastline are all clearly visible from the sea.

As for Nevis itself, it was wonderfully unspoilt. It is said to house more monkeys than people – we saw few of either to be honest!

Where to stay

On the coconut-lined beachfront and with only 32 rooms, the Oualie Beach Resort really gives you a feel for the authentic, unspoilt Caribbean experience.

Prices for a seven night stay, departing 2 March based upon two people with breakfast costs from £959 per person including BA flights.

3. Aruba

The experience

Dubbed the Las Vegas of the Caribbean, there are nonetheless two distinct sides to Aruba. The traditional low rise part of the island just north of its capital Oranjestad maintains that quieter feel away from the spanking new high rise hotels and casinos.

But if you are after the latest in an all inclusive resort with water sports and casinos, restaurants and nightlife, this may just be the one.

I must admit, it did seem a bit unorthodox – gambling in the Caribbean (I have no idea why) – but to be truthful, once inside a casino, I decided I could probably live with it!

Where to stay

Being south of the hurricane belt, there is no bad time to visit Aruba, unlike many of the other Caribbean Islands.

Prices for a seven night stay at the Tropicana Aruba Resort and Casino based upon two people sharing costs from £1,459 per person including international flights departing in March 2016.

4. Grand Cayman

The experience

Swimming with Stingrays struck me as a bit scary at first. Particularly after a pep talk from our guide about “minding the barb that could impale itself and kill you if you get on the wrong side of one of these animals.” However, I need not have worried. Snorkelling with such exquisite and graceful creatures was fascinating and thoroughly enjoyable.

Where to stay

There is only one address when staying here – the famous Seven Mile Beach. The Comfort Suites Resort for a seven night stay, based upon two people sharing costs from £1,363 per person including flights in March 2016.

5. Turks & Caicos

The experience

A Segway? On Turks and Caicos Islands? Oh yes indeed.

For the ultimate in laziness, we did not even bother to walk around this flat but alluring island.

Instead, letting battery power take the strain, we whizzed around these quiet streets on roads absolutely made for such vehicles.

And of course, having covered so much ground so quickly, that left even more time for sunning ourselves and lazing by the pool afterwards….

Where to stay

It may be only 80 minutes away by air from Miami, but the Atrium Resort on the Providenciales will seem like a world away.

With a perfect beach, spectacular views, tropical setting, seclusion and sophistication it really makes it easy to unwind.

Prices for a seven night stay, based upon two people sharing a Standard room costs from £1,500 per person and including international flights departing in March 2016. Get there now while you can.

6. The Grenadines

The experience

It really does not get any more Robinson Crusoe than a stay in the Grenadines. And that is the experience!

Your chance to be a castaway awaits.

Where to stay

A stay at the Bequia Beach Hotel costs from £1,899 per person in high season and includes bed and breakfast accommodation, international flights and transfers.

Andrea Powell is the owner and managing director of Idelo Travel in Ipswich. Contact her on 01473 231181.

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