Suggested Itineraries Caribbean
Unless you have months to spend in the Caribbean, there"s
little chance you will be able to see everything the various
islands have to offer. And while most of the suggested
itineraries for Caribbean travel revolve around the popular
spots of Jamaica, Aruba or the Virgin Islands for a week or so, the Caribbean is laid out perfectly
for those who wish to island hop and get a sampling of
what each has to offer. Everyone who has returned from
the islands will have their own ideas about how to construct
a Caribbean itinerary – the following are a few,
along with Caribbean travel tips to keep in mind.
Few people come to the islands for this short a period
of time, and those who do can barely afford to take a
day trip somewhere. Not even cruises run this short. But
if you are just heading down for an extended weekend,
stick to the large urban areas. Suggested itineraries
for Caribbean travel over this short of time include San
Juan, Puerto Rico, which
is always a guarantee for a good time, while St. Thomas and the Cayman
Islands are the most well equipped for shorter a shorter
Caribbean itinerary. Just like Vegas,
if you are going gambling in the Caribbean, a few days
is probably all you need. The best casinos are on Aruba,
though St. Maarten and the Dominican Republic provide some decent competition for that title.
Now we are getting an opportunity to do a little island
hopping. Hundreds of cruises ship out each day towards
the Caribbean islands, many of them lasting a week or
so and coming into port at several different cities. Most
of these cruises cover the northern islands and leave
from a few stateside locations. Puerto Rico and the Virgin
Islands are also good location to begin a whirlwind tour
of the Caribbean. Usually you will get a glimpse of both
the British and United States Virgin Islands, Jamaica
and maybe one of the Turks
and Caicos chain, if you are lucky. By far the most
popular island hopping tours generally include bouncing
across the Virgin Islands. More adventurous travelers
include the French West Indies in their Caribbean itinerary.
Seven days may not be enough to get them all in, but day
trips originating in St. Lucia can lead you to Dominica, Martinique and Guadeloupe within hours.
Those dispensing Caribbean travel tips usually applaud
the ability to quickly move around by plane. If you plan
to island hop this way, there are a hundred different
combinations of islands you can visit. One of the most
important Caribbean travel tips to keep in mind is that
the cheapest flights usually can be found in Puerto Rico
or Jamaica, so those are good islands to start on. If
you prefer the Dutch West Indies, a week is enough to
focus completely on Aruba and Curacao,
though savvy travelers will know to spend the majority
of their time on the latter.
If you are venturing through the Caribbean without the
benefit of a cruise, you should probably budget at least
seven days to get a true grasp of the region. Since so
many islands have cultures heavily influenced by the European
countries that colonized them, it can be an interesting
experience to sample one from each region. This is only
doable by plane travel, or if you have a lot of time,
however. Flying into the Dominican Republic, moving on
to St. Maarten, before heading south to Martinique and Barbados is a sample itinerary
that includes most of the different types of cultures
in the Caribbean. Another way to see the region is to
pick a small cluster of islands and stick to those. This
way you get to become more embedded in a single culture.
If you touch down in St. Lucia, you can easily travel
to all the French islands. The same with Aruba and the
Dutch influenced nations. If you want to take a rich cultural
vacation, start in Haiti and journey
onto the Dominican Republic before making your way to Cuba. Though not as easily laid
out as many vacations, it could easily be the most rewarding.
For those that want a more relaxed version of island hopping,
the conventional wisdom says to stick to the Virgin, Cayman
and Turks and Caicos Islands.
Regardless of how long you have to spend in the Caribbean, the many distinctive cultures will have you immediately wanting to return. There are hundreds of plausible directions for your vacation to head in, these are only a few suggested itineraries for the Caribbean.