17 of the Best Beaches in the Caribbean
The Caribbean is known for many things — great weather, music, cuisine, cocktails, and warm, friendly people. Atop that list, these islands are home of some of the best beaches in the world. Lulling waters, powdery sands, and palm trees are a few reasons that the region has earned its reputation. Though there are countless idyllic beaches to choose from, here are 17 of the best Caribbean beaches so you can start planning your next island getaway.
Related: More beach vacation ideas
Pigeon Point, Tobago, Trinidad and Tobago
While Trinidad is known to many for having the largest carnival in the Caribbean, its sister island (part of the same country), Tobago, is where you go to cool off and unwind. There's no better place to do that than Pigeon Point Beach, the island's most popular beach located on the southwest end. While here, you may want to consider a glass bottom boat ride to the Nylon Pool, an in-sea shallow point in the water way off the coast where you can stand and have the water only waist deep.
Grand Anse Beach, Grenada
Postcard-perfect Grand Anse Beach is a two-mile stretch of powdery sand and tranquil, azure-colored water. Sheltered between green hills to the left and right, full of fun bars with local flavor, and dotted with vibrantly colored boats, you can pop a squat under an almond tree for hours and may never want to leave these panoramic views. Aside from the typical jet skiing and parasailing, you may want to snorkel or dive at the Underwater Sculpture Park – a beautiful underwater museum created to rebuild the coral reef ecosystem previously devastated from hurricane activity.
Grace Bay, Providenciales, Turks and Caicos
Often rated one of the best beaches in the world, the experience at Grace Bay lives up to its awards. This 13-mile long beach touts powder-soft white sand and piercing blue shallow and calm waters, perfect for swimming. Walking the beach, you will happen upon many of the best hotels and restaurants on the island, so it's easy to visit Providenciales and never have to leave this strip. This is also a great beach to catch the sunset on the horizon every evening.
Doctor's Cave Beach, Jamaica
Many of the best beaches in Jamaica are privately operated and connected to hotels. Doctor's Cave Beach, a less than 10-minute drive from the airport in Montego Bay, is a local favorite and is available to the public for a nominal fee (around $6 for adults) from a street-side entrance, or for free if you book a stay at the nearby S Hotel. The tranquil, turquoise water at this beach make swimming all day an easy task. Replenish in the heat with fresh coconut water from an on-site vendor.
Labadee Beach, Haiti
One of the largest islands in the Caribbean, Haiti boasts countless stunning beaches. One of the most popular and best to visit is Labadee Beach. Relax along the shore, or for the thrill seekers, there is an option to zipline across the water from atop a nearby mountain. For around $100 US, Dragon's Breath zipline will take you across 2,600 feet at speeds up to 40-50 mph, landing at Dragon's Breath rock.
Bávaro Beach, Dominican Republic
Palm trees fringe the shores of this white-sand and aqua-colored beach. Located in the popular area of Punta Cana, Bávaro Beach stretches 30 miles so you can walk seemingly forever on the pillowy sand that comforts your feet. Nearby all-inclusive resorts make this a complete getaway where you can leave the stress of your everyday life behind.
Caracas Beach, Vieques, Puerto Rico
There is no shortage of beaches in Puerto Rico, but it's worth a quick ferry ride or flight from the main island to Vieques, a small nearby island that is part of the country. The beaches in Vieques stand out for how untouched and calm they feel. If you want to feel remote, Caracas is a great choice — it's not uncommon to be the only one at Caracas Beach, even on a beautiful day — or hop around to other nearby beaches on the island.
Varadero Beach, Cuba
Spanning a magnificent stretch of 12 miles, Varadero Beach is one of the most popular beaches on the island. The sparkling turquoise waters separate it from the Florida straits. And there's never a shortage of water activities from diving to sailing, snorkeling to fishing, or even taking a ride in a glass bottom boat.
Pig Beach, Big Major Cay, The Bahamas
Another unique beach experience is in Exuma, Bahamas. Stunning waters aren't the only showstopper here. On this uninhabited island, a colony of pigs take center stage. It has become a tourist attraction because who doesn't want to take a photo swimming with pigs? You can't stay overnight on this island, but many nearby islands offer excursions here, including nearby Staniel Cay.
Brown Beach, Barbados
The easternmost island in the Caribbean has some of the most gorgeous beaches, especially along its Platinum Coast. Located in the Carlisle Bay area, Brown Beach offers some of the most stunning sand and water in the Caribbean. While here, take a catamaran ride out to swim with the sea turtles and snorkel to view an abundance of marine life and a shipwreck under the surface.
Jalousie Beach, St. Lucia
Just south of the town of Soufrière, Jalousie Beach boasts crystal-clear waters, bright and plush white sand, and amazing views situated right between the iconic twin Piton Mountains. As it's near a huge coral reef, this beach is also a popular snorkeling point as schools of bright and beautiful fish swim around beneath the surface.
Flamingo Beach, Aruba
Eagle Beach and Baby Beach in Aruba attract people with their stunning waters and white sands, but with equally great beach quality, you can also have up close and personal encounters with flamingos at Flamingo Beach. This private beach is accessible when you visit Renaissance Island, a private island in Aruba that has a mangrove where the flamingos live.
Seven Mile Beach, Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
If sparkling clear water and coral sand are your thing, look no further than stunning Seven Mile Beach in Grand Cayman. The beach is sure to capture your attention all day long as you stare off into perfection. Many hotels along this strip also include large personal floating devices that remain permanently anchored off the shore allowing for even further relaxation for your beach day.
Little Ffryes Beach, Antigua, Antigua and Barbuda
Antigua has 365 beaches, one for every day of the year! Two of the best beaches that are adjacent to each other, Ffryes Beach and Little Ffryes Beach, are all you need to feel at peace. Little Ffryes actually has a leg up in that it's usually less populated and also has a great restaurant with local food nearby for authentic eats and drinks.
Coki Beach, St. Thomas, USVI
While Magans Bay is voted one of the top beaches in the Caribbean, it's actually Coki Beach where you feel the flavor of St. Thomas. Here, locals lay out while enjoying fresh seafood and strong cocktails prepared by on-site beach bars. Always-on music and laughter create the soundtrack to the perfect day frolicking in and out of the beautiful water.
Trunk Bay, St. John, USVI
There are beautiful beaches and then there are beaches that just leave you speechless. Often, the more remote the beach location, the more pristine the quality. A quick ferry from St. Thomas will bring you to St. John, a less inhabited island but very much worth the visit. Trunk Bay, tucked away around 15 minutes from the ferry in St. John, touts the brightest white sand and crystal-clear waters for the perfect escape (even from your vacation).
Maho Beach, St. Maarten
This beach has great sand and water quality, but that isn't why it's one of the most photographed beaches in the Caribbean. While scrolling on social media, you have likely stumbled upon a photo of someone with a huge jumbo jet seemingly right above their head. That's because it's located right next to the island's Princess Juliana International Airport. On a good day, you can time out a plane landing and land your perfect shot.