The Caribbean is, without a doubt, one of the world's most inspiring destinations. The diversity in cultures, cuisines, language and landscapes adds to the region's magnetic appeal, but with so many choices, vacationers can become overwhelmed deciding where to begin exploring local activities.
...some of the world's largest boating festivals and races...
Just below the surface of the Caribbean Sea lies a world of tropical fish, dazzling reef, and haunting ship wrecks waiting to be explored. The lure of the deep blue is what draws many vacationers to the Caribbean in the first place, making diving and snorkeling two of the most popular activities available. The Cayman and Virgin Islands attract the most underwater adventurers, but there are fascinating sites to be explored just off the coast of each Caribbean island.
For those who prefer to keep their head above water, sailing around the islands on a chartered boat can prove to be just as exciting. Sailing offers a unique vantage point of the Caribbean, allowing visitors to zip from one side of an island to the next without having to navigate through the unfamiliar and busy streets. Full days are often spent fishing, water skiing, and just relaxing on the waters. Sailing is such an important part of Caribbean culture that some of the world's largest boating festivals and races are held here - especially in the Bahamas and the Virgin Islands.
Active travelers may envision making exercising all the more enjoyable by getting their heart rate up against the backdrop of fruiting tropical trees and warm sunlight. For example, hiking through the Blue Mountains of Jamaica, or swimming laps in the infinity pool of your resort on St. Lucia is a great way to achieve this. Teeing off at sunrise at one of hundreds of golf courses throughout the Caribbean, or challenging a friend to a round of tennis as the sun sets will also heed breath taking results.
Spectator sports provide a great way to pass time on your vacation. Soccer and baseball are especially popular on the islands, but visitors can catch a cricket or rugby match on the British influenced islands like Barbados and the British Virgin Islands.
Jewelry, purses, and perfumes, oh my! Discounted prices, tax free islands, and duty free shopping in most locations make shopping in the Caribbean a must. Luxury items can be found at significantly lower prices than one might find at home, and many shoppers want to take advantage of these rates. Shopping for local products is also a great way to support the local economy, especially when you purchase handmade goods.
If one thing is for sure, it's that Caribbean natives know how to celebrate; and vacationers are welcome to celebrate with them at the annual events and festivals that are always happening. One of the most well known festivals is Carnival (or Carnaval), a celebration that nearly every island hosts at one point or another during the year. Festivals are great ways to learn about local customs, music, and dance, as well as eat delicious local food, purchase local goods, and perhaps meet a few interesting local people.
Just because the sun sets on the Caribbean doesn't mean you have to go to bed. Night time opens up a whole new host of opportunities for excitement. From theater productions and Vegas-style shows to casinos and night clubs, island nightlife can't be beat. Clubs reign supreme in Jamaica, while Aruba is known for its casinos. Resorts typically offer night time shows or casinos for guests to enjoy.
The choices don't end here. No matter what ideals shape your vision of a Caribbean getaway, you're sure to find what you're looking for, and you may even encounter a pleasant surprise or two during your stay.
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