Begin researching your Caribbean vacation with a little reading. With resources such as Web sites and travel guides, it's easy to find everything you'll need to know about the islands.
You've already taken the first step to getting the knowledge you'll need by visiting this Web site. The information provided here covers general travel needs and can be supplemented by using the official Web sites for the individual islands of the Caribbean as well as the Caribbean Tourist Organization. However, these are not the only places you can find information online. Internet searches can reveal many helpful results to help get your research going.
Internet travel sellers can be another useful resource. These vendors can offer information about the various amenities offered and differences between the Caribbean's hotels so you can get a clearer picture of where you will be staying. They can also save you time if you know the type of hotel you're looking for or the location you want to visit. If you're not sure, these sites will allow you an overview of the many types of accommodations, airfares, cruises and other island rentals and bookings available to Caribbean vacationers. Many island services, such as yacht charterers, have Web sites with helpful information to point you in the right direction.
Internet resources can also be extremely helpful in pointing out options for the budget conscious Caribbean visitors or for travelers who may want a vacation in multiple destinations. Many Web sites allow users to narrow destination choices by rates.
You also may want to visit a local bookstore and pick up one of the many guidebooks found in a section dedicated to Caribbean travel. You should review these guidebooks before making a purchase. While some may contain very similar and redundant information, facts, prices and travel tips vary from book to book. Some sources offer more information on resort hotels, and others may focus on traveling with children. Some are dedicated to specific activities and cultural elements of the islands. These are important distinctions, and sometimes looking at more than one book can be helpful in your research to give you a well-rounded view of the options available.
If you visit a bookstore for guidebooks, you may want to spend a few extra minutes browsing through the magazine rack as well. Several magazines focus on both travel and the Caribbean. While you may not want to buy a subscription, looking at current issues may offer some ideas and advice for your trip. There are online versions of many magazines as well, and the articles in Caribbean and general travel magazines can offer insight from columnists who have visited the islands.
Another wonderful travel resource is other people. Friends and colleagues who have visited the Caribbean in the past can make excellent sources when you're looking for real hands-on information about the islands. They may regale you with stories of a wonderful trip, or give you tips on what to watch out for if their vacation was less than perfect.
The Web can be another source for real-world advice. Large company-run sites, such as those for some Caribbean magazines, have travel message boards where people ask questions and get answers about resorts and other travel necessities. Whatever the case, nothing is a substitute for real experience. As always when asking for guidance, you will want to consider the trustworthiness of your sources before making decisions based on their advice.
As a whole, the Caribbean can be an exciting tropical destination, but tourism can mean something different from island to island. Keep in mind the many different cultures that inhabit these islands, the varied terrains and the activities available in every destination. The research you do will help you gain invaluable travel information by acquainting you with the differences and pointing you toward the places you're most interested in.
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