Like a beauty pageant of nature, the best beaches of the Caribbean shine like nothing you’ve ever experienced. It’s simply amazing how beaches in this region, while diverse, collectively manage to exude irresistible Caribbean appeal and charm. Irrespective of the fact that the Caribbean is a hurricane prone region, beaches in this part of the globe have largely been able to maintain their magnificence throughout the years.
As you travel across the region, you’ll notice that some beaches have similar names, but are located in different countries. Although it is difficult to compare each beach to one another, if you are not a well-traveled Caribbean explorer, know that each beach has something special to offer.
Picture: Sandals Negril on Seven Mile Beach (beach number 18 in this list)
Keep reading to find out what the top 45 beaches in the Caribbean are, and where they are located.
Trinidad & Tobago
A scenic rainforest drive leads the way to this gem of a beach located on the Caribbean island of Trinidad. Almost an hour out from Port of Spain, this popular beach tends to be livelier than most, especially on public holidays. On week days, the beach is quieter, perfect for resting and sunbathing. There are lots of food stalls on this beach offering tasty snacks and drinks. Make sure you grab a bake and shark (fish sandwich) from one of the many beachside restaurants. Savor it on the glistening sands of this northern strand, taking in the unforgettable mountainside backdrops.
Insider Tip: Be aware of the sometimes strong currents on this beach.
Saint Lucia’s Pitons are a World Heritage site, and Jalousie beach is located smack in their bosom. The view of the towering Pitons from the beach is humbling, magnified by the mesmerizing blues and greens on the beach front. Jalousie Beach is located in the southern community of Soufriere, and is a must visit for any beach lover. Snorkeling in this area is good, but swimming or taking a boat a little further out is even better!
The stunning green backdrops reflected on the sea give this beach a unique feel. Anse Chastanet is known to be a popular scuba diving and snorkeling site; there’s even a dive shop on location! The long and windy road to this beach is a bit rough, but it’s worth the trip. The beach is located near Saint Lucia’s twin Pitons. It is also possible to visit this beach via boat.
The coral island of Barbados is known for its beautiful beaches, and Crane Beach is one of the top picks. Breezy, clean, and quiet, Crane Beach is perfect for relaxing and forgetting the world. Surfers of all kinds love this beach because of its great waves. Swimming here is something best left for strong swimmers.
This beach is hugely popular, especially for tourists. If cruise ships are in port, expect to find the beach lined with umbrellas and sun seekers. Reduit beach, also called ‘The Ramp’ by locals, is loved by most for its accessibility. There’s excellent swimming here in clear, warm waters, great views, and lots of restaurants nearby.
A rugged road takes you to Bathsheba, but it is scenic, and filled with the possibility of seeing unusual wildlife – like monkeys. Barbados is known for its population of green monkeys, and if you’re vacationing there, you’re bound to run into at least one. Bathsheaba beach is great for relaxing, and especially taking pictures. The rock formations here are stunning. As this beach is open to the Atlantic Ocean, the water tends to be rough. It is not the best choice for swimming, but still beautiful for those of you who care not to get wet. This beach is a top pick for expert surfers. Be warned: only go out when you know what you are doing. Bathsheba is famous for its strong currents and difficult conditions.
Dip your toes into the Caribbean Sea at this tropical gem in Barbados. The sands here are powdery, white and clean. You might even hear guitars strumming the background as you stroll along and take a dip in the warm ocean, cooling off after an afternoon in the sunshine. This beach tends to be calmer than most in Barbados, so it is especially popular with both locals and tourists.
Insider Tip: Book one of Sandals' all-inclusive resorts in Barbados, located right on the beach for a romantic getaway.
Turks & Caicos
This beach is fairly easy to find, though the access road is quite rocky. Long Bay is in close proximity to Grace Bay, in the Providenciales. Kite surfers on this scenic beach are a sight to see. Many people come to this beach for that purpose. If you’re into horseback riding, this beach is also ideal. Horses are able to get far out because of the shallow waters, and that in itself makes for a great experience!
Trinidad & Tobago
There is more than one ‘Pigeon Point Beach’ in the Caribbean, and Saint Lucia and Trinidad feature the top two beaches with the name. Trinidad’s Pigeon Point Beach is located in the south-west of the island and is one of the more popular beaches on the island. As part of your adventure at this beach, it may be worth your time to venture out on a glass bottom boat to the nearby Bucco Reef. You’ll find great snorkeling there, and lots of colorful fish species and coral. While there you can swim in Nylon Pool (named by Princess Margaret), which is essentially a natural swimming pool about a metre deep with a sandy bottom, bordered by a sand bar. Overall, you can’t go wrong with this beach!
Insider Tip: For a less crowded experience, don’t go when the cruise ships are in. There is a small entrance fee of TT$20 to go to this beach.
This beach is quite popular for snorkeling and beach combing. Yup, you heard right. People actually go to Darkwood Beach to comb through the sand to see what interesting things they’ll find. There are shells plentiful on this beach – beautiful ones at that. This is a calm beach, away from the crowds, and relatively secluded. There is a small water park in this area for kids.
Insider Tip: Be aware that there is shelf drop once you get about waist deep into the waters on this beach.
Clean, with clear waters and white sands, Dickinson Bay is one of the most talked about beaches on the island. Not far from the cruise ship port, this beach tends to receive lots of cruise visitors, but the beach itself is large enough to accommodate. You can find pretty much anything you’d like on this beach, including lots of fun sea excursions. Sandals Grande Antigua is located right off the beachfront, and the property adds to the ambiance of the beach.
Pinel Island is hard to beat when it comes to finding a great spot for a beach day. There’s a lot to do while on Pinel Island, including snorkeling, hiking, and turtle seeking! Make it an adventure, and rent kayaks to get there. This beach is quiet, but tends to get a bit more populated when cruise ships are in port.
Insider Tip: If you’re traveling with kids they may enjoy seeing the small and large hermit crabs and iguanas which are plentiful on this island.
A top-rated beach, this calm and beautiful oceanside vantage draws scores of visitors to Saint Barthelemy. Saint Jean beach is mostly calm in the shallows, with wave action happening further off shore, which sometimes attracts surfers. You’ll find just about everything you need for a perfect beach day here. Like many Caribbean beaches in this area, Saint Jean has been affected by recent hurricanes. It is steadily bouncing back to its former glory.
The only thing more mesmerizing than a sea of blue, is a sea of blue surrounded by the richest of greens. Frenchman’s Cove in Jamaica is a nature lover’s delight. This is a relatively secluded beach which comes with a small entrance fee. But once inside, you’ll find a beach with decent service and offerings of reasonably priced food and drink. A river runs through this beach all the way down to the surf.
Cable Beach comes complete with excellent online reviews, and if you’re looking for a great beach in Nassau, you’ll be happy to know it lives up to the hype. Most days you’ll find this beach buzzing with activity, from children running about exploring the sandy shores, to visitors and locals taking in the warm waters and amazing views. You can swim around freely in waters of the clearest variety, or go out into the water sports zone where activities are plentiful. Take some time to explore this expansive beach before claiming your seaside vantage for the day.
Tip: Looking for a great beachside resort on Cable Beach? Sandals Royal Bahamian is located in this area!
If you can’t say you’ve been to Punto Cuna, can you really say you visited the Dominican Republic? The same goes for Bavaro beach, located in that same territory. This expansive beach draws in thousands of visitors each year and it is a top choice for beach lovers in the Dominican Republic. There are lots of palm trees here, which add just the right measure of tropical authenticity when you’re taking a romantic walk down these white sands.
There are so many outstanding beaches in the Caribbean that it is hard to choose a favorite. Kenepa Beach located in Willemstad Curacao is near the top of the list of best beaches for its accessibility, and touristic appeal. Whether you’re a fan of cliff jumping, snorkeling, of just lounging on a sunny beach, Kenepa will meet your needs. You’ll find a snack bar, and plenty of beach umbrellas and chairs for rent on this beach.
Coconut vendors, palm trees and even the occasional fruit vendor, Grand Anse Beach in Grenada has it all. This beach draws visitors in because of its calm surf and convenient location. Grand Anse Beach is mostly serene and peaceful, with the exception of high traffic times when cruise ships are in port. You can take a water taxi (ferry) or regular taxi to this beach.
Saint John, U.S. Virgin Islands
Maho Bay, located within the Virgin Islands National Park is a popular beach in Saint John. On this beach you’ll see tent-cottages, 114 in total, which are part of the island’s eco-tourism thrust. Snorkeling at Maho Bay is highly recommended, as running into sea turtles and other sea life is common. Maho, less-trafficked than Trunk Bay, features a stretch of postcard-worthy sand and turquoise waters, the essence of what makes Saint John unique!
If you want to feel like a celebrity for a day, this is your beach. The beautiful islet of Palomino has been known to feature high-end shoots of famous people, and other VIPS. Spanning around 100 acres, this beach is located at the northeastern tip of Puerto Rico. This beach is super exclusive though you may spot the occasional private yacht docking for a couple hours while on island. This is your go-to if you want a peaceful beach. Palomino is an 8-minute ride on a fast moving catamaran available from the resort.
With 365 beaches to choose from, one for every day of the year, beach options are endless in Antigua. Valley Church is in the top 5 because of the combination of great facilities and privacy that can be found here. There’s a beach club at one end of the beach and complete peace and serenity at the other. Valley Church features a long stretch of white sand and great facilities. It is family friendly, and a must visit on a trip to Antigua.
Bottom Bay in St. Philips Parish Barbados is a gorgeous place. Some call it the most beautiful beach in all of Barbados and a visit here will show you why. Palm trees swaying in the wind will greet you as you make your way to the beachfront. You may find a coconut vendor or two at Bottom Bay, but it’s best to walk with your own goodies. This beach is located on the Atlantic side, which means there are bigger waves so be cautious if you decide to get into the water.
Insider Tip: If you take a cap here make arrangements with the driver to come back to pick you up as this is a low traffic destination.
Saint Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands
Located in Smith’s Park, Lindquist Beach is one of the most pristine beaches on the island of St Thomas. This beach features a stretch of bright, white sand and luminous blue water. The water on this beach is so unbelievably clear and calm that on a typical day, you’ll feel like you’re standing in a tropical swimming pool. This beach features cool views of nearby islands, and it is located on the East end of St Thomas, on Smith Bay Road. Lindquist beach is best enjoyed in a group. Keep in mind that there are no bars and restaurants on this beach, so walk with your own snacks and a cooler stocked with drinks.
Insider Tip: Be aware of the rocky areas on the water’s edge. Wearing water shoes, particularly for children, is recommended.
Anegada, British Virgin Islands
Located within the British Virgin Islands, this is a lesser known beach that will pleasantly surprise you. Visitors often leave rave reviews after they visit this beach which features shallow waters and a beautiful atmosphere. Cow Wreck Beach offers easy access to Horseshoe Reef for snorkeling and the shallow waters on this beach are great for the whole family.
Insider Tip: Be aware that on some days the current on this beach can be quite strong.
Cuba is a top choice for people looking for the vacation of a lifetime, at reasonable cost. With that said, hardly anyone who goes to Varadero beach as part of their vacation comes back with bad reviews. This beach is hands down one of the most gorgeous in the Caribbean, with soft sand, and the necessary amenities for your comfort. There are a few resorts along this beach, so it is safer than most, and kept impeccably clean. Varadero is especially breathtaking at night. You’ll never forget the moments you spend here, so make sure you go with people you don’t mind being etched into this memory forever.
Saint John, U.S. Virgin Islands
The stunning blues on this beach are mesmerizing, and the sands are powdery white. This beach is one of the most photogenic beaches in the Caribbean, and it has racked up the awards to prove it. There are lots of useful facilities here, which add to its popularity. When visiting Trunk Bay Beach, be sure to check out the 225-yard-long Underwater Reef Trail! This beach tends to get busy when there is cruise ship activity, so it might help to look out at the ports ahead of time to decide. It is possible to take a ferry over from nearby Saint Thomas.
Historical note: This beach was donated by Laurence S. Rockefeller to the National Park Service almost 50 years ago!
Soft pastel pink sand, calm waters and breezy skies – three of the ingredients needed for a relaxing beach day. Horseshoe Bay Beach in Bermuda has all three. Located in Southampton Bay, these sands will steal your heart. There is a lot to see here so walk with your camera. You may even spot some mega yachts from your beachside vantage, as this a popular destination for wealthy Caribbean island hoppers. Horseshoe Bay Beach is ideal for a taste of Bermuda’s famous pink sand beaches, some of the loveliest in the world. There are lots of caves and coves to check out on the edges of the beach.
Insider Tip: Just east of Horseshoe you’ll find some truly iconic coves including Warwick, which features beautiful pink sands.
This beach is one of the most loved beaches in Jamaica, and for good reason. With sand comparable to the softness of baby power, warm breezes, and cool waters, Seven Mile Beach will take your breath away. Jamaica’s laid back party atmosphere comes to life on this beach and when it’s time to go, we’ll bet you’ll be asking for one more hour.
Insider Tip: Sandals Negril is an award winning all-inclusive resort directly located on Negril's Seven Mile Beach.
This wide expanse of beach is perfect for unwinding. The soft sands here just might be the softest you’ve ever set your feet on. This beach offers an unobstructed view of the nearby island of St. Maarten, which will really make you feel like you’re getting the best of both worlds. With striking blue waters that are conducive for swimming, it’s hard to beat Rendevous Bay.
Insider Tip: Visit the Sun Shine Shack on the beach for BBQ or lobster or fish.
Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands
Rave reviews would lead just about anyone to Seven Mile Beach in the Cayman Islands. Luckily, the reviews are right when it comes to how beautiful this beach is. If you’re in this area, we recommend starting your walk down the stretch near Coconut Joe’s and walking north. There is a lot to see along the way, and you’re bound to end up at Calico Jacks restaurant and bar which offers great food and drinks!
Insider Tip: A walk further up this beach can lead to more peace and quiet.
Soft white sand and a breezy atmosphere, Eagle Beach is a must visit while in Aruba. Beach umbrellas and chairs are available for rental, so you’ll be able to take in the views in comfort. The gradual slope of the sea bed on this beach makes it perfect for swimming. The waters here are calm and refreshing, so dive right in! Keep an eye out for sea turtles that are known for nesting on this beach. Water sports are available on this beach.
Insider Tip: Be sure to ask about the hugely popular Divi Divi trees in this area!
Some beachgoers say this beach on the coast of Costa Rica is reminiscent of a movie set, with a lush jungle setting on one side, and a bright and sunny shore on the other. Punta Uva is highly rated as far as beaches go in this territory, especially for people who appreciate a less crowded experience. Past the reef on this beach you’ll find some cool swimming areas. Some people choose to bike to this beach, which takes about 25/30 minutes from Puerto Viejo. If you’re lucky, while on this beach you may spot monkeys in the nearby forest. It is also common to see turtles, and even river otters!
Located next to Warwick Long Bay in Bermuda, Jobson’s cove is a lucky find for its alluring scenery, and dainty pink sands. This small cove is a favorite for beach goers who prefer less crowded beaches, as well as families with kids. The rock formations on this beach make for great exploring, and snorkeling is popular in this location.
Insider Tip: Bring your own drinks and snacks.
Meads Bay in Anguilla is perfect for some fun in the fun. The scenery, ambiance, and convenience are what draws most people to this waterside vantage. The sands are silky and inviting, and while you’re sipping on something delicious and cold, you’re likely to spot some spectacular luxury yachts in the distance, or perhaps even run into an incognito celebrity, taking in the best of what Anguilla has to offer.
Big Major Cay in the Bahamas, also known as ‘Pig Beach’ has a reputation unlike most Caribbean beaches. Tourists flock here for much more than sun, sea and sand. In fact, the real life pigs that reside on the island are the attraction, and they have been for years. Visitors to this beach come for the swimming piggies, to this island in the Exumas, and it is an experience unlike any other!
Insider Tip: You can take a boat from Staniel Cay to ‘Pig Beach’ at a reasonable cost, or book a tour at the Sandals Emerald Bay resort in Exuma.
French Leave Beach is a getaway, on a getaway island. This beach is secluded, and loved by most for its gorgeous pink sands. Even well-travelled vacationers will agree that French Leave is one of the most spectacular beaches in the world. Depending on when you go, you’ll either have this beach all to yourself or you’ll find it populated with guests from a nearby resort. Either way, you’ll still have lots of time for sunning, snorkeling in the cove and riding the waves!
Insider Tip: There is little to no shade on this beach, so walk with a beach umbrella!
It’s not every day that you run into a pink sand beach, and for this reason Harbour Island’s Pink Sand Beach is a dream. One may think it is common to find pink sand on a beach in the Caribbean. It is not. Pink sand is a beautiful rarity, best observed where the water hits the sand. Aside from the color of the sand on this beach, the atmosphere is welcoming and rejuvenating. Along the beach you may find little shops selling drinks or snacks, or you can bring your own. Pink Sand Beach is also popular for honeymooners.
Insider Tip: To get to this beach you’ll need to make your way down a short dirt path through the trees.
Also known as ‘Blue Beach’, La Chiva is great for swimming and snorkeling. On some days it can get a little windy here, but for beach goers fortunate to have the La Chiva experience under their belt, it remains one of the best beaches in the world. With calm and shallow waters, this beach is located at ‘Marker 12’, of about 20-22 other numbered entrances for the La Chiva beach area. The beaches here vary slightly, depending on which entrance you choose, so it’s worth exploring before settling into your spot for the day.
Insider Tip: As this beach is relatively secluded, pack everything you’ll need for a fun beach day.
Shoal Bay in Anguilla belongs on a postcard. It’s one of those places that will set your heart at peace upon arrival. A ferry ride away from Saint Martin, this Caribbean beach is top rated. The waters here are relatively shallow. When the waters are calm, its perfect for snorkeling.
If beaches are rated by their measure of azure waters, the softness of the sand, and the pure bliss emitted just from being on their shores then surely Playa Paraiso belongs at the top of that list. The waters here are clean, cool and refreshing, and are shallow for a long distance, which adds to the family appeal. If you take a 15-20 minute walk up the beach you’ll run into another beach, Playa Sirena.
Still in the Bahamas, Lighthouse beach located on Eleuthera Island lives up to the hype. It is serene and absolutely mesmerizing. It is a bit of a challenge to get to the beach itself, as the road is quite rugged, but with the right directions you’ll soon be sprawled out on a beach towel with calming Caribbean breeze ushering you into a world of relaxation and bliss.
Insider Tip: Due to the remote nature of this beach walk with everything you’ll need for the day. Lighthouse Beach is a great location for picnics.
Jost Van Dyke, British Virgin Islands
Warning, this beach is jaw droppingly gorgeous! One of the most scenic beaches in the British Virgin Islands, White Bay Beach has evolved over the years. Now, instead of just one bar along the stretch of white sand, you’ll find plenty to eat, drink and do. You can get to this beach by car or by catamaran. There are also some really cool hiking sites nearby.
Insider Tip: The Soggy Dollar bar is a must visit!
Flamenco beach has some of the best ratings on the web, and if you go for yourself, you’ll quickly find out why. Described as “unreal” and “heaven on Earth”, Flamenco will literally take your breath away. Located on a small island near Puerto Rico, you can choose to take a ferry, or a local flight to get to Culebra, where Flamenco Beach is located. There are food stalls and other amenities on this beach, so you’re pretty much set for a relaxing day in paradise. Though it will take a bit of planning to get here, the experience is worth it in the end.
Insider Tip: You can take the ferry over to this beach from the Ceiba terminal at a cost of US$4.50 round trip. The ferry takes about 45 minutes to one hour.
At mere mention of the Bahamas, it’s easy to transition (if only in your mind) to a place where life is carefree, and there are a plethora of white and pink sandy beaches waiting to be explored. In your deepest imaginings, perhaps it is Coco Plum Beach you see, as this beach is the definition of idyllic tropical haven. There’s not much else we can say here, except that you need to see it for yourself. Oh, and at low tide you can walk out about a half mile out in angle deep water. You may even come across some sand dollars, which are plentiful here!
Insider Tip: Sandals Emerald Bay, an award-winning all-inclusive resort in Exuma, is located on a 10-minute drive from Coco Plum beach and is located on a gorgeous stretch of white sand beach. Visitors can also book a tour to the swimming pigs from this resort.
Picture: Sandals Emerald Bay, award-winning all-inclusive resort in Exuma - includes a Greg Norman designed championship golf course!
Turks & Caicos
Grace Bay Beach, located on Providenciales, features white sand and shimmery blue seas. With no seaweed or rocks in sight, this beach is as picturesque as they come. Some of the best-rated resorts in the world are located in this area. If you’re into snorkeling, further off shore there are some great diving locations accessible via this beach.
Insider Tip: Award winning all-inclusive resort Beaches Turks & Caicos is located right on Grace Bay beach.
Picture: Grace Bay beach in Turks and Caicos, voted the World's Best Beach.
Beaches shift most people into a carefree mode, but here are some helpful tips to keep in mind while on your Caribbean vacation. Paying attention to these tips will help keep you and your family safe.
Tip: If stung by a Jellyfish, get out of the water immediately. Rinse the area with vinegar for at least 30 seconds. You may use a mild hydrocortisone cream or oral antihistamine to reduce itching and swelling. Seek a doctor’s opinion if severe and avoid scratching the area.
It’s hard to go wrong when you decide to venture to the Caribbean for a well-deserved vacation in one of the beach resorts the region has to offer. The islands almost always have perfect weather, and beautiful beaches abound. Hopefully this article makes it a little easier for you to find the paradise island you’ve always dreamed about.