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    by Emily_D Fodor's Editor | Posted on Apr 27, 15 at 11:33 AM
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Which island? mix of fun and beach and locals

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So, I am looking for a vacation spot in March. I have spent a decent amount of time in the Caribbean, mostly for scuba vacations, and this time it is my girlfriend and I (she is not a scuba diver - so that is not relevant).
What we are looking for. Not wanting the mega resort world (so no Dominican or Jamaica). Want something close to the beach (or on it of course!), something were we can hang with a mix of locals and tourists and "feel" the experience at a local beach bar, etc. Want some night life - but don't need huge big clubs, but a little late night drinking and dancing is a must.

Would like a little snorkeling and catamaran sailings along with beach lounging. I would like a place were I can explore a bit on our own (maybe rent a car) and if I am driving - I want a place where you drive on the right (would hate to spend my vacation in the hospital because I turned wrong on a roundabout!)

Don't need high end shopping, but perusing a few little beachy shops for a bit is fun. Want to be able to run to a grocery store to stock up on food for breakfast and snacks to save up for the nice meals out. No roach cheap motel, but not a 5 start - think Hampton Inn type.

Where I have been and what I liked (to give you a feel for me)

Bonaire - been there 5x - love it- but Scuba diving in only reason I was there - love the place, but not what I am looking for this time - no real night life.

Roatan - see Bonaire - I never left CocoView resort

Naussau - only there for a night as I left for a scuba liveaboard

Maui - Love it - exactly what I am looking for - with maybe more night life needed (but maybe I did not find it)

Barbados - again loved it - but didn't feel like I should be driving around - was a tad spread out - but my part (south of bridgetown) I had a blast

DR - stayed at Hard Rock - we loved it, had a great time, but want something maybe less mega resort (and where we can explore the local area more)

Curacau - had fun - was there for a wedding, explored the area a little more - hated the traffic, but didn't get out an about other than near our villa - but had potential - maybe something more "rain forest" tropical thou.

Have visited several places on cruises, so never really got to explore - been to:
Antigua (thought it was rough for us)
Torotola - seemed beautiful, but maybe a little too low key??
St Thomas, potential, but just went to beach
Cozumel - again - potential, mix of fun and sand - but maybe not much island exploring
Grand Cayman - again - beautiful, nice, and clean, - think I could like it - but maybe a little expensive??

So - places I am thinking
Key West - cool bars, but not much beach or exploring
Puerto Rico - thinking a couples days in Old San Juan then either Culebra or another area for the rest
Playa Del Carmen - my sis is going there next week, can tell me more
Cancun - maybe to much mega resort?
St Martin - pricey, but maybe not - not to familiar with it

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