Which Caribbean Island should I vacation to?

Dec 5th, 2012, 10:11 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 3
Which Caribbean Island should I vacation to?

Going on vacation in April and know that I want to go to the Caribbean. But with so many choices, I have no idea where to go... I am looking for the following....

- Nice beaches with white sand and clear water
- Nightlife that includes bars/clubs/casino
- Strips with nice restaurants, great shopping e.c.t. with that old island village feel
- Not extremely covered with tourists but not deserted either
- Plenty of cool excursions, snorkling, scuba, e.c.t..
- Great scenery with plenty to do outdoors

I plan on renting a house/condo that's a short walk to the beach. I want the hustle and bustle of every day life. Want there to be plenty going on. It's just going to be my girlfriend and I and we are in our mid 20's. Any help is greatly appreciated!
danbanner is offline  
Dec 5th, 2012, 11:16 AM
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Bump... no help, really?
danbanner is offline  
Dec 5th, 2012, 11:38 AM
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First off, budget and time of year always helps.

Second, you're really not going to find your perfect island, everything is a contradiction

In general:

2 types of islands, hilly scenic with beaches in coves, flat dry scrubby with long white sand beaches and clear water.

The white sand clear water type are less crowded, no shopping, no casinos, not much nightlife.

Old island village feel is only in a couple of islands, think St. Martin, Grenada, many others, but in general the hotels, resorts and villas aren't walking distance to them.

Not extremely covered with tourists won't get you nightlife, casinos, etc. It's hard enough to sustain a business in Caribbean with crowds, there ctainly won't be any without the crowds.

Hustle and bustle of everyday life is harder to find, as vacation places tend to be away from the "real life"

Plenty going on? But with no crowds?

So you'll have to give up some things. St. John in Virgin .islands might come close to what you're looking for. But be warned, if a cruise ship carries some people over it can get crowded. No casinos.
It might fit everything else on your list.

Again though, budget helps.
blamona is offline  
Dec 5th, 2012, 11:53 AM
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Thanks for your response! Don't really have a limit on budget, can spend whatever. Sorry if my post was confusing, I do want some people there. One of the biggest things for me is nightlife. I don't want an island that shuts down completely at 6 pm. I want bars and clubs and partying going on well into the night.
danbanner is offline  
Dec 5th, 2012, 12:02 PM
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Sounds like Cancun to me.....
JeanH is offline  
Dec 5th, 2012, 12:07 PM
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I have not traveled extensively thoughout the Caribbean but I have been to a few places and in general I assume any place with nightlife is going to have tourists. Aruba has beautiful beaches with things to do during the day and plenty going on after dark. Puerto Rico and San Juan in particular is an active nightlife destination. The beaches are nice, but not the white sand with clear water you describe. There is certainly plenty to do if you want to be active during the day or night. St. Martin could be another option. The Dutch side has more nightlife ( casinos) but the French Side has some amazing restaurants.
genio67 is offline  
Dec 5th, 2012, 09:05 PM
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i agree...St Martin...seems to foot the bill...beautiful beaches...night life, casinos, restaurants...went for a summer...so many different beaches and each had its own theme...great suggestion
carol18 is offline  
Dec 6th, 2012, 04:15 AM
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St. Martin gives you what you're looking for except for it is crowded (especially if driving around, and beaches are crowded) and absolutely no scuba and snorkel. You can day trip to Anguilla which will give you the beaches you crave, they are the best in the world, but again nothing else on your list. So a combination might help.

Since you have unlimited budget, keep in mind in general the places with the white sand clear water are extremely expensive, and most islands still consider April peak season. Expect $500 a night or higher.

In general(again):

The beaches that you crave are on the flat dry islands, tend to be isolated, not much nightlife or shopping, no scenery (except for the glorious beaches) great scuba/snorkel

Best food: Anguilla, St. Martin, St. Barth
Best Beaches: Turks and Caicos, Anguilla, Virgin Islands
Best scuba/ snorkel: BVIs, Turks, Caymans, Bonaire (no real beaches)
Best Scenery: Virgin Islands, St. Lucia, Grenada
Best shopping: St Thomas, St. Martin
Best nightlife: Cancun, anywhere in Mexico, Aruba,St. Martin
Casinos: St. Martin, Puerto Rico, Aruba
Best old town strips with restaurants: Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic (have to drive to it) Aruba, Grand Case area of St. Martin, Playa Del Carmen, Grenada
Best not covered with tourists but not isolated: Turks and Caicos, Anguilla
Best cool excursions: water stuff, Turks and Caicos, Caymans, St Martin

So you'll have plenty to cross off before you decide, as no island has it all, and no islands are easy to combine.

So let us know the most important to you, as you won't find all your list on any island. Let us know which is important, or our recommendations will be all over the place.
blamona is offline  
Dec 6th, 2012, 06:29 AM
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You should listen to blamona. She's spot-on except for maybe this part: "... no islands are easy to combine. "

There's a frequent ferry between St. Martin and Anguilla. The journey is only 25 minutes. We sometimes spend a week on St. Martin and then ferry to Anguilla for another week. Very easy. It's also easy to get to St. Barts from St. Martin, either via the ferry (can be rough waters) or a quick, some think scary, flight.

It's also easy to combine islands in both the British and U.S. Virgin Islands. Again, there is ferry service between some of the islands which makes traveling between them quite easy.

Come back when you've figured out where you want to vacation and we can most likely help with accommodations and other things.
sharona is offline  
Dec 6th, 2012, 11:54 AM
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Sharon a, I completely agree with you. I should have said it's not easy to combine 2 islands that would cover ecpverything on his list.

For example, I agree with Anguilla/St. Martin, do it all the time. But have to give up scuba/snorkel. So you can't combine for example, St. Martin/Turks and Caicos to get it all on the list. Sorry I didn't clarify.
blamona is offline  

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