There are many spots you can dip your toes in the sand, but the best Caribbean beaches offer privacy, less crowds, and natural beauty.
If you’re a fan of sun, surf, and sand, we can guarantee you’ll have trouble finding a beach in the Caribbean that you don’t like. There’s something about wiggling your toes in the sand while holding a frosty margarita that has a certain magical effect on the soul, don’t you think?
While it seems impossible to find a “bad” beach in the Caribbean, there is something to be said for the good ones — the really, really good ones — and the best Caribbean beaches we’ve listed below will become your new measuring stick for future vacations.
The best Caribbean beaches to add to your bucket list
1. Shoal Bay Beach, Anguilla
With 33 pristine beaches, Anguilla has a reputation for being home to some of the best beaches in the entire Caribbean. It seems almost an impossible feat to choose the top version of paradise, but Shoal Bay Beach is the most popular with locals and tourists alike. Keep in mind, Anguilla is never very busy compared to other islands, so you can enjoy the calm, clear water or selection of good eats in relaxation mode. Try entering the beach in the parking lot between Madeariman and Uncle Ernie’s (a celebrity hot spot), get a pina colada at Tropical Sunsets, and begin your beach day.
2. Crane Beach, Barbados
Have you ever seen golden sand with a hint of pink? You’ll find it on Crane Beach in Barbados. The limestone cliffs and palm groves add a dramatic touch to the atmosphere. Don’t forget your boogie board — the waves are on the stronger side, but nothing you can’t handle.
3. Saline Beach, St. Barths
Walk down the tucked away path to Saline Beach and you’ll feel like you’re in on a really special secret. The path opens up to a smaller, secluded beach that you may only have to share with one or two other groups (nude sunbathing is permitted here). This beach truly is hidden away, so if you plan on spending a significant amount of time, bring snacks, chairs, and anything else you might need.
4. Seven Mile Beach, Cayman Islands
Seven Mile Beach has received top honors in the past from publications like Caribbean Travel + Life, who named it the best beach in the Caribbean. Because the beach is so long (yes, it’s seven miles as the name implies), you’ll be able to find something to interest every member of your family — snorkeling, parasailing, or volleyball.
5. Doctor’s Cave Beach, Jamaica
You’ll have to pay a small fee before stepping foot on Doctor’s Cave Beach, but we assure you — it’s worth it. The facilities are clean, there’s plenty of rental equipment available, and there’s a ban on vendors, footballs, and radios to keep things quiet and intimate.
6. Trunk Bay, St. John, USVI
St. John’s claim to fame is its natural beauty, and Trunk Bay has plenty to go around. The big draw is the 225-yard-long underwater trail of reefs, which has been preserved and protected as part of the Virgin Islands National Park. It can get a little crowded, but the snorkeling can’t be missed.
7. Orient Bay Beach, St. Martin
Orient Bay is the most developed and popular beach on St. Martin, which means there are plenty of places to eat and opportunities for water sports. If you’re a fan of snorkeling, Orient Bay is one of the best Caribbean beaches for checking out the underwater scene because the area is a marine reserve.
8. Macaroni Beach, Mustique
Set up your chair on Macaroni Beach in the morning, and there’s a good chance you’ll have the entire spot to yourself. It’s a lovely spot for picnicking and you can reserve your table ahead of time. Your villa staff will even come down and set the picnic up for you so you can focus on more important things — like your late morning nap.
9. Oualie Beach, Nevis
The calm, warm waters are a big draw during the day, but come back at night for a spectacular sunset. If you order food and drinks while you’re there, the beach chairs and hammocks are free (rentals are cheap if you’re not hungry).
10. Honeymoon Beach, Peter Island, BVI
Peter Island itself is small and virtually untouched, and Honeymoon Beach continues with that wonderful theme. It is at the end of Little Deadman’s Beach (ignore the grim name) and it’s a romantic escape with one thatched palapa and two lounge chairs waiting for you.
11. Lindquist Beach, St. Thomas, USVI
Some beaches in St. Thomas can get crowded when the cruise ships roll in, but Lindquist Beach is a hidden jewel that has very few crowds, powdery white sand, and calm waters. There’s a small fee to park, but the beach is clean and safe, making it completely worth it.
12. Cane Garden Bay, Tortola, BVI
This beach can get slightly busier than others, but it’s a fantastic hub of activity on the island. Cane Garden Bay gets bonus points for great beach bars, strong drinks, and live music around happy hour. You can also rent a boat or kayak, go snorkeling, or just hang out and relax.
13. Grace Bay Beach, Turks & Caicos
Grace Bay Beach is 12 miles of turquoise water, white sand, and total perfection; it was, after all, voted the 2016 best beach in the world by TripAdvisor. What makes it so ideal? On one end is Smith’s Reef, which is known for world class snorkeling, and on the other is quiet, secluded beauty and access to the mangroves. In between, you’ll find water sports, restaurants, and relaxation.
14. Savannah Bay, Virgin Gorda, BVI
Savannah Bay is always uncrowded, but has some of the best views, swimming, and snorkeling you’ll find in the Caribbean. There are a few picnic tables with umbrellas, so pack a cooler, have lunch, and spend the entire day at the beach.
Ever stay in a beachfront villa?
Visiting some of the best Caribbean beaches is a “must” for any traveler, but you have the option to make your trip even more special by staying in a villa that’s on the beach. Just talk to one of our Villa Specialists about your desire to be a 24/7 beach bum on vacation, and they will show you some of the best beachfront villas available. Browse our beachfront villas now.