The Caribbean is famous for many things: music, delicious cuisine and amazing weather. And let’s not forget – some of the best rum in the world. But probably the most important and famous attraction that draws tourists from around the globe to this region are the gorgeous beaches in the Caribbean. And from personal experience we can tell you that the Caribbean is home to some of the best beaches in the world.  

Glistening water, powdery soft sands, glorious sun and brilliantly clears skies are the building blocks of beaches in the Caribbean. So making sure your vacation is on an island with the best the Caribbean can offer, is crucial.

Luckily we know this region like the back of our hand and are here to help! Here is our list of some of the best Caribbean islands for beaches. Expect bucket list locations and picture perfect coastlines.

If you are looking for more beaches to visit in the Caribbean check out our previous article on the islands with the clearest water in the Caribbean too!

THE 7 BEST CARIBBEAN ISLANDS FOR BEACHES

  1. U.S. Virgin Islands
  2. Trinidad and Tobago
  3. Jamaica
  4. Cayman Islands
  5. Anguilla
  6. Martinique
  7. Barbados
Best Caribbean Islands for Beaches

Best Caribbean beaches

1. U.S. Virgin Islands

The crème de la crème of beach destinations in the Caribbean, the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI), are nicknamed ‘America’s Caribbean Paradise’. If you are looking for the best beaches to visit, you have three stunning islands to choose from – St. Thomas, St. John or St. Croix – all of which have soft white sand and crystal clear water. But who said you have to choose? Spilt you vacation time and visit all three islands for the beach holiday of a lifetime.

Each island offers its own unique experience. St. Thomas is known for luxury stays, St. John attracts honeymooners and nature lovers, whilst St. Croix is famous for its beautiful colonial heritage and history. The USVI has topped best beach destination charts for decades, and is also regarded as as one of the best honeymoon destinations in the world too.

As the largest island, St. Thomas is the starting point for many yacht vacations and has over 40 beaches encircling the island. Fringed by palm trees, the beaches here are the embodiment of picture perfect.

Best Caribbean Islands for Beaches

Best Caribbean beaches

Remote St. Croix gives you a chance for a quiet and more serene beach getaway. With so many secluded beaches that you can visit on the island, St. Croix is the perfect place for a romantic retreat. The white sands and clear water on this island are potentially the best throughout the region.

As the smallest of the USVI, St. John has its own unique holiday experience to offer tourists. Two-thirds of the island and its surrounding waters actually fall under the U.S Virgin Island National Park and is therefore protected. That makes the coastline pristine and undeveloped – a rarity in the Caribbean. On top of that, St. John has a laid-back vibe, is home to many celebrities, has stretching green hills and rich coastal waters. An easy addition to our best Caribbean islands for beaches list.

Best Caribbean Islands for Beaches

Best Caribbean beaches

The Best Beaches in the U.S. Virgin Islands

  • Trunk Bay is the gathering spot for beachgoers in St. John who want to have fun.
  • Magens Bay in St. Thomas is known for having the best swimming waters in the USVI, and is probably the most photogenic beach too.
  • St. Thomas’ Coki Beach is one of the best places for snorkeling in the USVI.
  • Lindquist Beach in St. Thomas is a stunning undeveloped beach which is pristine and often very quiet.
  • The exquisite Sapphire Beach in St. Thomas is perfect for parasailing, kayaking, jet skis and other water sports.
  • Turtle Beach on St. Croix is a gorgeous beach that was once voted one of the ‘World’s Most Beautiful Beaches’ by National Geographic.
  • Cane Bay Beach on the northern side of St. Croix is the perfect place for families.
  • For a nature lovers paradise head over to Sandy Point Beach on St. Croix
  • St. John’s Maho Bay Beach is an idyllic beach that attracts a large population of sea turtles.
  • Leinster Bay and Waterlemon Bay on St. John offer a quiet beach experience and both are home to vast variety of marine life.

The Best Hotels and Resorts in the U.S. Virgin Islands

  • The Buccaneer
  • Marriott’s Frenchman’s Cove
  • Grande Bay Resort
  • Renaissance St. Croix Carambola Beach Resort & Spa
  • Sugar Bay Resort & Spa

2. Trinidad and Tobago

The beautiful twin islands of Trinidad and Tobago have some stunning beaches that have been attracting adventurous tourists for years. While they may be twin islands, Trinidad and Tobago actually have very different vibes.

As the larger island, Trinidad is the place to be for the ultimate beachside party life. The air pulses with the beat of Caribbean tunes here, as tourists revel in carnival celebrations. A hub of commerce and diversity, the island boasts a colorful Creole culture, and as the birthplace of steel drums and the limbo, Trinidad breathes an energy that is unrivalled. If you’re looking for gorgeous tropical beaches, alongside a fun and vibrant party scene, then Trinidad is your place.

Best Caribbean Islands for Beaches

Best Caribbean beaches

The smaller island, Tobago, caters to the more private and quiet holiday crowds. With pristine beaches, cooling palm groves and luxury resorts and villas, this secluded island provides a spectacular private holiday. Compared to its twin, Tobago is much more sleepy, but it’s also home to stunning natural wonders, sparkling white sandy beaches and simmering turquoise waters. (Recommended: The Best Beaches in Trinidad and Tobago).

Simply put, Trinidad offers festivities and Tobago offers romance. Trinidad gives you glam and glitter while Tobago gives you beauty and nature. And both have beaches that look like they’ve come directly from a holiday brochure (if they even exist anymore!).

Best Caribbean Islands for Beaches

Best Caribbean beaches

The Best Beaches in Trinidad and Tobago

  • Maracas Beach on Trinidad is perfect for surfing. Palm trees dot the beach while waves splash on the soft white sands.
  • Trinidad’s Las Cuevas Bay is a local favorite with its calm waves and hidden caves.
  • The secluded Blanchisseuse Beach in Trinidad is a pristine beach that’s perfect for watching sea turtles.
  • The coconut-lined beach, Pigeon Point in Tobago, is famous for the Buccoo Reef and a line of quaint restaurants along its coastline.
  • Tobago’s Englishman’s Bay Beach, is a jewel hidden within the forest line, with some amazing marine life and stunning sceneries.
  • Man-O-War Beach in Tobago is close to a small fishing village with calm waters and beautiful sunsets. But the waters are also home to the Portuguese Man-O-War jellyfish during certain months, so be careful!

The Best Hotels and Resorts in Trinidad and Tobago

  • Hyatt Regency Trinidad
  • Hilton Trinidad & Conference Centre
  • Magdalena Grand Beach & Golf Resort
  • Bacolet Beach Club
  • The Villas At Stonehaven

3. Jamaica

If you are looking for good food, lively music, comfortable resorts and exciting adventures, Jamaica is the place to be. The tunes of Bob Marley fill the air along with the clinking of beer bottles as tourists and locals gather to enjoy a day on the beach. This is an island of laid-back beach partying on gorgeous white sand. No wonder it makes our list of best islands in the Caribbean for beaches.

Enjoy some reggae music, mouth-watering jerk chicken and some authentic Jamaican coffee on some of the most beautiful beaches in the Caribbean. This island has over 900 kilometers of coastline and offers up a range of beaches from long sandy beaches bustling with the holiday crowd to more secluded beaches hidden by the cover of wild jungles and cliffs.

The waters surrounding Jamaica give you a spectacular show of marine life too, amongst healthy and colorful coral reefs. It’s a paradise for snorkelers and divers, and the variety of different beach activities in Jamaica makes this nation a perfect destination for honeymooners, solo travelers and adventurers alike. (Recommended: Scuba Diving in Jamaica).

While embracing the natural beauty at Jamaica’s two beach resort destinations, Montego Bay and Negril, make sure you also embrace the culture of Jamaica’s very own Rastafari movement. This is a country rich in culture as well natural sights.

Best Caribbean Islands for Beaches

Best Caribbean beaches

The Best Beaches in Jamaica

  • The renowned Negril Beach is the most popular beach amongst tourists and locals thanks to its long white sandy coastline.
  • The golden sands of Doctor’s Cave Beach is a quiet and tranquil beach where you often only have the sound of waves lapping against the shore.
  • Nestled within palm trees is Frenchman’s Cove with its pristine white sands and bright blue waters.
  • Bloody Bay is a private section of coastline for beachfront resorts, giving guests their own private beach to enjoy.
  • Tourists flock to the shores of Ocho Rios Bay Beach, to splash in the clear blue waters.
  • Close to Jamaica’s capital is Hellshire Beach, which has black sand and is bordered by the gorgeous Blue Mountains. It is the island’s hotspot for beach parties and carnival.
  • To the south of the island is the secluded Treasure Beach, which makes a great spot to get away from the crowds.
  • Winnifred Beach is known for its calm waters and mesmerizing coral reef that’s perfect for snorkeling.

The Best Hotels and Resorts in Jamaica

  • Jamaica Inn
  • Round Hill Hotel and Villas
  • Half Moon
  • Couples Tower Isle
  • Sandals Royal Plantation
Best Caribbean Islands for Beaches

Best Caribbean beaches

4. Cayman Islands

The three islands that form the Cayman Islands give you some of the most charming and best beaches in the Caribbean. Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac and Little Cayman offer their own version of fun in the sun too, as the Cayman Islands are known as a watersports, diving and snorkeling paradise. (Recommended: The Best Caribbean Islands for Snorkeling).

Along with white sand beaches and crystal clear waters, the largest island Grand Cayman grants you the opportunity of a lifetime as you can swim with a docile school of wild stingrays at a coastal location here nicknamed ‘Stingray City’.

Best Caribbean Islands for Beaches

Best Caribbean beaches

Cayman Brac and Little Cayman are less visited by beach-going tourists and cater more towards avid scuba divers. So if are looking for a quiet retreat to relax, Cayman Brac and Little Cayman are the islands to visit. Cayman Brac and Little Cayman have warm tropical waters and an abundance of underwater color and life, and subsequently can boast some of the best diving sites that the Caribbean has to offer.

Only ten miles long and a mile wide, Little Cayman presents tourists with empty beaches where you can enjoy a quiet moment under the sun as the waves gently roll over the isolated coastline. As the tropical winds rustle the palm trees, unwind and bask in the silence of nature in its purest form. If you ever wanted the beaches of the Bahamas but without the crowds, then this is it. Pristine empty beaches in paradise – that’s why it makes our list of the best Caribbean islands for beaches.

The rugged landscape of Cayman Brac gives eager adventurers a chance to get off the beaten track. Cayman Brac has limestone caves and sinkholes, sunken ships and lush forests with rare flora and fauna to see. For beach fans who like a bit of adventure, it’s perfect.

The Best Beaches in the Cayman Islands

  • Grand Cayman’s Seven Mile Beach is a popular tourist spot thanks to its long stretch of soft sand and crystal-clear waters.
  • Cemetery Beach found on the north end of Grand Cayman is much more secluded than the other beaches on the island.
  • Rum Point is another of Grand Cayman’s quieter beaches and will give you a more tranquil day at the beach.
  • Brac Reef Beach is Cayman Brac’s hotspot for diving, snorkeling, fishing and kayaking.
  • Little Cayman’s 11-acre Owen Island is a great place for picnicking beachgoers.
  • Sandy Point on Little Cayman is an isolated beach, making it the ultimate peaceful getaway.

The Best Hotels in the Cayman Islands

  • Kimpton Seafire Resort + Spa
  • Caribbean Club
  • The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman
  • The Westin Grand Cayman Seven Mile Beach Resort & Spa
  • Grand Cayman Marriott Beach Resort
Best Caribbean Islands for Beaches

Best Caribbean beaches

5. Anguilla

Simply put, dreams become reality when you visit the luscious beaches of Anguilla. A low-key holiday destination that most travelers overlook when visiting the Caribbean, Anguilla offers a luxurious beachside vacation that makes the trip worth every cent.

In a region where beaches are the main attraction, Anguilla is a small island with a handful of offshore islets, which proudly put up amazing luxury villa vacations with an authentic ambiance, incredible soft sandy beaches and azure blue waters.

Best Caribbean Islands for Beaches

Best Caribbean beaches

The waters that hem these tiny but beautiful islands are clear as crystal and teeming with marine life and vast expanses of coral reefs. Discreet beachfront villas dot the coastline but with premium features to indulge in. If you’re a beachgoer who’s looking for luxury and tranquility, then in our mind Anguilla is the best island for beaches in the Caribbean.

As one of the few islands that’s not facing overtourism in the Caribbean, a vacation in Anguilla is perfect for those looking for a serene place to unwind and relax. Isolate yourself by sunbathing, swimming and relaxing on the beautiful beaches that this island has to offer.

While Anguilla is small compared to the others on our best Caribbean islands for beaches list, it is home to 33 amazing stretches of beach. There’s a wonderful foodie scene on the island too, with many superb beachside restaurants, so you’ll have a treat for your tastebuds and your eyes when visiting.

The Best Beaches in Anguilla

  • Tranquil Shoal Bay East is a two-mile stretch of beach with soft sands and glimmering waters.
  • Rendezvous Bay Beach is a pristine white sand beach that allows you to bask in the sun in peace and quiet.
  • Surrounded by rocky landscape, Sandy Ground Beach is a more frequented beach with sailboats and yachts scattered in the water.
  • Barnes Bay Beach is a secluded paradise towards the north end of the island with an expansive open beach.
  • The rosy pillowy sands and aquamarine waters of Meads Bay Beach attract visitors from across the globe.
  • Cove Bay Beach is an untouched stretch of beach with rocky cliffs and shallow, calm azure water.
  • Crescent shaped Maundays Bay Beach, with its golden sands and gentle waves, is a local hotspot for swimming and snorkeling.
  • Little Bay Beach is a mesmerizing little bay fringed with a towering cliff-line and lush forest cover accessible only by boat or climbing down a rope from the cliff!

The Best Hotels and Resorts in Anguilla

  • Belmond Cap Juluca
  • Malliouhana, Auberge Resorts Collection
  • Zemi Beach House, LXR Hotels & Resorts
  • Four Seasons Resort and Residences Anguilla
  • Frangipani Beach Resort

6. Martinique

Home to the majestic but equally infamous volcano Mount Pelée, Martinique is a beautiful island shrouded in French culture. Another one of the Caribbean’s less visited islands, Martinique has a very unique landscape of mountains and beaches, blanketed by vibrant tropical rainforest. (Recommended: The Best Caribbean Island for Adventure).

As one of the Caribbean’s least visited islands, expect a range of untouched, pristine beaches. The island also offers up a decadent Caribbean-French mix cuisine and superb weather almost all-year round.

The beaches of Martinique attract a variety of tourists such as adrenaline junkies looking to zipline through jungles or hire jet skis on the cheap. As well as the usual sun-worshippers looking to catch some tropical rays.

Martinique will captivate your senses and have you falling in love with its pretty landscape, friendly Caribbean atmosphere, adventure activities, amazing fusion of French and Creole food, and some of the best beaches in the Caribbean.

Best Caribbean Islands for Beaches

Best Caribbean beaches

The Best Beaches in Martinique

  • The black sand of Anse Couleuvre Beach can be reached by hiking through dense jungle to visit this stunning yet remote location.
  • Anse des Salines is a picture perfect white sand beach with clear water surrounded by small shops selling trinkets and snacks.
  • Diamant Beach is the island’s most popular beach for surfers
  • A popular black sand beach that pops up on every visitor’s must-see list is Anse Noire, which is also a good place for snorkeling and scuba diving.
  • The crystal blue waters of Anse Figuier is packed with tourists and locals during the holiday season.
  • The beautiful beach, Anse Mitan, gives you equally beautiful views of the island and is one of the best places to catch some of the fun nightlife that this island has.
  • If you are looking to experience swimming with sea turtles head over to Anse Dufour.
  • A quiet oasis away from the bustling beaches, Petit Anse is a great place to rest and relax.

The Best Hotels and Resorts in Martinique

  • Club Med Buccaneer’s Creek
  • Cap Est Lagoon Resort & Spa
  • Hotel Bakoua
  • Hôtel La Batelière
  • La Suite Villa
Best Caribbean Islands for Beaches

Best Caribbean beaches

7. Barbados

The island of Barbados is known as an island that caters to travelers of any budget looking for all types of activities. From avid watersport addicts to couples looking for a luxury romantic getaway, or even budget backpackers, Barbados has everything, for everyone. It also happens to be one of the best islands in the Caribbean for beaches too!

Indulge in some authentic Caribbean rum and groove to the tunes of calypso that fill the air here. With a unique culture that holds on to its British past but embraces the Caribbean too, the ambiance in Barbados is laid-back and fun.

The picturesque beaches in Barbados are the picture you will have of the Caribbean in your mind. You’ll find two types of beaches here though. There are tranquil stretches of sand with gentle water along the west side of the island which are perfect for swimming. While some of the more remote, wild and rugged shores found in the east are perfect for water sports such as surfing and kiteboarding.

Best Caribbean Islands for Beaches

Best Caribbean beaches

The Best Beaches in Barbados

  • Carlisle Beach is a calm cove with bright blue water that is great for a gentle swim.
  • Known as one of the best beaches in the Caribbean, Crane Beach has an expansive shore and cerulean water.
  • Pebbles Beach is a great place to relax on sugary white sands and gentle waves. This is a favorite place of many for kayaking and paddle-boarding.
  • Mullins Beach gives you an all-round Caribbean experience while sipping some local rum.
  • The unique rocky landscape of Bathsheba Beach gives it a stunning wild and isolated feel.
  • A haven for watersport enthusiasts is Silver Sands Beach, which is perfect for windsurfing and kitesurfing.
  • A secluded spot that is popular among beachgoers, Miami Beach is a stunning location for a swim.
  • Accra and Rockley Beaches offer watersports such as body-surfing, windsurfing, sunfish sailing, and snorkeling.

The Best Hotels and Resorts in Barbados

  • Sandy Lane
  • Cobblers Cove
  • Fairmont Royal Pavilion
  • The House by Elegant Hotels
  • Sandals Barbados

Recommended For Your Trip to the Best Caribbean Islands for Beaches