The Caribbean's Top Ten Hidden Beaches - Page 2
|BARE BEACHES: Mayreau features deserted beaches in the southern section of the Grenadines (courtesy, St. Vincent and the Grenadines Tourism)|
5. Owen Island, Little Cayman, Cayman Islands
Little Cayman is already the smallest and least populated of the Caymansjust 12 square miles and a population less than 200but there's even more seclusion on nearby Owen Island. The tiny islet sits about 200 yards offshore, opposite Little Cayman's upscale Southern Cross Club resort. Strong swimmers can make it there solo, but most people rent a kayak or hire someone to row them across. Owen Island is completely undeveloped, and it's not uncommon to have its powdery white sand and shallow, azure water all to yourself. Bring plenty of food, water, and a good book. Little Cayman itself has more deserted beaches (check out Point o' Sand at the island's far eastern tip) plus spectacular snorkeling and diving and a huge colony of red-footed frigate birds.
Little Cayman Vacation Guide
4. Mayreau, St. Vincent and the Grenadines
Continuing south down the Grenadines, the island of Mayreau is even smaller and less populated than Canouan, with a no-name village of around 300 people, and just one upscale resort. The resort is located at Saltwhistle Bay, an idyllic curve of powdery white sand shaded by palm trees at the north end of the island. The bay faces west, and its calm leeward waters make it a favorite anchorage for yachters. If the beach there ever gets crowdeda rare but occasional occurrencepaths lead a short distance to the island's windward side, where a long-deserted beach is great for beachcombing. Just east of Mayreau are the Tobago Cays, five uninhabited and impossibly beautiful islets with lovely beaches and terrific snorkeling, a must-do day trip for anyone staying on Mayreau.
Mayreau Vacation Guide
3. Canouan, St. Vincent and the Grenadines
There are two types of isolation to be had on the island of Canouan, about midway down the Grenadines. There's ordinary isolationstaying in a low-key hotel or villa and visiting low-key beaches like Glossy Bay or Friendship Bay. Or you can enjoy some "luxury isolation" at the super-deluxe Canouan Resort at Carenage Bay, which occupies most of Canouan's northern end. The resort's seven private beaches give you plenty of options for enjoying peace and quiet, without the privations of a completely deserted seashore. Mahault Bay (a.k.a. "Maho Bay") is the most famous and secluded spot, where the sand is ivory, the water sapphire, and clothing optional.
St. Vincent and the Grenadines Vacation Guide
2. North Caicos, Turks and Caicos Islands
You've probably seen pictures of Providenciales and its stunning Grace Bay beach, a 12-mile stretch of sand that's often voted one of the Caribbean's best beaches. But Grace Bay has hotels, resorts, and condos practically end-to-end. North Caicos Island, just a half-hour ferry ride or ten-minute flight away, receives only a fraction of the visitors. Along the northern shore are Whitby Beach (home to several appealing beach hotels), Pumpkin Bluff Beach, and Horse Stable Beach; together, they offer miles of empty white sand and extensive shallows that are great for snorkeling. North Caicos is also known for its bird watching, with a huge flamingo colony and rare whistling ducks.
Turks and Caicos Islands Vacation Guide
1. Rendezvous Bay, Anguilla
Anguilla is truly a beach-lover's paradise, with dozens of first-class beaches from which to choose. For peace and quiet, try Rendezvous Baywith just three resorts on two glorious miles of silky, white sand, you'll have no trouble finding a secluded spot to lay out your towel, soak up some sun, and enjoy the view of nearby St. Martin. Rendezvous Bay also is home to The Dune Preserve, a bar/restaurant/club run by local reggae star Bankie Banx, and one of the island's most unique (and agreeable) watering holes. Of course, no trip to Anguilla would be complete without a stop at Shoal Bay East, widely considered to be one of the world's best beaches. It can get quite crowded in the midsection, where all the hotels and shops are located, but it has long empty stretches on either end.
Anguilla Vacation Guide