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Tropische Bucht in der Karibik, Bild: Aerial-motion / shutterstock

All islands of the Caribbean at a glance

The Caribbean has many fantastic destinations. However, one or the other is sure to have a hard time choosing the right Caribbean island. In the following article, we briefly introduce the individual islands. For further information, we have linked the detailed articles in each case.

Anguilla

Anguilla, Caribbean
Natural bay on Anguilla, Image: Nikolay Tranov / shutterstock

Anguilla belongs to the archipelago of the Lesser Antilles in the Caribbean and is a British Overseas Territory. It is the main island of the archipelago, which also includes other uninhabited coral islands, and is itself made of coral and limestone. Anguilla is about 25 kilometers long, a maximum of five kilometers wide and has a total area of 91 square kilometers. Crocus Hill is its highest point, which is only 65 meters above sea level.

Antigua and Barbuda

Antigua and Barbuda Beach
Idyllic tropical darkwood beach in Antigua island in Caribbean seas with white sand, turquoise ocean water and blue sky, Image: BlueOrange Studio / shutterstock

The election and advertising slogan of the island state of Antigua and Barbuda could also serve as a program for a successful vacation: “Experience it to believe it”. Without a doubt, it is a special experience to experience one of the fascinating sunsets on these so-called “Leeward Islands”. Some of the 365 beaches between the Caribbean and the Atlantic Ocean shimmer pink.

Aruba

Aruba is considered the first of the so-called ABC Islands (Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao). The island was inhabited more than 3000 years ago. The population group known as Arawak is believed to have immigrated from Venezuela via the offshore and neighboring islands of Bonaire and Curacao.

Bahamas

The Bahamas are something of a magic word for vacationers who can’t escape wanderlust. The sea glistens turquoise, the palm trees on the beaches sway in a warm wind and the white sand invites you to take long hikes. For connoisseurs of this archipelago, this is all a beguiling mixture of luxury and a cheerful charm.

Barbados

Compared to most other islands in the region, Barbados has a fairly flat topography as it is not of volcanic origin, making it not only suitable for soaking up the sun, but also for activities such as cycling or hiking. It’s famous for its white-sand beaches, turquoise and clear waters, tasty coconuts, as well as an unbeatable rum punch. Despite all these enticing features, this paradise is a comparatively unspoiled island for tourism, with most visitors coming from the UK.

British Virgin Islands

Norman Island, British Virgin Islands
Norman Island, Image: Andy Deitsch / shutterstock

The British Virgin Islands are undoubtedly the epitome of all the clichés that holidaymakers make of an exotic dream destination. Green rainforests stretch up to the peaks of the mountains, and on the beaches the palm trees bend in a mostly mild wind. And if you haven’t chosen the hurricane season as the date for your trip west, you can hope for carefree days without significant precipitation and temperatures between 26 and 32 degrees Celsius.

Bonaire

Bonaire, which belongs to the so-called ABC Islands (formerly the Netherlands Antilles) (Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao), can point to a long-ago, albeit not glorious, history. The indigenous people are the Arawak, who still make up a large part of the population today. From this it also follows that the language used in the main is the “Papiamentu”. However, there are no communication difficulties because of this. Because in addition to Dutch, sufficient English is also spoken. It is assumed that the Arawak settled on Bonaire from other islands.

Cayman Islands

Snow-white, seemingly endless sandy beaches, in the background you can hear the sound of the waves rolling out on the beach just a few meters in front of your feet. The sun shines down from the cloudless blue sky and it smells gently of sweet tropical fruits. Large coconuts hang from the palm trees next door. In the middle of the Caribbean Sea between Cuba and Mexico lie the Cayman Islands, which could hardly be more picturesque. If you are looking for paradise on earth, you will find it on the three-part archipelago.

Curaçao

Netherlands Antilles, Curacao
Turquoise blue water in Curacao, Image: Simon Dannhauer / shutterstock

Curacao is a special jewel among the ABC Islands, along with Aruba and Bonaire. As early as 4,000 BC, the island was settled by the ancestors of the Arawak Indians. The cave paintings in the Hato Cave still bear remarkable witness today, which can also be visited. Gradually, the island suffered the same fate as its neighboring islands. It was first claimed by the Spaniards, then by the Dutch, English and Americans. What they all had in common was that they were primarily interested in the exploitation of natural resources.

Dominica

Wavine Cyrique Waterfall Dominica
Wavine Cyrique waterfall on the black beach in Dominica, Image: david blais / shutterstock

Between the well-known Caribbean islands of Martinique and Guadeloupe lies the rather unknown island of Dominica. The island paradise still offers an original Caribbean atmosphere away from mass tourism. Holidaymakers who come to Dominica experience pure adventure: spectacular scenery, exciting hikes and a mystical backdrop known from Hollywood films make the island a true pearl of the Caribbean. An important factor for this magnificent nature is certainly nature conservation. This is taken very seriously in Dominica. For example, there is a “Cleaning Day” and children are taught respect for animals as early as primary school.

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Dominican Republic

The Dominican Republic is a major power in the world of tourism. Much earlier than its Caribbean neighbors, the country knew how to open up to vacationers. With a good infrastructure, an acceptable network of paths, modern hotel complexes and an overwhelming nature. In contrast to Haiti, with which it shares the pearl of the Antilles, the republic is green, and anyone who travels through the country encounters huge plantations with sugar cane, coffee and bananas.

Grenada

Saint George's, Grenada, Lesser Antilles
Saint George’s, the capital of Grenada, Image: Claudio306 / shutterstock

The Caribbean island of Grenada is the southernmost of the Leeward Islands. La Grenade was what the French called the island in colonial times: the jewel. And she is a jewel indeed. It is of volcanic origin, only 18 kilometers wide and about 34 kilometers long, but the extinct volcanoes rise up to 840 meters out of the sea.

The island is almost completely covered with rainforest. Dreamlike beaches invite you to linger, while inland, untouched nature, crater lakes, waterfalls and hot springs beckon. And despite all this, Grenada is still considered an insider tip and is not flooded by crowds of tourists.

Guadeloupe

More than a dozen volcanic islands belong to Guadeloupe , six of which are inhabited – Basse-Terre, Grande-Terre, Marie-Galante, La Désirade and the Îles des Saintes. From lonely sandy beaches to forested mountains, the archipelago’s scenic diversity stretches. The two main islands of Basse-Terre and Grande-Terre together form the wings of a butterfly. They are separated by a mangrove swamp spanned by a few bridges.

Haiti

Jamaica

Montego Bay Beach
On the beach at Montego Bay, Image: Sheri Swailes / shutterstock

On the paradisiacal island of Jamaica , there is something like a “magic triangle”: reggae, rastafari and rum! But it’s not just the hot rhythms, the unusual hairstyles and the alcoholic beverages that attract guests from all parts of the world to this tropical region. Rather, it is the wonderful beaches, the warm sea in all seasons and the fascinating underwater world on the coral reefs on Jamaica’s doorstep. But the sound of reggae will remain in the memory of many holidaymakers long after they have been caught up in everyday life.

Cuba

Cuba’s sights are on the one hand the cities with their magnificent, partly dilapidated colonial buildings. On the other hand, you can experience and enjoy a dreamlike nature with endless white beaches and exotic national parks in Cuba .
The mentality of the Cubans, which is characterized by joie de vivre and melancholy at the same time, can be felt everywhere, even in the traditional music and dances of the country, the Son Cubano.

Martinique

Martinique is one of the many dream islands of the Caribbean. It is not only their political affiliation to the European Union that is convincing, but also the friendliness of the people and the unique culture. The island belongs to France, which is why French is also spoken. Martinique is located between the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea. The island is about 6,000 kilometers away from France. The island is one of the more expensive Caribbean islands. The advantage of Martinique: Here you can pay in euros! In addition, only an identity card is required for entry, which is also an advantage.

Montserrat

Montserrat
A typical image on Montserrat: Stone-covered beaches, Image: t.m. urban / shutterstock

From the air, Montserrat impresses with its lush green, tropical vegetation and the three volcanic massifs. A distinction is made between the Silver Hills in the north, the Centre Hills in the interior of the island and the Soufrière Hills in the south. Soufrière is one of the most active volcanoes in the Caribbean and is known for a series of disastrous eruptions in 1995 and 1997. At that time, the capital Plymouth was almost completely buried by a devastating river of ash and is therefore often referred to as a modern Pompeii . About two-thirds of the approximately 12,000 inhabitants at the time had to leave Montserrat for security reasons – the entire southern part of the island was declared a restricted zone.

Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico is the easternmost and smallest island of the Greater Antilles, which also includes Cuba, Jamaica, and Hispaniola. The U.S.-administered country is a destination that is still relatively unknown to Europeans, although it fulfills all the clichés of the Caribbean. However, the port of San Juan, the capital, is visited daily by numerous cruise ships, whose passengers then want to discover Puerto Rico in one day and are guided through the picturesque old town in groups for a few hours.

Saba

Saba, The Bottom
The Bottom on Saba, Image: Wandering Lexicon / shutterstock

Saba, together with its neighbors Green Island, represents a tropical paradise. The same applies to the more distant islands, such as Bonaire and Curacao. To ensure that this remains the case, the councils of the respective islands appointed by the Dutch crown take care of it. In fact, the Isel is considered a holistic nature reserve where rigorous rules for the protection of fauna and flora, above and below water, prevail. Nevertheless, many divers and sailors, occasionally yachts find their way to Saba.

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Saint-Barthélemy

Also known as St. Barts, the island is part of the overseas department and a little bit of France in the middle of the Lesser Antilles. The island of volcanic origin is considered an insider tip for relaxing holidays away from large crowds. It occupies an area of only about 21 square kilometers and is the smallest island in the French Antilles, but captivates with a great variety of landscapes. St. Barts has endless fine white sandy beaches, turquoise seas, dazzling coral reefs, winding inland hiking trails, exotic flowers and picturesque towns.

Saint Lucia

St. Lucia is heaven on earth. Here you can look forward to an incredible mix of nature and fantastic beaches. Anyone who has ever been to St. Lucia will certainly visit the Caribbean island again. St. Lucia is characterized by picturesque landscapes that can convince with their rich, green color and enchanting nature. Fantastic beaches and a tropical climate all year round are also convincing.

Saint-Martin & Sint Maarten

One of the peculiarities of the Caribbean is that the distance between two islands can be as little as an hour and you can still find yourself in a completely new world. This contrast is particularly evident when heading from a destination to the island of Sint Maarten . The peace and tranquillity that can be found on many of the smaller islands is exchanged here for cosmopolitanism and a permanently active nightlife. St. Maarten has become the pulse of the Caribbean and is now a sought-after destination for vacationers from all over the world. The island itself can boast some interesting features.

Sint Eustatius

St. Eustatius, SSS Islands
View of St. Eustatius, Image: EQRoy / shutterstock

If the Caribbean island were to be listed, a large part of the Germans would certainly completely forget St. Eustatius . If they have ever heard of the name of the island, which used to be part of the Netherlands Antilles. The situation could be different in the Netherlands. After all, the small island in the Caribbean is still a special municipality of the Netherlands and has a long history of colonization behind it. The small island has become a Mecca for those tourists who want to experience Caribbean flair without mass tourism. It is mainly the lovers of nature who are drawn to the small island paradise.

Saint Kitts and Nevis

The island state of St. Kitts and Nevis is one of the twelve smallest states in the world and is home to just 55,000 permanent residents. Significantly more people will be found here on each visit. The islands in the Caribbean are among the secret favorites of vacationers who are not drawn to the islands that are heavily developed for tourism, such as the Dominican Republic . St. Kitts and Nevis has a flair all its own and, contrary to prejudice, is not just a destination for people with a thick wallet. Holidaymakers with the demand for a special culture and great sights will also be able to spend a great holiday here.

Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

A popular destination for cruises through the Caribbean, yet a little off the beaten track – the island of St. Vincent, the main island of the island kingdom of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, attracts with its contrast of idyllic beaches and deserted bays as well as wild jungle, mountainous wilderness and volcanic landscapes. St. Vincent, with its capital Kingstown, an area of 346 square kilometers and about 25,000 inhabitants, is part of the Commonwealth of Nations and its name dates back to 1498, when Christopher Columbus landed there on St. Vincent’s Day. The breathtaking Caribbean landscape attracts not only vacationers and nature lovers, but also film crews, so that several places on the island became the backdrop of the famous “Pirates of the Caribbean” films.

Trinidad and Tobago

Trinidad & Tobago Beach
Fantastic beach of Trinidad & Tobago, Image: Claudio306 / shutterstock

Just off the coast of Venezuela is the often-mentioned but rarely visited island nation of Trinidad & Tobago. The two southernmost islands of the Antilles have a long and curious history and are still considered a curiosity in everyday life and in the various forums and reports for travel due to their exotic name. The charm of the Caribbean can be experienced here in a very special way. It is not least the people themselves who make this place a special destination for travelers and vacationers from all over the world. In addition, there are a lot of things to discover on the two islands.

Turks And Caicos Islands

Unknown, dreamlike beauties like the Turks and Caicos Islands possess so much charm and appeal precisely because of their obscurity. The idyll is still a lesser-known holiday destination and actually you don’t want to report so much about such a place, preferring to keep the secret. On the other hand, however, every person should be given the opportunity to go to paradise and back again.

Virgin Islands / Amerikanische Jungferninseln

The archipelago of the U.S. Virgin Islands belongs to the Lesser Antilles. The US Virgin Islands, as they are officially called, consist of about 68 islands. Only the 3 largest among them, St. Thomas, St. John and St. Croix, are permanently inhabited. The archipelago is about 70 km from Puerto Rico. It is also not that far to the Dominican Republic.