(Carib Journal) You never forget the first time you see a truly great beach. No matter how crowded (or empty), how easy to get to, how big or small, there’s a feeling of discovery you get when you first set foot on the sand that is, well, magnificent. You feel that the beach is all yours, that you’ll never leave. This beach, you say to yourself, is why I travel to the Caribbean. But what if you could experience that 25 times? Our latest look at the best beaches in the Caribbean offers a unique mix of 25 superb beaches around the region. Some are big, some are tiny, but all of them will make you experience that wonderful feeling of finding a great new beach. Here are our favorites for 2018.
Pink Sand Beach, Harbour Island, Bahamas When you walk down the sandy path and emerge here, you feel like you’ve been transported to another world. The sand is pink, the beach is seemingly endless and you simply never want to leave. This is the best beach in the Caribbean for 2018.
Eagle Beach, Aruba Aruba’s preeminent beach has some of the whitest sand on earth. And it’s also remarkably wide, meaning you’ll never have any trouble finding a spot, even on a beach as popular as this one.
Seven Mile Beach, Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands It’s as perfect a beach as there is in the Caribbean, with soft sand and some of the clearest water you’ll ever see.
Grace Bay Beach, Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Turks and Caicos’ signature beach is this remarkable stretch of ultra-soft white sand and calm water, rimmed with some of the region’s finest hotels and resorts.
Valley Church Beach, Antigua There’s just something special about the color of the water here, a kind of bright turquoise that has to be seen to be believed.
Seven Mile Beach, Negril, Jamaica Equal parts beautiful beach and party capital, this always-bustling shoreline is Jamaica’s must-visit beach.
Palm Beach, Aruba The turquoise is sparkling here, but it’s the shallow, ultra-calm water that lets you stay here for hours and hours.
Diamant Beach, Martinique It’s as much about the energetic surf here as it is about the view — the spectacular Diamond Rock.
Old Bight Beach, Cat Island, Bahamas If you arrive and see a single car parked here, it’s crowded. This is a spectacular, endless white sand stretch with classic turquoise Bahamian water. And you’ll often have it all to yourself.
Grand Anse Beach, Grenada Grenada’s most famous stretch of sand occupies more than two miles on the southwestern coast of the island.
Pain de Sucre, Terre de Haut, Guadeloupe It’s the Caribbean’s mini-version of Sugarloaf. It’s a short hike to get here and then a major reward.
Treasure Cay Beach, Abaco, Bahamas This 3.5-mile-long beach has talcum-white sand, ultra-blue water and the great Coco Beach bar.
Boca Grandi, Aruba Set on Aruba’s wild east coast, this raw, breathtakingly beautiful beach is popular with kitesurfers. It’s also home to a brand-new beach bar, Tortuga.
Saona Island, Dominican Republic A frequent site for TV commercial shoots, this little island off the coast of the Dominican Republic can only be reached by boat. That’s what makes it so special.
Bathsheba, Barbados Barbados’ world-class surf spot is home to a stunning, almost mystical beach punctuated by massive boulders.
Les Anses-d’Arlet, Martinique We just love this beach set on a tiny French Caribbean town in Martinique, meaning perfect sand, calm water and some terrific beach restaurants, too.
Sand Dollar Beach, Great Harbour Cay, Bahamas Almost always entirely empty, this beach combines utterly perfect sand with shallow water that extends for almost a mile, making for a feeling of blissful remoteness that’s hard to replicate elsewhere, even in the Bahamas.
Pinneys Beach, Nevis The views of neighboring St Kitts, coupled with this beach’s soft volcanic sand, create a decidedly exotic feel.
Cabbage Beach, Paradise Island, Bahamas Yes, you can see Atlantis down at the other end of the sand, but the main stretch of Paradise Island’s flagship beach has the perfect mix of blue water and white sand, and is never too crowded, either.
Playa Bavaro, Dominican Republic The most popular beach in the Caribbean by visitor volume, Punta Cana’s Playa Bavaro lives up to the hype, with a row of seemingly infinite palm trees and smooth, beautiful water.
Dover Beach, Barbados The water is almost impossibly turquoise, the sand a brilliant white, and the bustle of the nearby St Lawrence Gap means this is a truly fun beach.
Frigate Bay, St Kitts The beach bars are the story here, as good a collection of shacks and rum shops as you’ll find on one beach in the Caribbean.
Princess Margaret Beach, Bequia Bequia is one of the more laid back islands in a region full of them, and this is it’s greatest stretch of sand.
Reduit Beach, St Lucia As good a beach as there is on St Lucia, this beach has ultra-calm surf and is particularly great for families.
Maracas Bay, Trinidad Are you a foodie? Then head straight for Maracas Bay, a gorgeous beach in its own right that also serves up some of the best street food around, highlighted by its famous bake ’n shark.
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