13 Under-the-Radar Gems Only Found in the Caribbean
The islands of the Caribbean are beloved for their beautiful beaches, sand, surf, and sunshine, but that’s just part of its glory. Here we highlight where else the Caribbean has bragging rights.
Caribbean Sea Jazz Festival, Renaissance Festival Plaza, Oranjestad, Aruba
courtesy aruba tourism authority
You can’t go wrong with great music and awesome scenery, and you’ll get both at the Caribbean Sea Jazz Festival, an annual event in September. The weekend-long bash draws some 8,000 local and international visitors to enjoy top quality jazz acts, combos, bands, theater, arts and fantastic food.
Junkanoo, Nassau, Bahamas
Courtesy nassau paradise island promotion board
Nobody is quite sure how Junkanoo, a celebration on Boxing Day and New Year’s Day, started, but one thing’s for sure, it’s party time! You might hear that it originated with John Canoe, a West African Prince who bested the English and became the big man on campus so to speak in the early 1700s. Then there’s the tale that it comes from the French. It’s also thought to have developed from the days of slavery. Wherever it came from Bahamians love Junkanoo, with its colorful masks and costumes, stilt walkers and all manner of revelry is three days of sheer fun. Masses of people, singing, dancing, drums, cowbells, whistles, horns, parading through downtown Nassau. You definitely want to put this on your list of must-go-to festivals.
The Botanical Gardens, Nevis
Courtesy Aviva Patz
The Botanical Gardens of Nevis, on the Montpelier Estate overlooking Mount Nevis and the ocean, are a marvel. There are five-acre gardens with tropical plants from around the world, dolphin and monkey fountains, cascades, water lilies, over 100 species of palm, orchids, roses, fruit trees, and more. Don’t miss the parrots in the Rainforest Conservatory that whistle and say Hello. Hungry? Head upstairs to The Oasis Bar and Restaurant for a spectacular view of the island and authentic Thai food.
The Caribbean is definitely on our list of summer vacation packages worth the money.