Spectacular beaches, catamaran trips, Champagne for breakfast, intoxicating diving, gourmet cuisine, volcanic peaks and rejuvenating escapes – you’ll find all this and more among these Caribbean islands

Been to one Caribbean island and think you’ve seen them all? Think again, as each island has a unique charm. Blessed with sunshine, stunning beaches, exhilarating watersports and fantastic food and culture to boot, here’s a rundown of the region.

BARBADOS

With miles and miles of idyllic beaches, an abundance of internationally acclaimed restaurants, lively nightlife and a range of elegant resorts, Barbados is the most cosmopolitan of the Caribbean islands.

Oistins Fish Fry is not to be missed, with locals and tourists travelling to the charming fishing village on the south coast every Friday to dance and enjoy delicious fresh fish from the ocean. Also highly recommended is the Lone Star restaurant located on the Platinum Coast – it’s renowned for its idyllic setting and was described as ‘The Ivy of the Caribbean’ by Michael Winner.

Hop on a catamaran for a fun day out and you’ll even get to swim with turtles. Or simply sit back and enjoy stunning vistas as you sail along the west coast with a rum punch in your hand.

Located on the platinum coast, Cobblers Cove Hotel exudes country house comfort combined with Caribbean charm. Also on the platinum coast is The House by Elegant Hotels, a boutique adult-only retreat where Champagne is served for breakfast to start your day in style. Wherever you choose to stay, set your clock to Barbados time as one visit will see you returning time and again. Cobblers Cove Hotel on the platinum coast in Barbados

GRENADA

Known as the Spice Island, Grenada is a paradise of spectacular beaches, charismatic towns and dramatic mountains. This enchanting island is a haven of authentic beauty above and below the sparkling ocean. There are an abundance of dive sites as well as the Underwater Sculpture Park, a submerged art installation, regenerating the coral and marine life, it’s perfect for snorkellers and intoxicating to view.

St George’s, Grenada’s capital, is one of the most picturesque towns in the Caribbean. It’s the perfect place to explore on foot with its handsome old buildings and pretty harbour as well as the interesting shops and cafés that dot the narrow and busy streets.

Calabash Luxury Boutique Hotel & Spa is an intimate, luxury retreat with the superb Rhodes restaurant – directed by Gary Rhodes himself – offering gourmet cuisine.Calabash Luxury Boutique Hotel & Spa in Grenada

SAINT LUCIA

Rising majestically from the shimmering Caribbean Sea are the verdant volcanic peaks of the Pitons. These iconic landmarks create a striking backdrop, potentially the most instagrammable pictures in the Caribbean. Relax on one of the sandy beaches, hike the picturesque national park or enjoy lively nightlife at Rodney Bay.

With accommodation ranging from romantic boutique properties to luxurious resorts, Saint Lucia is an inspiring, versatile destination exuding a magnetic charm. We’d recommend Sugar Beach, a Viceroy Resort, for its incredible Piton views, impressive beachfront location and fabulous luxury villas. Or, if you’re looking for a rejuvenating escape, try BodyHoliday, a hotel that provides a health and well-being holiday experience with a free daily spa treatment.

JAMAICA

One of the largest islands in the Caribbean, Jamaica offers a rich cultural history and distinctive cuisine in a stunning setting. The beautiful stretches of white sand beaches against the backdrop of the cool verdant mountains create a stunning juxtaposition of land and sea. Music is the lifeblood of Jamaica with the vibrant cities oozing Caribbean rhythms and reggae vibes.

Set within 110 acres on a hillside overlooking Round Hill Bay, the Round Hill Hotel and Villas offers a wonderful blend of low-key luxury and timeless glamour with stylish rooms designed by Ralph Lauren.A Jerk chicken sign in Jamaica

ANTIGUA

Renowned for its impressive beaches and sparkling azure waters, Antigua is one of the most picturesque Caribbean islands. With 365 beaches, one for every day of the year, beach hopping along the Antiguan coastline is a delight. Tear yourself away from the glistening white sands and there’s more to discover. English Harbour is a fully restored Georgian dockyard, developed by Captain Horatio Nelson, in colonial times serving as a British Naval base and now a hot spot for bars and restaurants, the perfect place to sit back, relax and admire the boats.

The luxurious Carlisle Bay is on one of Antigua’s most beautiful beaches and sits on the island’s unspoilt south coast against a backdrop of rolling hills and lush tropical rainforest. With its chic design and award-winning facilities, the hotel brings a new standard of contemporary luxury.

These top spots and tips were compiled with the help of the team of travel experts at Trailfinders. Their travel centre is at 5 Union Street, Bath. Tel: 01225 724 000; trailfinders.com 

Featured image: BodyHoliday in Saint Lucia