For Americans and Europeans alike, the Caribbean is usually one of those destinations considered for special getaways, like honeymoons and milestone birthdays. And rightly so, since it is such an amazing region. With almost thirty countries being part of the Caribbean, there are a wide variety of islands to visit, all with their own characteristics. Some of the islands are easier to get to than others; in many cases with direct flights from major American airports but also from many other flight hubs around the world
Hypnotic Music – Jamaica
If you are looking for a typical Caribbean musical experience and vibe you should head to Jamaica. This is where what we today call reggae, an almost hypnotic music style driven by steady beats of drums or piano, was born in the 1960s. Bob Marley is probably the most well known contributor to this genre. Other types of music typical in the Caribbean include calypso, salsa, zouk, soca, ska and dancehall.
Cosmopolitan buzz – Cayman Islands
If you are keen on experiencing a more cosmopolitan feel, then the Cayman Islands may be your preferred destination. George Town on Grand Cayman – the main island) offers plenty of typical tourist opportunities including museums, shopping and local eateries. Cruise ships frequently stop at the harbour, adding to the vibe of the capital. Grand Cayman is also home to the Seven Mile Beach, which is very popular with holiday makers and locals alike, ensuring this holiday destination offers culture as well as shopping and relaxation.
Tropical hideaway – the Bahamas
For those who fancy a quiet tropical hideaway (although technically not in the Caribbean Sea, but rather the Atlantic) the islands of the Bahamas may appeal. Located just 50 miles off the coast of Florida in the United States, the 700 islands making up the Bahamas really aren’t far away, and they offer plenty of opportunity for seclusion.
Being a dream destination for many, there really is something for everyone, including white sandy beaches, a buzzing night life and amazing food. For those interested in golf, there are popular golf courses located at The Abacos, Freeport, The Exumas and Nassau & Paradise Island. For a slightly different experience, you can even swim with pigs off the Exuma island chain.
Swimming with pigs!
For a truly amazing holiday, also consider making your way to some of these must see Caribbean landmarks including Paradise Island in the Bahamas, Dunn’s River Falls in Jamaica, Virgin Gorda in the British Virgin Islands, and El Yunque National Forrest and Old San Juan, both in Puerto Rico.
Working in the Caribbean
Essential to many travellers, including those adapting the wandering life style I have come to enjoy, is the availability and speed of internet connection. Looking at the latest yearly update by ICT Pulse, the connection speeds in the Caribbean are generally improving compared with previous years. Unfortunately, Barbados and Trinidad & Tobago are the only islands with stated download speeds of 1 Gbps. The Bahamas, Cayman Island and Jamaica also offer reasonable download speeds of 300 Mbps or 400 Mbps, with all other islands offering slower speeds. The cost of the different plans vary greatly, so it’ll be important to do proper research for anyone planning on a longer stay.
The internet speeds for the Caribbean may sound slow, but for many they’ll still be sufficient. If not, perhaps ditch the work laptop, grab a traditional book and relax on one of the many beaches for a few days before returning to the connected world again.