August 17, 2017

5 Family-Friendly Caribbean Beaches

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Anguilla

Anguilla

It’s hard to find a “bad” beach in the Caribbean, but if you’ve got little ones in tow, some strands are more suitable than others. Ideally, you’ll want to find a patch with calm, shallow water; somewhere that’s small enough that the kids are always within eyesight; and with bathrooms and other facilities nearby. Here are a few of my favorites:

Doctor’s Cave, Jamaica
There’s good reason that this is Montego Bay’s most popular beach: warm clear waters fed by underground streams; a sweep of white sand; and a central location right on the city’s “Hip Strip.” You’ll pay $6 (kids are half price) to get into this private “bathing club” that boasts beachside restaurants, an Internet café and well-maintained changing facilities. And it’s worth every penny.

Bambarra Beach, Turks and Caicos Islands
If you’re staying on the main tourist island of Providenciales, consider a day trip to this secluded beach on the neighboring island of Middle Caicos. Hop the 30-minute ferry to North Caicos, then rent a car and drive about an hour to “Middle” and this breathtaking, off-the-beaten path beauty, where knee-deep, gin-clear water skims rippled sand for about a quarter-mile offshore. There are no restaurants, so bring a picnic and feast under the welcome shade of casuarina trees.

Smith Cove, Grand Cayman
Everyone talks about Seven-Mile Beach but about 20 minutes’ drive away, towards Georgetown, there’s a much smaller, lesser-known strand with oodles more charm. The tiny heart-shaped beach at Smith Cove (aka Smith’s Barcadere) is a great beach to meet local families, who come here for early-morning dips and afternoon picnics, and hotel staff, who seek refuge here on their days off. Look out for the painted blue iguana sculpture, one of 15 dotted around the island.

Emerald Bay, Bahamas
The Bahamas boasts some of the Caribbean’s best beaches, and the beaches in the Exumas (a chain of islands within the archipelago) are acknowledged as the best in the Bahamas. This mile-long curve of coast on Great Exuma Island is carpeted with sugary sands bordered by private homes and resorts. Look to the family-friendly villas and condos at Grand Isle Resort & Spa, which share the same strand and have bedrooms that open right onto the sand.

Anguilla
While other islands may crow about having a beach for every day of the year, Anguilla can claim “only” 33. All of them, however, are postcard-perfect. Beaches are public here, so even if you’re not staying at the swanky resorts that overlook them, you can still partake of their pleasures. Spread your blanket beside at shimmering Maundays Bay, located at the Cap Juluca resort. Or, park your bum on Shoal Bay, one of the island’s most popular strands, bordered by restaurants and shops.

Jet Set Sarah, Sarah Greaves-Gabbadon, is a Caribbean travel expert, award-winning travel journalist, and TV personality. Former executive editor of Caribbean Travel +Life magazine, she ventures to the beach and beyond, sharing the diverse culture, relaxed lifestyle and colorful people of the world’s favorite warm-weather destination. She is also jetsetter-in-chief at JetSetSarah.com, where travel and shopping meet 

Photo Credit: Margiebean

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