Escorted tours to the Caribbean
Language: There are six official languages throughout the Caribbean; Spanish, French, English, Dutch, Haitian Creole and Papiamento.
Currency: Most Caribbean countries accept US dollars, however please check individual countries before travelling.
Time Zone: Time zones vary across countries so please check before travelling.
Tipping: Tipping is at the discretion of guests, apart from in restaurants where normally a 10-15% service charge is added to the bill.
Caribbean - an introduction
Coconut trees, tropical azure waters and Robinson-Crusoe beaches that trail out to crystal clear seas; it's little surprise that this colourful clutch of islands score highly among every type of holidaymaker. This real life paradise consists of over 7,000 islands and 28 island nations, each one boasting its own characteristics yet with the common ground of being the perfect place to relax and unwind.
From the exquisite beaches of Barbados and the surprising mountains of St Lucia, to chic St Bart’s and the unrivalled dive sites of Turks and Caicos, spending lazy days sipping cocktails and basking in the sun is what the Caribbean was made for.
Cuba is a popular highlight when it comes to Caribbean destinations; sip rum and cha-cha the night away in Havana, pick your way around picturesque colonial architecture in Trinidad or soak up Cienfuegos's unique atmosphere. An escorted Caribbean tour offers a superb and safe way of becoming familiar with the nitty gritty of the country's lesser-trodden parts.
Things to do
With 28 beautiful islands, The Caribbean is sure to have something to suit everyone:
This stunning island will give you the chance to marvel at the rocky east coast and the lovely beaches of the west coast. You can venture into the underground caverns in Harrison's Cave or wander round the pretty harbour.
Grenada's capital of St Georges is picturesque, encompassed between hills and leading down towards the harbour. Visitors can relax on one of the many beaches, wander round the cobbled harbour streets or embark on a trip through the rainforest.
The twin peaks of the "Pitons" stand out from the island. One of the most gorgeous secluded harbours, Marigot Bay, makes for a lovely trip and the Hill of Good Fortune is not far away. From Fort Charlotte you can see amazing views of the island.
This peaceful island is an ideal location to spend your time unwinding on the beach, or take an undisturbed walk through the coconut palms and fruit trees.
Thinking of travelling to the Caribbean? Check out the average temperatures for when you plan to visit courtesy of BBC Weather
Tips & Advice
One of the benefits of travelling in an escorted tour is that you'll be in the safest hands when it comes to holidaying in foreign lands. However, to help you have an enjoyable holiday in the Caribbean, take a look at these useful tips and advice provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO):
Health and Travel Insurance
Before travelling to the Caribbean it is worth checking to see whether you need any vaccinations or other medical preventive measures.
In addition to this you should ensure you have access to additional monetary funding and adequate travel insurance which can cover the cost of treatment and medical repatriation should it become necessary. Most tours offer the chance to purchase one-trip travel insurance at the time of booking.
Some islands in the Caribbean have high levels of HIV, therefore you should exercise the normal precautions to avoid exposing yourself to the virus.
Violent crime including murder has occurred in a few Caribbean countries. Usually this is within local communities and is fairly unlikely but it has been known to involve tourists.
Certain homosexual acts are illegal under Caribbean laws.
Maintain awareness at all times as you would in the UK. Don't walk alone at night or in isolated areas and don't carry lots of cash, jewellery or valuables on you. Leave valuables and travel documents in a hotel safe.
Local Laws and Customs
Drug offences result in severe penalties. All baggage should be packed yourself and you should not carry anything for anyone else.
You should not wear camouflage clothing as this is reserved for those in the military.
You do not require a visa if you are a British Passport holder staying up to 6 months. A return ticket must be held, and if you do not have one you may be refused entry.
Your passport should be valid for the whole time in the Caribbean.
If travelling through countries with risk of yellow fever, you must have a yellow fever vaccination.
Arrival and departure tax may have to be paid; please check the individual countries you are travelling to prior to departure. Please check the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) website for information on individual countries.
Any other nationality looking to visit the Caribbean must contact the local embassy to check visa requirements.
To find out more about visiting Caribbean, check out their official tourism website at caribbeantravel.com