Five Best Caribbean Islands for Watersports

27th May 2019

On June 16, International Surfing Day is celebrated by activists and volunteers who work together to protect and enjoy our precious coasts. In celebration, we’ve picked out our best Caribbean islands for watersports. From surf breaks in the Bahamas, to kitesurfing in the Grenadines, there are endless opportunities for adventure in the Caribbean.

1. Surfing the Exumas, Bahamas

Ok, not strictly the Caribbean, you’ve got us there, but we can’t not mention that surf fans can find some great waves in the Bahamas off Nassau. The swell and waves are not consistent but if you are blessed with the right conditions, you’ll find breaks without the crowds. Eleuthera is your best bet with breaks on its north coast (north to north easterly wind conditions) and eastern side (north to south easterly wind conditions). Recommended spots include Surfer’s Beach off Gregory Town, James Point Beach and Man Island.

When to go? Head out from November to April. Temperatures are around 80-85ºF between December and May with sea temperatures in the low to mid 70s.

Flight time: 1 hr 15 mins from Fort Lauderdale to Marsh Harbour

2. Kitesurfing in Union, Grenadines

Union is gaining a reputation as a popular kitesurfing spot for confident riders who can handle upwind on flat, shallow water or, if you are highly skilled, you can head to the breaks for air acrobatics. If you’re keen to learn, there are local schools you can book lessons with, making it one of the top destinations for Caribbean watersports. Recommended spots include Kitebeach, Frigate near Ashton and Big Sand in the north (for north easterly winds).

When to go? Make the most of the trade winds and travel from mid-December to the end of June.

Flight info: 4 hrs 25 mins from Atlanta to Grenada

3. Kayaking in British Virgin Islands

One of the best Caribbean islands for watersports, if you’re after a thrilling challenge, then kayak from The Baths at Virgin Gorda to Fallen Jerusalem. Don’t be deceived by the apparent short distance on the map, your arms will get a full work out from the swell and fast current. Make sure you wear a life jacket and listen to the VHF forecast before you set out. For more ideas, check out our guide to hiring yacht watertoys in the BVI, which also includes the best paddleboarding destinations.

When to go? Enjoy the trade winds between November and June, including the Christmas winds. Temperatures are around 82ºF year round.

Flight info: Fly from Florida via Puerto Rico, St Thomas, Antigua or St. Maarten to Tortola

4. Diving the Mayreau Gardens, Grenadines

For the best coral reefs, sail to Tobago Cays Marine Park and Mayreau. Drift dive the sloping coral wall at the deep sea reef, Mayreau Gardens. The area is heavily protected and you will need to arrange a guide. Nearby you can explore the wreck of British gunship, Puruni in 40ft of water.

When to go? To make full use of the Caribbean watersports, sail during the dry season between December to May for tropical temperatures up to 85ºF with cooling trade winds. You’ll see nurse sharks, stingrays, lobster, eels, as well as a colorful array of fish.

Flight info: 4 hrs 25 mins from Atlanta to Grenada

5. Snorkeling the Jardines de la Reina, Cuba

Head 50 or so miles from the main island to the archipelago, Jardines de la Reina or the Queen’s Gardens where you’ll find over 200 uninhabited small mangrove islands over 75 miles. Some call it the Galapagos of the Caribbean because of its biodiversity among the coral reefs. This is a protected park and visitor numbers are restricted to protect the reefs.

When to go? December to April for 81ºF. You’ll find the area is protected from the waves with warm water and high visibility of 100ft. It’s perfect for snorkeling and watching small fish in the mangroves or large groupers, barracuda, nurse sharks and reef sharks, eagle rays and sea turtles on the virgin reefs.

Flight info: 1 hr 15 mins from Miami to Havana

What’s your best Caribbean island for watersports? If we’ve missed it off, let us know. If you’d like to embark on a Caribbean yacht charter, then get in touch. From bareboat charters, to hiring a skipper, cabin charters and luxurious crewed charters, our vacations cater to everyone.

Alternatively, for more vacation inspiration, head on over to our blog.