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All fun, no fuss family holidays

Thinking about taking the kiddies away on an exciting beach break? Great idea! A Caribbean family holiday could be just the ticket. While there are tonnes of swanky hotels and upmarket resorts in this part of the world catering to honeymooners and adult holidaymakers, there are heaps of family-friendly options here, too.

Whether you’re staying in Cuba, Tobago, St Lucia or the Bahamas, you can expect hotels to have fantastic facilities as well as a range of delicious dining options – so even fussy eaters will be well looked after. Most resorts have kids’ clubs that cater for everyone from tots to teens, plus a spa where parents can enjoy some well-deserved R&R. And activities – both land and sea-based – are also available in abundance.

Outside the resorts, kids and grown-ups alike will continue to find plenty to keep them occupied on a Caribbean family holiday. Unsurprisingly, the beautiful beaches should be your first port of call. While the powdery soft sands are ideal for a spot of sunbathing, the clear blue waters of the Caribbean Sea allow for all kinds of adventures. You and the little ones can swim with whale sharks in Mexico; ride the waves at Jamaica’s best surf beaches; or snorkel amongst turtles in Turks and Caicos. And while the coast does tend to hog the limelight on a family holiday to the Caribbean, you’ll find yet more fun awaits away from the shore.

You can enjoy thrills at spills at a waterpark; raft down a fast-flowing river; scramble up a waterfall; or simply enjoy a scenic hike through lush, tropical rainforest. If either you or the kids have an interest in history, you might want to tour the Mayan ruins in Mexico, or visit the colonial capital of the Dominican Republic – Santo Domingo. Alternatively, why not spend some time with the friendly locals and get acquainted with the vibrant culture that the Caribbean’s so well known for?

Family hotels

Aquatic adventures

Exciting excursions

Best time to go

Family hotels

When it comes to deciding where to stay on your family holiday in the Caribbean, you’ll be absolutely spoiled for choice. In Mexico, you can’t beat the Hard Rock Riviera Maya. An all-inclusive resort with its own private beach and exclusive snorkelling areas, it’s also got a waterpark onsite as well as a kids’ club offering endless entertainment – think activities, games, crafts and music. Then there’s Moon Palace Jamaica, in the popular resort of Ocho Rios. Besides having a whopping seven restaurants, it offers non-motorised watersports, heaps of day tours, and a relaxing spa and nightclub for the grown-ups.

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If you’re considering a trip to the Dominican Republic, the Majestic Colonial Punta Cana should certainly be on your radar. With one of the best beach settings in the area, this spectacular hotel has friendly staff that do everything possible to make you feel at home, while also boasting all the amenities you’d expect from a five-star resort. All suites come with their own Jacuzzi, there’s a lazy-river-style pool, and just around the corner you’ll find an 18-hole golf course.

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Aquatic adventures

One of the best things about the Caribbean islands is the water that surrounds them. Ultra-turquoise and bathtub-warm, they’re ripe for all kinds of exciting adventures. The rich corals just off Mexico’s Caribbean Coast are part of the Mesoamerican Reef – the second-largest barrier reef in the world – while the Andros Reef that surrounds the islands and cays of the Bahamas is the third largest. So there’s plenty of scope for top-notch snorkelling. Chances are, in these places, as well as in Jamaica, Martinique, and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, you’ll even encounter sea turtles. Meanwhile, if you’re in the Dominican Republic, Grenada or Turks and Caicos between January and March, you’ll be able to go whale-watching.

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In most destinations, you and the kids will be able to enjoy a range of watersports on your Caribbean family holiday – kayaking, paddle-boarding, kite-surfing and parasailing are all widely available. Or if you’re keen to do some surfing, Puerto Rico, Barbados, Jamaica and Dominican Republic are all great choices.

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Exciting excursions

The beach isn’t the only place to hang out on a family holiday in the Caribbean. The likes of Jamaica, the Dominican Republican, the Bahamas, St Lucia and Mexico all have waterparks, while Barbados, the Cayman Islands and Grenada boast excellent nature reserves. Of course you can explore nature another way, with a scenic hike through the jungle – or a zip-line through the treetops. River rafting is another option, while the tropical waterfalls dotted all over the Caribbean allow for days spent climbing craggy rocks and swimming in refreshing blue pools.

Show More
Show Less

If you want to teach your kids about the rich culture of the Caribbean, you can always spend some time exploring the region’s historic gems. There are the Mayan ruins in Mexico, the spice plantations in Grenada, and Nelson's Dockyard in Antigua. Plus, you’ll find tonnes of museums, churches and colonial buildings pretty much everywhere you go.

Show More
Show Less

Best time to go

The best time for a Caribbean family holiday is during the dry season. There are of course slight regional variations but, generally, this runs from December to May. Highs at this time of year are usually between 25°C and 30°C, while lows are typically around 18-26°C. The humidity is low, rain is infrequent and there are plenty of sunshine hours every day. While the weather is pretty much perfect, there is a downside to travelling at this time of year – it’s when everyone else wants to go on their Caribbean family holiday, too. So, if you do visit during these months, just be prepared to encounter crowds in certain places – and also be aware that accommodation prices are likely to be at their highest.

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Show Less

If you’re not restricted by school terms, though, try to book your holiday for the beginning of December or early January – either side of the peak Christmas and New Year period. Things also tend to quieten down a bit after Easter, so think about visiting in the weeks after that up until early June, which is when the wet season begins.

Show More
Show Less

Family hotels

Family hotels

When it comes to deciding where to stay on your family holiday in the Caribbean, you’ll be absolutely spoiled for choice. In Mexico, you can’t beat the Hard Rock Riviera Maya. An all-inclusive resort with its own private beach and exclusive snorkelling areas, it’s also got a waterpark onsite as well as a kids’ club offering endless entertainment – think activities, games, crafts and music. Then there’s Moon Palace Jamaica, in the popular resort of Ocho Rios. Besides having a whopping seven restaurants, it offers non-motorised watersports, heaps of day tours, and a relaxing spa and nightclub for the grown-ups.

Show More
Show Less

If you’re considering a trip to the Dominican Republic, the Majestic Colonial Punta Cana should certainly be on your radar. With one of the best beach settings in the area, this spectacular hotel has friendly staff that do everything possible to make you feel at home, while also boasting all the amenities you’d expect from a five-star resort. All suites come with their own Jacuzzi, there’s a lazy-river-style pool, and just around the corner you’ll find an 18-hole golf course.

Show More
Show Less

Aquatic adventures

Aquatic adventures

One of the best things about the Caribbean islands is the water that surrounds them. Ultra-turquoise and bathtub-warm, they’re ripe for all kinds of exciting adventures. The rich corals just off Mexico’s Caribbean Coast are part of the Mesoamerican Reef – the second-largest barrier reef in the world – while the Andros Reef that surrounds the islands and cays of the Bahamas is the third largest. So there’s plenty of scope for top-notch snorkelling. Chances are, in these places, as well as in Jamaica, Martinique, and Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, you’ll even encounter sea turtles. Meanwhile, if you’re in the Dominican Republic, Grenada or Turks and Caicos between January and March, you’ll be able to go whale-watching.

Show More
Show Less

In most destinations, you and the kids will be able to enjoy a range of watersports on your Caribbean family holiday – kayaking, paddle-boarding, kite-surfing and parasailing are all widely available. Or if you’re keen to do some surfing, Puerto Rico, Barbados, Jamaica and Dominican Republic are all great choices.

Show More
Show Less

Exciting excursions

Exciting excursions

The beach isn’t the only place to hang out on a family holiday in the Caribbean. The likes of Jamaica, the Dominican Republican, the Bahamas, St Lucia and Mexico all have waterparks, while Barbados, the Cayman Islands and Grenada boast excellent nature reserves. Of course you can explore nature another way, with a scenic hike through the jungle – or a zip-line through the treetops. River rafting is another option, while the tropical waterfalls dotted all over the Caribbean allow for days spent climbing craggy rocks and swimming in refreshing blue pools.

Show More
Show Less

If you want to teach your kids about the rich culture of the Caribbean, you can always spend some time exploring the region’s historic gems. There are the Mayan ruins in Mexico, the spice plantations in Grenada, and Nelson's Dockyard in Antigua. Plus, you’ll find tonnes of museums, churches and colonial buildings pretty much everywhere you go.

Show More
Show Less

Best time to go

Best time to go

The best time for a Caribbean family holiday is during the dry season. There are of course slight regional variations but, generally, this runs from December to May. Highs at this time of year are usually between 25°C and 30°C, while lows are typically around 18-26°C. The humidity is low, rain is infrequent and there are plenty of sunshine hours every day. While the weather is pretty much perfect, there is a downside to travelling at this time of year – it’s when everyone else wants to go on their Caribbean family holiday, too. So, if you do visit during these months, just be prepared to encounter crowds in certain places – and also be aware that accommodation prices are likely to be at their highest.

Show More
Show Less

If you’re not restricted by school terms, though, try to book your holiday for the beginning of December or early January – either side of the peak Christmas and New Year period. Things also tend to quieten down a bit after Easter, so think about visiting in the weeks after that up until early June, which is when the wet season begins.

Show More
Show Less

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