The first thing that probably comes to mind when you imagine a vacation in the Caribbean is a white sand beach with warm turquoise water and swaying palm trees. The second thing is probably an all-inclusive resort with expensive yachts and retired expats. For independent travelers, the latter is mostly a deterrent for a beach vacation on a Caribbean island. With some small considerations and thoughtful planning, you can turn what you might think to be a standard Caribbean vacation into an adventurous taste of island life.
Shoulder seasons:those delightful wedges between high and low seasons that offer decent weather, smaller crowds and a healthy potential for deals on hotels and airfare. Shoulder seasons indicate a drop in tourism demand, but not in intrinsic value. Melanie Waldman offers up tips for booking shoulder season deals in five regions around the world.
The Caribbean has all the trappings of an exotic travel destination, but if you want to avoid the crowds and costs, Jo Fitzsimons recommends you approach the Caribbean from another side - Central America.
The tiny island of Barbados boasts some of the longest life spans in the world. How do Barbadians do it? Ramona Flume reveals some of the secrets behind this ostensible fountain of youth in the east Caribbean.