St Vincent and the Grenadines for families
When you're looking for a family holiday destination, it can be easy to overlook the Caribbean thanks to its reputation for being such a wonderful spot for romantic breaks and honeymoons. However, there is a lot for families to enjoy in this laidback tropical region, particularly in St Vincent and the Grenadines.
This charming collection of islands and cays is a real gem and one that's often forgotten about by tourists, with its many little islets being in a completely unspoiled and virginal state, offering excellent opportunities for getting back to nature and enjoying the Caribbean scenery in all its glory.
Whether you've got young children who will simply be happy to play on the sand in the warm sunshine and splash in the sea, or older kids who will be keen to seek out some action and adventure, a holiday in St Vincent and the Grenadines will have something for everyone in the family.
Although it's easy to just spend time chilling out at the beach, there is plenty more you can be getting up to with your kids in the Grenadines. If your youngsters are water babies, take advantage of the islands' many water-based activities.
Going snorkelling is a brilliant choice if you've got inquisitive kids, who are bound to enjoy seeing the likes of bright butterfly fish, colourful wrasse and even turtles swimming around the beautiful coral reefs. If they are old enough, they can also have a go at scuba diving and delve a little further beneath the waves.
Kayaking trips are another way to see a bit more of the islands and a fantastic option if you'd like to explore the secluded coves on your island's coast. Spending a day sailing between a few of the isles in the Grenadines is another wonderful way to get your children excited about this corner of the Caribbean.
On land, there are lots of other options, including hiking and horseback riding for those keen to explore the verdant forests that cover much of St Vincent's interior. Tackle the hike to the summit of La Soufriere Volcano with your kids - looking into the crater after having walked through an amazing jungle isn't something they're likely to forget in a hurry!
Discovering the local wildlife
One of the joys of travelling abroad with your children is the chance to introduce them to a host of exotic creatures, and St Vincent and the Grenadines certainly won't disappoint on this front. Out on the water, you can go on a whale and dolphin watching tour, with species such as spinner, bottlenose and common dolphins all being easily spotted throughout the year, while December to April sees pilot, sperm and humpback whales swim by Grenadinian waters during their yearly mighration.
On dry land, there are amazing opportunities for bird watching, with some of the species known to inhabit the islands including the St Vincent parrot, which can be seen in the Botanical Gardens in Kingstown, the whistling warbler, the Antillean crested hummingbird, the white-tailed tropicbird and the magnificent frigate jijbird, among many others.
Brown lizards, iguanas, three species of snake and whistling frogs are among the other creatures worth looking out for when you're out and about on the islands with your family. Which child doesn't love spotting wildlife roaming free on a remote little island?
Best hotels for families in St Vincent and the Grenadines
Of course, it's important to have an excellent hotel in St Vincent and the Grenadines to allow you and your kids to make the most of your stay. Booking into an all inclusive resort will not only mean you have comfortable accommodation, but that you're also able to make use of facilities like sun terraces, swimming pools and sports centres that many of these type of resorts offer.
Parents may want to look out for hotels that provide kids' clubs, so that they can make the most of a few hours away from their children during the holiday. One of such resorts offering an excellent kids' club and dedicated entertainment for little ones is the Buccament Bay Resort in St Vincent, with its Little Harlequins Club providing supervised activities and fun games. Likewise, the Tamarind Beach Hotel and Yacht Club in Canouan Island offers complimentary non-motorised water sports as well as babysitting facilities.
If you're not sure which hotel in St Vincent and the Grenadines might be best for your needs, speak to one of our knowledgeable travel advisors to get some further information about what's on offer where, so that you can make an informed decision about where to stay.
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Mandarin Oriental will be making its debut in the Caribbean after the group acquired the Pink Sands Club, Canouan in St. Vincent & the Grenadines next year. The luxury resort will be rebranded as Mandarin Oriental, Canouan, and is scheduled to open to guests in the first quarter of 2018, with 26 colonial-style suites and six four-bedroom Lagoon Villas.
The son of famed marine explorer Jacque Cousteau is set to open a dive centre on the southern Grenadines island of Petit St Vincent later this year. Jean-Michel Cousteau hopes the centre will continue his father's legacy of sharing the wonders of the underwater world and protecting the fragile marine environment for generations to come.
Tourism officials have stated that St Vincent and the Grenadines are very much "open for business" following the recent storm over the festive period that saw the islands take a battering by wind and heavy rain. The islands are a popular destination for Caribbean holidays and officials are keen to assure tourists that it is safe to travel to the country.