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Ottley’s Plantation Inn, St. Kitts

Get to know the Caribbean by practicing your ABCs. (It works, we promise.)

If You Go

Bonaire www.tourismbonaire.com
St. Kitts
Grand Cayman Island
Antigua and Barbuda
No one needs an excuse to take a timeout on a tropical island. But, once you’re beachside, total Zen can at times still remain elusive. With that in mind and the Caribbean as our canvas, we imagined the islands in terms of the (very elementary) ABCs. The results? A fast pass to self-discovery — and pleasure enhancement. To find out which island suits your personality, what to do while you’re there and the perfect place to stay, read on.

Adventure Junkies: Bonaire
There are 86 official dive sites off the island. Explore the famous Hilma Hooker shipwreck, covered in orange coral. There’s also world-class kiteboarding on the southwest coast. And the longest land-sailing track in the world is at Piedra Cruz.

Where to stay: La Pura Vista, where personal whims are actually encouraged. From $195.

Beach Bumming: St. Kitts
The lively beach scene here is about as good as it gets in the islands. Go to black-sand Dieppe Bay beach for all the action. Banana Bay, on the southeast peninsula, offers a more peaceful interlude. When the sun goes down, party at the ever-animated beach bar Shipwreck in Friars Bay, known for its island-style barbecue.

Where to stay: Ottley’s Plantation Inn, for its spring-fed pool and panoramic views. From $346.

Culinary Conquistadors: Grand Cayman

First stop, the famed Blue by Eric Ripert at the Ritz — the crown jewel of dining in the Caribbean. Take cooking classes at the Brasserie in George Town, and on Saturdays, peruse the Market at the Grounds, where local growers, fishers, gardeners and chefs set up shop.

Where to stay: The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman — trust us, this is where you want to be. From $500.

Decidedly Decadent: Barbados Collars are turned up and shades are worn. Start at the L’Acajou Bar & Lounge at Sandy Lane for people watching prior to a polo match on Holders Hill. Afternoon tea is a must at the Fairmont Royal Pavilion hotel, then shopping in nearby Holetown.

Where to stay: The House, in St. James, greets guests with a complimentary massage to relieve jet lag. From $711.

Escapist Fantasy: Antigua and Barbuda Total detachment begins at the deserted pink beaches of River Fort Beach and Low Bay. Further unplug by taking in the island’s principal inhabitants, frigate birds at the Frigate Bird Sanctuary in Codrington Lagoon. End with a visit to Martello Castle on the south coast to view the distant colorful reefs.

Where to stay: Cocos Hotel, which boasts 26 well-appointed cottages with personal hammocks. From $610.


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Kite-boarding off the coast of Bonaire
Bonaire Kiteboarding
From $210
Kaya Venus 2

Landsailing Bonaire
From $30
Kaya Mgr. Niewindt 29

La Pura Vista
From $245
Kaya Turkesa 7
011-599-795-6582 or 011-599-717-6582

St. Kitts
Shipwreck Beach Bar & Grill South Friars Bay, South East Peninsula

Ottley’s Plantation Inn
From $346
Ottley’s Village
011-869-465-7234 or (800) 772-3039

Grand Cayman
Blue by Eric Ripert/The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman
From $500
Seven Mile Beach

The Brasserie
171 Elgin Avenue, Cricket Square
George Town

The Market at the Grounds
Stacy Watler Agricultural Pavilion

L’Acajou Bar & Lounge at Sandy Lane
Sandy Lane, St. James

Barbados Polo Club (Holders Hill polo match)
Holetown, St. James

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Afternoon tea at the Fairmont Royal Pavilion, Barbados
The Fairmont Royal Pavilion
Porters, St. James
011-246-422-5555 or (866) 540-4485

The House
From $711
Paynes Bay, St. James
011-246-432-5525 or (888) 996-9948

Antigua and Barbuda
Frigate Bird Sanctuary and Martello Castle

Cocos Hotel
From $610
Valley Church, Antigua