Solo Travel in the Caribbean
It’s all about sunshine, beautiful beaches, and relaxing with cocktails, but it’s about so much more as well. Sea turtles, tropical birds, lush forests, pink sand, sleeping in hammocks.
Built out of a mixture of piracy, slavery and sea trade, the people are diverse but all ready to have fun. It’s relaxation in a (coco) nut shell.
Traditionally the Caribbean has not been a major solo independent destination but there are lots of places to travel to on any budget and as Asia, South America becomes a little more expensive then it’s a great time to discover the Caribbean!
So here are some of the countries we consider great budget destinations, when done right!
Budget Guide to Anguilla
Anguilla is on first appearance a little prohibitively expensive but if you come off season, around the end of October when everything has opened but the crowds haven’t arrived, and you spend more chillin rather than partaking in relatively expensive stuff like diving, then there’s no reason not to enjoy this place.
Budget Accommodation on Anguilla
There’s not much, but look hard enough and you’ll find a couple of reasonable guest houses at the lower end of the pricing spectrum. Otherwise you’r kipping on the beach, which could be worse.
A Traveller’s Budget for Anguilla
There are few inexpensive places which are obvious in Anguilla but there’s often a barbeque going down, there are some seaside snack bars and there’s a fresh fruit market in Valley. One of the reasons that the accommodation is a little more expensive than you might like is that it often provides cooking facilities so you can always self cater.
Helpfully there is no form of public transport on the island so you’ll have to try and organise lifts which obviously carries some element of danger with it. Probably best to bring a bike. Or just go somewhere a bit cheaper. If there’s a group of you then car rental is available, splitting the cost might make it affordable.
Activities for the Budget Traveller
Snorkelling, which is stunning and cheaper than diving, which is readily available also.
Horseriding on a pristine white beach
Swimming in the crystal clear blue sea
Eating freshly caught crayfish from a beach barbeque
Budget Guide to the British Virgin Islands
Despite the comedy name for those with a slightly juvenile sense of humour, this is a stunning location. It’s hugely attractive for yachts to stop by due to it’s many harbours and inlets (there are more than 60 islands making up the nation) and as such you might think it’s an expensive place to visit, but it has a lot to offer those with barely two pennies to rub together. And you can always offer to crew a boat if you get stuck.
Budget Accommodation on the British Virgin Islands
It’s no budget backpackers paradise in terms of finding a cheap bed, there are some fairly reasonably priced guesthouses but it might be worth bringing a tent, there’s a couple of camp sites, or just kipping on the beach with your sleeping bag if it’s dry. Imagine waking to that sunrise!
A Traveller’s Budget for the BVI
Soup and stew are the staple diet here and by their nature they’re not expensive, just choose where you eat them and you’ll not go far wrong price wise. To get around the islands there are series of ferries whose timetables don’t necessarily tie in conveniently with each other.
Activities for those on a budget
Sailing, if you can be part of a crew they might even pay you!
Diving and Snorkelling, the islands are all connected not too far down, they’re the high points on a volcanic plateau. Cool!
Sitting chilling with a beer on the beach
Try out some mushroom tea if that’s your thing, they’re legal to posess and consume here.
— The AdventureJunkies (@The_AdvJunkies) October 6, 2014
Budget Guide to Guadeloupe
On first appearance it’s like rural France in sightly the wrong place. There’s every part of French everyday life evident here from boulangeries to stripey shirted onion sellers then if you look just a little harder, banana plantations and coconuts to remind you tat you are, after all, in the Caribbean.
Budget Accommodation on Guadeloupe
There is one established campsite on the island, south of Pointe-Noire, but the best bet if you don’t fancy camping is to get in touch with the Gites de France Guadeloupe association, which run a network of apartments and rooms in family homes.
A Traveller’s Budget for Guadeloupe.
If you want to get around as cheaply as possible hire a bike or bring yours, there are excellent opportunities for cycling around the island. Otherwise, catch a bus, they generally depart when they’re full, usually start from Point à Pitre or at least include it in the route somewhere, and few run on a Sunday.
Cheap food can generally be found in beach huts, open air restaurants and the like, and there are some reasonably priced cafes with excellent food around.
Diving at Pigeon Island
Horseriding at Domaine de Belle Plaine
Surfing – there are various locations around the island
Trek to La Soufriere, the island’s highest point
Budget Guide to St Kitts and Nevis
Another Caribbean paradise with coconuts holding cocktails, beachside open air bars, long stretches of white sand and a pace of life to match. Tourism is slowly making things a little more hectic which seems a little contradictory since it’s the slowness of everyday life that attracts people to come here, nevertheless, prepare to relax.
Budget Accommodation St Kitts and Nevis
There are some low priced guest houses available and apartment style accommodation which doesn’t cost the earth. There are no campsites on either island but it’s ok to wild camp if you’ve got the gear.
A Traveller’s Budget
Cheap freshly caught fish are available in abundance, whereas imported food such as meat tends to be more expensive. There are some fast food joints (not multinationals) serving things like fried chicken for next to nothing, and to offset the damage from that, fresh fruit and veg are available along with the local brew, Cane Spirit Rothschild, to wash it all down and get ready for the evening.
Drinking local brew on the beach
Visiting the Brimstone Hill Fortress and it’s surrounding national park
Drinking cocktails on the beach
Take a trip on the St Kitts Scenic railway to see the whole island complete with choir.
Check out the botanical garden on Nevis.
Budget Guide to St Vincent and the Grenadines
St Vincent and the grenadines are 32 incredibly beautiful islands, an absolute paradise for divers and snorkellers and anyone with a boat to park. The days are equally warm all the year round and even the rain can’t take much away from this perfection.
Budget Accommodation in St Vincent and the Grenadines
The vast majority of accommodation on the islands is in hotels and so it’s just a matter of finding a reasonably priced place. None of the hotels are especially large, some take the form of bungalows and some apartments. The price is usually higher at the end of the year when it’s winter for much of the world.
A Traveller’s Budget
Eating locally produced, caught or grown food is your best bet for a budget meal. Seafood is abundant as you’d probably expect, west indian soups feature strongly on any menu and there are plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables on offer.
To get around the islands boat is the only option unless you’re a particularly good swimmer, St Vincent has a bus service in the shape of minivans which hold about 20 prople and depart when full.
Take in a perfect sunset on a perfect beach
Visit some of the uninhabited islands for complete solitude
Go diving off the island of Bequia, or clubbing on it.
Hike up volcanic La Soufrière, and have a look at the crater lake.
Budget Guide to Trinidad and Tobago
Trinidad is unusual these days in that it doesn’t rely on tourism to get by, as a result the set up for tourists and travellers is a little haphazard at times. The best thing to do is to use it to your advantage, what you get is most certainly the real deal, jump in and make the most of it.
Budget Accommodation in Trinidad and Tobago
As long as you’re not going during the carnival the prices of accommodation are pretty reasonable. There isn’t much backpacker specific accommodation to speak of but there are some cheap guesthouses and hotels.
A Traveller’s Budget
Shark sandwiches and curried chickpeas in flatbread will set you back next to nothing at beach cafes and restaurants, not to mention the flying fish and chips. Otherwise look out for trucks piled high with coconuts for drinking and various snacks.
To get around Trinidad the cheapest option is the bus if you’re not in a hurry. Otherwise jump in a maxi-taxi, they’re colour coded for ease of identification, each colour servicing a different area. On Tobago take a bike or catch the bus which serves most villages on the island.
Carnival is the biggest event of the year here and although the prices of accommodation rocket the carnival itself is something to behold.
Visit Fort King George for stunning views and some history
Go bird watching at the Caroni Bird Sanctuary
Snorkel at the Buccoo Reef
Check out the local music scene with steel drums and soca