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One of the top diving destinations in the world for its bright storybook coral reefs, the island of Cozumel is also home to a variety of natural beaches. Choose a beach with soft white sand for relaxing, or snorkel off a rockier vista. A destination for both adventure and romance, Cozumel has a year-round Caribbean climate, untrammeled jungle and abundant nightlife.
Sunny Cancun has much more to offer than its party-town reputation might suggest. Plenty of gorgeous, drama-free family resorts cater to folks who want to experience the tropical Yucatan climate. There are significant Mayan ruins here, such as El Rey and the Yamil Lu’um, a crumbling tower of pale gray stone. Learn more about this ancient civilization at the Museo Maya de Cancun. For a literal taste of Mexico, take a tour of the Museo Sensorial del Tequila.
Stretching 126 miles south toward Cuba, the stunning Keys are a perfect escape. Highlights along the way include Key Largo, Islamorada, Marathon, Big Pine Key and the irrepressible Key West. Get up close with an amazing array of fish while snorkeling, diving or fishing in the warm turquoise waters. Creeks, coral and costumed spectacles are other lures along the way. Highway 1 is a spectacular ribbon tying together the islands and atolls of this paradise between the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic.
The best way to cap off a day of pristine Roatán reef diving and heart-pumping adventure is to sip a sunset cocktail by the beach. From zip-lining to deep-sea fishing to exploring the military-protected archipelago of Cayos Cochinos, the Honduran island is a playground for lovers of water sports and ecotourism. Landlubbers will adore the Carambola botanical gardens, touring the Stone Castle Cameo Factory, or exploring the beaches on horseback.
Just a few minutes' drive but a world away from the mainland, Key Largo has been the setting of movies, the home to abundant wildlife and a favorite destination for scuba diving. Lush flora and lively fauna abound in the Dagny Johnson Key Largo Hammock Botanical State Park, John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park and Everglades National Park. Underwater, the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary teems with life while the American Crocodile thrives at Crocodile Lake National Wildlife Refuge.
Like seashells, no two holidays in the Bahamas are alike. With options as diverse as its 700 islands, it's a place where you can find exactly the getaway you love most. Looking for a family destination, a place for lovers to sneak away, a gambling mecca, a haven for cruise passengers, or a shopper’s world market? The Bahamas is all these… and much more.
Turks and Caicos is an excellent destination for divers and snorklers. Smith’s Reef in Provo is one of the area’s most popular dive spots, thanks to a diverse collection of sea creatures in a spectrum of electric colors. For a completely different vibe, explore the black coral and submerged overhangs of Black Forest or kayak the bright turquoise waters of Chalk Sound. Both the Caicos Conch Farm and the bird sanctuary on uninhabited French Cay offer unique ways to commune with local wildlife.
Serious divers have long flocked to Curacao. Whether you’re looking for a challenging wall dive or a shallow snorkeling spot, you’ll find it here. Beaches, of course, are another big draw. With sugar-fine sand and calm waters, they’re perfect for kids. And make sure to explore Willemstad, Curacao’s capital city. Its charming pastel buildings and equally colorful history earned it recognition as a UNESCO World Heritage City.
Puerto Rico offers the perfect balance of rum-soaked nightlife and tranquil retreat. The Spanish colonial buildings of San Juan set a perfect backdrop for a day of shopping and sightseeing. Hike the massive El Yunque rainforest to see waterfalls, stone towers, and colorful Puerto Rican wildlife. As far as beaches go, it doesn’t get better than the private sands of Isla de Vieques – particularly Mosquito Bay, where by moonlight the water glows blue-green thanks to magical microorganisms.
Are there more flamingos than people on Bonaire? It's possible, and it's part of this unspoiled island's appeal. Bring your binoculars and your scuba gear to make the most of Bonaire's natural charms: more than 200 different species of birds live here, and the island itself draws divers from around the world to its reef-lined coast, a National Maritime Park.