Why you should plan to visit the Caribbean in 2018!

As a person of Caribbean descent and an avid visitor to the islands, the Caribbean is a destination that is very near and dear to my heart. Considering the fact that nearly 30 million tourists visit the Caribbean annually, there is a very high possibility that it holds a special place in your heart as well. Now this beautiful region is greatly in need of our love and support, but I think it’s the kind of help that you’re going to have a great time providing. Grab your bathing suit, dust off your sunglasses and dig out your passport—it’s time to plan your 2018 vacation to the Caribbean.

Nearly six months after the islands took a harsh beating from hurricanes Irma and Maria, the question for many concerned vacationers is still this: When can I expect to travel to the region again and which island’s are open for tourism? Believe it or not, right now is actually the perfect time to book your 2018 tropical getaway! Though there are parts of the Caribbean that are still in the midst of recovery operations, many islands were untouched by either storm and most that took a hit have resumed tourism and are welcoming visitors with wide open arms.

Some islands, such as The Virgin Islands and Barbuda, suffered more significant damage and are in need of many repairs before they are fully up and running, but take heart. Rapid progress has already been made in many places that were devastated by the catastrophic storms including Puerto Rico, which is as enchanting as ever. As a guest of the San Juan Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino in 2017, I was thrilled to learn that the location is currently open for tourism and ready to welcome guests back for a fun and relaxing stay. Here are examples of just a few other Caribbean destinations and properties that are open for business and ready to welcome you:

St. Kitts Marriott Resort & The Royal Beach Casino
St. Kitts Marriott Resort recently completed extensive renovations that include all guest rooms and suites, and a brand new lobby experience with a Marriott Great Room.

The Ritz-Carlton, Aruba
New York City’s famed Casa Nonna restaurant is excited to open its second location at The Ritz-Carlton, Aruba in early 2018.

The Westin Grand Cayman Seven Mile Beach Resort & Spa
Westin Grand Cayman is welcoming travelers to their stunning property with the completion of a $50 million, two-phase renovation.

The Reef Atlantis, Bahamas
Visitors to The Reef Atlantis will experience a newly updated, Bahamian culture-infused resort, sitting on five miles of pristine beach.

As I mentioned, this brief list barely scratches the surface of Caribbean tourism news! Despite a false perception that the Caribbean region is closed to tourism, the affected islands are hard at work rebuilding and tourists are slowly returning. Best of all, you can actively help the Caribbean in this process through your own travels. Take that picturesque, relaxing beach vacation you’ve been daydreaming about and know your stay is helping the islands and the locals to get back on their feet and rebuild the many destinations we’ve come to know and love.

Curious to know more about which islands are open for business? Visit the Caribbean Tourism Organization or the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association websites for more!