Caribbean and Atlantic

Caribbean and Atlantic

Dominica Coast photo by Tonya Fitzpatrick

“We must go beyond textbooks, go out into the bypaths and untrodden depths of the wilderness and travel and explore and tell the world the glories of our journey.”

-John Hope Franklin

Feel the hypnotic rhythm, savor the explosive flavors and experience the rich cultural heritage of the Caribbean and Atlantic Ocean islands.

The Caribbean and Atlantic Ocean region is known for inviting sandy beaches, crystal blue water, tropical flavors, amazing seafood, unique spices and a perfect blend of cultures. All of these things combine to make a wonderful holiday vacation in popular Caribbean islands. However, the Caribbean and Atlantic region is also tied to cultural and historical connections to slavery and European colonization.

Explore the history of the popular Caribbean islands and each island’s respective cultural heritage that was shaped by indigenous groups like the Amerindians, Kalinago people, Garafuna tribe, Carib and Arawaks. Learn how the influx of Asians and Europeans influenced architecture, gastronomy and traditions.The following Island countries make up the Caribbean region. Each of these islands also holds thousands of smaller islands within their domain.

Caribbean islands include: Anguilla, Aruba, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, British Virgin Islands, Caribbean Netherlands, Cayman Islands, Cuba, Curacao, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Martinique, Montserrat, Nicaragua, Puerto Rico, Saint Barthélemy, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Martin, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Sint Maarten, Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caicos Islands, United States Virgin Islands. Some continental countries like Colombia, Mexico, Costa Rica, Panama and Venezuela also have islands in the Caribbean.

  • It’s easy to imagine what Saba must have looked like two hundred years ago. Aside from the medical school and the single narrow ribbon of road, the island hasn’t changed much.

  • Traveling throughout the Caribbean and especially the West Indies, one can experience the cultural influences of the Garifuna people in the food, music, dance and island traditions. 

  • Serene white sand beaches. Tropical cocktails garnished with slices of fresh fruit. Catamarans floating through turquoise water. Images like these tend to be the first to come to mind when thinking of the Turks and Caicos Islands. But this tropical destination, which has stringent COVID protocols, has much more than luxury resorts to offer travelers.

  • A block from Havana’s famous Malecon, I found myself standing on a curb, sharing a bottle of rum with my good friend and traveling companion Sandra, and three strangers. We’d all met earlier at a nearby salsa club tucked in an alleyway between the Centro and Old Havana neighborhoods, a local joint.

  • The science fiction that binds Jurassic Park’s storyline together is that dinosaur DNA could be extracted from mosquitos and other biting insects preserved in amber.

  • For many people around the world, the Bahamas are emblematic of the Caribbean’s charms. When we think of these islands we generally picture pristine beaches, crystal-clear waters, and lush green forests.

  • Pianist Kendol Bacchus, who hails from the island of St. Vincent, is riding out the COVID-19 pandemic in Florida. He had a concert tour planned when he arrived in the U.S. two months ago so he is hunkering down until he can resume his concert schedule. Until that time comes, Kendol joined World Footprints to share some COVID-19 updates from St. Vincent and a sample of his musical gift. We've seen how much music helps to connect and heal us during this time of social distancing. So we thought it would be appropriate to invite our friend Kendol to play a song for all of us because we know, first hand, the power of his gift. (You can listen to our podcast interview with Kendol on WorldFootprints.com to understand the backstory of how we met.) So sit back, close your eyes and relax to the beautiful sounds Kendol offers. To [...]

  • The island of Puerto Rico was still recovering from the destruction caused by Hurricane Maria when a Magnitude 6.4 earthquake shook the island.  As of this taping, Puerto Rico was hit by a 5.3 quake. Yet, despite these natural disasters Sarah Ratliff, a resident of Puerto Rico, along with freelance writer Cassandra Brooklyn, who just returned from Puerto Rico, say that the island is not as devastated as has been portrayed and it is open for tourism business. For many years, Cuba has been the forbidden fruit that many Americans have sought to taste by traveling to the island using “unconventional” means.  For years, Americans believed that they could save money (and red tape) by entering Cuba through other gateways. Freelance writer and owner of Escaping New York Cassandra Brooklyn, joins us again to share how solo and group travelers can travel to Cuba legally and within a modest budget. [...]

  • I sat at the edge of the little fishing boat, peering down into the clear Bahamian sea to spot my husband. Under the water, I could make out his shape as he took careful aim with his Hawaiian sling.

  • Voluntourism can be a benefit to communities, but if done improperly, it can actually be more harmful than helpful.

  • The island of St. Maarten (Sint Maarten) is the common denominator in the stories of two different families whose lives were changed when they landed on the Caribbean island.  Join us to hear why St. Maarten was the backdrop to their positive life transformations. First, we’ll speak to Erik and Emily Orton about their decision to spend a year at sea with their five children.  The family of seven spent a year sailing from St. Maarten to New York.  The lessons they learned and the adventures they experienced are described in their book, Seven at Sea: Why a New York City Family Cast Off Convention For A Life-Changing Year On A Sailboat.  In their book, Erik and Emily remind us that we have the ability to customize our lives, regardless of our perceived constraints. Then, we’ll introduce travel writer Breana Johnson who lived as an American expat on the island [...]

  • Every May the entire population on the island of Bermuda gathers to celebrate Bermuda Day, formerly known as Empire Day.  The holiday initially marked the birthday of Queen Victoria across all of the British colonies.  However, as the colonies gained independence this day shifted as a celebration to mark national identity and heritage. Until May 2018, Bermuda Day was celebrated on May 24th.  However, the national holiday is now celebrated on the last Friday of the month.   The day begins with a marathon for kids and adults and is followed by parade.  Vistors and residents set up camp along side the road and enjoy the day's festivities with LOTS of food and plenty of drink.  We were there to enjoy the celebration and our anniversary.