Spring is the time to revitalize mind, body and soul and what better way than to celebrate. There’s always reason to have a good time in the Caribbean – simply, starting a new day can be cause to rejoice. On land or at sea, it’s world-class competitions, film, food and festivities. Don’t be surprised to hear cheers to her majesty, as many islands pause to celebrate Queen Elizabeth’s birthday, where British ties remain strong. So, come and be immersed in culture and all things tropical, as only can be found in the Caribbean.
In Barbados, catch exhilarating Polo this season as matches take place all month long and St. Thomas celebrates VI Carnival, April 1 – 29 www.vicarnival.com
At sea, the impressive fleet of Volvo Ocean Race boats are readying themselves for a world-class race, not to mention what’s been called a “race among races,” at the Les Voiles de St. Barth, April 10 – 15 www.lesvoilesdesaintbarth.com/us
In Nevis, blues abound – blue skies, seas and groovy, funky notes, as international artists such as AJ Ghent, Deanna Bogart, and Ben Waters converge on Oualie Beach for two nights of Blues in Paradise Festival, April 7 – 8 www.nevisbluesfestival.com
The US Virgin Islands showcase their diversity through delectable dishes, music and fine wine at the St. Croix Food and Wine Experience, April 7 – 10 www.stxfoodandwine.com
Head indoors as Curaçao explores the cinematic arts, featuring local and international artists from the Caribbean and Latin America alongside feature length and short films from around the world, at the Curaçao International Film Festival Rotterdam 2017, April 5 – 9 curacaoiffr.com
The name says it all, as Anguilla celebrates all things of the sea. There will be races of the crustacean kind on land – and swimmers of the humankind at sea – there’s deep sea fishing and so much more, at the 10th Annual Festival Del Mar, April 15 – 16
Definitely not for the faint of heart, Jamaica presents scantily clad, quite agile bodied revelers. Learn how to shake and “wine” (vernacular for wind) like the best. Bacchanal Carnival explodes April 15 – 23 www.bacchanaljamaica.com
Around The Abacos, fishermen are at sea vying for the big catch, during White Marlin Roundup, April 19. No worries though, if you didn’t make the catch then, head for the premier event at the Bahamas Billfish Championship, April 26 – 29 www.bahamasbillfish.com Or try your hand at another form of sport fishing, where a different kind agility is required around Grand Bahama Island, when Extreme Kayak Fishing gets underway, April 20 – 23 www.extremekayakfishingtournament.org/bahamas
Later in the month at Christiansted in St. Croix, grab a folding chair or blanket and head to the outdoor venue, Ft. Christiansvaern, and relax to the melodic stylings of local and international jazz artists at Jazz in the Park, April 28. Stay another day and take in the St. Croix Yacht Club Memorial Day Race, April 29.
At the same time, further north, those vibrant costumes, steel pans, trumpets and drums are filling the streets of Grand Bahama for two days of revelry, as only the Bahamas does. There will be concerts, a “midnight rush” and a beach party at the “not to miss” Bahamas Junkanoo Carnival, April 28 – 30 bahamasjunkanoocarnival.com
In Barbados, golfers take to the verdant, rolling green course for Sir Garry Sobers Festival of Golf International Tournament, April 27 – 30 sirgarrysobersfestivalofgolf.com
In the Caribbean, not all action is above water or on land, an international nine day diving experience at the famous Dean’s Blue Hole on Long Island Bahamas, will take the competitor’s breath away, or at least have them holding it. How far can they go at the Vertical Blue Free Diving International Competition, April 30 – May 10 verticalblue.net
Saint Martin/Sint Maarten doubles the pleasure as host to two carnivals filled with colorful parades and concerts – leave it to the Dutch side to double the fun over two months – great things come in pairs at Dutch Side Carnival, April 17 – May 3.
The Bahamas is not to be left behind as Nassau & Paradise Island as “ballers” showcase their skillful maneuvers on the white sands for the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup, April 27 – May 7 www.fifa.com/beachsoccerworldcup/index.html
Ready the sails, the challenge is on for the island’s famed races during Antigua Sailing Week, April 29 – May 5 www.sailingweek.com
St. John in the US Virgin Islands fills the month with nonstop activities of food, music and merriment – steel pan, bike races and pageantry are just part of the celebrations at St. John Festival.
St. Martin again impresses with a cultural collection of activities and culinary dishes that demonstrate one of the Caribbean’s important culture, that of the fisherman. There’s nothing “fishy” about this event, it’s the real deal and quite delectable. Join the festivities on Fish Day, May 7.
That same day over in Cayman, masqueraders are part of a pageantry of stilt walkers, acrobats and limbo dancers for Cayman Carnival Batabano, May 7.-
Jamaica truly brings a cultural twist to festivities, as the island premiers a more subdued week of enlightenment on the world renowned seven-mile beach in Negril. The event focuses on wellness of mind, body and spirit, featuring international artists and wellness personalities such as Chris Blackwell, to name one. The unique cultural immersion gets underway at Tmrw. Tday Culture Fest, May 23 – 27 www.tmrwtday.com
St. John US Virgin Island has athletes in the water, with three different courses to choose, swim one, swim all, go it alone or form a relay team, one thing’s for sure, endurance is the key. Dive in the clear blue waters for the 14th Annual Beach-to-Beach Power Swim, May 24 www.friendsvinp.org/swim
Antigua and Barbuda attract anglers from all over the world for their big “catch and release” competition at the Antigua and Barbuda Sport Fishing Tournament, June 2 – 4 antiguabarbudasportsfishing.com
Clubs are swinging in St. Kitts– the golfing kind, that is – as the Johnny Walker St. Kitts Open tees off for men and women, June 3 – 5 www.golfstkittsandnevis.com/st-kitts-open
Off the shores of St. Martin, anglers are casting reels at one of the Caribbean’s premier sports fishing event, the Billfish Tournament, June 21 – 24.
Musicians of all genres and generations have audiences on their feet and promises an array of memorable performances at the 21st Annual St. Kitts Music Festival, June 22 – 24 www.stkittsmusicfestival.net
Atop the waves, the race is on for the fun and excitement that marks this historical regatta that demonstrates the close ties between America and the Bahamas. The races begin in the south and head north with a Kick-off Party at Pete’s Pub in Pelican Harbor on June 22. The Hope Town Race sets sail on June 24, then it’s onto the Green Turtle Race on June 29. The series closes with the popular “Cheeseburger in Paradise Party” on Fiddle Cay, during the Regatta Time in Abaco, June 23 – 30, www.regattatimeinabaco.com
There’s no better place to view well-defined, glistening bodies than the many athletic events happening in the Caribbean, and St. Martin doesn’t disappoint at the Inter-Island Bodybuilding Fitness & Physique Championship, June 30 – July 1.