2014 Travel

2014 Fall Beach Preview

It’s crazy to think that we’re already talking about fall. It seems like just yesterday we were swimming, barbecuing and taking summer vacations. Okay. Maybe that was just yesterday. But we’re exactly one month away from the official start of fall. And since we’re all about planning ahead, let’s take a look at what’s happening in the Caribbean & Mexico this fall.

Groove Fest – September 9 – 14, 2014

If you’re looking for a party—mark your calendar. Even if it’s a few days before the “official” start of fall, it’s an epic fun time you don’t want to miss out. This is a music festival unlike any other, really. Hosted in Puerto Plata, DR at Lifestyle Tropical Beach Resort & Spa, it’s a weeklong dance festival that brings the world’s best DJs and artists together. And the best part? It’s all-inclusive. No extra costs for concert and event tickets. Once you get to Groove Fest all food, drink, and entrances are included so there’s no additional cost to attend all of the open-air events, beach parties, pool parties, and late night events. Sounds like a party animal’s dream if you ask me.

Groovefest Dominican Republic - Best Beach Parties - CheapCaribbean.com

Photo credit: www.groovefestevents.com/

Learn more about the festival and see the lineup here.

Port Antonio International Fishing Tournament – September 27 – October 4, 2014

So if you’re looking for more of a competitive event to attend, we’d suggest the Port Antonio International Fishing Tournament in Jamaica. This is one of the biggest fishing tournaments in not just Jamaica, but the world. Competitive deep-sea fishermen arrive from all over the world to prove their hook and line skills. The great news for those who aren’t avid fishermen – there’s a canoe race and plenty of parties to keep the action going for the non-fishermen in your group.

Oh, and a little inside scoop: the precise date of this tournament varies according to the moon, to appease the superstitions of the sea captains.

Day of the Dead – November 1, 2014

Known as “Dia de los Muertos” in Spanish, this day falls after the U.S.’s holiday of Halloween. And while the name of this holiday insinuates horror and perhaps gore, there’s a deeper meaning to this Spanish holiday. The traditional meaning of this day is to honor the deceased friends and family members who have passed over time.

Some of the celebratory traditions surrounding Day of the Dead include placing gifts of incense, pan de muertos, Calaveras (aka sugar skulls), etc. at the foot of a self-created altar in the home. Once they’ve been blessed, they are taken to the cemetery, which is also decorated. There are also plenty of celebratory festivals and events that take place to pay tribute to those who have passed. For example, the Festival de Tradiciones de Vida y Muerte at Xcaret (eco-cultural park in Riviera Maya) takes place all weekend long. With art exhibits, music & dance performances with costumes, and festive food & beverages, this is a great way to get a taste of the vibrant, rich culture that calls Mexico home.

Oh, and an added perk if you want to attend this cultural festival – stay at Occidental Grand Xcaret. It’s located across the street from the eco-cultural park and has its on unique amenities and events planned for Dia de los Muertos.

Cayman Islands Annual Pirates Week Festival – November 6 – 16, 2014

One of our favorite things about the Cayman Islands (next to the picturesque blue waters and crystal white sandy beaches) is the Cayman Islands Annual Pirate Week Festival. Yes, pirate week. It’s 10 days in November where the Cayman Islands really know how to get down. Things like street dances, competitions, games, local food and drink, parades, and of course pirate invasions take over the island – and it’s pure madness (in a good way).


Photo credit: www.pirateweek.com

If this sounds like your kind of fun, book a stay at the Westin Grand Cayman Seven Mile Beach Resort & Spa and start putting together your best wench or pirate costume. The good news about staying at the Westin Grand Cayman (besides the fact it’s located perfectly on award-winning Seven Mile Beach) is that swimming pools, dining options, and scheduled events. So if you have any downtime from the festival, you’ll be covered with the resort accommodations that offer it all.

Thanksgiving at the Beach?

The autumn season marks the beginning of the holiday season, which means soon you’ll probably start to think about your plans for the family. Here’s a thought – instead of divvying up cooking and hosting duties this Thanksgiving, maybe pack a bag and head to the beach? Secrets Resorts & Spas are known for having epically wonderful celebrations. A feast with all the accouterments is a given, but there’s even special Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and football watching parties, as well as events unique to each resort. It might be the year to switch it up and spend this perpetually hectic (and often times, cold) holiday in the warm, relaxing sun of the beach.

Since you officially have a list of things happening in the Caribbean & Mexico this fall season, you pretty much don't have an excuse not to plan a fall getaway. So, tell us (in the comments below). Where are you headed?

Brittany Innes is a travel junkie with a passion for food, trying new things, and being spontaneous.


Jump on the Travel Trend & Seas the Deal

Ever had the urge to go to the airport, pick a destination and just go? Yeah, us too. Being spontaneous is one of our favorite things about traveling. Taking a trip to a new place and embarking on a new adventure isn’t just fun while you’re doing it, it makes for some great stories & memories to share when you get back home.

That’s why you’ve probably seen the trend of “mystery travel” popping up. The year of 2014 is said to bring about a lot of great travel trends and this will most definitely be one of them. And here at CheapCaribbean.com, we’ve made it easy & a little less risky for you to jump on the bandwagon. Instead of offering a package that’s a complete mystery, we’re encouraging you to “seas” the day and pick a vacation package where your destination is a sure thing, but the resort is revealed a few days before you travel.

Surprise Travel Trend - Seas the Deal - CheapCaribbean.com

Don’t worry, the resort you’ll be staying at is guaranteed to be a 5, 4.5 or 4-star property that’s an all-inclusive paradise. With CheapCaribbean.com’s Seas the Deal offer, we’ll pick one of our best resorts in destinations like Cancun, Punta Cana, Los Cabos, among others and get you all the deets seven days before you depart.


Read more about what to expect and how to jump in on the hottest travel trend of 2014 here. Get ready for a little spontaneous adventure and book this hot vacation deal quick...it won't last long!

Brittany Innes is Manager of Social Media at CheapCaribbean.com. She's a travel junkie with a passion for trying new things and being spontaneous. 

What’s Trending on the Beach in 2014?

Now that the holiday high has worn off and we're all busy working on new resolutions and fresh outlooks for the coming year, it's time to discuss what to see & do on the beautiful beaches of the Caribbean & Mexico this year. Here's a few trends you can expect to see on the beach in 2014:

Swimwear for Women

The temperatures outside may be frightful, but in sunny Miami, swimsuit designers turned our eyes to summer sand at the Mercedes Benz Fashion Week. You’re going to be needing new swimwear thanks to what will definitely be totally successful New Years Resolutions. Or if you’re like us, you’ll want a new suit, even if you don’t drop two dress sizes. So here’s a quick list, compiled from industry watchers, of what’s trending:

  • High-waisted bottoms for a sleek silhouette in the 1940’s vintage style

  • Jungle-inspired and animal prints

  • Long-sleeved tops that cover shoulders and upper arms paired with small bottoms

  • Mixing and matching bright, colorful tops and bottoms

  • Classic nautical looks

2014 Women's Swimwear Trends - High Waisted Bathing Suit - CheapCaribbean.com

Photo credit: Global Grind

Swimwear for Men

Men’s swimwear may generally be a little less articulate than women’s, but the guys need to know that wearing jorts or basketball shorts on the beach just won’t fly. The looks for guys include short swim shorts in all the classic navy blues, reds and whites. For men unafraid of being noticed, trunks with colorful pastels and eye-catching patterns will be the way to go. Of course, if a guy is reticent to move out of his comfort zone, you can always compromise with board shorts in colorful pastels or navy blue shorts that stop just above the knee.

On the other hand, if he’s more the adventurous (or self-promoting) type, briefs-style swim trunks are featuring bold patterns, bolder colors and draw strings for the snuggest fit imaginable.

Authentic Destination Experience

Travellers want to feel the texture of their chosen destination. For some, this will mean plunging into the sharing economy and renting time at a villa or beach house. This option will nestle you and your fellow travelers more organically into the community. Depending on where you want to go (or who you want to go with) in the Caribbean, options in the sharing economy can be limited. Plus, buying food and getting around the island might be difficult if you have kids or a big group with you.

Bio Bay - Puerto Rico - CheapCaribbean.com

Luckily, local vendors both big and small offer tons of trips and excursions to delve into the destination’s culture and landscape. USA Today recently published a list of their 10 favorite water excursions in the Caribbean, which includes kayaking on glowing water in Puerto Rico and walking among the boulders of The Baths, Virgin Gorda. Tour operators will pick you up at your resort and drop you off when the tour is over. That kind of convenience and opportunity is hard to beat. However you get there, make time to go see what makes your chosen destination a brilliant and unique place.

Hot New Properties

There’s nothing quite like the electric thrill of visiting a brand new resort. The adventure of a new beginning invigorates the staff and guests with palpable enthusiasm. The property gleams never brighter than in its youth. Then again, a $30 million renovation might also do the trick. After all, often times a “new” resort is a big time renovation of a recently purchased property. In the end, the result is a fabulous new resort to explore. Luckily for us, 2014 is witness to new resorts all across the Caribbean and Mexico.

  • Sandals Barbados: Sandals resorts are popping up all over the Caribbean, and beautiful Barbados is the newest home for this luxury resort chain.

  • Breathless Punta Cana: This brand new property from AM Resorts opened at the end of 2013 and offers adult fun for singles and couples in an energetic and chic setting.

2014 New Beach Resort - Breathless Punta Cana - CheapCaribbean.com

  • Beaches Ocho Rios: This Jamaican property just underwent a huge renovation to get many much needed updates. The result is a resort of sparkling amenities with the same, attentive Beaches service.

  • The Bahamian Riviera: This sprawling project is actually comprised of four properties on Nassau’s Cable Beach. Huge and teeming with amenities and services, the flagship resort, Baha Mar, boasts Vegas-style luxury and backs it up with a 2,000 sq. ft. casino. Other resorts on Cable Beach, such as Melia Nassau, are a good, easy way to enjoy the glamour and newness of the Riviera if you don’t want to stay with the crowds.

Bestie Desties in 2014

  • The Panama Canal is turning 100. There ain’t no birthday like a centennial, and we can expect Panamanians to celebrate accordingly.

  • Costa Rica took a step on its path to appeal to even wider tourism audiences. The Playas de Nosara in the Gulf of Nicoya received the Blue Flag, an international symbol of the beaches’ top quality and eco-friendliness.

  • Mexico is on the rise. As travelers feel increasingly confident visiting the big cities (Cabo, Cancun, Puerto Vallarta), Mexico is making top lists in 2014, including LonelyPlanet and Frommers.

  • Destination weddings and honeymoons are always big in Mexico and the Caribbean, and this year the beachy locales are as appealing as ever for the about to be and just recently betrothed. Destination Weddings magazine includes several Caribbean and Mexican locations in its list of the top honeymoon destinations for 2014.

So as you can see, 2014 is gearing up to be the best year at the beach yet. With plenty of new trends and the resurrection of some of the past, we can't wait to see what an exciting year 2014 is going to be. To learn more about the beaches to see and be seen on in 2014, visit CheapCaribbean.com.

The Best 2014 Travel Deals Around

It may be hard to believe that 2013 is quickly dwindling away. Naturally as the window to travel in 2013 gets shorter, you’ll need to start thinking about the vacations you’ll be taking in 2014. That’s why this week we’re going to discuss what are some of the hottest deals to be on the lookout for the upcoming year. Since the options are near endless for 2014, you’ll want to hold on to your excitement, vacation shopping is about get fun!

Now Jade Riviera Cancun: Your Family’s Paradise

If you’re in charge of planning the family vacation, you probably get plenty of requests from everyone asking for different things – good food, great beach, activities for the young kiddos and cool, hip stuff for the older ones, right? So naturally it’s important that the vacation you plan has something to offer for every single member of your family. That’s why Now Jade Riviera Cancun is a perfect fit.

Best Family Beach Resort - Now Jade Riviera Cancun - CheapCaribbean.com

This 4.5-star all-inclusive resort in Riviera Maya is a contemporary interactive hotspot with options for everyone in your group. Now Jade Riviera Cancun sits right on a half-mile of crystal clear beach with three resort pools, including an adults-only pool & swim up bar. There’s also an Explorer’s Club that offers a number of exciting activities for children ages 4-12, such as big screen movies under the stars, treasure hunts & even a ocean trampoline. And with Unlimited Luxury® dining options, you’ll have access to eight restaurants & six bars, as well. After having dinner and hanging out at the themed party on the beach, retire to your modern suite that accommodates the entire family and get ready to do it all over again.

Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort: The Ultimate Couples’ Escape

While family vacations are a blast and definitely something we all look forward to, sometimes you’re looking to celebrate the romance just a bit. That’s why a week away with your significant other can be just what you need to rekindle the romance. Of course, you’ll be spending some quality time with the one who has your heart, but it’s still best practice to make sure that there are things each one of you can fully enjoy.

Best 2014 Couples Resort - Sandals Grande Jamaica - CheapCaribbean.com

When planning your 2014 couples vacation, you should consider Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort in Jamaica. Located perfectly on 100 acres of Ocho Rios’ prime real estate, this resort makes its home on the pure, white sands of the Caribbean Riviera. There are more than 90 private & semi-private pools across the resort grounds, so you can easily find your favorite spot in the rejuvenating Caribbean sun. We also recommend experiencing the onsite golf course located 700 ft. above sea level and one of the courses Golf Digest Magazine has named “Courses to Play While on Vacation.”

And when it’s time to get your grub on choose from one of 11 restaurants with options including Caribbean cuisine at The Reef Terrace, Italian fare at Valentino’s and grill fare at Sandtrap Grille. After dinner, join in on the fun activities and themed nightly parties. You can participate in the couples’ game show, Lovers’ Passion or hang at the Beach Party Barbeque with live entertainment. Whether it’s a honeymoon, anniversary or just a simple getaway, Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort is THE place to visit in the New Year.

Breathless Punta Cana Resort & Spa: Calling all the Partiers

Now if your vacation is all about catching some serious rays and having the time of your life, then your 2014 vacation spot is Punta Cana – Breathless Punta Cana Resort & Spa, more specifically. This luxury, adults-only 4.5-star resort caters to the fun, energetic lifestyle of singles, groups and any other occasions in need of a celebration.

Best 2014 Singles Resort - Breathless Punta Cana - CheapCaribbean.com

Come see what this Vegas-style energy center has to offer for yourself. Nestled between the jungle and ocean, this beachfront resort offers five swimming pools, including an expansive infinity main pool, two quiet pools and two xhale club pools. You’ll also want to take advantage of the 24-hour Unlimited Luxury® dining & beverage options with a total of 12 restaurants & eight bars. Among the bars, there’s MartinOX, a cigar club & oxygen bar serving top-shelf spirits and After Dark, a late night sports bar & nightclub. Opening November 2013, there’s no denying that this will be one of the hottest all-inclusive resorts in the upcoming year.

So as daylight gets shorter, the weather gets colder and the holidays quickly approach, it’s time to start looking to the future - your vacation future, that is. There’s no denying that 2014 looks to be a promising year full of family, fun and, of course, great vacations!

Where are you dying to go in 2014? Let us know in the comments below.