Scenic destinations you have to see to believe
One of the best parts of any vacation is discovering the natural beauty of your new environment. Whether it’s snorkelling from an immaculate beach or taking a tour through verdant, lush rainforest, the natural environment can be an essential part of any vacation. We created a short list of five of our favourite destinations that exhibit unforgettable natural beauty.
Aruba offers one of the most dramatic and stunning landscapes on the planet. Its natural environment is so pervasive that almost 20% of Aruba is a designated national park, known as the Arikok National Park. You can take a hiking tour through the park where vacationers will experience the arid and unusual land formations that make it so memorable. With the help of a guided tour by a park ranger, the tour is as informative as it is beautiful. And after a walk through the hot, desert-like environment of the Arikok National Park, why not cool off on the equally stunning Aruba Beach Hopping Tour, where you can enjoy two of Aruba’s most popular beaches for some of the best swimming and snokelling on the island?
Where to stay: See the best views of Palm Beach while staying at the modern and stylish Riu Palace Aruba. Here you will get the best of both worlds between city and nature, as the hotel is close to Palm Beach’s restaurants, shops and other major attractions but also close to Arikok National Park. Plus, your stay at the Riu Palace Aruba may also feature free activities like paddle surfing, beach volleyball and kayaking.
The island of Bonaire offers travellers beautiful, pristine beaches and world class diving. It’s a fantastic getaway for those looking to explore one of our planet’s most beautiful natural environments: its coral reefs. A great way to see Bonaire’s coral reefs is to go snorkelling through the Mangrove Nursery, which showcases the reefs untouched natural beauty through its crystal-clear waters. The colours of the flora and fauna are sure to create a memory that will last a lifetime. In addition, the island’s relatively arid climate and fine weather means that Bonaire is a diver’s paradise all year round. Many resorts offer diving packages, or if you’d rather explore just under the waves, snorkelling tours are also a great way to encounter the island’s rich and diverse marine life. Whether it’s snorkelling through the Mangrove Nursery or diving along the coastline, Bonaire’s natural beauty is impossible to escape.
Where to stay: You can easily explore the mangroves while staying at Buddy Dive Resort, which offers a Mangrove Snorkel Tour through its fully-equipped five-star PADI dive centre that offers an extensive range of dive packages.
The tropical paradise of Antigua is a genuine escape from the pressures of modern day life. Featuring 365 white sand beaches and stunningly blue ocean water, the island’s natural environment is the very definition of natural beauty. But there is more to Antigua, as this tropical escape is home to over 22 unique offshore islands that are full of natural adventures from snorkelling to nature walks. You can visit one of these on the Eco Tour that takes you to Great Bird Island, one of the best places to see a variety of endangered species, such as the brown pelican and the magnificent frigate bird.
Where to stay: If you’re interested in the Eco Tour, be sure to stay at the Sugar Ridge Resort, where you can also take part in complimentary guided walks through the lush rainforest, or book a scuba diving package to explore the underwater world.
From its palm-lined beaches to its majestic pitons, Saint Lucia is rich in extraordinary natural beauty. One of the best ways to explore Saint Lucia is by taking a Land & Sea Tour, that includes a tour of a working banana plantation at Marigot Bay, together with a visit to the beautiful Diamond Botanical Gardens followed by a snorkelling trip in a stunning secluded bay. For those looking for more dramatic natural encounters, there is the Soufriere Adventure Cruise. After a scenic cruise to get a glimpse of the island’s stunning pitons, the tour continues with a visit to the Sulphur Springs, the world’s only “drive-in” volcano, where they can enjoy a mud bath or take a tour of the beautiful volcanic landscape. Don’t worry though, the volcano is considered dormant!
Where to stay: After a day’s explorations, Hideaway at Royalton Saint Lucia is the perfect place to unwind. Situated in a beautiful private cove, the resort offers numerous luxurious inclusions from gourmet dining options to a world class spa.
The swaying palm trees and silky white dotted sands of Punta Cana offer more than just a place to unwind. The natural beauty of the resort town is impossible to escape and is always a delight to look at. One of the best ways to explore its natural wonder is through the Horseback Riding Tour. An exceptional activity that is perfect for families, couples, or solo travellers. Guests on the tour will see the Punta Cana countryside and beaches while riding atop a beautiful and calm horse. And if that’s not enough, the Hoyo Azul Eco Tour allows travellers to discover and explore the stunning, natural sinkhole Hoyo Azul, which features a 75 metre deep cliff, alongside the most astonishing turquoise waters nature can offer.
Where to stay: After some exciting exploration, you might want to kick back and relax on a comfy Bali bed on the stunning Bavaro Beach at Punta Cana Princess All Suites Resort and Spa. This adults only resort is designed for couples and honeymooners. It features a serene and cozy atmosphere, lavish suites and lush tropical gardens.