Although the Caribbean might conjure images of powder-soft sand, frozen cocktails and competition- caliber waves, there’s more to these idyllic islands than their beachy borders. With more than 700 islands, islets, reefs and cays, the Caribbean is a diverse habitat teeming with wildlife of all sorts, from gentle giants to cuddly critters and glowing microscopic mysteries. Whether you’re into birding, wildlife photography or you simply enjoy being in nature, keep reading to discover five of our favorite wildlife experiences across the Caribbean.



An otherworldly experience like something plucked straight from a fantasy movie, bioluminescence must be seen to be believed. This mystical, glow-in-the-dark display occurs when marine organisms containing luciferin react with oxygen and produce light. The anomaly occurs mostly in the deep sea for reasons like feeding, mating and protection, but in some rare instances, it can also be witnessed from the shore.

Boasting three of just five bioluminescent bays in the world, Puerto Rico is your best bet to catch a glimpse of this sparkling spectacle. Head to Laguna Grande, La Parguera or Mosquito Bay and watch as the waves illuminate as they lap onto the shore. Because the microscopic marine organisms light up when they’re touched, the best way to see them is to make a splash, literally. Go for a night swim or opt for a clear kayak excursion, marveling at the swirling blue hues with every stroke of your paddle.



In the months of January through April, this low-lying coral archipelago is a popular vacation spot not only with sun- and fun-seekers, but also for an unexpected visitor: Humpback whales. Migrating north from the Atlantic to the warmer waters of the Caribbean, these gentle giants meet in the Silver Bank and the Turks Island Passage to mate and give birth.

For your best bet to spot a mother swimming with her whale calf, head to Salt Cay or Grand Turk. Unlike other whale-watching destinations, the smaller boats of Turks & Caicos offer much closer — and more adventurous — viewing opportunities. Depending on ocean conditions, some tour operators even lead groups into the water to snorkel alongside the majestic 10- to 12-foot calves as the mothers watch from below.


From the palm-fringed beaches to cascading waterfalls, mountainous rainforest and secluded coves, Trinidad delivers as many wonders on land as it does in the air. Boasting one of the highest bird species to area ratios of any country, there are few places in the world where so many flying creatures can be seen in such a small area.

Encompassing 1,500 acres in the Arima and Aripo Valleys of the Northern Range, the Asa Wright Nature Center is known for its biodiversity of hummingbirds, pygmy owls, woodcreepers and the rare oilbird, while the Winston Nanan Caroni Bird Sanctuary is home to flocks of flamingos and scarlet ibises, herons, toucans, manikins and tanagers. With over 470 recorded species, you’ll hardly need binoculars to see them.

For the ultimate adrenaline rush, head to Mount Tamana, the highest point in the island’s Central Range. Venture through old coffee estates and past massive silk cotton trees before embarking on a 30-minute climb to an intricate cave system. Inside, see thousands of bats of nearly a dozen species hanging inside the cave walls. As dusk approaches, stand completely still as they exit en masse, screeching and flapping in a thrilling exodus to challenge even the bravest of adventurers.



With a wide range of distinct ecosystems, Grenada is one of the best hiking destinations in the Caribbean. With four of the island’s tallest peaks, Grand Etang Forest Reserve near St. George is a great place to start for all sorts of trailside adventures, from hiking to birding, river tubing and meet-and-greets with critters like mongoose, armadillos and Mona monkeys. Hikes here range from easy to strenuous, some conveniently passing waterfalls that empty into pristine pools perfect for swimming.

For an easy hike, start with Mount Qua Qua near Saint George, a 2.7-mile out-and-back trail with fantastic views of Grand Etang Lake. On the Atlantic side, opt for the 1.3-mile Seven Sisters Waterfall hike near Saint Andrew or the misty rainforest trails of La Sagesse Nature Center, a former plantation nestled along a private estuary along Grenada’s stunning southwest coast.

Contact our agency to plan your family adventure.