Bridgetown to Fort Lauderdale, Silverseas Cruise
January 23rd-February 5th 2024. Prices from £6,159pp in a Classic Veranda Enquire Now
Including 2 night pre Cruise stay at Cobblers Cove
Drinks, Food, Butler Service and Shore Excursions are included on board Silver Dawn.
At A Glance
- 2 night Pre Cruise Stay Cobblers Cove, Barbados
- Day 3 Stop in Bequia
- Day 4 Stop in St Lucia
- Day 5 Stop in Antigua
- Day 6 Stop in St Barths
- Day 7 Stop in US Virgin Islands
Bridgetown, the captivating capital of Barbados, combines faded colonial history, captivating tradition, and vivid white beaches plucked directly from your richest imagination of Caribbean perfection. Recently listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site, thanks to its beautifully preserved colonial architecture, Bridgetown’s mask of modernity covers a core of complex history and fascinating culture. Sherbet coloured buildings line up to overlook the waterfront of the Constitution River at the ‘The Careenage’ – where gleaming ships bob on the blue water, and peaceful strolls along a wooden boardwalk await. Stop for a sobering moment at the commemorative plaque honouring the people traded at this spot, when Bridgetown was the British Empire’s most important harbour, and first stop on the Transatlantic Slave Trade crossing. Just five minutes’ stroll from here is Carlisle Bay – a postcard-perfect place where you’ll find crystal-clear, turquoise seawater glowing in the Caribbean sun, and a mile of soft white powder sand.
A treasure trove for divers, the shipwrecks scattered below the shallow water’s waves are now inhabited by turtles and swirling, rainbow-coloured tropical fish. Head to the backstreets, where street food vendors serve up spicy chicken soup, barbecued pigtails and thirst-quenching coconut water. There are bargains aplenty to be had on Broad Street, where duty-free malls and souvenir stalls cram together, vying for your attention. Roebuck Street is the spot where one of the Caribbean’s favourite drinks, rum, was discovered – having been created here from the by-products of the island’s booming sugarcane trade. Nowadays, it’s lined with bars splashing every variety of the deliciously spicy dark libation imaginable into glasses. For a touch more culture, visit one of the oldest synagogues in The Americas – Nidhe Israel Synagogue, which was built in 1654. The adjoining museum tells the story of Barbados’ Jewish immigrants, who were instrumental in the island’s development.
An almost mythical utopia of virgin beaches, rustic rum shacks and bays so scenic you feel like you’re intruding – Bequia Island is an island mirage of Caribbean perfection. This is the real, unspoiled experience – and with just 6,000 locals living here, you quickly start to recognise the same smiling faces, welcoming you with outstretched arms. Offering glorious – often deserted – beaches of pure golden sand, and hillside sweeps of forest and almond trees, Bequia Island is an extraordinary feast for the senses.
Unlike some of the flashier Caribbean islands, Bequia – a part of the Grenadines – is a rustic, unassuming and off-the-beaten-path choice. The staggeringly picturesque natural harbour, Admiralty Bay, greets you on arrival, and is peppered with day-tripping yachts bobbing on the gentle waves. The island’s tiny capital, Port Elizabeth, sits behind, with its bustling fruit and vegetable market, turtle sanctuary, and stalls selling hand-crafted model ships. This tiny, pretty island is ridged along the centre, and you can earn your beachside bliss with a gentle hike to the top of Mount Peggy, looking out over views of Grenada and St Vincent.
At just seven miles long, you can discover the whole island in a few hours – but that would be to miss the point somewhat. Bequia Island coaxes you in to slow the pace and soothe your soul on blissful beaches, where you can revel in the uncomplicated joys of sitting, reading and swimming in heavenly shallow waters. The royally approved Princess Margaret Beach is one of the finest – an arching band of soft sand and cobalt-blue waters. As evening sets in, you may find you’re beckoned to share with communal barbecues of the day’s fresh catch with the locals, or to indulge in rum-heavy cocktails at beachside bars, lashed together from sea-blanched wooden limbs.
Explore a land of vibrant colour, from the tranquil turquoise water that surrounds it, to the verdant green peaks of its famous soaring volcanic plugs – The Pitons; which give this mesmerising island its form. Waterfalls thunder in the jungled interior, should you successfully drag yourself from St Lucia’s gleaming beaches and dive spots – where patchworks of colourful fish dance below the waves. Offering the picturesque island luxury of your wildest dreams, St. Lucia is a cinematic, thrilling Caribbean idyl.
Marigot Bay served as the tropical backdrop for 1967’s Doctor Dolittle film, and the island’s amiable animal life is never too far away – spot flashes of bright red, as parrots zip between palm trees, before catching sight of dolphins splashing playfully offshore. Vigie beach is a charmed spot to lie back and recline in the sun’s glow, watching as overlapping layers of mesmerising blue hues intertwine.
St. Lucia’s iconic Pitons mountains deliver as the perfect backdrop to any envy generating photograph – rising up exponentially from the calm waters like sharp shark fins. Castries is this heavenly island’s capital, and while the Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception may seem a little humble from the outside, the soft sounds of soulful hymns emanating from within are sure to draw you in. The astonishing interior glows with bright frescoes, lit up by the sunlight that spills inside, and atmospheric rows of flickering candles.
There’s more rich Caribbean colour to behold at the ramshackle Castries Market, where you can take handfuls of fragrant spices, like nutmeg and cinnamon, and enjoy the singsong ritual of bartering, as you move between tables heaving under bounties of green bananas and rosy mangos.
Lush and lively, Antigua is a bedazzling Caribbean destination, gorged with sunshine and crisp white sand beaches. Historic forts, sparkling coastline, and dense rainforest all contribute to Antigua’s land of thrilling natural beauty. With its bright blue to turquoise sea gradients – the beaches are vibrant and plentiful and the island has no shortage to choose from, with a rumoured 365 options.
Experience the beauty on horseback, as your ride pounds across the sands, and the wind whips through your hair. Choose to loll in a catamaran offshore, or lie back on a bed of the softest sand to soak it all in. Beach shacks cook up fresh seafood and spicy goat meat curries if you’re feeling hungry. St John’s glows in the sunshine, with flamingo pink and baby blue paints boldly coating vivid Georgian buildings.
Lively markets offer an authentic slice of Antiguan life, while museums celebrate the island’s revered cricketers like Viv Richards, and the story of independence. The whacks and whoops of makeshift cricket games hint at the island’s British history, and you can see more of this heritage at Falmouth Harbour – which was the centre of the British presence in the Caribbean.
The area is still filled with sailers and dallying yachts, as well as the only working Georgian dockyard in the world. Built in 1725, the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Nelson’s Dockyard, was led by the admiral Horatio Nelson himself and is a fascinating time warp. Hike up to viewpoints here, which reward with glorious views of the forest-clad inlets, craggy cliffs and pointed hills. The stone towers of sugar mills dot the island, and hint at the tragic history of slavery, amid the island’s sugar trade past.
Cherry red roofs, yacht-sprinkled bays and a sophisticated French flavour all add to the gorgeous Caribbean allure of Gustavia. The island’s capital rolls around a horseshoe-shaped harbour, where gleaming yachts hover and fancy boutiques, bars and restaurants fizz with life and clinking cutlery. Head up to red and white Gustavia Lighthouse to look down over the revered waters, which attract many a celebrity guest and diving enthusiast to these shores. Christopher Columbus was the first European to discover this volcanic island in 1493, giving it the name St Barthelemy in honour of his younger brother.
The island has a unique history as a Swedish colony, following a deal with the French King Louis XVI to exchange the island with Sweden for better trading rights. It was returned to French control in 1878 and is now a French Overseas Collectivity. Learn more of the Swedish legacy at Fort Karl – which sits on a 29-metre-high hill above Shell Beach. The fort now lies in ruins, but you’ll meet wandering iguanas, and the views down of sweeping sea and emerald coastline are some of the island’s finest.
Down below, a delightful spread of tiny pebbles and shell fragments are scattered like confetti and lapped by crystal-clear water. A little exploration uncovers countless other glorious beaches and natural wonders. Colombier Beach is a little out of the way but cradles silky-smooth sands and typically turquoise waters. If you have chance, find somewhere to settle and sip fruity rum cocktails as the sunset flares across the waves.
The steep, spectacular hills that surround St Thomas’s exquisite harbour provide a fitting entry point for this island of overwhelming natural splendour. The jungled-mountains reach up above tempting beaches and scuba diving sites, while Charlotte Amalie – the island’s capital – sprawls down towards the water, bedecked with shops and tasty restaurants. Part of the beautiful U.S. Virgin Islands – together with St John and St Croix – these lands were purchased by the US in 1917. Nowadays, St Thomas is a patchwork of cultures, and a lively welcome to the islands, serving as a gracious host to the many visitors who linger – as well as those who jump on ferries, yachts and catamarans to explore the blessed beaches of the Caribbean’s other retreats.
A stunning island of dramatic jungled-scenery, keep your camera close to hand as you swing up the Skyride to Paradise Point, to look down over the natural amphitheatre of the dock and city below. Snap some more postcard-perfect shots at Drake’s Seat – said to be Sir Francis Drake’s lookout point, where he could survey for approaching enemy ships. Nowadays, the views over Magens Bay and the infinite sea are always peaceful, and this is a great spot to catch a fiery Caribbean sunset spilling across the sky.
Take catamaran cruises to explore the shining coastline, or seek out the glorious coves and caves that are hidden along the island’s perimeter. Land on the secluded shores of tiny islands, before scuba diving and snorkelling above the twisted boughs of lost ships, reclaimed by the waters and inhabited by curious tropical fish life. Kayak over still lagoon waters, or take the chance to lay back on soft beaches strewn with tiny shells, as St Thomas’s beauty washes over you.
Compact, but utterly gorgeous, the third biggest of the British Virgin Isles is one of the region’s most spectacular – and a truly indulgent Caribbean escape to rejuvenate the senses. Sprinkled amid the mansions and private islands of the rich and famous, Virgin Gorda has somehow retained its secluded, castaway paradise atmosphere. Translating as Fat Virgin, the island was given its unusual name by Colombus, who noted the protruding stomach of the island’s shape.
Visit to dive deep into the island’s relaxed essence, and to gorge on endless expanses of idyllic beaches and dreamy coastline. Visit a trademark white sand beach – like the slice of paradise at Savannah Bay – or rise up to the perspective offered from the elevated heights of Gorda Peak. At its southern end, Devil’s Bay National Park provides a haven of relaxation, amid geothermal pools and mounds of scattered boulders. Secluded caves and rock pockets fill with seawater at the Baths, forming the perfect spot to sink into the welcoming water and unwind.
Whether you choose one of the beaches here, or head to the island’s plethora of other options, chances are you’ll only be able to resist the call of the waves for so long. With tempting temperatures and electric blue overtones, the seas here are the quintessential Caribbean experience. Snorkellers also have rich pickings among crystal clear diving sites – blossoming with colourful fish and sea life.
Sitting on the north coast of this lush, tropical island, San Juan is the second settlement founded by European settlers in the Caribbean, and the oldest city under US jurisdiction. The stocky walls and watchtowers here have stood the test of time, repelling notable invaders – such as Sir Francis Drake – and the pirates who historically looted these islands. With massive fortresses, airy plazas and sheer Caribbean beauty, San Juan is a beach-blessed star of these turquoise waters. With more than 500 years of European history, Old San Juan gleams In Puerto Rico’s sunshine, with sugar-almond painted facades and ankle-testing cobbled lanes. Decorative balconies and varnished wooden doors add everyday artistry to streets, dripping with history.
Soak up the culture at rum-fuelled parties and salsa dances on this Spanish-culture infused island, or recline into afternoon relaxation sessions on sensational slivers of gleaming sand. Kick back on the beach, or satisfy a lust for adventure by exploring sprawling mangrove forests. The magic of sea kayaking after dark here is an experience you won’t forget. Break the waves with your oar, and watch as the waters illuminate with neon colour, as bioluminescence creates a mystical, peaceful spectacle.
Pocked limestone cliffs and karst landscapes add rugged contrast to the serenity of the beaches, and you can walk into folds of the earth in sea-carved caves, or across cliffs to hidden views of the Caribbean’s expanse. Enjoy a taste of the island’s cuisine by sampling Mofongo – a local concoction of green plantains and chicken. Why not indulge and wash it down with an iced mojito, made from crushed mint and locally distilled rum?
Two Days at Sea where you can enjoy everything Silverseas have to offer.
Miles of sandy beaches, lively outdoor events, and a charming web of waterways help to make Fort Lauderdale a relaxed, vacation capital of Florida. The excitement is palpable, as cruise ships and gleaming yachts gather in the harbour ahead of adventures and luxury journeys across the waves. Soak up the relaxed atmosphere in the canal-laced ‘Venice of America,’ as you enjoy big label shopping on Las Olas Boulevard – or visit fancy restaurants and bustling art galleries.
For a wilder experience, the swampy wetlands of the Everglades sprawl away nearby. Fort Lauderdale Beach is a lively stretch of sand, bordered by palm trees, and sprinkled with crowds enjoying the Sunshine State’s generous weather. The charming promenade of red-brick tiles extends right along the beach’s length and rumbles with passing rollerbladers and cyclists. Flick across the waves while paragliding, or relax with a coffee or a margarita in a beachfront bar, as volleyball games play out in front of you.
For a quieter beach option, Olas Beach lies a little down the coast towards Port Everglades, and has extra space to spread out and tan on acres of smooth white sand. Spot the backs of alligators waiting patiently, and the toothy grins of crocodiles patrolling the murky waters of the Everglades – the USA’s biggest tropical wetlands. A haven of extraordinary wildlife, birds wade through its swamps, and black bears and panthers roam its wilds. Take to a plane to appreciate the full scale of the national park or purr along exploring its waterways in a fan powered boat.