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Best Caribbean Cruises for 2015
  • For many of us just the name Barbados conjures up images of caster sugar beaches and warm azure sea. You can find all that and more, plus in Bridgetown music-filled bars, markets and the historic Garrison area. Must-sees include Harrison's Cave, a group of caverns filled with stalagmites and stalactites.
    Take me there: P&O has a 14-night cruise departing Barbados on 2 Jan 2015 from £999pp, based on two sharing, including flights.
  • St Lucia boasts some of the most diverse landscape in the Caribbean, from the magnificent Pitons (twin peak mountain) to the sulphur springs and drive-in volcano at Soufrière. It's also a great island to try zip-wiring (all those trees) and exploring by ATV.
    Take me there: Holland America has 11-night cruise from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, calling at St Lucia, St Thomas, St Kitts and Barbados, from £891pp cruise only, departing on 5 Jan 2015, based on two sharing.
  • You've probably heard that Antigua has 365 beaches, one for every day of the year, and with its banana trees and stunning Englishman's harbour, it's certainly worth exploring. But the chance to visit the neighbouring (and exclusive) island of Barbuda, with its pale pink sand and Frigate bird sanctuary, is not to be missed.
    Take me there: Princess Cruises has a 10-day Caribbean Islander cruise from New York on October 25 2015, calling at St Thomas, Antigua and Aruba from £599pp, not including flights.
  • Translucent water teaming with tropical fish and pristine beaches make the Bahamas the quintissential Caribbbean escape.
    Take me there: On a Disney cruise you'll call at Nassau, where you can spend the day swimming with dolphins or hanging out at the Atlantis resort, and you'll also visit the cruise line's own private island, Castaway Cay. An 11-night cruise-and-stay holiday, including seven nights at Walt Disney World resort Florida and a four-night Bahamas cruise from Port Canaveral starts at £1299pp in 2015 (virginholidaycruises.co.uk).
  • With its lush green rainforest, mountains and reggae everywhere you go, Jamaica is without doubt one of the most intriguing islands in the Caribbean. On a day trip you can go bareback horseriding in the sea, climb Dunn's waterfall and still have time for a lunch of jerk chicken, rice and peas; or if you're a music fan, head for The Bob Marley Centre & Mausoleum. Jamaica is the kind of island that seduces you from your first visit. Trust us, you won't want to leave.
    Take me there: MSC Cruises has a seven-night cruise from Miami, departing in February 2015, calling at Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, the Bahamas and Mexico,from £459pp (a saving of £200pp on the brochure price), based on two sharing, not including flights.
  • The chance to visit Cuba before big changes take place makes the island one of the hottest destinations for 2015. Havana, with its crumbling baroque and neoclassical buildings and squares, old cadillacs cruising the streets and extraordinary history is not to be missed.
    Take me there: Thomson has a seven-night Cuban Fusion cruise, departing from 30 December to 7 April 2015, sailing from Montego Bay in Jamaica with two days in Havana, from £1,039pp, based on two people sharing, including flights.
  • Divers and snorkellers will be in their element in this small Central American country - the 150-mile Belize Barrier Reef offers some of the best diving and snorkelling in the world. There are also Mayan ruins to visit in the jungle, notably at Altun Ha, which dates back to 900BC.
    Take me there: Norwegian Cruise Line has a seven night cruise calling at Belize from £1,040pp, based on two sharing, including flights.

  • Arguably one of the prettiest islands in the Caribbean, with the 17th-century UNESCO-listed Dutch colonial quarter of Willemstad the biggest attraction. Must-sees include the gingerbread houses painted in pastel colours and floating market. 
    Getting there: Carnival has an eight-day Southern Caribbean cruise from £627pp in March 2015, cruise only, based on two sharing.
  • Away from its all-inclusive resorts, the Dominican Republic is one of the most fascinating islands in the Caribbean, with a distinctly Latin flavour. Head for Santo Domingo, with its beautiful preserved architecture and museums. Must-sees include the former viceregal residence of Alcázar de Colón, Ozama Fortress and Santa Maria La Menor Cathedral. 
    Getting there: Thomson Cruises has an 18-night cruise sailing in April 2015, from £1467pp, departing from Montego Bay, Jamaica and calling at La Romana in the Dominican Republic. Other ports of call include St Kitts, Antigua, the Azores and Majorca.
  • Considered the most glam of the ABC islands (the others are Curacao and Bonaire), Aruba has magnificent white-sand beaches perfect for chilling out.
    Take me there: Norwegian has an 11-night Southern Caribbean cruise from Miami, sailing regularly from November to March, from £1,394pp, based on two sharing, including flights.