St. Kitts and Nevis is the smallest country in the Caribbean, but don’t let that fool you as they still have plenty to offer when it comes to tourism. Here are a few good reasons to consider St. Kitts and Nevis as your next vacay destination.
For COVID travel requirements, refer to the official tourism site of St. Kitts and Nevis here.
See the Historical Sites
St. Kitts and Nevis, like many other countries in the Caribbean traces its history through colonialism, and slavery taking place a few centuries ago. The remnants of this history can be seen through buildings from that era, that you can visit. These are two of them:
Brimstone Hill National Park
This is a fortress designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site, built in the St. Kitts island from 1690 intermittently over a period of 100 years. A trip here is usually a part of a preplanned sightseeing tour, and if you’re a history buff, you don’t wanna miss a visit to the museum where you learn about the history of the fortress and the island. It was designed by British military engineers, built by African slaves, and is remarkably well preserved.
With breathtaking scenery, the site is apt for exploration. Overlooking the cannon-studded walls, there are excellent views over the sea and landscape below. To get a thorough view of the place, you might want to get here before it gets crowded. Brimstone Hill also has a gift shop if you’d like to get a souvenir. Finally, the fort even has facilities to organize conferences, banquets and weddings.
This house was built back in the early 17th century, on what may have been the ground of Carib Indian Chief Tegreman’s village. The manor was first owned by the ancestors of Thomas Jefferson the third President of the United States. It was later acquired by its namesake the Earl of Romney who had voluntarily freed his slaves in 1834. The house is now surrounded by six acres of a botanical garden with its own interesting flora and fauna and a saman tree that’s believed to be around 400 years old.
Finally, be sure to check out the Caribelle Batik shop where you can even try your hand at Batik. Batik is an Indonesian method of dyeing a cloth through wax-resist. The Manor is also near a rainforest, and if you’re interested in exploring it, you can find guides that can help with that. You can also visit Romney Manor as part of the St. Kitts Rainforest Nature tour which costs just $70 per head.
Take a ride on the St. Kitts Scenic Railway
Also known as “The Last Railway in the West Indies” this is a 3 hour ride over 30 miles of the coastline of St. Kitts, making it a convenient way to see much of the island in a short time. 18 miles are traveled by train, and the rest by bus, sometimes in reverse order. You can choose to sit in the lower floor which has A/C, while the upper floor is open but offers a better view.
On the ride you learn more about the train’s history where it was built in the 1920s to transport sugar from the plantations to the mills in Basseterre. The ride offers a spectacular view of the rainforests, ocean, cliffs, old plantations, along with landmarks such as Brimstone Hill Fortress, and Mt. Liamuiga. It also has complimentary drinks. Nothing to complement the view like a rum punch!
Here is a link to book a ride through Viator.
Take an adventurous hike on Nevis Peak
Are you a beast when it comes to fitness and itching for some challenges in the great outdoors? Then a hike to the Nevis Peak might tickle your fancy as many visitors have described it as an arduous hours long climb. Yes, a climb. While it’s called a hike, it’s only a part of the beginning, as it later grows into a climb. You’ll be traversing through streams, muddy ground, loose stones and the rainforest.The hike has its inherent risks, so it’s advised that you take the help of a guide and prepare yourselves well in advance, both physically and mentally. Don’t forget to carry food, water, and especially climbing gloves, as you’ll be using ropes. All the hours of hard work are rewarded with a spectacular view from the peak.
Visit the Beaches
No trip to the Caribbean is complete without a visit to the beaches. Here are three of the top beaches in St. Kitts and Nevis:
Located at the channel between St. Kitts and Nevis Islands, Cockleshell has many things that make it picture perfect: green rolling hills, the volcano of Nevis Peak, and the clear blue waters. While most of the beach is white sand, there are some spots of dark volcanic sand. The beach has excellent food, especially freshly caught seafood and beverages served in establishments such as the Spice Mill, Reggae Beach Bar, and Lion Rock. Finally, there are facilities for snorkeling and watersports such as boogie boards, and jet skis. You might need to book them in advance.
Frigate Bay North
The Frigate Bay is actually two bays, each with its own beach. The Northern part faces the Atlantic Ocean, and just like Cockleshell Beach, has amazing scenery of and most of the beach is white with some spots of black sand here and there. A part of the beach is taken up by the Marriot Hotel and similar developments and its opposite end tends to be more tranquil. The beach is also ideal for swimming and snorkeling.
Located across the island of Nevis, and near Cockleshell beach lies Turtle beach. It’s relatively untouched by human activities with only a few rental establishments nearby and is ideal for relaxing activities such as sunbathing, and swimming. Despite the name, the beach isn’t famous for having many turtles but you can spot dolphins and maybe even a whale. Snorkeling is also ideal with the reef and fishes making for a beautiful snorkeling environment.