Updated: 6 days ago
Across the Caribbean and Central America, there are a few resorts that we just looooove. We book them again and again for our family clients.
These are all relatively small, independently owned properties. They all have unique personalities and reflect the soul of their destination. They flawlessly combine luxury, adventure and offer a perfect setting to relax and create cherished memories together as a family.
Often, our clients will return from staying at one of these properties and immediately want to start planning their next family adventure! We know if they enjoyed a particular resort they will love several more on this list.
This list has always lived in our heads - until now! So here you go - the "if you liked this place... you'll love this other place" list.
Goldeneye - Jamaica
Goldeneye, located in Oracabessa (near Ocho Rios) Jamaica, embodies all the fun and music of Jamaican culture while offering an accommodation option that works for a wide range of families.
Their beach villas are quite literally just steps to the beach. Their beach huts offer excellent value for money and the lagoon cottages are perched over a beautiful lagoon teeming with fish. You'll find 4 unique beaches and all the toys to get out on the water and explore on your own or with a guide.
However, our favorite part of the experience at Goldeneye is it's ties to the local community. Across the bay is a community space created by the property owners to host events for the local community. We happened upon a local high school marching band competition, and were welcomed into the party with open arms!
If you're looking for amazing beaches, spacious accommodations, and an opportunity to experience authentic Jamaican hospitality, Goldeneye is the place!
Morgan's Rock - Nicaragua
Morgan's Rock, located on Nicaragua's Pacific Coast, is tucked into the forest at the edge of a massive crescent beach. This beach is totally private, only accessible via boat. And it's a spectacular beach! Great waves for jumping, boogie boarding and beginner surfers - world class surfing is also located nearby.
While all the rooms feature amazing views and tons of privacy, their 2 bedroom suites are the perfect set up for a family. Enjoy 2 full bedrooms with en suite bathrooms with an open air seating area in the middle, and private infinity plunge pool looking out over the tree tops to the ocean below.
Hotel Aguas Claras - Costa Rica
For families who have already been to Costa Rica, consider returning to explore the country's Caribbean coast. Here in Puerto Viejo you have 5 unique beaches and a charming town teeming with yoga studios, fresh, local restaurants and a truly unique bohemian atmosphere.
Hotel Aguas Claras is the nicest accommodation option in the area by far, and they have a 5 bedroom villa that is very reasonably priced. Enjoy the beach, just steps away, or hop on a bike and explore the area on your own.
Isla Palenque - Panama
Isla Palenque is a relatively new resort located on a 400 acre private island in Panama’s Gulf of Chiriqui. For families with older kids, their beach villas are perfect (kids will be in their own unit). Alternatively, they have a stunning 6-bedroom villa that is the perfect getaway for multigenerational families or multiple families traveling together (it can and can accommodate up to 14 guests).
Here all meals and drinks are included (you're on an island after all!) and you can spend your days hiking, paddle boarding, snorkeling or hop on a boat and explore the other islands in this remote archipelago.
Turtle Inn - Belize
Turtle Inn is a long-time favorite for families and for milestone birthday celebrations. Owned by the Coppola family, here food and wine are serious business! Rooms are private and just steps to the beach. They have a few villa options we love as well!
This part of Belize is best explored by boat, so be sure to plan a few full days out exploring the Cayes. Clear, calm waters combined with an abundance of fascinating coral and fish make Placencia a premier spot for snorkeling in Belize.
Ser Casasandra - Mexico
Mexico is always an interesting destination for families thanks to plenty of easy, direct flights from all around America, a wide variety of experiences, accommodation options and of course all those amazing beaches and the lovely, warm Mexican culture.
But if the Riviera Maya resort scene really isn't right for your family, consider heading off the beaten path to Isla Holbox. Here, Ser Casasandra is our go-to property.
The island is small so you're always just a few steps from the beach. Ser Casasandra, as they like to say, "is art in every expression." We love the authentic decor and the cuisine, which is a delicious mix of local specialities, seafood and fresh fish.
Head here in July to swim with the majestic whale sharks as they make their annual migration past the island.
Galapagos Safari Camp - Galapagos Ecuador
And last but certainly not least is Galapagos Safari Camp. Located in the lush highlands of Santa Cruz Island, in the heart of the Galapagos Islands, Galapagos Safari Camp is the ideal base and perfect springboard for discovering the other-worldly landscapes, amazing wildlife and spell-binding magic of this remote archipelago, made famous by Charles Darwin nearly two centuries ago.
The property is family owned and operated, so you can expect to see their young kids on property during your stay. Everything about this experience is bespoke and the guiding always receives rave reviews. A land-based experience is ideal for families and Galapagos Safari Camp is a perfect home base.