Best Affordable Caribbean Islands For Families

A young girl wearing a swim suit, holding a yellow bucket, plays in the waves on the sand at Crash Boat Beach in Puerto Rico, one of the best affordable Caribbean islands for families.
Photo Courtesy: Antonia Grant

If you’re in search of a dreamy family getaway that won’t break the bank, look no further than the mesmerizing allure of affordable Caribbean islands. Boasting beautiful beaches, clear waters, and dynamic cultures, these paradises offer an irresistible blend of relaxation and adventure. ​​Whether you seek thrilling water sports adventures or serene nature excursions, these gems provide the perfect backdrop for unforgettable family memories – without being too hard on your wallet! Explore the cobblestone streets of Old San Juan in Puerto Rico, go snorkeling in Curaçao, or book an all-inclusive vacation in The Dominican Republic. But with numerous options, which Caribbean island offers the best value for your hard-earned money? Keep reading to find out things to do, where to stay, and tips for visiting the Caribbean with kids! 

A Few Things To Consider When Choosing an Affordable Caribbean Island for Families

A family of four sits together on a bridge on a bright sunny day in the Dominican Republic.
Photo Courtesy: Megan Tucker

Before diving into the best affordable Caribbean islands for families, let’s go over a few tips for visiting the Caribbean with kids. Even if it’s not your first time visiting the Caribbean, it’ll be useful to keep a checklist of what to consider when planning a Caribbean family vacation. Keep reading to find out more! 

Location and Accessibility

One thing to consider when visiting the Caribbean with kids is location and accessibility. Here are some suggestions!

  • To minimize travel costs, opt for islands with direct flights or easy access. 
  • Be flexible with travel dates to find cheaper flights. This may mean traveling during the shoulder or low season or when your kids would typically be in school. 
  • Compare prices across airlines and platforms for the best deals.

Accommodations

If you need tips about booking accommodations in the Caribbean with kids, look no further! 

  • To get the most bang for your buck, seek all-inclusive resorts with family-friendly amenities.
  • Consider villa or apartment rentals with cooking facilities for cost-effective stays.
  • Research and book accommodations in advance for better rates.
  • Look for budget-friendly options away from tourist hotspots.

Common Features To Look For in Budget-Friendly Accommodations

silhouette of mom and son in a beach in Antigua, one of the best affordable Caribbean islands for families

Here are some other things to consider when looking for accommodations in the Caribbean with kids. 

  • If you’re staying on an island that’s harder to get around or don’t plan on renting a car, choose a convenient location. It’ll be easy to reach all the best attractions, and you’ll save more money, in the long run, this way. 
  • Check if your accommodation offers a complimentary breakfast. Even if the hotel is a bit more expensive than other options, you’ll probably save money that you can put towards activities! 
  • Of course, make sure your hotel has Wi-Fi access just in case you need it or your kids want some entertainment! 
  • A swimming pool is a fantastic asset for any Caribbean hotel to have. Even though the ocean is likely nearby, it’s still nice to have somewhere kids can play and splash inside the resort. 
  • Make sure your hotel has on-site dining options for those lazy days when you don’t feel like leaving the resort! 
  • If you’re booking a rental, make sure it has a kitchen is close to the town or public transportation, or has a grocery store nearby. Groceries are a great way to save money and cook your kids their favorite food, which is great for picky eaters or those who don’t want to try different options. 
  • Sometimes, owners or rental management companies will stock your villa before you arrive. Make sure to send an email to the rental company beforehand so that you make the arrangement way in advance.‌

Activities and Attractions

Lastly, here are some tips for booking affordable activities and attractions in the Caribbean with kids! 

  • Choose destinations with a mix of free or low-cost activities.
  • Explore beaches, hiking trails, and cultural experiences to get a good mix and have the most wide-ranging experience.
  • Discover national parks and wildlife sanctuaries for budget-friendly family fun.
  • Use discount websites to look for deals on sites like Groupon or LivingSocial for discounted accommodations and activities.

Best Affordable Caribbean Islands for Families

Now that we’ve gone over some tips for visiting the Caribbean with kids, it’s time to list the best affordable Caribbean islands for families. Whether you want to eat delicious cuisine in Jamaica, hike mountains in St. Lucia, or relax on the beach in the Dominican Republic, you’ll love these choices. Keep reading to plan your next Caribbean family vacation! 

Curaçao

A mom and two kids pose together as they enjoy a beautiful view of Curacao.
Photo Courtesy: Christina Noordstar

When it comes to finding the best affordable Caribbean islands for families, one destination that stands out is Curaçao! Famous for its friendly locals, coral reefs teeming with marine life, and secluded beach alcoves, this Dutch territory boasts culture, great restaurants, and affordability. In fact, the local currency (Netherlands Antillean guilder) provides great value for your money. However, flights can be longer from the United States, less frequent, and more expensive, which is something to consider! 

Willemstad, Curaçao’s capital city, is lined with vibrant architecture, historical attractions, and kid-friendly all-inclusive hotels. Curaçao also has a range of free activities like swimming and building sandcastles at kid-friendly beaches like Kenapa Beach or Cas Abou Beach, which features snorkel and kayak rentals plus banana boat rides. A lot of Curaçao’s kid-friendly attractions are spread out throughout the island, but don’t let that discourage you from venturing out to natural wonders like Christoffel and Shete Boka National Park. Animal enthusiasts will also delight in visiting Curaçao’s Ostrich Farm! Or, explore underground mysteries while wandering the Hato Caves. Don’t forget to walk over the illuminated Queen Emma Pontoon Bridge at nightfall! 

Where to Stay in Curaçao with Kids

An aerial view of the sprawling Kunuku Aqua Resort Curacao - Trademark by Wyndham.
Photo Courtesy: Kunuku Aqua Resort Curacao – Trademark by Wyndham

Curaçao offers a range of accommodations, from guesthouses to luxury resorts. Families love staying at Renaissance Curaçao Resort & Casino, where kids under twelve eat free. There’s also Kunuku Aqua Resort, Dreams Curaçao Resort, Spa & Casino, Blue Bay Resort, and other options on our list of the Best Family Resorts In Curacao! Or, check out Airbnb or Vrbo for more options.

Choose the Families Love Travel Booking site and save on your hotel stay in Curaçao! Sign-up is complimentary!

Dominican Republic

A family of four, wearing color coordinated outfits in blue and pink, walks on the beach toward the water in the Dominican Republic.
Photo provided by Dana Pressler, Photographer Courtesy: Mario Ptasik

If you’re looking for an unforgettable family vacation in the Caribbean that won’t break the bank, look no further than the stunning Dominican Republic. Known for stunning beaches, kid-friendly activities, and all-inclusive resorts, it offers a mix of budget and luxury accommodations with reasonable food and transportation costs. Most all-inclusive resorts here are extremely affordable in comparison to other Caribbean islands, including rental options for staffed villas. 

In Santo Domingo’s Colonial Zone, which is free to explore, you can watch history come to life through charming cobblestone streets and stunning Spanish colonial architecture. Nature enthusiasts will love the plethora of natural beauty on the island too, including Los Haitises National Park. The Dominican Republic is also renowned for its free public beaches such as Playa Dorada in Puerto Plata or Bavaro Beach in Punta Cana. Both areas offer numerous activities for families, from windsurfing to kayaking. Punta Cana, aka the Coconut Coast, is particularly famous for its strip of luxury accommodations, most of which are kid-friendly and popular with families. Outside the resort strip, you’ll find inexpensive Airbnbs, though you should check the safety ratings of the area if you do decide to rent. 

Note: It is generally recommended that families stay on-site at their resort due to ongoing safety issues with lesser-developed areas.

Where to Stay in the Dominican Republic With Kids

A view of the pool and cabanas at Paradisus Palma Real.
Photo Courtesy: Paradisus Palma Real

Looking for affordable accommodations in the Dominican Republic? Check out budget-friendly chains like the Meliá Caribe Beach Resort, set along Bavaro Beach in Punta Cana. Also on Bavaro Beach, families love the Paradisus Palma Real, which features a beautiful property with multiple outdoor pools. Families also love the affordable options at Iberostar Dominicana or Iberostar Selection Bavaro Suites, located right next door to one another in Punta Cana. Or, if you’d prefer to stay somewhere more low-key like Santa Bárbara de Samaná, check out the Bahia Principe Grand Cayacoa, which has an outdoor pool. You can also check out Airbnb or Vrbo for affordable rental options.

Jamaica

A dad and his young son play in the sand near the ocean, while staying at Beaches Negril, one of the best Jamaica all inclusive family resorts.
Photo Courtesy: Megan Tucker

Jamaica is one of the most affordable Caribbean islands families! With its sun-drenched beaches, delicious cuisine, and vibrant culture, this tropical paradise offers an array of exciting and wallet-friendly activities for all to enjoy. All-inclusive resorts, guesthouses, or boutique hotels here offer reasonable prices compared to other islands, plus many villas include staff for a reasonable price too. However, getting around the island can be quite expensive with a taxi. 

Tourist hubs Montego Bay and Negril are popular destinations for families to visit on the island’s west coast. Jamaica also features several families-friendly all-inclusive resorts ready to spoil your family with designated baby or kids clubs, scenic views, and dining all in one place. Plus, you’ll find free beaches across the island, like Winnifred Beach, Dead End Beach, and Mahogany Beach. Harmony Beach, a new recreational park and public beach in Montego Bay, also has lots of facilities for families. Older kids or teens will appreciate Jamaica’s reputation for affordable adventure sports, whether it’s paddleboarding, river rafting, or zip-lining. Dunn’s River Falls, a 180-foot waterfall near Ocho Rios, welcomes thousands of tourists to climb it each year!

Head to the north shore and tour the Green Grotto Caves in Runaway Bay for a tropical treat. Or, check out the Blue Lagoon, which is free to enter! Entrance to the Devon House in Kingston, a historical mansion, is also free. Finally, don’t forget to try some of Jamaica’s street food, which is very affordable! 

Where to Stay in Jamaica with Kids

An aerial view of the Holiday Inn Montego Bay, featuring a long beach and lush foliage.
Photo Courtesy: Holiday Inn Montego Bay

As one of the best Caribbean Islands with kids, you know you’ll find amazing places to stay too! For something affordable, consider Holiday Inn Montego Bay, Jamaica where the Granny Nanny Program welcomes infants 6 months of age to 3 years, and children ages 4-12 can enjoy the Sunspree Vacation Club. For bigger families, Bluefields Bay Villas offers large that come with staff. Or, check out Moon Palace Jamaica, Meliá Braco Village, Iberostar Rose Hall Beach, or the Hyatt Ziva Rose Hall Resort. Click here to find out all the details and more about the 10 Best Caribbean Family Resorts With Baby Clubs or the Best All-Inclusive Resorts In Jamaica For Families! Or, check out rentals on Airbnb or Vrbo.

St. Lucia

Family hiking near a waterfall in St. Lucia, one of the best affordable Caribbean islands for families

St. Lucia, known as one of the most enchanting and affordable Caribbean islands for families, is a true paradise waiting to be explored! Home to dark volcanic-sand beaches, quaint fishing villages serving delicious but affordable cuisine, and kid-friendly resorts, this low-key island offers adventurous families a unique blend of luxury and affordability. Due to the long (and sometimes pricier) flights from the United States, however, St. Lucia may better suit older kids and teens. 

Daredevil families will love St. Lucia’s rugged terrain, since it’s more mountainous than other Caribbean islands. Visit the iconic Pitons, two volcanic peaks that rise dramatically from the ocean. You can even hike up Gros Piton for amazing views of the island! The island’s highest point, Mount Gimie gives a glimpse at the island’s natural beauty too. You can also treat kids to a drive through the island’s volcano, Mount Soufriere. They’ll love how close you are to the eruption site! For beach lovers, Anse Chastanet Beach is a must-visit public beach, with its powdery white sand and calm waters ideal for swimming and snorkeling. Pigeon Island National Park, a historic landmark dotted with ruins of military structures,  offers panoramic vistas over Rodney Bay – plus the entrance fee is only $10! 

To immerse yourself in St. Lucian culture, make sure to visit Castries Market, where you can browse through local stalls offering fresh produce, spices, handmade crafts, and souvenirs at affordable prices. Don’t forget to negotiate friendly deals with vendors! 

Where to Stay in St. Lucia with Kids

An aerial view of the sprawling resort grounds for the Royalton Saint Lucia Resort and Spa, featuring several pools and a beach.
Photo Courtesy: Royalton Saint Lucia Resort and Spa

From budget-friendly hotels to Airbnbs in charming towns, St. Lucia has lots of accommodation options for families. Consider booking your stay at Bay Gardens Beach Resort & Spa or Royalton St. Lucia to experience pure vacation bliss! Next, consider The Landings Resort & Spa, which offers villas with full kitchens, en-suite bedrooms, and more in a private, gated location. Finally, families will love the Mediterranean-style villas and standard rooms with stunning ocean views at Windjammer Landing Villa Beach Resort. Read our list of the best hotels in St. Lucia for families to learn more! Or, check out affordable rentals on Airbnb or Vrbo.

Enjoy complimentary membership to the Families Love Travel booking site and save hundreds on your stay in St. Lucia!

Puerto Rico

A mom and her young daughter stand hand-in-hand while enjoying a view of the ocean from the cliffs of Cabo Rojo National Wildlife Refuge In Puerto Rico, one of the best affordable Caribbean islands for families
Photo Courtesy: Antonia Grant

Puerto Rico, known for its captivating beauty, outdoor activities, and rich cultural heritage, is an ideal destination for families seeking an unforgettable Caribbean experience without breaking the bank. Plus, since it’s technically part of the United States, it offers an exciting escape with the addition of American conveniences (think Costco, U.S. currency, and no passports!)

Families can explore Old San Juan for free, where you can walk along cobblestone streets adorned with colorful colonial buildings and awe-inspiring architectural wonders like Castillo San Felipe del Morro. Families can also take advantage of the free beaches dotting Puerto Rico’s coastline, from Balneario El Escambron in San Juan to Flamenco Beach on Culebra Island. Outdoorsy families can also hike through El Yunque National Forest to discover enchanting waterfalls, lush foliage, and endangered species such as Puerto Rican parrots. Or, take in the local culture by visiting artisan markets like La Placita de Santurce. Art lovers will adore the colorful murals found throughout towns like Ponce and Santurce, which you can explore for free! 

Puerto Rico is also on our list of the 10 Warm U.S. Spring Break Destinations For Families – check out who else made the list!

Where to Stay in Puerto Rico with Kids

An aerial view of the pool area, large slide, and pool deck at the San Juan Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino.
Photo Courtesy: San Juan Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino

Accommodations in Puerto Rico range from budget-friendly to luxurious. San Juan hosts multiple family-friendly hotels near Old Town San Juan Marriott Resort, for example, is perfect for families who desire a beach vacation combined with a city feel. Or, book your stay at Fairmont El San Juan. Read our list of the Best Hotels In Puerto Rico For Families to learn more! For more affordable options, you can also check out rentals on Airbnb or Vrbo.

Happy Travels! 

Two kids running on the beach in the Dominican Republic, one of the best affordable Caribbean islands for families
Photo Courtesy: Gunjan Prakash

We hope you liked this Best Affordable Caribbean Islands For Families list! From Jamaica to Puerto Rico, the Caribbean has beautiful destinations that appeal to all kinds of families – and their wallets. Enjoy your next Caribbean escape with kids! 

*This post may contain affiliate links that may earn us a small commission, at no additional cost to you. Affiliate links in no way inform the hotels, sights, products, or other recommendations included in our articles. All opinions and recommendations expressed here are compiled from submissions submitted by the generous members of our Families Who Love To Travel community.

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Families Love Travel Team

The Families Love Travel Team has a zest for life and an even bigger passion for globetrotting! Comprised of real-life travel professionals, we work hard behind the scenes to provide dynamic solutions for adventuring with children. Our enthusiastic team understands the challenges that often accompany traveling with kids and is committed to making Families Love Travel an inclusive space to convey these experiences.