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2013 About.com Readers Choice Awards Caribbean Winners


We've tallied up all the nominees for the 2013 About.com Readers' Choice Awards and are happy to announce the winners for each of our eight Caribbean Travel award categories. The top five nominees in each category competed for the right to be named the 2013 Readers' Choice Award winners in voting in February and March, and winners were announced on March 27

Congratulations to all of our 2013 winners -- read on to find out what makes each of these great destinations, hotels, cruise lines, beaches, beach bars, attractions, and rums our readers' favorites!

2013 Favorite Caribbean Destination

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Our 2013 winner for Favorite Caribbean Destination is historic, Dutch-flavored Curacao, also the 2012 award winner in this category. Curacao beat out fellow finalists like the upscale and very British Barbados, the birthplace of rum; little Bonaire, known as the diving capital of the Caribbean; Grenada, the "Spice Island" which boasts some fine beaches and of course great dining; and St. Kitts and Nevis, where new resorts and cruise ship calls are introducing more travelers to this twin-island nation each day.

2012 Winner: Curacao

2013 Favorite Caribbean Hotel

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The phoenix-like Four Seasons Resort, Nevis, restored to full glory after recovering from a devastating hurricane a few years back, is our 2013 Readers Choice Award winner for Favorite Caribbean Hotel .Some of the finest hotels in the Caribbean were among the finalists in this category, including Jamaica's legendary Half Moon resort, a RockResort that's a favorite of visiting royalty; The Regent Palms with its luxury rooms, elite restaurants and fine spa on Grace Bay Beach in Turks and Caicos; The Marriott St. Kitts Resort & Royal Beach Casino, a pioneering full-service resort on St. Kitts; and the private island resort Jumby Bay off the coast of Antigua.

2012 Winner: Seven Stars Resort, Turks and Caicos

2013 Favorite Caribbean All-Inclusive Resort

© Sandals Resorts
The Sandals Grande Riviera Beach & Villa Golf Resort, a pioneer in upscale all-inclusive travel, has won the 2013 Readers' Choice Award for Favorite Caribbean All-Inclusive Resort. Other finalists were the Jewel Dunn's River Beach Resort & Spa in Jamaica a former Sandals property has had good reviews since opening in 2010; the sprawling Divi Resort in Aruba; Hedonism II a resort nearly synonymous with (slightly naughty) couples travel in Jamaica; and the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, which adds a layer of "cool" to the typical all-inclusive vacation.

2012 Winner: Windjammer Landing, St. Lucia

2013 Favorite Caribbean Beach

© Grenada Tourism
The winner of the 2013 Favorite Caribbean Beaches category is lively Grand Anse Beach in Grenada, which beat out Pink Sands Beach in the Out Islands of the Bahamas; historic Rendezvous Bay on Anguilla; the famous Seven Mile Beach on Grand Cayman; and upscale Grace Bay Beach in Turks and Caicos.

2012 Winner: Grace Bay Beach, Turks and Caicos

2013 Favorite Caribbean Beach Bar

© Paradise Moon
The winner for this new award category for 2013 is the Paradise Moon on Bonaire, a diver's favorite. Other finalists were Sunshine's on Nevis, home of the famous Killer B punch; Mr. X's Shiggidy Shack on Frigate Bay in St. Kitts; Umbrella's Beach Bar on Grenada with its great roof deck views of Grand Anse Beach; and Le Petitbonum in Martinique, the beach bar with gourmet food prepared by the legendary Chef Hot Pants.

2013 Favorite Caribbean Cruise Line

© Island Windjammers
Two-ship Island Windjammers, which offers a tall-ship sailing experience and was the dark-horse winner of this award last year, has won again! This little giant -- with its two ships but a fleet of loyal customers -- won out over Oceania, Norwegian, Royal Caribbean, and Celebrity.

2012 Winner: Island Windjammers

2013 Favorite Caribbean Attraction

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Xel-Ha, a eco theme park that takes full advantage of the cenotes and other natural wonders of the Riviera Maya in Mexico, is the 2013 Winner in the category of Favorite Caribbean Attraction. Other finalists were Grenada's unique Underwater Sculpture Park, Virgin Islands National Park on St. John in the U.S. Virgin Islands; Stingray City in Grand Cayman; and the Bioluminescent Bay on Vieques, Puerto Rico.

2012 Winner: Old San Juan, Puerto Rico

2013 Favorite Caribbean Rum

© Brinley Shipwreck Rums
There are many types of rum, including white, gold, spiced, and aged. The winner of the first annual Favorite Caribbean Rum category is a spiced gold rum, Brinley's Gold Shipwreck Rum from St. Kitts, which topped Mount Gay Eclipse, El Dorado Superior from Guyana, and a pair of rums from Grenada: 12 Degrees light rum from Westerhall Estate and the Clarke's Court Special Dark.
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