Panama City Beach – This has been home base for me for over 30 years but it never gets old. PCB is a family beach so if that’s not your thing, go in early May or wait till September after Labor Day. The water and weather are still perfect. There’s nothing quite like the white sand beaches and gorgeous green water that gives The Emerald Coast it’s name.
Magen’s Bay – Situated on the north shore of St. Thomas in the US Virgin Islands, this is one of the most photographed spots in the Caribbean. If you get the chance, rent a home that overlooks the bay. I never get tired of seeing the bay from up on the mountain.
Varadero Beach – This beach on the north shore of Cuba is a couple of hours east of Havana. It is harder to get to these days since commercial airlines no longer fly into Varadero from the US due to increased tension between the two governments. Varadero Beach is exactly what you would expect from the tropics. It has calm, warm water that often boasts a beautiful turquoise color.
Jost Van Dyke – One of the hottest spots in the British Virgin Islands, Jost is home to the famous Soggy Dollar Bar. Boats of all shapes and sizes anchor off the beach while passengers jump in and wade up to the beach for a famous painkiller.
Negril – A few hours drive from Montego Bay, this beautiful beach is a great place for some R&R. While you’re there, make sure to try some conch with rice and beans from a street vendor.
Cabo Pulmo – This is a great beach for snorkeling in Baja Sur because the reef comes right up to the beach. Cabo Pulmo is difficult to get to. You have to rent a car in Cabo San Lucas and drive on a mostly dirt road for an hour or so. There is not much in the way of signage, so you won’t find a crowded town when you arrive. If you go, stay in the Baja Bungalows!