Great snorkeling and diving abounds throughout the coral reefs of the Grenadines, but for something a little different, head for The Bat Cave on St. Vincent’s western coast. No, you won’t find the Batmobile hidden away, but swim along a rocky point and into a well-lighted, narrow passageway, and you’ll surface in an inner chamber populated by … hundreds of tiny bats.
Charter a boat in St. Vincent and set a course south to Bequia, a favorite layover for cruising yachties for generations. Then sail to Mustique, where Basil’s Bar is a time-honored stop for cocktails (and perhaps a chance to rub elbows with some of the rich and famous who live here), before heading for a trio of isles famous for white-sand beaches – Canouan, Mayreau, and the Tobago Cays. Union Island, another charter base where both skippered and bareboat yachts are available, is near the southern reach of the island chain – and also close to a pair of upscale private islands, Palm and Petit St. Vincent. Then the big decision: You’re about 45 miles from St. Vincent … do you really want to leave the Grenadines?
The island’s most famous hike is the all-day trek through banana plantations and rainforest to the rim of the 4,000-foot La Soufriere volcano. But if you’re intererested in trying to catch a glimpse of the rare St. Vincent parrot, head for the town of Vermont on the west coast, where a series of nature trails in the Buccament Valley pass through a rainforest favored by the endangered birds (which are most often spotted in the late afternoon).