For many, the tropical islands of the Caribbean are their first taste of paradise. And it's not all Pirates of the Caribbean and Bounty adverts...
The Caribbean is split into several areas.
Starting in the south you'll find Grenada, Trinidad and Tobago, the original spice islands of the West Indies and famous today for carnival. Heading north, the next stop is Barbados, one of the most exclusive and accessible of the Caribbean islands with daily flights from the UK. Nearby St Vincent and the Grenadines offer a real slice of beach paradise if you want to get away from it all.
The island chain continues with St Lucia before hitting the French Caribbean gems of Martinique, Dominica and Guadeloupe. Passing tiny Montserrat you'll find Antigua, St Kitts and Nevis, St Croix, St Maarten, Anguilla and VIP hotspot St Barts, before reaching the US and UK Virgin Islands.
Having reached the most northerly of the islands, you now head west to the big islands of Puerto Rico, Hispaniola (Dominican Republic and Haiti), Jamaica, and the largest island of all, Cuba. A shade north of here are the Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos, with mile after mile of deserted beaches.
The Caymans are the final island grouping south of Cuba, and let us not also forget the group of islands called the Dutch Antilles, comprising Aruba Curacao and Bonaire.
There are enough islands there for you to keep finding a new tropical island holiday location for many years.