Travelers in their twenties tend to become a little more immersed in the places they visit. They thrive on soaking up local culture, trekking off the beaten path, and by experiencing something unique and authentic.
Sound like you? Then we’ve got the ideal places for you to experience. Check out our picks below.
This Caribbean island has miles of white sand beaches, but Falmouth is also near the incredible Dunn’s River Falls, where you can reach an expanse of terraced waterfalls and pools that have formed around giant limestone stairs. If you want to dive deep into the island’s culture, then the Good Hope estate lets you trace Jamaica’s history—the building originally was a sugar plantation and then a village—and get a taste of local cuisine from specialty dishes like curry mutton, and saltfish. All are great ways to get acquainted with the area; though these are just a few of the many things to do there.
San Juan, Puerto Rico
San Juan boasts a half-century of history, vibrant colonial buildings, old stone walls and two historic forts. There’s also the nearby El Yunque Rain Forest, where outdoor enthusiasts can explore more than 200 tree species and seek what was once thought to be the Fountain of Youth. Don’t miss the San Juan food and culture tour, where you will dive into the heart of Old San Juan and the bustling marketplaces of this historic neighborhood—all while sampling local favorites like tostones (twice-fried plantain slices), enjoying a multi-course meal and making fresh mojitos. Be forewarned: you can’t help but be charmed by the city’s narrow streets and colorful architecture.
Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas
From the Charlotte Amalie port in St. Thomas, you can head straight to Emerald Beach, which is lined with restaurants that feature breathtaking water views. If you’re looking for a different POV, ride through the sky in a gondola to the 700-foot peak of Paradise Point for panoramic views of the island. There’s also snorkeling and scuba diving aplenty at nearby reefs, where you can see parrotfish and starfish. St. Thomas has its own unique history to explore, like the infamous pirate Blackbeard’s castle, and Kings Corner, the historic colonial heart of the city, where you can try up to 20 types of Caribbean rum.
Cozumel is the gateway to some of Mexico’s most culturally relevant must-see structures. Make your first stop the ancient Mayan city of Tulúm, where you can hike the ruins overlooking the Caribbean—the jewel being El Castillo, an enormous pyramid-shaped structure. Further into the nearby forest, climbing the Coba Pyramid offers a one-of-a-kind adventure. For underwater exploration, there’s the Chaak Tun, a Mayan cavern named for their rain god, where you can snorkel in between stalactite and stalagmite formations. Whether you’re in a clear-bottomed kayak to see the tropical fish below, or relaxing on the beach, the crystal waters are always a major draw of Cozumel.
There’s plenty of culture in Barbados, the island that gave the world calypso music (and Rihanna). Things heat up even more around the carnival-like Crop Over festival, which runs throughout July, where the world’s oldest rum brand Mount Gay makes plenty of appearances. You can take to the hills of the island’s Wildlife Reserve for a safari 4×4 tour. There, you’ll encounter the native Green Monkey and other elusive wildlife rarely found outside of this island nation.
Ready for your next adventure [through Royal Caribbean]? Start making your plans here.