Visiting Grenada is like entering another world – a world of monkeys in Etang National Park, sea turtles playing in shallow waters, and the white sands of Grenada’s signature white beaches such as Grand Anse and Morne Rouge Bay.
Near the capital, St. George, visitors can enjoy the beauty of two stunning waterfalls, Concord Falls and Annandale Falls. The true magic of Grenada is that it is still relatively undiscovered and unspoiled. Nature still rules here, and visitors simply come to be amazed. There are more stunning natural wonders than there are high-rises, although it is not lacking in restaurants and other activities. A Grenada vacation is the ideal getaway for anyone.
Grenada is another one of Christopher Columbus’ island-hopping discoveries. Like so many islands in the Lesser Antilles chain, it is the result of volcanic activity. A mere 90 miles from Venezuela, Grenada spans 14 miles by 26 miles for a total of 121 square miles. Its volcanic history accounts for its mountainous terrain. These same volcanos are also responsible for the fertile soil that has resulted in magnificent, lush tropical jungles or rolling green hills.
Climbing the mountains or volcanoes provides visitors with many grand vistas of the Caribbean. The island mountain chain consists of nine mountains to are 1,000 feet or taller. They are a pleasure to hike and explore, but visitors shouldn’t be fooled by the tropical, humid surroundings. It is important to wear sturdy, waterproof hiking boots. The trails are scenic, but not always marked clearly, so it is an excellent idea to bring not only plenty of water, but a guide, as well.
There are wonderful volcanic-created hot Sulphur springs at the bottom of these mountains. The River Sallee Sulphur Springs within Levera National Park is one of Grenada’s major Sulphur springs. It is comprised of six individual springs with warm water that increases in temperature to nearly 100 degrees. These are muddy places but sinking into this mud has healing properties for the skin. The joy of wallowing in therapeutic mud draws many visitors to Grenada. It is both soothing for the skin and fun. Linger long enough for a soothing mud massage before rinsing off. Visitors need to remember to bring their swimsuits.
The initial settlers of this wonderful island came from South America. Subsequently, it ended up under disputed control between the French and the English. In 1783, it became a colony for the crown of England, which sent slaves to work the profitable sugar plantations. When hurricanes wreaked havoc with the sugar canes, Grenada’s major industry shifted to cotton, cocoa, and most importantly, nutmeg. Today, 82 percent of Grenadians are descendants of slaves who worked the plantations for the European settlers.
Granada gained its independence from England in 1974, although the crown still has a huge influence. Police are still referred to as “Her Majesty’s Royal Police.” A history of both British and French occupation continues to permeate Grenada’s culture. Grenadians speak English, but many also speak French Creole, a language which many citizens want taught in schools.
Grenada used the Eastern Caribbean Dollar as its currency, but the US dollar is accepted.
What Is Grenada Known For?
Grenada is known as Spice Island for a reason. It produces several wonderful spices, such as cinnamon, cloves, and allspice. Most importantly, it is the world’s second-largest producer of nutmeg and has been exporting this wonderful spice for decades. They even have their own Nutmeg Festival to celebrate its importance. Grenadians use nutmeg for every type of cooking, as well as in soap, for medicinal purposes, sauces, and drinks. The genuine, real Grenada nutmeg is difficult to find outside of the island (it’s probably not at your local market), and visitors are encouraged to treat themselves by taking some of this golden spice back home.
In addition to its spices, Grenada is known for a number of other attractions.
Grand Etang Lake and Grand Anse have fabulous beaches of white sand and clear blue waters. In addition to watersports, these beaches are surrounded by hotels, shops, and restaurants. Relaxation and excitement at the same time.
Underwater Sculptures (St. George)
The Underwater Sculptures in St. George’s underwater park are one of Grenada’s most famed destinations for anyone old enough to dive or snorkel. Children can enjoy these from over the water on a boat. This is a collection of 65 sculptures placed beneath the surface of the water. The most popular is a circle of more than two dozen children who are holding hands. True underwater art, and the fish don’t seem to mind.
Palm Tree Gardens Botanical Garden in St. David
The Palm Tree Gardens in St. David overlooks the stunning coastline and is one of Grenada’s hidden little gems. Visitors can stroll along 14 different types of palms and 400 different tropical plants. Take a guided tour and enjoy one of nature’s most soothing balms.
Seven Sisters Waterfalls
Granada is filled with magnificent waterfalls. One of the favorites is the Seven Sisters Waterfalls in the city of St. Margaret. Visitors can hike through the lush jungle greenery to view all seven of these sisters. The trail is beautiful, and it can be challenging. A guide is recommended. Don’t forget an extra set of clothing if you plan on jumping into the water.
Grenada is almost as famous for its rums as it is for its assortment of spices. They love to combine the two for a mind-boggling rum punch.
The River Antoine Rum Distillery located in northern Grenada by the River Antoine has been producing rum for two hundred and fifty years, and their process hasn’t changed. Learn everything about rum making, from sugar cane to bottling, by taking a tour and sampling the distillery’s products.
Best Regions to Visit in Grenada
St. George’s is Grenada’s capital and is usually visitors’ first encounter with the island, either straight from the airport or a cruise. This is the place for shopping at the Esplanade Mall and Market Square and visiting the fabulous Grand Anse Beach. The National Museum is the place to learn about Grenada indigenous history and European settlement.
For some excellent Grenadian nightlife and dancing, there are St. George’s vibrant nightclubs, Fantazia Nightclub, with great acoustics and disco ambiance, and the Dodgy Dock, with a Margaritas-saturated happy hour and Wednesday evening live DJ. At 10:30 weekend evenings, some heavy dancing occurs.
After dancing the night away, visitors can take a tour of Fort George named after King George III. The fort has the best view of St. George’s harbor and Grand Anse Beach and shouldn’t be missed. A camera is needed for some ideal Instagram moments.
Gouyave is a relaxing waterfront district that is all about fishing and boating. There is a yearly celebration of Fishermen when the local church blesses the boats. The day is filled with boat races and great feasting. This lovely coastal town is famed for its Friday night fish fries with beer and entertainment. Huge fun for a small town. It is also where visitors come to learn all about nutmeg at the Nutmeg Processing Station..
From fishing district in Gouyave to an amazing luxury resort in secluded Victoria, nine miles from Saint George’s. The Mount Edgecombe Plantation is nestled between the mountains and the Caribbean Sea, a former plantation that is now a boutique hotel surrounded by stunning nature and brilliant sunsets.
Mount Edgecombe Plantation has a pool where guests can linger over the view, a restaurant that offers cooking classes, and kid-friendly meals.
The cocoa bean has historically been an important part of Grenada’s economy. While in Victoria, take a tour of the Jouvay Chocolate Factory. Taste their delicious products and learn about the entire process of manufacturing chocolate starting with the cocoa bean to a bar of candy at their factory.
Best All-Inclusive Resort or Hotel in Grenada
Sandals Grenada is an all-inclusive adult resort near St. George’s. Guests can enjoy unlimited dining at ten restaurants and unlimited drinks at six bars, including swim-up bars. Luxury suites and villas are available with 24-hour butler service for total pampering. Take part in all watersports, sailing, kayaking, and scuba instruction for a great underwater experience. Don’t forget the indulgent couple’s treatment, including a couple’s massage, at the spa. Sandals will also arrange for sightseeing cruises. The Sandals Grenada Resort is all about romance and enjoyment, from candle-lit dinner at the beach to relaxing massages.
Everything, from meals to drinks to butler services, is included in one price.
Best Resort or Hotel for Couples in Grenada
The Laluna Hotel is a romantic boutique hotel that wrote the book on romance and luxury. It is a particular favorite of newlyweds and couples celebrating an anniversary.
The hotel consists of private, secluded, semi-detached cottages, each opening to a private pool and veranda. The cottages are a mere few steps from the beach with a breathtaking view. It is also within five minutes of Grenada’s most famous beach, Grand Anse Beach. Guests can rejuvenate in the spa’s special couples’ rooms, which can be followed by a romantic dinner in the hotel’s rooftop Italian restaurant.
Best Resort or Hotel for Families in Grenada
This deluxe all-inclusive, family-friendly hotel provides access to two miles of stunning beachfront at the Anse Beach in St. George’s, rooms with an ocean view, golf, watersports, and concierge service. For total relaxation, indulge in the resort’s oceanfront yoga classes. Guests enjoy exquisite Creole cuisine at Oliver’s and the menu at Sea and Surf Terrace and Bar. The swimming pool has a swim-up whirlpool.
Families will appreciate exploring the nearby spice plantations and chocolate factories when the kids aren’t roaming around the resort’s Nutmeg Pod, the special children’s activity center.