The islands of the Caribbean are a long, expansive archipelago defining the border between the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean.
The indigenous Arawak Indians were the original inhabitants, supplanted by the more aggressive, Caribs, the tribe in place when the first Spanish explorers discovered the islands for westerners. As each island was in turn colonized by a different European country, British, Spanish, Dutch, French or Portuguese, and slavery introduced to farm, original and highly diverse cultures arose. Today, the colorful legacy of that history is alive in the music, art, architecture and language of the Caribbean Islands.
The geography of each island is unique: some are near deserts and very arid, while others boast mountainous rain forests. The sub-tropical latitudes of the Caribbean provide nearly year-round good weather. The late summer and fall months are at times interrupted by strong storm systems crossing the Atlantic from Africa bringing with them those most powerful of storms, hurricanes.
As one might expect, activities in the Caribbean are largely water oriented - scuba and snorkeling, swimming, boating and fishing. Golf has a strong foothold as does everyone's favorite pastime at some point - lying on the beach, staring at the ocean and just sitting still.