Caribbean destination wedding

Caribbean Destination Weddings: A Walk Down the Isle

Couples have long known that the Caribbean is a destination where love blooms and flourishes. The pulse of life beats strongly here, and stress is artfully soothed away by languid island rhythms, swaying palms, and the sea gently lapping at your toes. This fertile landscape provides the perfect backdrop for new beginnings — and, for an increasing number of lovers, a destination wedding.

Island weddings are becoming increasingly easy to arrange, with simplified legal paperwork that is done well in advance of your trip. A few pre-trip emails or faxes provide the essentials to arrange a ceremony site with extras that can range from steel pan bands to harpists. Vows can be exchanged on powdery beaches, in garden gazebos surrounded by blossoming bougainvillea and hibiscus, or surrounded by historic architecture steeped in island lore. Here’s a look at some of the top islands that make it easy not just to exchange your vows but to say “I do” to a lifetime of anniversary trips.

St. Lucia

Imagine a tropical island where colorful blooms promise romantic walks in a Garden of Eden. This is St. Lucia, where you’ll find plenty of excuses to seal your vows with a kiss in the shade of a tall coconut palm, beneath the spray of a mountainside waterfall, or atop a hillside lookout. The symbols of St. Lucia are the Pitons — rugged mountains that climb from the sea. Located on the island’s southwest coast, the verdant slopes of Gros Piton and Petit Piton are among the Caribbean’s most recognizable landmarks and the perfect backdrop for wedding photos.

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The reggae beat of this island is just the first clue to Jamaica’s vibrant atmosphere. In this land of “no problem,” destination weddings are easy to plan — your only challenge might be narrowing down the long list of romantic venues. From picturesque waterfalls like Ocho Rios’ Dunn’s River Falls to historic great houses like Montego Bay’s Rose Hall and nearby Cinnamon Hill (once the home of Johnny Cash), the island offers memorable venues near every cruise port. End your ceremony with a taste of a traditional Caribbean wedding dessert: black cake, made with burnt-sugar syrup and fruit aged in the island’s world-class rum. Locals often ship slices of the heavy fruitcake to family and friends unable to attend the ceremony, a perfect tradition for destination wedding couples that want to share the fun.

St. Kitts and Nevis

Life is quiet and unspoiled on this two-island nation, often referred to as “the way the Caribbean used to be.” In the shadow of St. Kitts’ Mount Liamuiga, the 17th-century fortress provides a dramatic…

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By Paris Permenter and John Bigley

Photo: Awesome Caribbean Weddings


Now in its 25th year, Porthole Cruise and Travel Magazine is published bi-monthly and available worldwide through digital subscription. It offers the latest news in cruise and travel, with in-depth features on voyages, new ships, the best destinations, readers' picks, onboard cuisine, entertainment, and more!