While cruises of the Caribbean are the top international travel destinations this fall, destinations to Mexico have made a strong comeback, according to a Travel Leaders survey of its experts across the United States. When asked which international destinations they are booking most often for fall travel, 53.7 percent said Caribbean cruises; 43.9 percent said Cancun, Mexico; and 25.8 percent said Riviera Maya, Mexico.In addition, 38.4 percent of those surveyed said they are booking more travel to Mexico than they did last year at this time. This uptick indicates that more travelers are choosing Mexico now that fears of the H1N1 virus have largely subsided. Additionally, as recent U.S. State Department information points out, most areas of concern within Mexico are along the border with the U.S. and not in the resort communities or historical sites most often visited by vacationers. Of course, travelers to Mexico should always use caution and common sense as they would with any travel.The Caribbean is always a popular international destination for U.S. travelers because it’s relatively nearby. In fall, reliably beautiful weather and warm temperatures, along with the abatement of hurricane season, are powerful draws to the cruise ships that sail the region. Even if you’ve cruised the Caribbean before, a travel professional can help you find an itinerary that features a place you’ve never been. Some of the newer cruise ship destinations in the Caribbean include
- St. Croix, one of the three major U.S. Virgin Islands that has historic Danish colonial architecture and remnants of plantations and windmills. There’s also excellent snorkeling and diving in Buck Island Reef National Park.
- St. Kitts, which is dotted with stands of leafy green sugar cane, a rainforest and a dormant volcano. The island’s coastlines have white sand beaches and clear blue waters. It’s a brief ferry ride to the neighboring island of Nevis, a paradise of beaches and reefs.
- Tobago is home to the Western Hemisphere’s oldest protected rainforest, making it ideal for hikers and birdwatchers. There are beaches for sunbathing and swimming, as well as underwater reefs to be explored by snorkelers and divers. History buffs will enjoy the island’s colonial forts.