Why not kick things off with a lazy day on the powdered sands of iconic Grand Anse Beach, where the lapping Caribbean waves wash over the mangroves and the beach bars alike?
Or, head to the hills around Mount Qua Qua for a glimpse at the wild and volcanic hinterland of this Caribbean gem, where gushing waterfalls and uber-rare Grenadine doves meet between the orchids and the ferns?
Then there are the enticing rum houses and distillers, cooking up potent bottles of iconic liqueur from the freshest sugarcane in the world.
And that’s not even mentioning the spicy shrimp kebabs and earthy fish restaurants, the historic reaches of old Fort George, and the legendary spice markets of the capital.
Yep, there’s a whole load of things to do and see on the iconic Spice Isle; no matter if you’re a history seeker, a luxury lover, a foodie, a beach goer, an intrepid outdoor adventurer, a bird watcher, or a barbeque fan!
Let’s explore the best things to do in Grenada:
1. Tate the tipples of the River Antoine Rum Distillery
The longest continuously running rum distillery in the entire of the Caribbean region remains one of the most fascinating attractions on the Spice Isle as a whole.
Drawing both history buffs and booze lovers, it can be found between the fields of Saint Patrick in the north.
Today, the original distillery buildings from the 18th century are age-stained and half-ruined, but the same machinery used to crush and refine the sugarcane all those years ago is still in use, from the creaking water wheel (powered with the waters of the River Antoine) to the timber conveyer belts that transport the sugar crops straight from the field.
Regular tours are available for just a couple of dollars.
2. Enjoy picture-perfect Grand Anse Beach
Poking its way out of the extreme south-western edge of Grenada, Grand Anse Beach is top of the menu for any beach lover hitting the Spice Isle.
Every inch a Caribbean paradise, it’s famed for its talcum powder sands and verdant backdrop of palm-studded hills and dunes.
The shoreline is a lesson in all things turquoise, with bobbing catamarans drifting in and out of the bay on the soft ocean currents, and the occasional dolphin jumping above the low swells.
And then there are the hotels and bars, which line the coast here offering pina coladas and ice-cold mojitos, luxurious sand-side villas and shaded infinity pools just meters from the shore.
3. Hike into the Grand Etang National Park
The major outdoorsy draw of Grenada sits smack bang in the heart of the island.
A patchwork of sun-kissed dwarf forests, emerald-green fern blooms, waxy orchids, palm groves, gargantuan gommier trunks and primeval trees that’s set over the rising peaks of the central highlands, the reserve is a real hiker’s delight.
Weaving trails delve deep into the landscape, heading to the lookouts of Mount Qua Qua’s summit, around the lush banks of Grand Etang Lake itself, and through rugged volcanic valleys where hummingbirds and the scents of vanilla and nutmeg drift through the airs.
4. Enjoy a local BBQ at Roger’s Barefoot Beach Bar
For a sleepy Sunday of spicy jerk and local Carib fish barbeque treats, be sure to make a beeline across to tiny little Hog Island.
Here, crowds of islanders gather each week to enjoy one of the best grills Grenada has to offer, all whilst cooling off in the shallow waters that surround Roger’s bamboo-built timber bar and its sun-splashed deck.
You can rest assured there’ll be plenty of rum to wash things down with, not to mention oodles of chances to chat with locals and other travelers alike.
Oh, and did we mention that the Barefoot Beach Bar can only be accessed by boat?
5. Wander the historic streets of St George’s
St. George’s is a truly gorgeous town to behold. Cascading down the spice-scented hills on the west coast of the island, it’s dotted with the remains of gorgeous Gothic cathedrals and pretty homes and buildings that shimmer and shine in their whitewashed and vibrant Caribbean colours under the sun.
Travelers flock to the capital by their bucket load too, many of whom head straight for the Market Square, following the fragrances of nutmeg and vanilla, clove and cinnamon – all of which are sold by the bucket load.
Other sights include the cannon-topped walls of Fort George and the pretty parliament buildings.
6. Feel the colonial conflict at Fort Frederick
With more than 250 years of history coalescing between its stony walls and cannon-ready crenulations, Fort Frederick has its feet firmly placed in the high ages of Grenada’s colonial past.
It’s most certainly the best-preserved example of a European fortification on the island, still standing like a limpet on the top of Richmond Hill, just a stone’s throw back from the capital at St George’s.
The entire citadel is also joined at the hip to the nearby bulwarks of Fort Matthew, while short guided tours offer an understanding of the French and English powers that once ruled the halls here.
Oh, and there are also gorgeous views of the south-western coast to boot!
7. Dive down to the Underwater Sculpture Park
A world first and surely one of the most unique attractions on the island of Grenada, the Underwater Sculpture Park can be found below the Caribbean waves, rising in an eerie and haunting array of human effigies and carvings from the sand-bottomed seabed of Moliniere Bay.
The exhibition includes life-sized human figures and still life objects, evoking themes like the Cuban Revolution, modern ennui and the life of an artist to name just three.
The site is best viewed as a diver, and can easily be reached by boat out of the harbors of St George’s.
8. Enjoy seclusion on Morne Rouge Bay
While little Morne Rouge sits only a stone’s throw from the popular sands of aforementioned Grand Anse Beach, there’s something more secluded, romantic and quiet about this little inlet on the south-western coast.
Without the booming crowds of its near neighbor to the north, a trip here promises opportunities to recline under the shade of a swaying coconut palm, and for solitary evening swims under the pink-red glow of the Caribbean sunset.
There’s still a smattering of beach huts and beer bars here – so a swinging hammock in the shade and a cocktail are never too far away!
9. Photograph the Royal Mount Carmel Waterfalls
The Royal Mount Carmel Waterfalls can be found forever crashing over a bulbous cliff of carved and moss-speckled rock in the middle of the verdant rainforests around Grenville.
At a whopping 21 meters in height, they are the tallest of their kind on the Spice Isle as a whole.
That makes for one truly photogenic natural wonder, and today groups of visitors often make the journey along the winding jungle paths that delve inland from the east coast to catch a glimpse of the wonder.
And what a journey it is! Bamboo thickets and cocoa groves bloom on the side of the track, while chachalaca birds and mango hummers flit between the boughs.
10. Go birding in the Levera National Park
With the cone-shaped green tops of the Sandy Islands and Sugarloaf Isles peppering the deep blue of the waters out at sea, and great swathes of wild mangrove fringing the shorelines all around, there’s no question that the landscapes of the Levera National Park are wondrously beautiful.
They unfold along the rugged northern reaches of Grenada, offering visitors a glimpse at the Spice Isle’s more untouched and undeveloped side (save a few failed resort hotels here and there, unfortunately). The main attraction has to be the fauna though, particularly of the flying kind.
Expect waterfowl and snipes, sandpipers and herons, all gathering in and around that swampy flatland lagoon at the reserve’s very heart.
11. See where the nickname comes from at the Dougaldston Spice Estate
Grenada didn’t get its moniker from nowhere.
Hailed as the Spice Isle for its vast output of nutmeg, cinnamon, vanilla and clove over the centuries, there are still plenty of places here to see the tradition and heritage of spice cultivation in motion.
The Dougaldston Spice Estate in St. George’s is arguably the best, with its vast depots and industrial halls complete with cocoa-drying machines and nutmeg processing conveyers.
Regular guided tours will reveal the processes behind the mass production of Grenada’s most iconic export, and there are plenty of chances to purchase local spices besides.
12. Sail across to Carriacou (or Petit Martinique)
Strewn out like fragments of their big Grenadine brother in the Caribbean Sea just to the north-east of the Spice Isle proper, these two tiny islets are also definitely worth the visit.
Regular ferries and catamarans depart out of St. George’s, dropping travelers on the shores of untrodden Carriacou.
Undeveloped and much less busy than Grenada itself, the green and hilly land here is dotted with the occasional colonial fortress and off-the-beaten-track hotel, while beaches like Paradise and Anse La Roche come virtually without booming crowds and other tourists.
Oh, and Carriacou is also famed for its rum, with a centurion of shops touting the spirit on the island – you’ve been warned!
13. Sample the local kitchen at BB’s Crabback
A casual, laid-back eatery between the downtown streets of St George’s (on the bends of Grand Etang Road no less, just below the towers of George Fort), BB’s Crabback is one of the finest spots in the capital for sampling bona fide Grenadine cuisine.
Colourful dishes fill the menu with a real Arawak vibrancy.
There are king prawns doused in mango, there’s chicken marinated in herbs; colossal cuts of barracuda fresh from the sea, and seared tuna steaks with a BBQ edge besides.
If in doubt, get the house speciality of BB’s Signature: tender goat meat sloshing in a coconut curry!
14. Get in the sporting spirit at the West Indies Cricket Heritage Centre
Granted, the West Indies Cricket Heritage Centre may not be everyone’s idea of fun, but it certainly offers a glimpse at one of the Caribbean’s best-loved and most sacred sports and pastimes: cricket.
Dedicated to preserving the history and heritage of all aspects of the West Indian game, the institution has everything from old willow bats used by the likes of Brian Lara and Sir Garfield Sobers, to test caps and team outfits from as far back as the high cricketing days of the 1800s.
In short: a perfect spot if you want to get acquainted with Grenada’s reverent love for this old competitive tradition!
15. Feel the romance at The Beach House Restaurant
Spilling out onto the powdery sands of Grand Anse Beach, between groves of waxy palm trees and jungle ferns, The Beach House Restaurant remains one of the most acclaimed gastronomic hotspots on the entire Spice Isle.
The menu is a mouth-watering array of fisherman’s broth and Cajun BBQ shrimp, seared tuna fillets and spiced up scallops, while the catch of the day is guaranteed to be amongst the freshest in Grenada! However, it’s the setting here that really makes the experience, with sweeping views of the bay and panoramic sunsets that are the perfect accompaniment to that evening meal!