10 Tropical Destinations You Can Visit Without a Passport
Now is the time to get your passport application in, even if you don’t have an international trip planned already. The US is expecting a passport crunch, so while you’re waiting for your new passport, here are some amazing tropical destinations that you can visit without needing a passport.
US Virgin Islands
Looking for some sun in the Caribbean? You can visit the Caribbean passport-free if you head to St. John, St. Croix, and St. Thomas. These are all US territories, so you can visit with a birth certificate and a driver’s license as long as you don’t land on any foreign soil on the way there. There are many wonderful opportunities for relaxing and sightseeing on the US Virgin Islands (photo below - look at that water!), but save plenty of time to enjoy the amazing white sand beaches.
St. Croix is a great choice for your vacation with sailing, snorkeling, horseback riding, exploring the St George Botanical Garden, and some off-roading in the tropical rain forest in Frederiksted. St. Croix also offers some of the best scuba diving in the Caribbean with numerous wrecks, reefs, and wall dives. St. John is the spot for nature lovers, with over two thirds of the island being national park land and over 20 hiking trails to choose from including the Reef Bay Train with petrified cave drawings and ancient petroglyphs . While you’re visiting St. John, don’t miss the opportunity to stop by Trunk Bay and snorkel the famous underwater trail! When you visit St. Thomas, start your vacation on Magens Bay, which is consistently rated one of the world’s most beautiful beaches. You can also visit the historic town of Charlotte Amalie, take a tour of the oldest synagogue in the western hemisphere, and visit a Belgian chocolate factory.
Puerto Rico is a United States commonwealth so US citizens can travel freely between the US mainland and Puerto Rico with a state-issued photo ID.
When you’re in Puerto Rico, make sure to visit San Juan, the capital of Puerto Rico, where you can visit Old San Juan, hike a tropical rain forest, and hang out at the beach. A great destination is Vieques, a small island about 8 miles east of the Puerto Rico mainland. Spend the day at Sun Bay enjoying the beach near Esperanza. At night, stop by Bioluminescent Mosquito Bay where the water glows blue from the microorganisms that live there. Culebra is one of the Caribbean’s most beautiful tropical islands off the coast of Puerto Rico. You can spend the day enjoying the white-sand beaches and snorkel to Tamarindo Marine Reserve with rainbow coral and sea turtles.
Key West, Florida
The southernmost city in the United States, Key West (left), is island paradise roughly 90 miles north of Cuba. This tropical island city is a taste of Caribbean culture without leaving the United States known for watersports, nightlife, and beaches. The temperatures are in the high 70’s and 80’s year round with winter being peak tourist season. Make sure to hit Duval Street for some shopping, and for a cultural stop, don’t miss the Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum and Dry Tortugas National Park.
Of course Hawaii is on the list. As one of the US states, it’s very easy to visit Hawaii without a passport. There are 6 different Hawaiian Islands, each one unique with its own distinct characteristics; you can see the Napali Coast on Kauai (right), Waikiki Beach on Oahu, gorgeous beaches and Haleakala on Maui, and the volcanoes at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park on Hawaii Island. Anytime of year is a great time to visit Hawaii, and with no passport required, you can leave tomorrow.
So what are you waiting for? Send your passport application in now, and while you’re waiting for your new passport to come, head out to one of these amazing no-passport-required destinations! Contact me today to set up a free vacation consultation and let’s start planning.