General Description: Antigua holidays or more correctly Antigua & Barbuda Holidays offer year round sunshine and an incredible choice of 365 beaches ‘One for every day of the year’. Antigua has long been popular amongst honeymooners and families looking for the Caribbean’s quintessential sparkling sea’s and white sands. The twin island nation is rich in history and culture and offers a wealth of sightseeing opportunities. (It is great place to hire a car and go for picnics on your own deserted beach for the day). Antigua is generally quite flat with low undulating hills covering more or less 85% of the island, these rise in to the highlands area in the south – west of the country where the last of the islands forests are to be found.
St John’s is the both the capital of Antigua, the central economic hub and by far the largest city on the islands. The first place visitors see are the twin Baroque Towers of St John’s Cathedral which was completed in 1845 having been destroyed twice before by earthquakes. The city is also famous for it’s candy coloured architecture and vibrant markets.
Popular Hotels near St Johns include Jolly Beach, Coco’s Hotel, Galley Bay, Sandals Grande Antigua, and Halcyon Cove.
English Harbour is located in the south-east corner of the island and is home to Nelson’s Dockyard, Shirley Heights and Falmouth Village all of which are ‘must visits’. Nelson’s Dockyard is a former colonial naval base where Admiral Nelson was based in his early career. Many buildings have been loving restored and is certainly an island highlight. This area is also home to the world famous Antigua Sail Week when some of the biggest yachts in the world come out to play.
Popular hotels near English Harbour include Carlisle Bay, Curtain Bluff, The Inn at English Harbour and St James Club & Villas.
Our Opinion: If you are looking for an idyllic chilled out Caribbean beach experience then Antigua is the place for you.
The Capital: St Johns
International Airport: VC Bird International Airport (ANU)
Getting There: Connections are available with British Airways and Virgin via London Gatwick. Many options are also available via the United States.
Entry Regulations: Passport valid for at least 6 months after travel date.
Departure tax: It is usually included in the purchased airline ticket.
Did you know: The pop band Duran Duran filmed the music video for their famous song “Rio” in Antigua.
Cost of living: Nelsons Dockyard area is expensive, but generally Antigua is noticeably less expensive than Ireland.
Local Currency: Eastern Caribbean Dollar (EC Dollar). US dollars are widely accepted.
Official Language: English
Don’t Miss: Swimming with sting rays, Sunday night ‘Jump Up’ party on Shirley Heights. The party is on Sunday afternoons and begins with a barbeque and a steel band before the reggae music starts later on. Definitely the place to be on a Sunday.
Zip wire tours through the last of the island’s forests.
For those interested in the early history of the island, there is the Museum of Antigua and Barbuda, housed in the colonial Court House (1750).
Day trips to Montserrat, St Kitts, Nevis and Barbuda are well worth the effort.
Definitely hire a car, find a deserted beach and have a picnic.