Time difference: GMT -5 hours
Capital: St John’s
Currency: East Caribbean Dollar
Flight time: 8.5 hours
The saying goes that Antigua is home to 365 different beaches – one for every day of the year. While we’re not absolutely sure this is fact, having visited we can tell you something for certain: there are a LOT of beaches. Swathes of sand for every mood. The archetypal Caribbean mile golden sand that is Dickenson Bay. Remote and undeveloped Darkwood Beach, with icing sugar soft white sand. Palm-backed Jolly Beach with an expanse of jade water dotted with kayaks. The pink sand of Half Moon Bay protected from the full force of the Atlantic waves by a reef. Whether you’re a swimmer or a snorkeler, a windsurfer or sailor, prefer the natural shade of a gently swaying palm or the organised luxury of a private cabana with cocktails brought to your lounger, there’s a beach for you.
If you like your beach activities more horizontal than energetic then Antigua is ideal for sunny holidays soaking up the rays with the family or kicking back with a loved one on a romantic honeymoon or couples’ escape. While five-star resorts and impeccable service are the main selling points of this island of idyll, Antigua is also full of culture. As a former British Caribbean colony with strong trade route links and a strong base for the British Navy, it was a powerful asset to commercial shipping and remains of sugar cane farms and the magnificent English Harbour can still be seen and enjoyed.
A quintessential Antiguan experience is the Sunday Party at Shirley Heights Lookout, a long held tradition where steel bands and a sizzling barbecue transform the old military buildings into a weekly celebration.