You will find Antigua (pronounced An-tee’ga) in the middle of the Leeward Islands in the Eastern Caribbean, roughly 17 degrees north of the equator.
I have travelled more miles in our hire car in Antigua than anywhere else in the world. Well, I have been there 3 times. The roads are user friendly and I do have a pretty good sense of direction, most of the time.
The people are outrageously friendly and there is no way to get to know them better than at the Sunday Night Jump Up at Shirley Heights.
This can be arranged through your hotel and we seriously recommend you don’t take your hire car. Your hotel should provide transport. A barbecue and rum punch is laid on whilst you listen to local music consisting of steel-bands and reggae sounds. So after a few rum punches, jumping into your hire car is not recommended. The event gets started around 6:00p.m., but if you arrive early you will have the chance to take in the fantastic views and the atmosphere. It also has to be the best place on the island to enjoy the sunset.
Climate: Ranging from the mid-seventies in the winter to the mid-eighties in the summer and there is low humidity year-round.
Flight Time: Approximately 8-8½ hours – although we have done it in much less time.
Favourite Beach: 2 minutes away from Nelson’s dockyard is Pigeon Point where the sand is white and the sea is clear, so it is great for snorkelling. There is also a great restaurant there – Bumpkins.
My Favourite T-Shirt De rum and de parties, de salt in me hair, me vaguely remember, me think I was dere
Highlight: Hiring the Jabberwocky for the day. It’s pricy so you need to do with some of your new found holiday friends but, I promise you, it is a day out you will never forget. http://adventurecaribbean.com
Shopping: If you are a shopaholic you need to go to the capital St. Johns – its where all the cruise liners disgorge their passengers. I prefer to buy from the roadside stalls.
History: There is lots of it! Explore it and love it. Nelson’s Dockyard just down the road from Englishman’s harbour, is a must. Educational and fun for all the family. On the way in (and the way out) there are local stalls selling obligatory T-shirts and local arts and crafts. In the actual dockyard there boutiques, gift shops and watering holes. Englishman’s Harbour itself is a wonderful place to sit and have a cup of coffee, whilst looking at some the super yachts berthed there. The Museum of Antigua and Barbuda located in St. John’s and well worth a visit.
Barbuda forms a part of the state of Antigua and is situated 61.6km to the north of Antigua. I have not been but it is on my to do list. You can fly to Barbuda from Antigua or access the Island by boat. The Barbuda Express, operates between the Islands 5 days a week, Monday to Friday.
Once on Barbuda you can explore the Capital Codrington and the Frigate Bird Sactuary located in the Codrington Lagoon. Apart from the beaches, fishing and caving are also on offer. There are only two resort hotels on the Island.