Our Travel Guide to Antigua

Want to visit an island where you can explore a new beach every day for an entire year??

We’re not talking about a chain of islands or even somewhere in the East Indies, we’re talking about a place just a few quick hours from the USA.

Yes, it does exist! And its name is Antigua.

Located in the northeast part of the Caribbean, Antigua is the main island of the country Antigua & Barbuda. The island itself is 108 square miles which can be easily traveled with a rental car. We absolutely loved our trip to this tiny island! We spent our time sailing, visiting many beaches, and catching the most epic sunsets we have ever seen!

What To Do

Visit As Many Beaches As Possible

With over 365 beaches, you really can’t go wrong! During our trip, we visited Half Moon Bay, Ffryes Beach, Galleon Beach, Darkwood Beach, and Long Bay Beach. Half Moon Bay probably had some of the most incredible turquoise water we have ever seen! We highly recommend getting a rental car so you can visit as many beaches as you’d like!

Take In the Epic Views at Shirley Heights

If you want to see the most picturesque spot on the entire island, you need to plan a trip to Shirley Heights. It is a retired military lookout 500 feet above sea level offering an iconic view of the English and Falmouth Harbours.

But people don’t just flock here for the views. Every Sunday from 4 pm till 10 pm, Shirley Heights becomes a party. Think of it as a traditional block party with local food, drinks, music, dancing, friends, and fun. In case you can’t make it on a Sunday, there’s also a smaller version of this on Thursdays at Reggae Heights. These events are perfect for those interested in experiencing Antiguan culture, sampling local cuisine, and making lasting memories. 

Catch a Sunset at Sheer Rocks

Perched atop a rocky cliff on the west coast of Antigua, Sheer Rocks is a restaurant located on the grounds of Cocobay Resort. They have multiple plunge pools and day beds that you can rent while eating their amazing tapas or enjoying one of their delicious cocktails. We recommend calling ahead and reserving a plunge pool in the afternoon so you can watch the incredible sunsets! We enjoyed our visit here so much that we came back for a second time!

Sail the Coast of Antigua

This was probably our favorite experience during our trip to Antigua. We booked a private charter with Gadaboat Sailing and they took us on a four hour cruise aboard their 52′ yacht around the Antigua coast. We have never seen so many different shades of blue! Appetizers and alcoholic beverages were also provided during the trip. Stacey and her crew were the most incredible hosts!

Visit Nelson’s Dockyard

Remnants of British colonialism can be found all around Antigua from the many abandoned sugar mills to the streets of St. John. The most famous is Nelson’s Dockyard. Positioned on the English Harbour and next to Fort Berkeley, Nelson’s Dockyard became the center for the Royal Navy in Antigua, providing ship maintenance or repair and officer quarters. 

Today, Nelson’s Dockyard is a Unesco World Heritage Site, with a museum, bars, and restaurants. Unfortunately most of the restaurants and bars were closed when we visited due to COVID, but we heard that it is definitely the place to visit, especially on Sundays.

Where To Stay

For the first half of our trip, we stayed at The Escape at Nonsuch Bay. This adults-only all-inclusive hotel is the sister property of Nonsuch Bay Resort. Since this is an adults-only property, it is much quieter here, lending it as the perfect place for a romantic getaway with your loved one. Plus it is the only resort on the island where every unit includes a private plunge pool that has incredible views of the bay!

Check out our detailed blog post about our amazing stay at The Escape at Nonsuch Bay here!

For the second half of our trip to Antigua, we had the pleasure of staying at The Great House Antigua. From the moment we arrived, we knew immediately that this charming hotel was the perfect way to end our trip. We felt like we had stepped back in time with it’s colonial charm and how rich it is in history, but it still had all of the luxuries of a modern boutique hotel.

Check out our detailed blog post about our incredible stay at The Great House Antigua here!