Looking to escape to a life of sun, sea and sand? Antigua is the archetypal Caribbean island, adorned by stunning white sands with beautiful waters lining the coast. Our Antigua guide outlines some of the most appealing places to visit and interesting activities that can keep anyone of any age occupied. If you’re looking for the best things to do in Antigua, you’ve come to the right place. Take a look at our top picks of what to do in Antigua below.
The beautiful island of Antigua in the Eastern Caribbean is one of the many islands that make up the Lesser Antilles. The state of Antigua also incorporates the islands of Barbuda to the north, a flat coral island only 68 square miles, famous for its spectacular pink and white sand beaches. It’s also home to the Frigate Bird Sanctuary, which is where you can see more than 170 different species of birds. To the south west lies the uninhabited island of Redonda, a rocky outcrop made famous by the on-going myth of the "Kings of Redonda".
Life in Antigua
The island of Antigua is home to stunning scenery, postcard-worthy beaches, lush vegetation, exotic fruits, warm and wonderful people waiting to welcome you and so much more. If you are looking to make the island your permanent home - or even if you would like somewhere regular to holiday - we offer the most luxurious properties for sale in Antigua. These spectacular real estate opportunities are not to be missed out on, and making the investment may just be the best thing you ever do.
We previously wrote an article about useful things you should know before moving to Antigua. Check it out here: https://www.luxurylocations.com/news/article/101/5-useful-things-to-know-before-moving-to-antigua
If you’re thinking about buying a property in Antigua, here are 5 reasons why you should make the investment: https://www.luxurylocations.com/news/article/61/top-5-reasons-to-buy-property-in-antigua
Things to Do in Antigua
Whether your ideal day is spent basking in the sun or enjoying one of the many fun-filled activities on offer, be it zip-lining through the rainforest or wakeboarding on the sea, Antigua can - and will - fulfil your dreams as a top class Caribbean destination. You won’t be disappointed with the things to do in Antigua once you realise how much there is going on on the island.
Beaches & Coastlines
Antigua lays claim to having 365 beaches, one for every day of the year! Most of the best beaches are located on the west side of the island, where they are met with the crystal clear warm waters of the Caribbean Sea.
As well as being of strategic importance, Antigua’s complex coastline of safe harbours, protected by an almost unbroken coral reef, attracted Nelson to the island in 1784. His naval base at English Harbour at the extreme southern tip of the island was the perfect place to hide his fleet and keep it protected from violent storms. It is now home to the fully restored Nelson's Dockyard, the world's only continuously operating Georgian dockyard, complete with museum, shops, hotels and restaurants.
History & Culture
Antigua is rich with history and culture, with some of its most popular destinations having plenty of opportunities to learn more about the island. English Harbour has a wonderful view, so it’s easy to see why this location was chosen as a military lookout and gun battery. Shirley Heights is now an ideal spot to watch the sunset while enjoying a BBQ every Sunday between 4 p.m. until 10 p.m.. Nelson’s Dockyard can also be found in English Harbour. It’s a British-built port, which now contains the Dockyard Museum. There are also numerous shops selling local produce.
Walking & Hiking
Constructed in the early 18th century, Fort Berkeley was initially designed to be a crucial part of Antigua’s defence. There’s a trial to the fort that starts at the Superyacht Dock, which can be found in Nelson’s Dockyard. The route is generally fairly quiet, but it offers perfect views of the island no matter which angle you’re on.
Another great walking trail for you to enjoy is the route that takes you to The Pillars of Hercules. You can get here by following the path from Galleon Beach, though you may have to scramble over some rocks along the way.
Another major passion of Antiguans is of course cricket! Whether you watch an international match at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium or a local game on the beach, it offers you another fantastic way to soak up some Antiguan culture. The island has a fierce devotion to the sport, with the cricket season lasting from January until July.
Viv Richards is a former cricketer from Antigua who famously represented the West Indies at both Test and international levels. He is known as one of the greatest batsmen of all time, which the whole of Antigua is immensely proud of. Another well-known cricketer from Antigua is Curtly Ambrose, who was regarded as the best bowler in the world during his lengthy career.
You will not fully understand the devotion that Antiguans have for cricket until you witness the love for yourself. Even if you’re not hugely into the sport, the atmosphere while watching a match is something that everyone can enjoy.
The island also hosts the internationally renowned Antigua Sailing Week and is fast becoming the epicentre for sailing in the Eastern Caribbean. The constant trade winds and many harbours to explore make it an ideal location for cruising or racing. It also boasts an excellent choice of fully equipped marinas, offering a complete range of modern facilities and marine services.
Nature & Wildlife
If you are interested in the preservation of nature and the wonders of the natural world, find out what Antigua and Barbuda has to offer, both on the islands and around them. As well as being abundant with a variety of wildlife on land and sea, the islands have uniquely retained their unspoilt natural beauty, a quality fast becoming rare in this age of mass development.
One of the most popular things to do in Antigua is acting like Tarzan and flying through the jungle’s treetops. There are a number of zipline tours available, all of which allow you to explore Antigua’s beautiful rainforest while experiencing a thrill.
Devil's Bridge is a natural rock arch in eastern Antigua. For hundreds of thousands of years, the waves of the Atlantic Ocean have crashed into Antigua’s east coast. Due to this, it has formed the natural limestone arch known as Devil’s Bridge, which is a must-see sight for many who enjoy walking along the coast.
Restaurants & Dining
As evening approaches you are spoilt with a fabulous choice of local and international restaurants to dine in, as you experience one of our spectacular sunsets and - if you're lucky enough - the mysterious green flash of light as you look across to the islands of Montserrat, Guadeloupe, St Kitts and Nevis.
There are a mix of elegant restaurants and more laid-back establishments dotted throughout the island, many of which are set in atmospheric buildings with wonderful scenes to be viewed from the dining area. Due to its location, some restaurants in Antigua can close down during the summer months as they rely on the winter yachting trade.
Flights to Antigua
Antigua is easily accessible with direct flights from numerous major cities, including London, Miami and New York, plus connections to many other Caribbean islands. Thanks to this, travelling to and from Antigua is relatively easy.