If you have never been to Antigua, you may have been missing out on one of the most enjoyable Caribbean vacations of your life.
Antigua is one of the smaller islands in the region, that is regarded as a luxury escape. The economy is based heavily on tourism, and visitors are eagerly welcomed.
The island occupies 108 square kms of breathtaking landscape, in the north of the Leeward Islands archipelage, and is surrounded by some of the most beautiful beaches in the region.
Vacations in Antigua are based on visits to the beach, but despite the relatively smaller area, there are scores of things to do in Antigua.
If you tire of the beach, you can head over for a visit to the historic Nelson`s Dockyard National Park. The park that was used as a dock for the British fleet, is one of the historic sites, that was originally the headquarters of Lord Horatio Nelson. It has been restored, and now includes restaurants,the Dockyard museum, cafes, and plenty of shops among its attractions. You can even see Lord Nelson`s original telescope, and original naval documents are kept on display.
For entertainment and nightlife, you can hike up to Shirley`s Heights, which, is almost 500 feet above sea level. At the summit is a popular bar and restaurant, that features live music. On a clear day, you can easily recognise the island of Guadeloupe to the south and the active volcanos of Soufriere Hills in Montserrat.
One of the natural wonders is The Devil’s Bridge, which is a limestone arch in the eastern region of the island. You can take some fascinating photos of this extraordinary landscape, or you may be lucky enough to experience blasts of the blowholes, when extreme weather conditions create blasts of sea water and air from caves that exists below the ocean`s surface. Although fascinating to enjoy, care is advised as the blasts can pose a bit of danger.
There are four secluded beaches on the Hawksbill resort that are open to tourists. Access to the Galley Bay, Half Moon Bay, and Dickenson Bay beaches are also available. The Dickenson is considered one of the premier attractions because of the variety of options. With glass bottom boat tours, you can observe some incredible ocean fauna, or swim among dolphins as they frolic in the crystal clear warm blue ocean.
One location that should not be missed is the Market in St. John’s. Every Saturday morning vendors assemble, offering a gamut of everything from tropical flowers, fresh fruits and vegetables, and a coterie of Antiguan souvenirs. You have ample opportunities to barter or bargain for objects of your choice. Be prepared to spend at least one hour for the adventure, but it can be well worth it.
Another historic site, that you can enjoy visiting is the island`s first sugar plantation. It was named after the daughter of one of the owners, and today the Betty Hope Site is used as a relic to the past British colonisation periods.
Being surrounded by ocean, the climate remains moderate and ranges around 75 degrees C. The best time to visit is between the months of May to November when rates are cheaper.