Caribbean North America Travel

Top 5 Things to Do in Antigua and Barbuda

If you’re looking for ideas for your next Caribbean adventure, then point your focus to Antigua and Barbuda! This set of islands is sure to meet all your vacation desires.  Antigua and Barbuda are the home to 365 beaches. That’s a new beach to hang at for every day of the year! Aside from the lovely beach scene, there are several fun things to do on the islands.  Here is a list of firsthand experiences that will convince you to book your next Caribbean journey and try the top 5 things to do in Antigua and Barbuda.

Shirley Heights Lookout

If there is anything you do on a Sunday in Antigua, make sure that it includes the weekly barbeque party at Shirley Heights.  This was one of the top things that locals recommended doing!  Situated at an elevated point where you can enjoy the view of Falmouth Harbour and English Harbour, this restored military lookout is one of the iconic points on the island.

Every Sunday you can find locals and tourists alike, enjoying regional live music and some of the BEST food on the island!  While you’re there making friends, there are several vantage points to catch a memorable sunset and more than enough photo opportunities.

Photo left: Sunset view of Falmouth Harbour along with English Harbour in Antigua


Stingray City

Face your fear of the open ocean on this sea adventure!  From the home base of this outfitter, located on the northwest side of the island, a speed boat will take you out to a sandbar where all the stingrays hang out.  The boat ride there is an easy 10 minutes where you can enjoy the ocean views directly and make friends with others along on the ride.

Once at the sandbar this is where the adventure turns up the excitement volume!  Take small steps around the walkable area while these magnificent creatures glide amongst you.  There are plenty of photo opportunities and chances to feed the stingrays if you’re daring enough!  Nearby is an area to snorkel and see other neighboring wildlife.  Take advantage of this perfect time to soak in all that there is at this easy-to-navigate location. 

Photo Right: Stingray City in Antigua


Spend the Day in St. Johns

St. Johns is a popular destination on its own and makes for many cruise port itineraries.  You can imagine how bustling the local area gets when there is a big ship in town for the day. Walk the main strip at the Heritage Quay Complex and soak in the colorful buildings and shops.  For a more authentic experience, venture outside of the main tourist area.  There is so much culture to soak up while you’re sauntering through St. John’s!

Here are a few nearby key points of interest:

  • Saint John’s Cathedral
  • Museum of Antigua and Barbuda
  • VC Bird Monument

Try some of the highly recommended restaurants:

  • Hemingway’s Caribbean Café
  • Cutie’s
  • Annette Fine Dining and Caribbean Cuisine

Photo Left: Both land and sea from Saint John’s Cathedral in St. John’s, Antigua.

Visit One of the Many Beaches

As mentioned before, there are 365 beaches to visit on the island!  While not all beaches are created equal, there is a beach for every kind of person out there.  Enjoy the gorgeous hues of blue water and the inviting temps- making it feel like a natural bath on most coastlines.  Make sure to bring snorkel gear as many locations are teeming with viewable wildlife. 

Here are some top picks to visit:

               Long Bay Beach

Situated within walking distance of restaurants and hotels, this beach is perfect for the family as the waters are shallow.  The sun can get intense without much natural shade.  A beach umbrella or tent may be a good idea.

               Darkwood Beach

A rather calm beach situated on the southwest side of Antigua.  This lagoon beach has a local restaurant with sunshades.  Another plus for this beach is the water park with lots of fun for everyone.

               Valley Church Beach

A gorgeous white sand beach that has a chill hangout vibe.  Get some grub at the local beach hang out at The Nest and simply relax and enjoy the views.

Barbuda Pink Sand Beach

Pink sand?  You bet!  It’s not every day you get to wiggle your toes in the soft color of pink sand.   Explore over eight miles of this unique terrain that mixes between pink and white sand.

Photo Right: The Nest at Valley Church Beach

Visit the Devil’s Bridge National Park

Soak in some of the best Atlantic Ocean views while taking in a purely formed limestone bridge.  Watch the water as it spouts through the natural blowholes in the organic area.   There are several rock formations that offer spectacular photos if you can wait for the big waves to crash in.  The majestic views offer a feeling of true relaxation landing it in one of the Top 5 things to do on the island.

Pro Tip: There is not much shade in this nature-filled area of the island, so be sure to wear a sun hat!

Photo Left: Devil’s Bridge

Other highly recommended ideas:

Frigate Bird Sanctuary

Barbuda is home to the largest breeding and nesting colony of the Magnificent Frigate Bird in the world, according to the University of Michigan Museum of Zoology.  Hop over to this island to witness all there is in this bird watcher’s paradise.

Big Head Lobster Seafood Restaurant

The lobster Thermidor is exquisite and worth every east Caribbean dollar!  On top of excellent food, the service is top-notch and truly exceeds your island expectations. Cheers to that! Find your next meal here, located in Jolly Harbour.

No Matter What

However you decide to spend your time in Antigua and Barbuda, you can’t go wrong.  There is an abundance of activities, history, beach life, and natural wonder to experience that will easily have you walking away with your own top 5 things to do at this exotic destination.

Share with us how you enjoyed your time in Antigua and Barbuda!

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