There are 365 beaches to discover in the Caribbean’s Antigua and Barbuda.
Antigua and Barbuda, the two-island nation in the Caribbean, features a whopping 365 beaches. The choices on these scenic coasts are endless—well, almost. There are beaches with activities. And, then, there are beaches where the “activities” are a beer and a best-seller. Here, the best beaches in Antigua and Barbuda—whatever the vacation’s vibe.
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This slim stretch, which snakes around Antigua’s south-west coast, is situated between a basin and the Caribbean Sea. Darkwood Beach features a small restaurant (where one is able to borrow the chairs and the multi-colored umbrellas) as well as AQUAlympia Antigua: an obstacle course that has been fashioned with flotations.
Deep Bay Beach
There are secrets in these seas. The wreck of the Andes—a three-masted boat that, in 1905, combust on its trade route from Trinidad to Chile—can be discovered in the shallows. (Snorkels are, thusly, recommended.) But there is more to do than swim. The active can also ascend the mountain to Fort Barrington: a stone watch that was constructed in 1779.
The bass from the bars calls like a siren to the cruise ships that are docked in St. John’s—which is about three miles from this crowded scene. Dickenson Bay is a one-mile beach that buzzes with popular resorts (including Sandals Grande Antigua Luxury Resort) and restaurants. The merriment can also include water activities like banana boats and jet skis.
Boat-lovers are certain to be in blue-water bliss at Galleon Beach, which is named for the historic Spanish ships. (These shores are still decorated with anchored boats.) From there, the active can choose to climb the trails to Shirley Heights Lookout—a centuries-old fortress that features panoramic views and Sunday-eve festivities.
Great Bird Island Beaches
This 20-acre isle, which is situated about two miles from Antigua’s north coast, features two sanded stretches: North Beach and South Beach. Great Bird Island is a remote destination that is famous for its exotic creatures. It’s home to the Antiguan racer (one of the world’s rarest snakes) as well as bold-colored birds, like the magnificent frigate bird.
Half Moon Beach
This pleasant cove is famous for its clear waters and rose-colored sand, as well as its coral reefs. Half Moon Beach, which is situated on Antigua’s east coast, is an intimate destination for relaxation. It will soon be home to Rosewood’s Half Moon Bay Antigua. (The luxe resort is slated to debut in 2021.)
Hawksbill Bay Beaches
There are four beaches at Hawksbill Bay, which has been named for the rock formation that ornaments the area’s shallows (it resembles a bird’s features). The most distinctive is perhaps Antigua’s nude beach: Eden Beach is where people can embrace nature without clothes (and without tan lines).
Pasture Bay is a private beach on a private island. It exists on Antigua’s Long Island—which is a 300-acre isle that is, now, owned by Jumby Bay Beach. But, should one be able to reserve an accommodation at the exclusive resort, an excursion to this oasis-like east coast is a must. Here, on the Atlantic Ocean, is a fabulous chance to see the hawksbill sea turtles.
Pigeon Point Beach
This charmed choice has become a destination for residents and non-residents alike. Pigeon Point Beach is a scenic stretch that is sprinkled with sea-grape trees. There are facilities (which include bathrooms as well as showers) as well as access to Catherine’s Café: a restaurant that caters to “yachties” with French cuisine and rosé.
Turner’s Beach (or, Crab Hill Beach) is beloved for the white-colored sand, which sparkles on Antigua’s south-west coast. Here, sunbathers are blessed with breezes and warm waters. Beers (and bites) can be ordered at the small restaurant—which boasts a Caribbean–themed menu that features authentic eats like conch fritters and fish cakes.