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Antigua - A beach for every day of the year

The beautiful twin islands of Antigua and Barbuda have been independent since 1981, yet their centuries-old cocktail of cultures, from Arawak and Carib to West African and British, has given them a delightfully unique flavour. Formal British architecture of the 1700s sits shoulder to shoulder with eye-catching pastel-coloured houses; menus offer creole seafood and spicy stews alongside European fare while the island’s passion for cricket knows no bounds. Our villas here have some of the most idyllic views you’ll find anywhere. Dozens of sheltered coves, with gently curving shores and enticingly clear waters are the jewels in Antigua’s crown while the stunning harbours offer a perfect setting for sleek luxury yachts, motor cruisers and catamarans from all over the world.

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Blue Waters

Nestled upon a private sandy bay, in 17 acres of immaculate tropical gardens, this exclusive resort is in a favourable position on the north-west coast of the island, with glorious ocean views. Located just 15 minutes from the commercial district and capital city of St. John’s, and 11km from the airport, the intimate and family-friendly Blue Waters resort is easily accessible and has fantastic amenities located on site, including a fun an interesting activities programme for the children. Our accommodation here is immaculate and inviting, providing an ideal base for exploring the services on the resort as well as all the pleasures of this inspiring island. This is the perfect setting for recreation or relaxation, with sports facilities onsite and a golf course nearby, complimented by the sumptuous spa, tranquil communal pools and three ambient Caribbean restaurants.

  • 20mins fromV.C. Bird Int.

Jolly Harbour

The fabulous coves down on the west coast of Antigua make magnificent sailing havens, none more so than the finger-like peninsulas at Jolly Harbour. An attractive, well-equipped marina provides excellent berths for some of the Caribbean’s most luxurious vessels in a spectacular setting. Modern, stylish waterside residences in tropical pastel colours have been smartly constructed to fit perfectly into the harbour design, many with their own little jetties right on the doorstep. The resort has its own 18-hole golf course as well as tennis courts and a sports centre and there are two beautiful beaches to choose from. Even if you haven’t arrived by yacht, it’s impossible to resist an opportunity to get out on the water and there are plenty of opportunities to do so with a variety of boat and catamaran tours available. In the evenings, the bars and restaurants around the marina come alive, with everything from Italian and Greek cuisine to Caribbean specialities and seafood.

  • 35mins fromV.C. Bird Int.

Galley Bay

Located on the northeast peninsula just south of St John’s, Galley Bay is the epitome of laid-back, Caribbean charm. Positioned along one of the island’s most idyllic white sand beaches within lush tropical gardens, this is a perfect place to unwind amid truly breathtaking surroundings.It’s the simple pleasures that are the most memorable, such as the three quarters of a mile of powder soft sand to stroll along and the enticing aquamarine waters in which to take a dip whenever you please. If you’re feeling a little more energetic, there’s a wide choice of complimentary watersports on offer as well as cycling and tennis, and you can always relax afterwards with a treatment at the on-site spa. The resort’s accommodation is perfectly in keeping with its tropical location, including Tahitian-style cottages and white-painted houses just steps from the beach, with terraces and balconies enjoying wonderful views over the bay. With three gorgeous open-air restaurants to choose from as well as romantic private beach dining as a special treat, meals here are one of the great pleasures of your stay, while cocktail parties and live music evenings are an opportunity to be as sociable as you wish.

  • 30mins fromV.C. Bird Int.

Your Antigua Villa holiday

Fun packed days in Antigua Image

Fun packed days in Antigua

Wherever you’re staying in Antigua, a visit to the capital, St John’s, as well as English Harbour in the south, will give you a sense of the island’s historic significance. In the elegant 18th century former courthouse in St John’s, the Museum of Antigua and Barbuda traces each step of the twin islands’ history, right through to independence. Nearby, Fort James and Fort Barrington, built to deter the French, now offer wonderful views of the town and its harbour, while the impressive St John’s Cathedral is well worth a look.In the south, Horatio Nelson’s former dockyard at English Harbour is now a beautifully restored marina with attractive stone warehouses now converted into shops, galleries and restaurants. Take time to stroll around and admire the magnificent super-yachts now moored in the place of Royal Navy ships. For a change of scene, Fig Tree Drive is a very pretty route around the hills of the southern coast, winding its way through banana plantations, orchards and old sugar mills. Roadside stalls sell freshly picked black pineapple and thirst-quenching juices, and there are wonderful views across the rainforest interior.

Atmospheric evenings in Antigua Image

Atmospheric evenings in Antigua

As on all the Caribbean islands, good food, great music and fun-loving people means there’s always plenty going on once the sun goes down. From rustic beach bars to chic yacht clubs, reggae to calypso, each town and resort has something special to offer, washed down with a rum punch or two. Many bars offer a happy hour while restaurants, serving both local and international dishes, often feature live music into the night. You can even try your luck at the casino in St John’s.Sunday evenings, however, belong to Shirley Heights, the most famous gig on the island. From around 4pm, locals and visitors alike gather to savour the stunning sunset from the old fortifications above English Harbour as the barbecue party gets underway. The steelband kicks off proceedings, handing over to other local musicians a little later to widen the musical experience. This is a don’t-miss Antiguan institution - and everyone’s invited!

Retail therapy in Antigua Image

Retail therapy in Antigua

Along with the crafts, beachwear and souvenirs available all over the island, you’ll find one of Antigua’s key shopping attractions is jewellery, with everything from silver costume pieces to rare gemstones. St John’s is one of the Caribbean’s cruise ship ports of call and has a number of stores, mainly at the attractive Heritage Quay, where gems, designer watches, sporting goods, perfume and cosmetics are among the goods available duty free to overseas visitors.Overlooking the harbour, the historic Redcliffe Quay was once a busy dock where coffee, sugar, rum and slaves were traded. It’s now a collection of brightly coloured shops and eateries where you can pick up pretty batik fabrics, paintings and pottery by local artists, as well as a wide range of clothing and accessories. The old Dockyard at English Harbour is another popular place to browse, with boutiques and gift shops housed in the old warehouse buildings. For a taste of local life, and some less than familiar fruit and vegetables, don’t miss a chance to visit St John’s Saturday morning market, a feast of colourful produce from mangoes and pineapples to tamarind and breadfruit.

Beaches in Antigua Image

Beaches in Antigua

Renowned for having a beach for every day of the year, Antigua is blessed with a truly stunning coastline that offers something to suit every taste. The Atlantic winds along the east coast create some excellent conditions for experienced windsurfers and it’s no coincidence that the island’s annual sailing regatta attracts competitors from all over the world. The dazzling Half Moon Bay, despite its breezy location on the southeast coast, is protected by a reef and offers great snorkelling on calm days and bodyboarding fun when the waves are a little higher. The exquisite coves and bays along the calmer west coast are some of the prettiest you’ll find anywhere. Dickenson Bay and its neighbour Runaway Bay, just north of St John’s, are popular choices and enjoy breathtaking sunsets while the lovely Pigeon Point at the mouth of Falmouth Harbour is a great option for families. Jolly Beach’s long stretch of white sand and crystal clear, tranquil waters make this an ideal place to hire a kayak or try your hand at small catamaran sailing.

Weather Guide

For the Antigua holiday season.

Average monthly temperature and rainfall for the Antigua holiday season

°C

Not to be missed...

  • St John’s cathedral is the town’s most striking landmark, and although it’s undergoing a huge renovation programme, it can be worth a visit to see the progress being made.
  • The Museum of Antigua and Barbuda in St John’s is a good opportunity to learn a little more of the island’s history, with artefacts from the native Arawaks and displays about life during the colonial era.
  • Stingray City is an experience you won’t want to miss! At Seaton’s Village on the northeast coast, hop on a boat with your guide and head to the home of the island’s friendliest sea creatures. In calm, waist-deep water you can stroke, feed and play with dozens of stingrays and snorkel over the nearby reef for an amazing day out.
  • To find out more about Antigua’s sugar plantation history, the open air museum of Betty’s Hope has two sugar mills dating from the 17th century, one restored to working order, along with some interesting background on plantation life.
  • Nelson’s Dockyard is not only a delightful place to wander around, it also has an excellent museum full of naval history and models of ships that would have docked here over the years.

Villas with Large Pools

2 villas found in Antigua
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Villas with Jacuzzis

1 villa found in Antigua
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Villas Good for Couples

1 villa found in Antigua
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Villas Great for Privacy and Seclusion

2 villas found in Antigua
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Villas with Great Views

4 villas found in Antigua
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Villas for Large Groups

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Villas Great for Barbecues

1 villa found in Antigua
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Villas with Infinity Pools

4 villas found in Antigua
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Villas with Games Facilities

2 villas found in Antigua
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Antigua reviews verified by reevooReevoo

Sights / Places to go
6.5
Night life
6.0
Overall rating
7.5
Scores 7.5 out of 10 based on 2 reviews
Views and opinions in these reviews are solely of the authors and do not necessarily represent those of James Villa Holidays (JVH). JVH provides no assurances regarding the accuracy of the information and cannot accept liability for complaints, loss or damage resulting from the article. It does not form part of the contract made when a holiday is booked with JVH and the information provided is not intended to be a rider or replacement to the booking conditions. Reference to the service or product of a third party, is not an endorsement or recommendation and JVH accepts no liability as a result of complaints, loss or damage arising from their use.
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