When you think of paradise, you’re thinking of Antigua. From the moment you dip your toes in the warm, powder-soft sands, taste the sweet tang of the rum punch, and discover colorful underwater worlds, you’ll see why Antigua has been nominated for the World Travel Awards in the Caribbean’s Leading Destination and Caribbean’s Leading Beach Destination categories. It’s won the distinction of Caribbean’s Most Romantic Destination the last three years in a row.
Antigua’s charm and irresistible beaches have also lured celebrities, including Oprah, Justin Bieber, and Prince Harry. Now you can experience its unique brand of paradise.
Day 1: A Day at the Beach
Perhaps the best-known fact about Antigua, the island has 365 beaches, and while you could certainly enjoy every single one, there are a select few that are perfect for today’s agenda – a beaching good time.
At Turner’s Beach, you’ll find bathroom facilities as well as a bar for burgers and seafood. If you’re in search of secluded sands or want to stretch your legs, then head to Rendezvous Bay, reached only on foot or by 4×4. Here, you’ll find a quiet retreat to regain your center, and serene waters perfect for snorkeling.
Dickenson Bay is one of the best stretches of sands on the island and offers excitement with water sports, glass-bottom boats, and souvenir shops.
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Day 2: Rays of Sunshine and the Ocean
Sail upon the calm, crystal-clear waters surrounding the coral reef, home of the stingrays.
Disembark onto a floating platform where a local guide will provide snorkel equipment and give an instruction and safety briefing before entering the water. Gently touch, feed, and photograph these friendly stingrays, and interact with other local marine life including crabs, lobster, shellfish, and starfish. Finish the day with a refreshing rum or fruit punch.
Day 3: Sweet and Sunset
Praised as the “world’s sweetest,” the Antigua black pineapple has the same appearance as the Hawaiian pineapple but retains its a dark green skin even when ripe. Found in only a few places outside of Antigua, this delectable treat must be on your list of things to taste. Grab a bite on your way to Nelson’s Dockyard, a UNESCO World Heritage Site with stone warehouses, nature trails, and museums.
Afterwards, join the Shirley Heights Jump Up, a party with live steel band music, a cookout, and spectacular views. Watch as the sun slowly sinks below the horizon, creating a dramatic sunset over nearby Guadeloupe and Montserrat.
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Day 4: Explore the Island
Colonial cottages, 18th-century courthouses, and harborside public markets welcome you to St. John’s, the capital city of Antigua. Immerse yourself in the city’s vibrant life or explore Antigua’s countryside on Fig Tree Drive with fresh-fruit stands, tropical landscapes, and vibrant farmland.
This evening, sail off into the sunset on a romantic catamaran. Munch on delectable appetizers and sip exotic cocktails as the sea becomes ablaze, looking like liquid fire. Sway to the rhythms of Caribbean sounds or simply steal away, finding a quiet spot to be alone together.
Day 5: Beachin’ Good Time
It’s your last day on an island with 365 beaches. Seize the moment. Find your spot in the sand and soak up the sun for a day of complete and total relaxation.
Where to Stay: Carlisle Bay
Resting upon an emerald canopy, this intimate resort pampers with 87 elegantly appointed suites, each boasting a mesmerizing ocean view. See it from the furnished balcony or terrace, complete with comfortable daybeds. Indulge with a full-stocked minibar, bathroom amenities by Molton Brown, turndown service, 24-hour room service, a yoga mat, and Tea Forte, an exceptional tea experience. The on-site yoga pavilion, water sports center, and of course, the warm sands of the Caribbean, make for the perfect retreat into paradise.