The Best of Antigua & Barbuda – The beauty of Antigua, and its sister island, Barbuda, is the 365 gorgeous beaches, “one for every day of the year,” as locals love to say. Even the locals haven’t combed every patch of sand. On Antigua, life is a beach. It’s coasts have hundreds of perfect sandy spots with beautiful emerald-blue water, with lots of sheltered bays. Yet Antigua is the typical Caribbean island, full of candy-colored villages, a rum-infused mellowness and locals that greet you smiles and open arms.
If life on Antigua is a beach, Barbuda is a beach: one smooth, pink-tinged strand hemming the reef-filled waters. Birds, especially the huffing and puffing frigates, greatly outnumber residents on this Caribbean dream island.
Most of the action takes place on Antigua, where you will see expensive yachts in the harbor, honeymooners, and scuba divers exploring the colorful reefs. You can also find lush rainforests, historic sites, and a military lookout. Also, there are wondrous national parks and blow holes such as Devil’s Bridge.
Barbuda is much quieter, but just as beautiful. The island is a haven for wild deer, exotic birds, and is home to the Frigate Bird Sanctuary. There are also Amerindian rock carvings at Two Foot Bay, and sumptuous beaches proliferate the island. To learn more about all the beautiful beaches on the island of Antigua and Barbuda, visit here, or visit us on Pinterest.
Antigua & Barbuda Weather – Best Time to Visit Antigua & Barbuda
The typical temperatures on Antigua are in the region of 75°F in January and with an average rainfall of 1.5 inches, the islands are also quite dry. October is one of the hottest months and also has the least amount of rain, with a minimum temperature of 77°F. The excellent weather means that water sports are one of the main pastimes on the islands and most people indulge in diving or sailing.
The best time to visit Antigua is from May to November, the island’s off-season. Rates are cheapest at this time, and although there is a slight threat of hurricanes, the weather rarely escapes 80 degrees. You’ll encounter less rain between December and April, but rates are expensive and crowds are abundant.
Best Antigua & Barbuda Beaches
Fort James Beach
Fort James Beach offers showers, lounger, and umbrella rentals, and changing facilities. Restaurants can be found at both ends of the beach to grab a meal. This beach tends to be a rather quiet and serene beach that rarely gets crowded.
Half Moon Bay
Half-Moon Bay is a long stretch of pink and white sand and curacao-colored water named for its crescent shape and calm surf that’s ideal for swimming and snorkeling. Near the middle and south of the beach, you’ll find slightly choppier surf, which is great for wake boarding and body surfing.
This beach is considered among the best beaches in Antigua for socialites. You can rent equipment for water sports as well as umbrellas and loungers. You’ll find every kind of restaurant here, from seafood fine dining to takeaway stands, food trucks, and cafes.
Eden Beach, is a clothing-optional beach that offers soft orange sands and a serene experience. Enjoy outstanding scenic views of the Hawksbill Rock crags, or go snorkeling and get a view of the tropical sea life beneath the waters.
This beach is popular among families, and kids love to run and play in the sand here, but it doesn’t tend to get overly crowded, so you and the entire family can relax here.
Top Barbuda Beaches
Barbuda Pink Sand Beach
Perhaps the most famous beach in Barbuda for the color of the sand which has pinkish shades caused by the presence of corals; this place is also quite surreal because it is characterized by scarce vegetation and seems to be suspended between the blue of the sky and the blue of the sea.
Princess Diana Beach
This beach is long with white sand washed by a cobalt blue sea. Unfortunately the vegetation was swept away by the hurricane and therefore there are few shady areas.
Low Bay Beach
This wonderful beach has soft, white sand with turquoise waters and a few palm trees scattered here and there to shelter from the sun. The only danger is the currents that can be strong here and create undertow.
This large bay in the southernmost part of Barbuda features a large beach lapped by fish-rich waters.
During windy days it is ideal for those who love windsurfing and kite surfing.
Coco Point is characterized by white sand, a large shore and the coral reef a few meters from the shore where you can see turtles and different colored fish. There is also a very expensive resort here, but the beach is open to everyone!
Best Antigua & Barbuda Restaurants
Le Bistro $15 – 60
Le Bistro is out of a foodie’s daydream with a kitchen that has consistently wowed diners with meticulously prepared classic French cuisine. No matter if you fancy escargots (snails), langoustes (lobster) or canard (duck), you’ll find the ingredients top flight, the presentation exquisite and the service immaculate. Reservations are essential. Telephone: 268-462-3881 Web: Le Bistro
Island Fusion Cafe $11 – 30
Find a table in the flower-filled garden of this nautical-themed restaurant, and watch the sailboats bobbing about in Falmouth Harbour as you dine. Classic Caribbean dishes like curry conch and jerk chicken with rice and peas are the highlights of the menu here. However, the restaurant also does a good line of satellite-dish-sized pizzas. Telephone: 268-734-5671 Web: Island Fusion Cafe
Sheer Rocks $30 & Over
Set on the clifftop above Coco Beach in Saint Mary, this Mediterranean-inspired restaurant serves up uninterrupted views of the Caribbean Sea. The tables here are set inside a series of thatched palapas, with wispy white curtains to keep out any breeze. The menu showcases local produce and changes seasonally. Telephone: 268-464-5283 Web: Sheer Rocks
Hemingway’s Caribbean Cafe $11 -30
The wooden building in St John’s that houses Hemingway’s restaurant dates back to the 1800s, when it was used as a hotel. It’s still full of period features today, including the sort of dark-wood bar that Hemingway himself would have approved of. The food here is classically Creole: think curried shrimp and okra gumbo. Telephone: 268-462-2763 Web: Hemingway’s Caribbean Cafe
Catherine’s Cafe $30 & Over
The seating at this English Harbour eatery spills out onto a sandy patch of beach that’s shaded by neem tree. The menu is predominantly French and features dishes like escargot, cheeseboards topped with livarot and pont l’évêque, and tarte tatins. Try the cocktail of the month. It’s often pretty special, featuring finishing touches like dragon-fruit-infused ice cubes. Telephone: 268-782-5050 Web: Catherine’s Cafe
Best Antigua & Barbuda Bars & Nightlife
Ana’s On The Beach
A chic new restaurant and bar with Mediterranean cuisine situated on Dickenson Bay, with an open-air bar, beach cabanas and lounges, and al fresco as well as interior, open air dining, emphasizing luxury lifestyle and service. Telephone: 268-562-8562 Web: Ana’s On The Beach.
C&C Wine House
A casual, but sophisticated wine bar – perfect for lazy days and cooling out in the evening – a great place to take in the ambience of St John’s. Telephone: 268-460-7025 Web: C&C Wine House.
Castaways Beach Bar & Restaurant
The quintessential Caribbean beach bar — a rustic setting on a perfect white sand beach with a laid-back, Riviera-type vibe, and featuring unique Caribbean cuisine as well as barbecue, salad, steak and fresh fish. Telephone: 268-562-4446 Web: Castaways Beach Bar & Restaurant.
Darkwood Beach Bar
Located on Darkwood Beach, on the South West coast of Antigua. It offers a restaurant, bar, beach chair and umbrella rental, snorkeling equipment rental, free wifi and more. This is a great spot to watch the sun set over the Caribbean sea, while sipping a delicious tropical cocktail. Telephone: 268-462-8240 Web: Darkwood Beach Bar.
Sottovento Beach Club
Sottovento Restaurant is an enchanting restaurant located on the beach, a few steps away from the sea on the north coast of Antigua. The bar serves cocktails, fresh fruit juices, soft drinks and good selection of wines and beers to sip while listening to the waves of the sea. It is a romantic place. Telephone: 268-562-8378 Web: Sottovento Beach Club.
Top Antigua and Barbuda Hotels
Antigua and Barbuda look so beautiful! Thank you for the recommendations and travel guide. You mentioned hurricane season and being off season. After these recent hurricanes I think I wouldn’t risk going during that time! Perhaps due to the hurricanes, the rates may go down in general.
Yes, the rates do go down in general during the hurricane season, as that is their off season. It is still a great time to go. This year was bad for hurricanes, but that is certainly not the norm. If saving some money, while being on a dreamy Caribbean beach is something that appeals to you, then just check the weather before planning. They seem to have it down to a science as to if and when a hurricane might show up 🙂 Thanks for reading the Antigua and Barbuda Travel Guide 🙂
What a delightful travel guide of Antigua and Barbuda, you have covered everything!
I can’t even Imagine how much stress relief I could get from walking on the pink beach, just amazing!
Do you know if the restaurant La Bussola is owned by Italian? My husband is Italian and in the case of missing familiar foods that could be of great help ( you know how Italians are… They can even bring pasta with them in the luggage
Chuckling about the pasta in the suitcase 😀 I am glad you enjoyed the Antigua and Barbuda Travel Guide. Yes, there are actually a lot of Italian restaurants in Antigua. Your husband will feel right at home 🙂 Thanks for visiting!
The indepth knowledge of this place sounds amazing and also the Pink beach! Im in love haha…I have actually wanted to visit Antigua, as I have a good friend who has vacationed there. She made it sound like paradise, and after reading your article on Antigua, I do believe that it is paradise! Thanks for all the great information, I now have everything I need to plan a great vacation!
You are very welcome Dorothy! I am sure that once Antigua starts receiving visitors again, that you will have a wonderful time visiting the island of Antigua! Thanks for reading!
I’ve never been to the Caribbean but this sounds lovely and I would hope that with 365 beaches you would be able to find somewhere that isn’t crowded. The site has a lot of good resources for anyone looking into traveling to these islands. Plenty of information on what to do and where to stay. I am definitely ready to plan my vacation to one of the wonderful Caribbean Islands that you have given so much information on!
Everybody needs to experience the Caribbean. Whether you are a beach lover, or a history buff, or just like the Caribbean culture and atmosphere, there is something for everyone. I hope that you can plan a trip to one of these beautiful islands soon!
These areas look truly breathtaking, I wish I could be there now!
Seeing as how you first mention that it has 365 beaches, one for each day of the year, leaves almost endless possibilities of gorgeous views to see right off the bat!
The weather also has me wanting to go there considering I have lived in the same state of Wisconsin for my whole life and I get sick of the frequent cold weather that comes and goes.
One of the outdoor activities that caught my attention is the Stingray City one and seeing as how I was never good with swimming and afraid to go underwater most of the time, I would not mind learning about going under with snorkel gear. I also would be interested in going on a sailing cruise.
I looked at some of the restaurants you mentioned and I think the Coconut Grove looks and sounds amazing! The chicken Linguini Pasta sounds good to me and it looks to have a breathtaking view!
In terms of the hotels, I say the Galley Bay Resorts and Spa definitely caught my eye when I visited their site. The rooms look great, the outside environment feels breathtaking, and overall seems like a great escape!
My question is, which of these areas would you say is the most exciting out of the places you visited? Also, what would you be looking forward to checking out during your next visit?
Sounds like you are ready to go to Antigua and Barbuda! Honestly, there are quite a few good restaurants, beaches, and things to see and do that I would want at least two weeks for a visit. The place I am looking forward to travelling to? I am actually planning a trip to Aruba. My son graduates next year, and I want to take him on a Caribbean beach vacation, as he loves to surf, so I know he would have a blast. Why Aruba? I guess because, it is not a particularly heavy Caribbean hotspot, so a hair cheaper for hotels and such. Also, I don’t like to be wall to wall on the beach with other people 🙂 Thanks for visiting BeachTravelDestinations.com.
Thanks for posting this article. I have wanted to go to Antigua and Barbuda for a long time but didn’t know anything about the islands, the culture or anything really. I had just seen some pictures, and decided this was an amazing place I wanted to experience.
After reading your article on these beautiful islands, I know loads more about the islands in terms of what to do, what its known for and when the best time of year to go is.
I know that hurricane irma recently did a lot of damage to the islands but I was wondering how frequent is it for them to be affected by natural disasters such as Hurricanes?
Jacob, you would absolutely love Antigua and Barbuda. Since the early 1950’s, Antigua along has been hit with 16 hurricanes, not all destructive. This is about the biggest natural disaster that hits these two islands, plus tropical storms. It will take some time to rebuild Barbuda who was right in Irma’s path.
I am glad you learned something about the islands, along with all the things you can see and do on the islands. Thanks for reading the Antigua and Barbuda Travel Guide.
wow! 365 beaches! That is amazing! The pink beach and Devil Bridge is now at the top of my MUST SEE PLACES. Thank you for the heads up on the Frigate bird sanctuary knowing that I need to book this trip in advance will save me some time. It is so helpful knowing what time of year is best to avoid the crowds!
Yes Lizel, I thing that Pink Beach and Devil Bridge are two must see places. Not to mention the bird sanctuary. I just love the birds 🙂 I am glad I could help fill in some of your planning 🙂
I love the Caribbean and have visited many of the islands. But I have not made to these islands yet. Hopefully, I get there someday.
This is a great resource for visiting these islands. So much in depth information about restaurants, hotels and things to see. I love getting a local taxi as a local tour guide. The tours are so much more personal than the organized tours. I had one taxi take me by his home and I met his mother and whole family.
Hopefully, these islands are able to recover quickly from these recent hurricanes.
I do hope they recover quickly as well. So much beauty to share with the islands visitors. Thank you for reading and glad you enjoyed the Antigua and Barbuda Travel Guide.
Firstly I am so sad to hear about the damage from the recent hurricane. I hope people there are keeping strong & staying safe.
As for your travel guide, oh my… it is such a complete one. To me, places like these are really like paradise & I hope I get there one day. I think I will definitely feel at home with its weather, as I am from the tropical country of Malaysia.
There are so many interesting places that you have covered in your article & really, they sounded like paradise!
Great guide and I think it will definitely be of a great help for anyone who is planning a trip to Antigua & Barbuda.
I am glsd you enjoyed my comprehensive Antigua and Barbuda Travel Guide 🙂 Thanks for visiting!
Such a comprehensive post with beautiful photos and website ❤
It makes me want to travel further when my kids are older. I’ll make sure to visit this website for references.
Thanks for sharing, Leahrae ☺
You are most welcome Safrina 🙂 I am glad you enjoyed visiting BeachTravelDestinations.com!
Antigua is a heaven on earth based on your article and the picturesque photos.
I want to jump into these shallow transparent waters and never get out.
And I for sure will visit ‘Ana’s on the beach’.:)
Thank you for basically planning my trip for me, LOL
It’s too pity that nature was cruel to this paradise but I hope that everything will come to together again for them!
You are very welcome Asen! I am glad you have found your destination to start planning a vacation to! Thanks for visiting the Antigua and Barbuda Travel Guide.
I had no idea there were deer on any Caribbean islands. I like to visit places during their off season to save money and avoid the crowds. I really enjoyed the video. It looks absolutely amazing. It looks like there’s something for everyone, whether you are active or just want to relax. I also like that there are historical sites. I like to do at least one thing educational on each of my trips.
Yes, Antigua has a nice mix of sun, beaches, history, and wildlife! Perfect for anyone really. Glad you enjoyed reading the Antigua and Barbuda Travel Guide. Let me know if you need any other information.
I have fallen in love with your website and look at it every chance I get. On my blog spot I have added a link to your website since I think this is probably the best I have come across 🙂 in my 15 years in the diving industry.
What would be your favourite place to visit ?
Thank you so much Cath! Boy, that is a tough decision. If I went with the states, it is hands down St Pete in Florida. Then Cabo in Mexico and Aruba, Anguilles, an Saba 🙂 Those are all wonderful 🙂 Thanks for visiting my Antigua and Barbuda Travel Guide!
Ya, how awful to read about the incredible damage the hurricane left behind. It will probably be at least 6 months to a year before they will be able to rebuild enough to entertain tourists again. I am looking up your site to ascertain whether great deals can be had, considering the economic plight of the islands ? We would love to visit Aruba, but it is usually way too expensive. What do you recommend ?
Yes, Barbuda got hit really hard, yes Antigua was mostly untouched. I guess that is a blessing in disguise and Barbuda evacuated to Antigua. I would definitely go in off season when rates go way down. The weather is still wonderful. The only downside is that some islands do close down to make their annual repairs during off season. The other idea is to plan way ahead, and get everything booked in advance so you can take advantage of the lower rates. Aruba can be quite affordable actually if you go in their off season and they are not in the Hurricane Belt either. So, I really would check into the rates for off season if that is a time frame that is doable for you. If you let me know when you want to travel, I can give you my recommendations. Thanks Rico, for visiting my Antigua and Barbuda Travel Guide.