Antigua and Barbuda is a nation which consists of two major islands and a group of smaller islands, and is located in the Lesser Antilles on the eastern side of the Caribbean Sea. Tourism is the main industry and the official language is English as it was under English rule until 1981. As with most of the Caribbean, Antigua and Barbuda lies in the tropics and temperatures range from the seventies in the winter to the eighties in the summer. It is sunny for this part of the tropics and has an almost constant trade wind.
Barbuda is the lesser known of the two major islands and is almost completely undeveloped. There are a few resorts on the island that offer golf in a relaxed atmosphere, but the majority of the activities on the island consist of more natural pursuits. Hiking, hunting, and fishing are popular pastimes on the undeveloped areas of Barbuda. There is a small airport which has flights from Antigua as well as a ferry service. The main attraction on the island is the Frigate Bird Sanctuary which is accessible only by boat and is home to over 170 species of birds, including over 5,000 frigate birds.
Antigua, on the other hand is a more traditional Caribbean destination offering a wide variety of activities and destinations. The capital city of St. John’s is a very colorful and beautiful city punctuated by the towers of St. John’s Cathedral, an historic church. For those interested in the island’s history, there is also the Museum of Antigua and Barbados located in an eighteenth century house. You will also want to spend some time wandering around English Harbour based around an old Naval Dockyard.
For those interested in shopping, your best bet is along the southern edge of the city, close to the new cruise ship pier. Try to visit this area on the weekends when a colorful and fun farmer’s market is operating. The local currency is the Eastern Caribbean dollar, and US currency is accepted everywhere. Remember that many stores close for an hour at noon.
Anyone interested in good food will love Antigua and Barbuda. There are not only many restaurants featuring local cuisine and fresh seafood, but almost every nationality are represented in at least one restaurant. Most of the restaurants are around English Harbour and St. John’s, but you will find many places to eat scattered throughout Antigua and Barbuda.
If you love sports, there is plenty of golf, diving, and sailing available. If you are more of a spectator, cricket is the main sport on the island and you can find a game almost anywhere on the islands. The season runs from January to July and the best place to watch is the Antigua Recreational Ground, which hosts not only local and regional games, but is host to international competitions.
Whatever you like to see or do, you can find it on the beautiful islands of Antigua and Barbuda.