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With sun-drenched beaches, swaying palm trees and an ambiance that is as mellow as they come, Antigua and Barbuda are everything you’ve dreamed of in a Caribbean holiday. If it’s relaxation you’re after – fuelled by fresh seafood and the world’s best rum – these dazzling islands are the perfect setting.
At 14 miles long and 11 miles wide – with just a 45-minute drive separating the east coast from the west – Antigua sounds small enough to explore in its entirety. But size can be deceiving, as its perimeter packs in around 365 picture-perfect beaches and sandy coves. It could take a year to see them all, so start with some of the finest, such as Half Moon Bay, Princess Diana Beach and Rendezvous Bay.
Barbuda is even smaller and its beaches arguably even more idyllic. And since the devastation of Hurricane Irma in 2017, Antigua’s little sister is rebuilding its infrastructure and starting to thrive again – a few hotels are open and visitors are returning.
Offshore, snorkelling and diving around Antigua and Barbuda is a must: pristine reefs and colourful marine life surround the paradise islands. Take a boat trip to see the coral at Cades Reef, visit the 100-year-old wreck at Deep Bay and explore the tiny offshore islets. For a higher-paced watersport, try kite-surfing off Jabberwock Beach.
Back on land, Nelson’s Dockyard is an essential stop on an island tour, offering a glimpse into 18th-century life. Elsewhere, Betty’s Hope – a restored plantation and windmill – provides an insight into the daily hardship experienced by slaves at the time, as do the stories surrounding the crashing waves at Devil’s Bridge and of those that escaped to Boggy Peak.
Being hit with unexpected fees on holiday is nobody's idea of fun. So, to help you avoid any nasty surprises, we reveal seven sneaky charges that can drive up your final bill.Read moreabout 7 unexpected holiday charges to look out for
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