Antigua is a lively, vibrant island with a relaxed and friendly local population. From the excitement of marine activities like sport fishing, scuba diving and sailing, not to mention the views of mega-yachts gracing the harbours, to readily available yoga, meditation and gym classes, Antigua is a recreational paradise. Hiking is a popular pursuit, and the wealth of historic and cultural sites creates many opportunities for memorable days out.

Car hire is recommended to explore all the island's beaches and sights, though many excellent restaurants, bars, shops and other facilities are within walking distance. We can highly recommend a local car hire/taxi company in Falmouth Harbour.

It is an incredible hike up from the house and over to Nelson's Dockyard, and other local hikes accompanied by an expert guide can be had by arrangement. We are also happy to put guests in touch with a local weekly yoga activity if required, or you can have Pilates or yoga classes at Zandoli itself.


There are 365 beaches on Antigua, one for each day of the year. The great majority rest inside the calm, protected waters of the island's Caribbean side. All are open to the public, and so the challenge posed to a visitor is not how to gain access to the best of them but simply how to locate the beach that suits one's taste. Exploring on your own is the best way to do this.

Northwest Coast:

Dickenson Bay and Runaway Bay, located along the island's developed northwestern coast, are the place to go for those who want the fully-loaded resort beach experience. The beaches most convenient to St. John's are Fort James, a locally-popular public beach, and Deep Bay. Galley Bay attracts surfers during the winter months and a joggers during the evening. The series of four crescent beaches at Hawksbill are also highly regarded, one of which is nudist.

Southwest and South Coast:

All along the west coast you'll find incredible beaches, day clubs and great restaurants. The beaches of the hilly southwest corner of Antigua are generally less developed than those around St. John's further north. On the road that winds along this coast are Fryes Bay, Darkwood Beach, and the beaches around Johnsons Point. Rendezvous Bay and especially Doigs Beach, both located on the central southern coast at Rendezvous Bay, are especially quiet beaches worth the rough travel necessary to reach them. Pigeon Point is a convenient balm after a day at Nelson's Dockyard.

East Coast:

On the southeast corner of the island is Half Moon Bay, now a National Park and a good choice for a family outing. Long Bay, on the easternmost point of the island, is another good choice for families, as it is completely protected by its reef.


Antigua Carnival is a fortnight's festival of colorful costumes, beauty pageants, talent shows, and especially good music. The festivities, which celebrate emancipation, are exciting and extensive, ranging from the Party Monarch and Calypso Monarch competitions of Calypsonians, the Panorama steel band competition, and the spectacular Parade of Bands to the Miss Antigua Pageant and the Caribbean Queen's Competition. In addition to these major events, the nonstop revelry boasts innumerable smaller festivities, including local concerts, food fairs, parades, and cultural shows.

For what's on in Antigua check out

Explore Antigua

Zandoli (Pigeon Beach)

With wonderful views across the harbour, Pigeon Beach is just a 2 minute walk down the hill. A favourite spot for the local community as well as visitors, Pigeon Beach is also home to one of the very best restaurants in the Caribbean, Catherine's Café Plage.

Offering classical French cuisine with Provence-style influences and local ingredients, Catherine's is a delightful experience. From a tasting menu with wine pairing to a beach menu for sharing, you're bound to find just the right delicacy to whet your appetite!

Not far away is Bumpkins, a great little beach bar and restaurant with reasonable prices.
English Harbour

Antigua's graceful and evocative historic district, is focused on the fifteen square miles of Nelson's Dockyard National Park. Developed as a base for the British Navy in the great age of sail, the harbour served as the headquarters of the fleet of the Leeward Islands during the turbulent years of the late 18th century. Although the dockyard was greatly expanded at that time by Horatio Nelson, it was gradually abandoned in the nineteenth century and was closed in 1889. Today Nelson's Dockyard is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and has been completely restored. It is the only Georgian dockyard in the world.
Falmouth Harbour

Falmouth Harbour houses the Antigua Yacht Club and a Marina which, during race week, attracts the most fantastic yachts from around the world. There are a number of independent supermarkets and specialist wine shops, as well as a lovely delicatessen, and an abundance of restaurants, including sushi, Italian, pizza and wraps. You will also find a coffee bar, an ice-cream parlour, two enchanting boutiques offering locally produced clothing and jewellery, a marine chandlery and a bookstore (several providing internet and FedEx services).

There are another 18 restaurants and bars, 2 gyms offering yoga classes and a tennis and squash club all within walking distance towards Nelson's Dockyard with its museum, beauty salon, bakery, bars, restaurants and boutiques.
Shirley Heights

This rambling array of gun emplacements, with their partially-restored fortifications of the harbour's colonial observation post, is best known today for the absolutely breathtaking views that it offers. From the Heights one can look far out over English Harbour, across the Caribbean to Montserrat and Guadaloupe, and on Sundays (in season also on Thursdays), for sunset and through the evening, the view is accompanied by barbecue, rum punch, and the plangent strains of steel band and reggae music.
Nelson's Dockyard

Although St. John's has long been Antigua's capital city, the island's historic heart is across the island at English Harbour. One of the finest natural harbours in the Caribbean, and located in a highly strategic position, English Harbour was used by Admirals Nelson, Rodney and Hood as a secure home for the British Navy during the Napoleonic wars. Today, Nelson's Dockyard forms part of a designated national park, complete with a museum. shops, hotels, restaurants and a yacht haven. The park embraces the whole of English Harbour and Shirley Heights. Nelson's Dockyard was listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2016.
Rendezvous Bay

Probably the most untouched and quiet beach in Antigua, mainly because it's so difficult to get to. Only reached by boat or a long hike down the hill, it is definitely worth the effort.
Fig Tree Drive

Antigua's most picturesque drive meanders from the low central plain of the island up into the ancient volcanic hills of the Parish of Saint Mary in the island's southwest quarter. The none-too-smooth road passes through an area of lush vegetation and rainforest and rises to the steep farmlands around Fig Tree Hill (figs are what Antiguans call bananas) before descending to the coastline again. Along the way are banana, mango, and coconut groves, as well as a number of old sugar mills and pleasant little churches. Also home of the Rainforest Canopy Tour for those with a sense of adventure.
Clarence House

The structure today was built (1804 to 1806) on the remnants of an earlier structure that popular legend holds was built for the Duke of Clarence Prince William lV during his tenure on Antigua while serving in the Royal Navy around 1784.

In the 1990s, hurricanes Luis, Marilyn, and Georges, devastated the residence and outer buildings, and the once elegant architectural masterpiece became a complete a ruin. In 1996 Governor-General Sir James Carlisle initiated a major conservation project for restoration of the house. Clarence House is now a major addition to the magnificent collection of Georgian Period architectural structures in Nelson's dockyard.
Half Moon Bay

Half Moon Bay is located on the south east coast of Antigua near Freetown village and is regarded as ne of the very best beaches on the island. It has fine pink sand, wonderful cooling breezes and an active surf. Take a beach umbrella for shade!
Devil's Bridge

At the north-eastern point of Antigua there is a remote wild area, a National Park, known as Indian Town Point. Within the park there is a remarkable example of sea-water erosion. Devil's Bridge is a natural arch carved by the sea from soft and hard limestone ledges of the Antigua formation, a geological division of the flat north-eastern part of Antigua. A bridge was created when a soft part of the limestone eroded away by action of Atlantic breakers over countless centuries.
St. Johns

The skyline of St. John's, the capital and largest city of Antigua and Barbuda, is dominated by the magnificently evocative white baroque towers of St. John's Cathedral. Built in 1845, the church is now in its third incarnation, as earthquakes in 1683 and in 1745 destroyed the previous structures. With its recently completed cruise ship dock and several hotels, St. John's is a lively hub for shopping and dining, particularly around the quaint shopping area of Redcliffe Quay, with lots of boutiques, places to eat, refreshing ice-cream bars, cafés, art and culture.
V.C. Bird International

The new terminal at the V.C. Bird International Airport was opened in 2015, making it one of the most modern international airports in the Caribbean. Direct flights are available from a variety of cities around the world, making your journey as straightforward as possible.
Recommendations and Reservations

Finding the right restaurants and knowing which require advanced booking to avoid disappointment are not things to be wasting valuable holiday time on. We are happy to liaise with you and recommend the best places to eat and make reservations prior to your arrival.

Car hire and airport transfer can also be arranged in advance of your stay.