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Overview of the island of Antigua

With its beautiful winding coastline providing hidden and secluded powdery white beaches and azure sea, Antigua is a wonderful example of the wealth of scenic delight available in the Caribbean. As a wedding or honeymoon destination you are spoilt for choice with top hotels and photo opportunities. As a Caribbean holiday destination Antigua will leave its imprint on your soul.

An Historic Island

Over 200 hundred years ago Antigua was just as sought after, but for vastly different reasons. The fantastic coral reef and winding coastline that draw divers from all over the world today, provided protection from outsiders and safe harbours for the fleets under the Admiralty of Horatio Nelson. In 1784 this was the most important British Caribbean Naval base for the protection of the trade fleets taking advantage of the ever present Trade Winds. Sir Christopher Codrington had arrived in 1632 and set up Betty's Hope, the first of around 150 sugar plantations on Antigua that brought wealth to the Leeward Islands.

Remains of the boat house and sail loft

*Remains of the boat house and sail loft

It is said that Nelson found the island "detestable" and spent his three year stay onboard his ship! But this didn't stop him from building "Nelsons Dockyard" and fully establishing English Harbour in the south of the island. Thankfully there are many fabulous places to stay in Antigua today, including some rather special boutique hotels. If you have had enough of relaxing by the pool or on your private beach Antigua is not short of things to do. Whether you are immersing yourself in the warm waters with a snorkel or in the long and varied history and culture of the island, its sunny charm will warm you.

When should you visit?

Antigua's crystal clear turquoise sea

*Antigua's crystal clear turquoise sea

The best time to visit Antigua is one of personal choice. High season runs from mid-December to mid-April when there is less rain, heat and humidity. However, being only around 17degrees north of the equator means year round warmth. Temperatures usually range from the mid seventies in winter to mid eighties in summer. It may pay to be mindful that Hurricane season runs from late July through to November and the power of these storms should not be underestimated. It is significantly busier in high season and booking is recommended well in advance for both accommodation and dinner reservations.

Two of the biggest events in the Antiguan calendar are Sailing week that traditionally takes place in late April and the Carnival which is held in the last two weeks of July. Over all it is a place to relax, succumb to Caribbean time, and soak in the delights of some of the top hotels Antigua has to offer.

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