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Where to Stay in Antigua and Barbuda
Hotel and resort accommodations can be found all over Antigua, with virtually all properties located on or very close to one of the island’s 365 beaches. Lodging is most plentiful on the Northwest and West Coasts, though many of the most exclusive and private resorts are located along the South Coast. Few resorts are located on the East Coast, where the white sand beaches tend to be rocky and the waters are often rough.
If you’re looking for cheap hotel deals in Antigua and Barbuda, it’s helpful to start your search in the capital of St. John’s and its neighborhoods to the north, including Bush Bay and Dutchman Bay. On the West Coast, the areas with the greatest concentrations of hotels are Five Island Peninsula and Coco Beach.
On Barbuda, which is far less developed than Antigua, there are only a few resorts to choose from. All of these are either located on the scenic and secluded South Coast, or in the charming inland town of Codrington.
Antigua and Barbuda Hotel Tips
Overall, Antigua is one of the most expensive of all Caribbean destinations, but that’s not to say that there aren’t affordable places to stay. The average nightly rate is driven up by the relatively large number of ultra-exclusive resorts on Antigua, most of which are located along the South Coast. If you’re looking to splurge on a room at one of these premier resorts, you’re in for a tropical experience you’ll never forget. But even if your budget is limited, you’ll still have a range of options and access to the same first-class beaches that put these islands on the map. A few all-inclusive resorts help make it easier to control costs.
If major resort amenities don’t matter much to you, the thriftiest way to enjoy your time in Antigua and Barbuda is to stay in an independently operated guesthouse. In Antigua, these are mostly in St. John’s, and in Barbuda, all guesthouses are located in Codrington.
Antigua and Barbuda Hotel Recommendations
Easily one of the most luxurious and exclusive resorts in Antigua, Curtain Bluff is located on the secluded Carlisle Bay on the island’s South Coast. Though it may seem formal for a Caribbean resort, there’s no better choice for the traveler seeking elegant surroundings. Impeccably lavish guest rooms, gourmet dining, nightly entertainment and a huge variety of amenities and activities make this resort a favorite among well-to-do repeat clientele.
Not far away is the appropriately named Carlisle Bay, another fierce contender for the best resort on the island. Special packages, including some that are virtually all-inclusive, help make this destination more accessible to those traveling on mid-range budgets. A private movie theater, an excellent spa and one of the island’s best swimming pools make Carlisle Bay one of the Caribbean’s more memorable hotels.
As for more affordable accommodations in Antigua, the Siboney Beach Club is an excellent mid-range option. Its few suites are located in a whimsical, intimate three-story structure where kitchenettes and either patios or balconies are standard features. Rooms are bright and airy, and an on-site restaurant and bar provides a place to enjoy a pleasant evening.
In Barbuda, the Coco Point Lodge is one of the most popular resorts with accommodations ranging from single rooms in the lodge house to two, three or four-bedroom cottages. Fishing excursions and tours of both land and sea can be arranged at the front desk. Another great choice is the Lighthouse Bay Resort, which prides itself on the sense of seclusion that its guests enjoy. In addition to its modern and luxurious accommodations, a key perk is complimentary helicopter rides from Antigua to the resort grounds.
Antigua and Barbuda Transportation
Many visitors to the islands rely on taxis to get around on Antigua. Fares are based on a schedule of travel zones, not mileage meters, and they tend to be fairly expensive, as is common on Caribbean islands. However, unless you plan on doing lots of exploring every day, taxis will likely still be cheaper than renting a car.
Cabs are always waiting at the airport after the arrival of flights, and they’re easy to find around most major hotels, too. When you can’t find one waiting or cruising down the street, any hotel, restaurant or other establishment should have an employee who would be happy to call a taxi for you.
To get to the neighboring island of Barbuda, take the Barbuda Express, an efficient and scenic ferry service that connects the two islands. Once on Barbuda, you’ll find many drivers offering car-for-hire services, but they won’t be the more traditional taxis you saw on Antigua. In Codrington, Barbuda’s only town, you can rent your own car, moped or bicycle.