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An insider’s guide to Antigua

16 October 2015• Written by Jordana Reuben Yechiel

Jordana Reuben Yechiel reveals her insider’s tip to the laid-back island that she says in the perfect place to start your private cruise or luxury yacht charter in the Caribbean.

Where to dock in Antigua

Carlisle Bay: a yacht-friendly luxury resort. Moor outside and swim through clear water into the private white-sand beach (one of the best beaches in the Caribbean) and have lunch at Indigo on the Beach followed by a treatment in its Blue spa. The boutique is great too!

Where to watch the sun set in Antigua

The Jumby Bay hotel is on a small private island off Antigua’s mainland. This Rosewood Resort is only reachable by boat. Watch the sun set from its spectacularly long beach and order a frozen daiquiri or any of its amazing cocktails from a hammock strung between the palm trees.

Where to eat in Antigua

Across from Jumby Bay on the mainland you will find Cecilia’s High Point Café, run by a gorgeous Swedish ex-model, who is also the chef. Her menu mixes local fish with Swedish specialities. This place oozes island cool and the WiFi is excellent too! Its boutique sells great beachwear in case you need a little last-minute shopping spree...

Also don’t miss Catherine’s Café Plage on Freeman’s Bay, run by French duo Claudine and Guillaume; it’s a favourite spot for diners in the know. Try its tuna tartar and a glass of rosé from the extensive French wine list.

If you are looking for smarter affair head to Sheer Rocks restaurant, which offers a great menu and has a very elegant setting on the water.

Cecilia’s High Point Café is a great lunch spot

Where to people watch in Antigua

Over afternoon coffee or early evening drinks at Sun Ra café and restaurant in Falmouth. From the roadside this seems an unassuming wooden house, yet is set in a garden where the trees are lit up with fairy lights. Jazz lovers and people watchers come together in this cool, essential local hangout.

For a lazy day in Antigua

Spend a day anchored in front of Green Island, owned by the Mill Reef Club and off Antigua’s east coast. This is one of the best anchorages and great for snorkelling.

For culture in Antigua Take a tender to Nonsuch Bay and have lunch at Harmony Hall Italian restaurant owned by sailing enthusiast Carlo Falcone, who also owns the Harmony Hall Yacht Club.  While there, visit the old plantation house, now an art gallery showcasing local and international artists.

The best view in Antigua is from Shirley Heights Picture courtesy of Bertl123/Shutterstock.com

Where most superyachts are based in Antigua

Many yachts base themselves out of the crew-friendly main port, English Harbour; it’s buzzing with cafés and restaurants and is the hub of the Caribbean, as well as host to the Antigua Charter Yacht Show in December.

The best view in Antigua

The best view just above the harbour, at Shirley Heights, from the partially restored fortifications of the colonial observation post; the view extends out over the harbour and far across the Caribbean to Montserrat and Guadeloupe. It’s perfect for Sunday night sundowners, with live music, and everyone goes. Antigua is definitely the place to kick off your Caribbean cruising.