The English admiral Horatio Nelson, who founded a naval base in Antigua in 1784, did not know that in 200 years this island, along with Barbuda, would become one of the best tourist destinations in the Caribbean. Tourists are attracted to the islands of Antigua and Barbuda by numerous carnivals and, above all, by magnificent white beaches.
Geography of Antigua and Barbuda
Antigua and Barbuda is an island nation located between the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, 650 km southeast of Puerto Rico. The main islands of this exotic country for us are Antigua and Barbuda. In addition, this state also includes a number of smaller islands – Green, Guinea, Long, York and Redonda. The total area of the country is 442 sq. km.
Most of the islands of Antigua and Barbuda are lowlands. The highest peak in Antigua is Mount Obama, whose height reaches 402 meters. In Barbuda, the height of the highest local hill (there are simply no mountains there) reaches 42 meters.
The coastline of Antigua and Barbuda is heavily indented with many lagoons, beaches and natural harbors. All the islands of this country are surrounded by reefs and shoals.
There are no permanent rivers on the islands of Antigua and Barbuda, but there is a lot of underground freshwater.
St. John’s is the capital of Antigua and Barbuda. More than 35 thousand people now live in this city. St. John’s was founded by the British around the 1630s and 40s.
The official language of the population of Antigua and Barbuda is English.
About 74% of the population professes Christianity (most of all Anglicans, but there are also Baptists, Presbyterians and Catholics).
Government of Antigua and Barbuda
Antigua and Barbuda is a constitutional monarchy ruled by a governor-general appointed by the Queen of Great Britain. Formally, in 1981, this state gained independence from Great Britain. The Governor General appoints the Council of Ministers.
The bicameral local parliament consists of the Senate (17 senators) and the House of Representatives (17 deputies).
The main political parties are the Antigua Labor Party, the United Progressive Party and the Barbuda People’s Movement.
Climate and weather
The climate is tropical. The average air temperature during the day is + 27-31C. The dry season runs from November to April, and the rainy season runs from May to October. But you can relax in Antigua and Barbuda all year round.
Sea in Antigua and Barbuda
The state of Antigua and Barbuda is located on the islands in the Caribbean. Both main islands (ie Antigua and Barbuda) are surrounded by beautiful coral reefs. The average sea temperature near the coast is +25C.
The main cultural events in Antigua and Barbuda are Sailing Week (held every April) and Carnival (celebrated every summer).
The traditional Carnival is held in honor of the emancipation of slaves, which took place on August 1, 1838. This grand show continues in Antigua for 10 days. Preparations for the Carnival begin a few weeks before its main events.
On the island of Barbuda, the Caribana Carnival takes place every May, lasting 5 days. All local carnivals are accompanied by mass street processions, musical, dance and theatrical performances.
Every September, the popular international music festival De Jam Festival is held, which attracts DJs from the Caribbean, the USA and the UK.
Cuisine of Antigua and Barbuda
The cuisine of Antigua and Barbuda was formed under the influence of the culinary traditions of the Caribbean, England, Holland and France. The main food products are fish and seafood. The inhabitants of these islands show a real talent for cooking lobster.
We recommend trying Pepperpot (stew with vegetables and spices, often served with corn porridge), Roti (cutlets with potatoes and curry), Ducana (grated sweet potatoes with coconut, sugar and spices, wrapped in banana leaf), “Tamarind balls” (local sweets), as well as black pineapples, known for their unique extra-sweet taste.
Traditional soft drinks – tea, herbal tea, fruit juices.
Traditional alcoholic drinks are Ting (homemade grapefruit sparkling drink), Wadadli (local beer), and of course rum.
Attractions Antigua and Barbuda
The main attraction of Antigua and Barbuda is the Nelson Shipyard, located on the south coast of the island of Antigua. Nelson’s Dockyard is an English naval base built in 1725. This historical monument now includes a museum, barracks, souvenir shops, and a multimedia center.
On the island of Barbuda, tourists are advised to pay attention to the colony of frigate birds, which now numbers more than 5 thousand individuals. Frigate nesting sites can only be reached by boat. Frigatebirds make their nests in the mangroves.
In St. John’s, among the attractions are St. John’s Cathedral, Fort James, medieval shops, Fort Barrington, the former slave market.
Cities and resorts
The largest city in the state of Antigua and Barbuda is St. John’s, where more than 30 thousand people live. The rest of the local cities can hardly be considered as such by Western standards. too few people live there. Thus, the population of All Saints, the second largest city in Antigua and Barbuda, is about 3 thousand people.
Antigua and Barbuda is an excellent beach resort with numerous beaches. So, only in Antigua there are 365 beaches, one for each day of the year.
On the northwest coast of the island of Antigua there are two beach areas – Dickenson Bay and Runaway Bay, they are very popular with foreign tourists. Also highly regarded are the four beaches of the Hawksbill area (one of these beaches is nudist).
The beaches of the hilly southwestern and southern coast of Antigua (Fryes Bay, Darkwood Beach, Johnsons Point, Rendezvous Bay and Pigeon Point) do not have such well-developed infrastructure as in the northwest of the island. There are not many tourists on these beaches. The beaches on the east coast of Antigua are most often chosen by families as their vacation spot.
In turn, the flat coast of the island of Barbuda is bordered by long pink and white sandy beaches. Reefs reliably protect them from the Caribbean Sea.
Tourists, vacationing in Antigua and Barbuda, buy handicrafts, ceramics, paintings, scented candles, Caribbean masks, wicker baskets, straw hats, local dolls, jam, local coffee, herbal tea, spices, spices, spicy sauces as souvenirs.
Mon-Thurs: 08:00-13:00 and 15:00-17:00
Fri: 08:00-12:00 and 15:00-17:00
Ukrainians do not need to apply for a visa to visit the state of Antigua and Barbuda.
Currency of Antigua and Barbuda
The East Caribbean dollar is the official currency of Antigua and Barbuda (its international designation is XCD). One XCD = 100 cents. Most hotels, restaurants and car rental companies also accept US dollars. Major hotels, restaurants and shops accept major credit cards, but smaller businesses and shops prefer cash.
It is possible to import foreign and local currency, subject to its declaration, without restrictions.
Pets (cats and dogs) can only be imported with an international veterinary certificate. Antiques and art can be taken out only if there is a special permit from the local authorities.
Useful phone numbers and addresses
Embassy of Great Britain in Ukraine:
Address: 01025, Kiev, st. Tithe, 9
Phone: (044) 490-36-60
Fax: (044) 490-36-62
Embassy of Ukraine in the UK:
Address: 60, Holland Park, London W11 3SJ Phone: (020) 7727-6312
Fax: (020) 7792-1708
Fire Department – (268) 462-0044
Police – (268) 462-0125/999
Emergency Medical Services – (268) 462-0251
All emergencies – 999 or 911
Behind Kyiv for 6 hours. Those. if, for example, in Kyiv it is 13:00, then in St. John’s it is only 07:00.
Tips in hotels and restaurants are usually included in the bill (they are 10%). In restaurants, it is customary to leave an additional 5% of the bill for “tea”. In hotels, tourists usually give porters and bellboys $ 1 per bag for help in carrying luggage. The maids at the end of the placement are given a tip at the rate of 2-2.5 dollars per day. As for taxi drivers, they expect a 10-15% tip.
Before traveling to this country, doctors recommend making preventive vaccinations against typhoid, malaria, rabies, and hepatitis A and B.
Petty theft for tourists vacationing in Antigua and Barbuda can be considered a problem. But violent crime is rare. Therefore, reasonable security measures must be taken in this country as well. We recommend not to walk at night along the streets of St. John’s, and also not to visit remote beaches alone.
Keep valuables and money in the hotel safe. Do not take valuables to the beach with you if you plan to spend a lot of time in the water.