Spectacular beaches, sun-soaked landscapes and glistening turquoise waters ensure that the Caribbean offers an unforgettable experience to all charterers.
Thanks to its laid-back atmosphere, beautiful climate, and magnificent shorelines, the Leeward Islands remain a favourite destination. A tropical getaway on an Antigua yacht charter is the perfect opportunity to sample everything the island offers, including a favourite pastime of the area – sailing.
A charter to Antigua is the perfect opportunity to experience first-hand the world-famous trade winds of the region, which offer hours of fun on the open water for both novice and experienced sailors. The long, stretching coastline is home to a range of gorgeous secluded coves and small bays covered in white powder sand, making it the perfect sailing playground. But there is more to sailing in Antigua than just favourable conditions. A buzzing, exciting hub of activity, we share three reasons why sailing in Antigua should be a part of your charter.
Beaches, beaches, beaches
Antigua is the beach haven of the Caribbean as it has 365 beaches, one for each day of the year. The majority of these beaches are surrounded by the tranquil and protected waters of the Caribbean coast, making them perfect for exploring while sailing.
Some of the most famous beaches to visit include Half Moon Bay, located on the southeast corner of the island, Dickenson Bay on the northwestern coast, and Rendezvous Bay, found at the island’s southern end. Half Moon Bay’s semi-circle of powder-white soft sand is said to be one of the most beautiful beaches of Antigua and is a national park. Ideal for tanning and engaging in watersports from kayaking to snorkelling, there are a series of relaxed local restaurants to have a bite to eat. Dickinson Bay is more developed as well, offering a wide variety of watersports and activities. Rendezvous Bay is home to pale golden sands surrounded by rolling hills. Located in an environmental preservation area, enjoy walking along the shoreline or hiking in the hills. The series of crescent beaches at Hawksbill are rated highly. Hawksbill Beach features the only resort with three of its own private beaches for those looking to relax in seclusion but still have access to all the amenities.
Cemented by the rich cultural heritage, Antigua and her sister island of Barbuda have deep maritime roots that go back to the 1700s. Nelson’s Dockyard National Park, a marina and historical site in English Harbour, is a listed UNESCO World Heritage Site which also contains Clarence House and Shirley Heights.
After England acquired Antigua and Barbuda in 1632, English Harbour became a focal point for the establishment of a naval base. Naturally well-suited to protect ships and cargo from hurricanes, by 1732, English Harbour was in regular use by British naval ships as it was a safe point. Construction of the dockyard began in the 1740s, and it was used by the British Royal Navy until 1889 when it was abandoned. Restoration of the dockyard started in 1951, and it was opened to the public a decade later.
English Harbour is home to all the island’s sailing and yachting events, including Antigua Sailing Week and Antigua Charter Yacht Meeting.
Antigua Sailing Week
Welcoming sailors from all over the world, Antigua Sailing Week is a premier sailing regatta that takes place off the coast of English Harbour. One of the island’s most notable annual events, it takes place at the end of April and the beginning of May. Founded in 1967, it is one of the top regattas in the world, with over 100 yachts participating, 1,500 participants and over 5,000 spectators gathering to watch. Encompassing five main races, several events and parties take place throughout the week, which makes Antigua Sailing Week a must-attend event for all sailing enthusiasts.