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Sailing area: Antigua and barbuda

 

The Commonwealth's small protectorates



Located in the Lesser Antilles, to the north of Guadeloupe, the islands of Antigua and Barbuda and the inhabited islet of Redonda form a unique and highly diverse natural environment. Well-known to British sailors, these jewels of the Caribbean have nothing to envy their surrounding islands Peace and quiet in a magnificent natural setting, with white sand beaches stretching as far as the eye can see, crystal-clear waters and small coves, this little archipelago of the Commonwealth welcomes you with open arms.
 

Rent a boat in Antigua



Antigua is a volcanic island, it is also the largest and most populous of the two main islands that form the archipelago. The population who are descendents of the Siboney, Arawaks and Caribs, currently constitutes the large majority of inhabitants. The population is mostly concentrated in the island's capital, Saint John's, which has preserved its traditional buildings and remains from the colonial era.
Located in the path of the trade winds, Antigua is one of the best places in the Caribbean for sailing and regattas. The perfect place to rent a boat where you can enjoy big thrills, breathtaking landscapes and exceptional sailing conditions. The Sailing Week Regatta in Antigua is one of the most important water sports events and is famous for its world-class level races and for its fantastic party atmosphere. It is held every year between the end of April and the start of May. The best time for sailing in the archipelago is between December and May.
English Harbour is a naturally sheltered port which also boasts a rich historical past. Located within a sheltered bay, it is surrounded by lush forests and sheer cliffs. In the 18th century, the English fleet in the Caribbean made it its home port. With its two fortresses which frame the entrance to the main port, the town became a very important naval base. In the surrounding hills, you can visit ruined forts, gun batteries and ancient cemeteries. This authentic site is very well-preserved and bears witness to the long military occupation here.
The departure base for renting boats in Antigua is located at Nelson's Dockyard, in the town of English Harbour. Built by Admiral Nelson, this base is one of the island's best-known sites.
Renting a sailing boat or catamaran with or without a crew from English Harbour guarantees the perfect combination of culture, charm and pleasure, thanks to the island's history and magnificent landscapes. For mooring, if you are unable to find room at English Harbour, nearby, to the west, you will find the vast bay of Falmouth Harbour, where you can drop anchor in complete peace of mind.
Do not hesitate to set out to visit the island of Antigua, some magnificent spots can be found there. Green Island to the south-west and its bird reserve, right next to Rickett Bay, where you will find a magnificent protected beach. Not far from there, Bird Island will amaze you. You will be able to enjoy some incredible snorkelling or fish in a dream setting.


Sail as far as the waters of Barbuda



Head northwards, 30 miles away is Barbuda! The coral island has untouched wild vegetation, diverse wildlife and a fantastic bird sanctuary. The coral reefs are home to many species of fish and shellfish. There are not many moorings on this island mostly due to its reefs and its coasts which offer little shelter for boats. However, you will be able to drop anchor at one of the mooring places available. Do not forget to stop at Coco Point for a few dives. You will not forget the experience.
Between Barbuda and Antigua, sailing is easy provided that you do not get too close to the coral reef on the east coast of Antigua. To the east of the Guadeloupe-Saint-Marin axis, the Antigua to Barbuda route is much less busy and is a great joy for sailors who choose it. Beware of the weather conditions, the winds and the sea can change suddenly in this area.
Although the archipelago has 356 beaches with crystal-clear waters and white sand where you can lie in the shade of the coconut trees, Antigua and Barbuda has its own culture, history, gastronomy and festive atmosphere that is shared by its 70,000 inhabitants.
Enjoy a real holiday. A bird sanctuary, in-land excursions on quad bikes, kitesurfing or diving a shipwreck site, a visit to the naval base of admiral Nelson at English Harbour, or "jump up" parties with the locals - there are many great activities here that will throw you into the local spirit!
Wait no more to rent your boat, we can offer several ranges of boats, from catamarans to luxury yachts, with or without a skipper for half-board or full-board cruises. Please do not hesitate to contact us, we will be happy to help you.


Worth knowing/Advice

  • Offshore navigation under regular trade winds.
  • Visual navigation from one bay to another.
  • Breath-taking beaches.
  • Sailing and mooring are possible on the west coast of Barbuda to discover its magnificent snorkelling spots and bird life.

The ports in this sailing area

Antigua ...


Formalities

  • Sailing licence
  • VHF Certificate (Restricted Radiotelephone Operator's Certificate)
  • Sailing resume

When to travel?

The best period to visit the West Indies is between December and the end of May. The month of May, which is more relaxed, offers interesting prices for flights and boat rentals.

Winds

summer
13 knots
(average)
Winter
11 knots
(average)

Temperatures

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun
25° 25° 25° 26° 26° 28°
Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
29° 29° 29° 28° 26° 25°