“ Country: Antigua / World Region: Caribbean „
My boyfriend and I went to Antigua in November last year (2007) for his 30th birthday. We stayed at Dickinson Bay resort at the Halcyon cove by rex resorts. The room was lovely and clean with king size bed and clean bathroom. The view from the balcony was amazing, especially first thing in the morning When there is no one around and you can see the sun rise!
We were located at the end stretch of Dickinson bay. This meant we had no other people passing through. The beach was about 400m away from our room. So a minutes walk and your there, in a secluded private beach with few people and plenty of sun loungers. The sea was a calm turquoise colour with soft white sandy beach that we'd never experienced before.
I would most certainly recommend you go all inclusive, we had made the mistake of going room only. This had cost us a lot more then we anticipated. We only had buffet breakfast at the hotel a few times and this cost us £10 each every time. The first night we had got there late evening and decided to eat at one of the hotel restaurants. This meal for two cost us £60. We then realised we had to be more selective of where we would eat as we were there for two weeks.
As my boyfriend is a fan of scooters, we can't go on any holiday without hiring one. We hired the scooter from the hotel reception, they were very helpful and friendly. The Scooter cost us around £130 for 13days; I think the company was called sun and sea adventure. It was great having that freedom to drive off from the resort to see the whole place. The island is very small and we just about saw the whole Island within our two week holiday.
St Johns is the capital and it's about 10 minutes drive to get to the city centre where the super market is.
The supermarket stock all types of food and drinks are cheaper.
Most people were helpful and cheerful although we did come across an old man outside the supermarket, who decided to tell us all about the British and Antiguan history. He was harmless but went on for far too long!
Although it's the capital it's not very big and the traffic is nothing compared to rush hour traffic in the UK
Most of the cash machines are in St Johns. They are easy to access. The city does get a lot busier if the cruise ships have docked, so beware as parking can be a pain to find.
We drove to various different beaches working our way round the Island. Most of the beaches are the typical Caribbean style beaches with soft white sands and clear turquoise sea. They were all gorgeous but my favourite two were long bay beach, this has its own coral reef, just a few feet away from the beach. We hired snorkels and went snorkelling. There are some interesting fishes down there, mostly small groups of them swimming about.
For lunch we went to a shack near by, this was probably the cheapest meal we had about £10 for two. It was whole grilled fish (sorry can't remember what fish) on a bed of rice. Lovely! While we were there we did get a guy offering us marijuana. We kindly declined and he left.
My other favourite beach was the nest beach, this we came across accidently while driving. We suddenly saw a glimpse of gorgeous turquoise sea, we had to stop and take a look. Their was no one there, just us on this beautiful beach with the sun shining on us. It would have been rude not to go in to that turquoise water that was calling us. Pure paradise!
Most of the bars at Dickinson bay stay open till about 11pm. After that you can go to the Beach bar, which is a restaurant but turns into a late bar. They do various types of dishes their, from pizzas to sushi. I would recommend the sushi. They will also make you up your own personal cocktails...just ask! The staffs are helpful and happy to help.
And finally getting onto boyfriends 30th, we went to a live jazz night at James bar. This truly was a lovely evening, we had a few drinks on the balcony while watching the sunset and then we had lobster dinner with conch fish for starters. (conch is Antiguans local fish dish) and lots of drinks to finish off the evening. With beautiful live jazz music in the background.
The next day we took one of the boat trips from Dickinson bay that took us out to cadiz reef to go snorkelling. This was with on the Wadadli cats catamaran. It cost around £40 each, this included food and soft/alcoholic drinks (plenty of rum punch) and snorkelling equipment. They also stopped off at a secluded beach, while we sunbathed the staff brought drinks round. Bless!
Overall it was a fantastic holiday; I would recommend it if your looking for breath taking views and relaxation. Hiring a car would be recommended if a scooter seems intimidating. Also bear in mind that you can pay with American dollars over there as they prefer it and most prices are quoted in American dollars as well as Caribbean dollars.
I have, at some point in my life, namely summer 2007, have stayed in the Jolly Harbour Resort, situated on the west coast of the beautiful, pictoresque, and frankly wonderful Carribean island of Antigua. I, personally, felt that this resort offered all that a stereotypical British tourist would want - a Chinese and a pool. However, in the opinion of me, I felt that the white sandy beach was a much better alternative to the pool. The beach, which I found to be white and sandy, as previously mentioned, was of such a high standard, that I even saw a marriage ceremony taking place. One thing that must be said, however, is that in a one hour spell on a certain part of said beach I was offered marijuana twice, but in a pleasant and certainly not threatening way. All in all, a very nice place to stay, especially for Brits.
I went to Antigua in July last year as part of a cricket touring party and stayed at the Jolly beach resort, where self catering houses were on offer. As i understood it they were part of a large development that people had bought and then were able to rent to holiday makers. I really enjoyed my stay at this resort. It was like a self contained island which i felt took away some of the personality of the island but was clearly aimed at travellers. The resort contained a number of places to eat including a tandoori would you believe, ran by a man from Nottingham which is very near to my home! Also at the resort was a casino, supermarket and its own beach. From what i gathered renting was around $50 a night at the time which was fantastic value considering what was on offer. A really nice place to stay and not expensive either.