“ Antigua / Carribean „
The Antigua canopy tour is relatively new to Antigua but not a new concept to the Caribbean. Whilst on a work trip to Jamaica a while back now we were lucky enough to experience the canopy tour there although it was different and in my opinion you get more for your money on the one in Antigua! Now if I hadn't of experienced it before I would have found out the prices for this and then not bothered but knowing what it involved made it justifiable to pay out for.
So what exactly is it?
Well the 'tour' is actually a load of zip wires - think krypton factor on the last part of the assault! However unlike them where they went to the ground, these wires zip right across the canopy of the trees, hence it being called the canopy tour!
The tour includes 8 wires that go horizontally across the rainforest - the longest is about 300 metres and 1 line at the end nick named the 'leap of faith' as it vertically drops! However it can be adjusted so it lowers you down slowly but, at 36 feet, although not the highest it will get a lot of people worried!!
Once you have done all the zips the next part is the rope challenge element which is another assault course if you want to call it that (and believe me its difficult!!). This is made up of varying ropes and thin wires that cross the gorge although not as high up as the zip wires. They look rather easy at first but soon enough you are exhausted! If you have only paid for the part tour there is a tree house which is where the last zip ends at and where the challenge starts and you can climb down the ladder from this onto canopy floor and take the more leisurely route back to base!
At the end of the tour and challenge there is quite a lot of steps to climb back to base and these are actually quite tiring too! However a cool drink is handed out at the end.
During the whole thing, there is normally a photographer taking pictures of which you can buy at the end but I'm not sure how much these are as on the day we went the photographer wasn't there! Typical!! Things like bandanna's and t-shirts can be bought from the gift shop too with the slogan of the place on.There is also a small bar in the cabin at the top where you can buy a few drinks and also a small children's play area and few seats.
We booked our trip through the rep in our hotel and all we had to do was to pay the deposit of $20 each and then the rest is paid to the tour directly when you arrive. The transport to it isn't included in the cost and we paid $50 for a return taxi. Overall the whole trip cost us $220.
The cost of the full tour is $85 per adult and this works out to about 2 and half hours worth including getting harnessed up and being shown the basics. You can do the part tour which is $70 which is just for the zip wires but, the $85 is to also do the rope challenge too and the reason it's not that much cheaper is that the first part is the main bulk of it and this is what you are paying for.
Overall this trip is an excellent way to do something different and is great fun. It is expensive in one sense but for the experience of it I would say it's worth it. I can honestly say though, that even though the challenge part is difficult it is still fun and if you're going to pay out $70 dollars you may as well pay the extra $15 dollars and do the whole thing. As regards to safety you need not worry as before anybody sets off they give a talk on how to use the zips and it shows you exactly how little you really need to do except for just being there really! There is quite a lot of staff involved in the process of getting you from one zip to the next and on each wire there is a member of staff at the beginning and end and even on some zips further along as that way they can keep a flow of people going along the zips. You really don't need to do much as they tell you when to go and they clip and unclip your harness for you. I had such a great day out and even though it very tiring I can honestly say that it was a brilliant thing for us to have done rather than just sticking to the usual boat trip! It is a good way to see other side to beautiful island of Antigua and I would highly recommend it for those who are able to do.
Take a unique eco tour high above the trees using zip lines and suspension bridges.