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2-N-TOW

Antigua

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Highly recommend Pacific Marlin Charters. These guys make the effort to catch fish, not just run around and burn time. Ran an eight rod spread most of the time, unless the captain had sneaks another line in on the shotgun. Both the captain and the mate constantly kept an eye on the baits (either naked ballyho or ballyho with an Islander), and were not hesitant to switch out for a fresh bait.

 

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Website is....

 

http://antiguagamefishing.com/index.htm

 

Runs out of Jolly Harbour, so most fishing will be on the southwest side of the island. Normally this will put you on the leeward side of the island, so water should be relatively calm. Reels were Penn 114's and International 50's, both bent butt and stand-up. Boat provides drinks, but you need to bring your own lunch and snacks.

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Another fun thing to do, especially if you have kids, is the Antigua Rain Forest Canopy Tour. We did both the zip line and challenge course. Zip lines are a blast, and definitely a different experience. The challenge course is a series of rope bridges in different configurations that requires you to have a sense of balance while crossing between trees. This is one of the few first-rate operations on the island, where the main building is very clean and well kept, the workers are very friendly with both adults and kids, and they actually seemed to enjoy their jobs!

 

Web site for them is www.antiguarainforest.com.

 

Sting Ray City....do not waste your time with this if you have experienced the one on Grand Cayman. We wasted $200 on this. They take you out to a site about 5 miles from the dock. Guides had some buckets of squid to feed to the stingrays, but each of us only got to feed on squid. Yes...$50 to feed one squid. After that, the rays took off to parts unknown and we were left to entertain ourselves snorkeling on the surrounding reefs for another 1 1/2 hours. After 45 minutes, we had enough and asked to return to the dock. Big disappointment.

 

We stayed at Dickenson Bay Cottages. It is about a 5 minute walk to the beach. We thought this would be a problem at first, but the layout of the cottages made up for this little inconvenience. The grounds were very well maintained, the cottages were very nice, and you have access to the gas grill next to the pool. Our room had an upstairs loft with a double bed, full bath, closet and little desk. Downstairs consisted of a small kitchen with 4 burner stove and oven, under counter refrigerator, eating area, single bed and nice sofa that can be used for a bed, too. WiFi is available for $20/week, but is is VERY SLOW!

 

Driving on the island....better forget everything you remember from driving in the States. They drive on the left side, cars are set up with steering on the right side. Everything is backwards! Best recommendation is to follow another car for a while until you are comfortable driving that way. Don't waste your time getting a 4 wheel drive car, it is not needed unless you think it is necessary in order to navigate the potholes on some of the backroads. Oh, and speaking of roads, most of them are the equivalent of 1 1/2 lanes that we are accustomed to. You learn real quick to keep one side close to the edge!

 

Maps are a joke making navigation a challenge. Do not be afraid to ask directions as most of the locals are very friendly and will assist you if they can. You will get lost; it is inevitable!

 

Eating on Antigua can be a challenge. You will see restaurant signs on the road, but trying to find them is like looking for a needle in a haystack. Here are the ones we ate at, all in Dickenson Harbor:

 

Opus....Italian food. Pizzas are excellent and you can eat here at a very reasonable price.

Millers...Located about 1/2 mile past Sandals Resort. Seafood is their specialty and it has a very good flavor. Nice view of the water.

The Beach...another nice restaurant near Sandals. Fresh mahi was excellent. Highly recommend the bread pudding covered in homemade rum sauce.

Coconut Grove...Lobster, seafood, pasta. Just past Sandals on the beach. Seems to get a lot of the older people from Sandals for happy hour.

 

Beaches....two best beaches are Long Bay and Half Moon. I would call Long Bay a "full service" beach. There are lounges to rent, kayak rental, a number of small shops, nice restaurant on the north end of the beach or a number of eating places to the south at the resort (all in walking distance). Snorkeling is very good here, especially if you venture out past the end of the reef. Lots of cut-throughs in the reef. Half Moon Bay is a lot more desolate, and a real challenge to find. It is fairly well protected from the ocean swells, and there is good snorkeling towards the point to the east. Bring your own food, drinks, and chairs, as there are no facilities at this beach.

 

If you try to find Devil's Bridge, good luck. It is not well marked, but here is how to get there. On the road to Long Bay, you will pass the Veranda Resort about a mile from Long Bay. Stop, turn around, and go back up the road until you see a sign saying Veranda Resort Service Entrance on the left side. This is a dirt road. Turn onto it and proceed past the resort until you get to the end, where Devil's Bridge is located.

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Wow!!!

What a fun vacation. Your kid's are spoiled for life now.

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Wow!!!

What a fun vacation. Your kid's are spoiled for life now.

 

Yes..........and scared for life after being taken to a nude seniors beach. :o:(:lol:

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