Antigua and Barbuda Visitor Information: Everything You Need to Know

by Ray Roman | Last updated on January 15, 2024

Antigua and Barbuda is a beautiful twin-island nation located in the Caribbean. The country is a popular destination for tourists from all over the world, thanks to its stunning beaches, crystal-clear waters, and vibrant culture.

Whether you’re looking for a relaxing getaway or an action-packed adventure, Antigua and Barbuda has something for everyone.

Antigua and Barbados Visitor Information
Antigua and Barbados Visitor Information

If you’re planning a trip to Antigua and Barbuda, there are a few things you should know before you go. First and foremost, you’ll need a valid passport to enter the country.

Additionally, you may need to obtain a visa depending on your country of origin. Once you arrive, you’ll find that getting around is easy thanks to a variety of transportation options, including taxis, buses, and rental cars.

Overall, Antigua and Barbuda is a must-visit destination for anyone looking for a tropical paradise. From its beautiful beaches and crystal-clear waters to its vibrant culture and delicious cuisine, there’s something here for everyone to enjoy.

Key Takeaways

  • Antigua and Barbuda is a popular destination for tourists thanks to its stunning beaches, crystal-clear waters, and vibrant culture.
  • Visitors to Antigua and Barbuda will need a valid passport and may need to obtain a visa depending on their country of origin.
  • Getting around Antigua and Barbuda is easy thanks to a variety of transportation options, including taxis, buses, and rental cars.

Entry Requirements

If you are planning to visit Antigua and Barbuda, you must be aware of the entry requirements to avoid any hassles during your travel. This section provides you with the necessary information regarding the visa policy, customs, and declaration requirements.

Visa Policy

Antigua and Barbuda have a visa-free policy for citizens of many countries, including the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. If you are a citizen of one of these countries, you do not need a visa to enter Antigua and Barbuda for tourism or business purposes, provided that your stay does not exceed 90 days.

However, if you are a citizen of a country that requires a visa to enter Antigua and Barbuda, you must obtain a visa before your travel. You can apply for a visa at the nearest Antigua and Barbuda embassy or consulate in your country.

Customs and Declaration

When you arrive in Antigua and Barbuda, you must go through customs and declare any goods that you are bringing into the country. The following items are prohibited from entering Antigua and Barbuda:

  • Illegal drugs
  • Firearms and ammunition
  • Explosives and fireworks
  • Pornographic material

You are allowed to bring in personal items such as clothing, cameras, and electronic devices duty-free. However, if you are carrying goods that exceed the duty-free allowance, you must declare them and pay the applicable duty.

It is important to note that Antigua and Barbuda has strict laws regarding the import and export of certain items, such as plants, animals, and artifacts.

If you are unsure about whether an item can be brought into or taken out of the country, it is best to check with the Antigua and Barbuda Customs and Excise Division before your travel.

By following the visa policy and customs and declaration requirements, you can ensure a smooth entry into Antigua and Barbuda and enjoy your stay in this beautiful country.

Transportation and Getting Around

When you visit Antigua and Barbuda, you’ll find that getting around the islands is relatively easy and convenient. Here are some options for transportation that you can consider:

Airport Facilities

The V.C. Bird International Airport is the main airport in Antigua and Barbuda. It is located on the northeast coast of Antigua, just a few miles from the capital city of St. John’s. The airport has a range of facilities and services to make your travel experience comfortable and stress-free. These include:

  • Duty-free shopping
  • Restaurants and cafes
  • Car rental agencies
  • Currency exchange
  • ATMs and banking services
  • Free Wi-Fi

Public Transportation

If you want to get around the islands on a budget, public transportation is a good option. Buses are available on both Antigua and Barbuda, but they are not always reliable and can be crowded. Taxis are also available, but they can be expensive.

You can find taxi stands at popular tourist spots and at the airport. Some taxi companies also offer island tours.

Car Rentals

Renting a car is a great way to explore Antigua and Barbuda at your own pace. There are several car rental agencies located at the airport and in major towns.

Most agencies require that you have a valid driver’s license and be at least 25 years old. You can expect to pay around $50-$70 per day for a small car, and around $100-$150 for a larger vehicle. Keep in mind that driving is on the left side of the road in Antigua and Barbuda, so be sure to take extra care when driving.

Overall, Antigua and Barbuda offer a range of transportation options that can suit any budget or preference.

Whether you choose to take a bus, a taxi, or rent a car, you’ll be able to explore the islands and enjoy all they have to offer.

Accommodations

When visiting Antigua and Barbuda, finding the right accommodations can make all the difference in your trip. Here are some options to consider for your stay:

Hotels and Resorts

Antigua and Barbuda have a wide variety of hotels and resorts to choose from, ranging from affordable to luxurious. Many of these accommodations are located on the beach, offering stunning views and easy access to the water. Some popular options include Carlisle Bay, Curtain Bluff, and Hermitage Bay.

These resorts offer amenities such as swimming pools, spas, and restaurants, as well as activities like water sports and excursions.

Budget Stays

For travelers on a budget, there are also plenty of options available. Guest houses and bed and breakfasts can be found throughout Antigua and Barbuda, offering affordable and comfortable accommodations. Some popular budget stays include The Lodge at Valley Church, The Catamaran Hotel, and The Ocean Inn.

Luxury Accommodations

If you’re looking for a truly luxurious experience, Antigua and Barbuda have plenty of options to choose from. Private villas and estates can be rented for the ultimate in privacy and relaxation.

Some popular luxury accommodations include the Jumby Bay Island Resort, the Blue Waters Resort and Spa, and the Sugar Ridge Resort. These accommodations offer amenities such as private pools, personal chefs, and stunning views of the Caribbean Sea.

No matter what your budget or preferences, Antigua and Barbuda have accommodations to suit any traveler.

Attractions and Activities

Antigua and Barbuda are known for their stunning beaches, cultural sites, and outdoor adventures. Here are some of the top attractions and activities to enjoy during your visit.

Beaches

Antigua and Barbuda are home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the Caribbean. With 365 beaches to choose from, you’re sure to find one that suits your style. Some of the most popular beaches include:

  • Dickenson Bay Beach: This long, white sand beach is perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and water sports. It’s also home to some of the island’s best beach bars and restaurants.

  • Half Moon Bay: This secluded beach is ideal for a peaceful day of swimming and sunbathing. It’s surrounded by cliffs and palm trees, making it a picturesque spot for a picnic.

  • Jolly Beach: This lively beach is a popular spot for families and water sports enthusiasts. It’s home to a variety of beach bars, restaurants, and water sports rental shops.

Cultural Sites

Antigua and Barbuda have a rich history and culture that is reflected in their many cultural sites. Some of the top cultural sites to visit include:

  • Nelson’s Dockyard: This historic site was once a British naval base and is now a popular tourist attraction. It’s home to a variety of shops, restaurants, and museums, as well as some of the island’s most beautiful views.
  • Betty’s Hope: This restored sugar plantation offers a glimpse into Antigua’s colonial past. Visitors can explore the ruins of the plantation and learn about the history of sugar production on the island.
  • St. John’s Cathedral: This historic cathedral is one of the oldest buildings in Antigua and is a must-see for history buffs. It features beautiful architecture and a rich history dating back to the 17th century.

Outdoor Adventures

If you’re looking for adventure, Antigua and Barbuda have plenty of outdoor activities to choose from. Some of the top outdoor adventures include:

  • Snorkeling and Diving: Antigua and Barbuda are home to some of the best snorkeling and diving spots in the Caribbean. Visitors can explore coral reefs, shipwrecks, and a variety of marine life.
  • Hiking and Biking: The islands offer a variety of hiking and biking trails that allow visitors to explore the natural beauty of the islands. Some of the most popular trails include the Fig Tree Drive and the Antigua Rainforest Canopy Tour.
  • Fishing: Antigua and Barbuda are home to some of the best fishing spots in the Caribbean. Visitors can go deep-sea fishing for marlin, sailfish, and tuna, or try their luck at fly fishing for bonefish and tarpon in the island’s mangrove-lined lagoons.

Dining and Cuisine

When visiting Antigua and Barbuda, you’ll find a variety of dining options to suit your taste buds and budget. From local dishes to fine dining and street food, there is something for everyone.

Local Dishes

Antigua and Barbuda are known for their traditional dishes that reflect the island’s history and culture. Some of the must-try local dishes include Fungee, a dish of boiled yellow cornmeal and okra, similar to polenta, that accompanies a number of soups, stews, and meats.

It is commonly served with stewed saltfish, stewed red herring, or shad coated in cornmeal and fried. Another popular dish is Pepperpot, a thick stew made with meat, vegetables, and spices.

Fine Dining

If you’re looking for a more upscale dining experience, Antigua and Barbuda offer a range of fine dining options. You can enjoy a romantic dinner at one of the island’s many waterfront restaurants or indulge in a gourmet meal at a world-class restaurant.

Some of the most popular fine dining options include Sheer Rocks, a cliffside restaurant with stunning views of the Caribbean Sea, and The Cove Restaurant, which offers a fusion of Caribbean and Mediterranean cuisine.

Street Food

For a more casual dining experience, try the street food in Antigua and Barbuda. You can find a variety of food trucks and stalls selling local specialties such as jerk chicken, fried fish, and conch fritters.

The most popular street food spot is the Antigua Public Market, where you can find everything from fresh produce to local snacks.

Whether you’re looking for a taste of local cuisine or a fine dining experience, Antigua and Barbuda have plenty of options to choose from. Be sure to try some of the local dishes and street food for a truly authentic experience.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the entry requirements for U.S. citizens traveling to Antigua?

If you are a U.S. citizen traveling to Antigua and Barbuda, you will need a valid passport and a return ticket. No visa is required for stays up to 90 days. However, if you plan to stay longer, you will need to apply for an extension. It is recommended to check the latest entry requirements with the Antigua and Barbuda embassy or consulate before you travel.

Do travelers from the UK need any specific documentation to visit Antigua?

If you are a UK citizen traveling to Antigua and Barbuda, you will need a valid passport and a return ticket. No visa is required for stays up to 6 months. However, if you plan to stay longer, you will need to apply for an extension. It is recommended to check the latest entry requirements with the Antigua and Barbuda embassy or consulate before you travel.

What are the current COVID-19 entry protocols for Antigua and Barbuda?

As of December 2023, all travelers to Antigua and Barbuda must have a negative COVID-19 PCR test result taken within 72 hours before arrival. Unvaccinated travelers must also quarantine for 14 days upon arrival.

Vaccinated travelers are not required to quarantine but are subject to health screenings and additional testing if necessary. It is recommended to check the latest COVID-19 entry protocols with the Antigua and Barbuda embassy or consulate before you travel.

What activities are recommended for tourists in Antigua?

Antigua and Barbuda offer a range of activities for tourists, including water sports, hiking, sightseeing, and cultural experiences.

Some popular activities include visiting the historic Nelson’s Dockyard, exploring the rainforest, relaxing on the beaches, and enjoying local cuisine. It is recommended to research and plan your activities in advance to make the most of your trip.

What is the local currency used in Antigua and Barbuda, and are there currency exchange facilities readily available?

The local currency in Antigua and Barbuda is the Eastern Caribbean dollar (XCD). However, U.S. dollars are widely accepted, and many establishments also accept major credit cards. There are currency exchange facilities available at the airport and in major tourist areas, but it is recommended to exchange currency in advance for the best rates.

What are the peak and off-peak seasons for visiting Antigua to avoid overcrowding?

The peak season for Antigua and Barbuda is from December to April, when the weather is dry and sunny. This is also when the island is most crowded and prices are highest.

The off-peak season is from May to November, when the weather is more humid and rainy. This is when the island is less crowded, and prices are lower. It is recommended to visit during the off-peak season to avoid overcrowding and enjoy lower prices.