Exploring Antigua

Mon 2 Apr 2018 20:46
17.0.27N 61.45.40W
We have spent the last two weeks in Antigua.

The first couple of days we spent anchored off Freeman Bay at the entrance to English Harbour whilst we explored the area and the marinas. Martin went ashore to complete customs and was back quickly - first time in the Caribbean customs wanted details of radio licence call sign and mmsi number so we have now added those details to our boat papers pack.

We swapped photos with the guys from Brag who we sailed up from Guadeloupe with, and returned the favour and invited them over for a few G&Ts. They took the photo of Tikka with the code zero up from the last post.

From there we the nipped round the corner to Falmouth Harbour and booked into Catamaran Marina for two days - lovely marina but very rocky with tides slapping the boat under the pontoon all night so little sleep. Tikka got cleaned, decks and hull scrubbed and shiny again, so after a hard kkdays work we treated ourselves to dinner at the Italian restaurant ashore.

We then found out the autohelm was fixed and was starting its journey to Antigua so we had a few days to explore the island before we needed to be back in English Harbour to get it refitted.

First we had a night in Deep Bay - beautiful and quiet beach (the nearby hotel was closed for refurbishment)

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There is a wreck in the mouth of the bay and we took the dinghy over to snorkel but the visibility was really poor so we just relaxed on Tikka and enjoyed the surroundings. Suddenly the peace was broken by loud music and the buzz of hundreds of voices -we looked up and saw what appeared to be a hotel in the gap of the headland of the bay (actually just a massive cruise ship).

The following day was a quick sail down the coast to Jolly Harbour - fairly quiet place but it did have the advantage of a big supermarket close to the dinghy dock so we could replenish supplies...

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Tikka was then booked into the historic Nelsons Dockyard back at English Harbour for a few days. A stunning place with a number of bars and restaurants that we had to check out in the name of research ahead of the Browns visit later this month. One of our favourites was Boom built from the old gunpowder stores. Beautiful location high up overlooking the Dockyard with an infinity pool, sunloungers, cocktails and good food

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Autohelm installed (along with a new solar light next to the bbq - previous one took a dive into the marina), we spent the Easter Weekend sailing right around Antigua (anti-clockwise).

We stayed two nights in Nonsuch Bay just north of Green Island, anchored just off the reef and spent time snorkelling and watching the kite surfers. We did go looking for Harmony Hall but it was all closed down which was a shame. There was a beautiful full moon

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Around the top of Antigua giving the reefs a wide berth and we spent last night in Dickenson Bay. We had our first holiday together in this bay at the Halcyon Cove hotel on the beach so it was bizarre coming back with Tikka, but we went ashore and found coconut grove - a great bar on the beach we visited last time. Perfect for watching the sunset

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We are now back in English Harbour to pick up our cockpit table which has been varnished and are hoping to visit Barbuda next.

Martin & Loz