Sailing the Best Beaches in Antigua

24th Apr 2018

If you’re thinking of a Caribbean getaway this year, make sure you’ve considered Antigua for some beautiful coastal sailing. Dotted with 365 idyllic beaches, you’ll never be far from an alluring stop off with soft sands, clear waters and coves to explore. We’ve selected our favorite Antigua beaches to help you plan an itinerary…

Pinching Bay

Close to Five Islands Harbour, near St. John’s, this beach is only accessible by boat. If you dislike crowds and tourist attractions, then you’ll love Pinching Bay. A rare undeveloped beach, it’s one of only a few places where you can truly snorkel in peace and quiet.

Make sure you pack a picnic, as there aren’t any restaurants or cafes on Pinching Bay.

So sit back and relax on one of the best beaches in Antigua, where you’ll get to enjoy soft sands, tranquil seas, and untouched beauty.

Half Moon Bay

Antigua is famed for its pink sand and this beach has it in abundance. Half Moon Bay is quieter than most other Antigua beaches, and is known for good swimming and windsurfing.

Located on the South-East of Antigua, it’s tucked away from the bustling St. John’s, but still easy to reach by charter.

There’s so much to discover on Half Moon Bay, whether it’s the 132 acres of breathtaking ocean views, or the neighboring national park. If you’re feeling active, follow one of the hiking trails to view possibly one of the best views in the world: azure ocean on one side, and lush, rolling hills on the other. Another tip? Don’t forget to try the lobster at the Beach Bum Bar!

To extend your trip, sail to the nearby Green Island, where you’ll experience true uninhabited bliss. Perfect for snorkeling, you’ll see turtles and rainbow fish; and you can also buy lobsters and coconuts from the locals, so you can prepare your own BBQ feast. 

Ffryes Bay

There’s no denying Ffryes Bay is one of the best beaches in Antigua, often described as the stereotypical Caribbean paradise. However, in order to get a good spot early, make sure you claim a space before the cruise crowd gets dropped off. 

Located 1.5 miles from our Jolly Harbour base, enjoy a tasty BBQ lunch, spot hummingbirds in the trees and, if you are feeling energetic, kayak down the coast to Darkwood beach and enjoy the sunset. In fact, Darkwood is also a great place to visit, with fantastic snorkeling and a small restaurant serving lobster and burgers.

Deep Bay

If it’s calm waters and soft sand you’re after, then look no further than Deep Bay. Located in Five Islands, while Deep Bay isn’t as secluded as the likes of Pinching Bay and Half Moon Bay, it’s still a lot quieter than the more popular beaches in Antigua. 

One of the best Antigua beaches, there is something for everyone here; whether it’s snorkeling, swimming or sunbathing.

If you choose to snorkel, then don’t miss the famous 100-year old shipwreck in the bay. There are several hiking trails nearby too – walk up to the tip of the cape to see the sunset over the ocean. If you want to explore further, then head to Fort Barrington, which was built in 1780.

Carlisle Bay

With soft white sand bordered by swaying palm trees to one side, and turquoise ocean to the other; Carlisle Bay is a total suntrap – ideal for those who are looking to top up their tans!

In fact, there’s no better place to relax and unwind, as you’ll get to enjoy a truly beautiful backdrop of rainforest and mountains. 

The reefs and rocks make it a popular place for exploring, and if you bring your kayak, you can gently paddle and explore the mangroves.

Located on the South-West coast, Carlisle Bay is one of the best beaches in Antigua, making it a much-deserved stop on your yacht charter vacation.


It would take a whole year to discover each and every one of Antigua’s beaches; and while every single one is beautiful, these are our five favorites.

Have we inspired you to embark on an Antigua sailing vacation? Take a look at our bareboat fleet, or get in touch if you have any questions. Alternatively, for more destination and sailing inspiration, head on over to our blog.