Tourist Attractions in Antigua and Barbuda
Antigua and Barbuda are two quite different neighboring islands. The main island, in terms of population, development, size, and tourism, is Antigua, while Barbuda is a quieter destination that attracts nature lovers and those looking for a slower pace.
Most visitors find themselves on Antigua, which proudly proclaims it has "a beach for everyday of the year". The beautiful beaches are the main draw for tourists but there is also much more to see.The capital city is St John's, a cruise ship port of call with tourist amenitites and several interesting sights. Redcliffe Quay is a refurbished area of the city with nice shops and some good restaurants. One of the main sites is the St John's Cathedral, built originally in 1683, rebuilt in 1745 and again in 1847 following a devastating earthquake. Also worth visiting are the Botanical Gardens, offering a pleasant retreat and a look at native flora, and Fort James, built by the British in 1739.
Nelson's Dockyard National Park near English Harbour is one of the islands biggest tourist attractions. This Georgian Shipyard features beautifully restored historic buildings and is a functioning marina with surrounding restaurants, hotels, and shops. It is also home to the 18th C Clarence House and the ruins of Fort Shirley on Shirley Heights. In the far north of Antigua is Dickenson Bay is one of the most popular tourist destinations on Antigua, with a long stretch of white sand beach, resorts, and restaurants. At the southeastern end of the island are the tranquil Half Moon Beach and the dramatic scenery of Indian Town National Park, with a natural bridge known as Devil's Bridge. Along the southwestern coast is the resort area of Carlisle Bay, as well Cades Bay and some small settlements.
Barbuda offers travelers something completely different from Antigua. The island is known particularly for bird watching and coral reefs, but also has beautiful calm beaches. The Bird Sanctuary, home to 170 species of bird, is one of the island's main attractions. It lies in the lagoon and can be reached by boat. Also located along the shore of the lagoon is Codrington, the main population center on the island. Other key sights around the island are Codrington House in the Highland Hills, the ruins of the 19th C Martello Tower, and the Darby Sink Cave.