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  • Writer's pictureJude

Solo in Antigua

Updated: May 7

Solo in Antigua

Visiting Antigua as a solo traveller

Going on a solo holiday to the Caribbean island of Antigua was something I hadn't given much thought to. I had travelled there many times with a partner and with children but never on my own. The islands conjure up images of blue skies, turquoise water and white sandy beaches fringed with palm trees, usually with couples hand in hand on them. Without a doubt it can be a romantic destination to travel to for couples but Antigua is also a great place to visit solo.

Me on Dickenson Bay

After being single for a while I began to question why I should wait to be in a relationship to travel again. So after a moment of sheer bravery, I decided to return to my favourite country alone. It was the best decision I made, life changing in fact and I would recommend solo travel to anyone. Afterwards I felt empowered and ready to take on the world.

Travel to Antigua

Antigua is a friendly, welcoming, English speaking country. Morning flights from London to Antigua are direct with British Airways and take less than 9 hours. The time difference is 4-5 hours behind the UK depending on the month of travel. This usually ensures arrival at your accommodation by 3pm which works well with standard check-in times. Arriving in daylight when travelling alone is preferable too in order to become familiar with the surroundings before dark.

Shirley Heights, Antigua

Short term holiday rentals in Antigua

Holiday rentals are a great alternative to hotels and can sometimes work out more cost effective. Click on the 'Studios for rent in Antigua' link for details of two highly recommended properties for solo travellers. Both are beneath family homes which can be reassuring to know that people are on hand for advice and a little help in the unlikely event that you need it.

Studio at Johnson's Point

A brand new, off grid property with a sweeping verandah overlooking the Caribbean Sea.

Studio accommodation at Johnson's Point Antigua

Studio at Crabbe Hill Village

A rural retreat - pick your own fruit from the grounds for breakfast and spend time on one of Antigua's finest beaches, Crabbe Hill, opposite the property.

How to choose a hotel in Antigua when travelling alone

Consider what you want from your holiday because travelling alone is a different type of break. Do you want to stay within a resort? Do you prefer to go out and explore? Do you like high end properties or those that are a little more basic? Is a beach important to you or do you prefer a pool? Do you like to socialise with others or be alone and self-reflect? I have stayed in a few places now ... here are my experiences to help you with your decision making.

Pool at Siboney Beach Club

Galley Bay, Antigua

I lacked confidence on my first solo trip so played safe staying in a stunning 5* all-inclusive resort, Galley Bay in Northern Antigua. I knew I didn't have to leave the resort unless I especially wanted to and actually I was happy to do very little on this particular holiday. The beach, restaurants, bars and entertainment were all included in the price. I didn't need to think about any additional expenses and carrying money around with me. The accommodation was luxurious, a spacious beachfront suite with a door opening onto powdery white sand and I could hear the waves crash while laying in bed. I spoke to a few people that week but I was the only single person on resort amongst couples and honeymooners.

I soon settled into a routine and enjoyed being alone for the first time ever. My days were filled with swimming, reading and relaxing in the hot sun. 5pm became cocktail o'clock while watching flame coloured sunsets. Evenings were spent sitting at a counter-top bar speaking with staff and I soon realised dining at 6:30 pm or 9pm rather than at peak times, ensured a table by the water's edge. I gazed out to sea embraced by a cool breeze rather than sitting in the middle of the restaurant feeling self-conscious.

Summary for solo travel at Galley Bay

Galley Bay is a stunning hotel and location to unwind, spend time alone and self-reflect. Be prepared to indulge in good food and cocktails and to be pampered at the spa. It's surprising how much you can actually think and see clearly when you are removed from life's clutter for a week. I would definitely come to this resort again but as a couple. It is one of the best places I have stayed but I probably would not return on my own.

The next time I travelled to Antigua by myself I booked a longer stay and split my time between several different places ...

Admiral's Inn, English Harbour, Antigua

Admiral's Inn is located within the grounds of historic Nelson's Dockyard overlooking the harbour on Antigua's south coast. There is plenty to do within the local area and without a doubt, it is one of my favourite spots on the island to visit. I have stayed here several times alone and I can highly recommend it if you are comfortable exploring the local area and staying on a room only basis. For more information, have a look at my post on how to spend a few days in English Harbour.

Explore the Dockyard museum, formerly Lord Admiral Nelson's house, then take a ride on the complimentary shuttle boat to Galleon Beach for snorkelling and turtle spotting. Alternatively, across the harbour is an infinity pool framed by loungers, four poster beds and hammocks, a spa and an open-air restaurant.

There are a number of bars and restaurants in English Harbour and as a solo traveller I feel very comfortable walking around here by day and night. Some restaurants offer a free collect and return service by water taxi from harbourside hotels such as Admiral's Inn and Copper & Lumber Store. This is a pleasant way to travel at night with the breeze, stars and twinkling lights on the water. Other activities such as Shirley Heights, a donkey sanctuary and a swimming with horses experience are within close proximity. Have a look at my Things to do in Antigua page for further inspiration.

Summary for solo travel to Admiral's Inn

Confident travellers who like variety will find plenty to do in this area. There are so many bars, restaurants and cafes to choose from as well as a nightclub at weekends for those that like to dance. I have travelled here several times alone and would definitely return. It is a good place to stay to get a balance between exploring and relaxation.

Copper & Lumber Store, Antigua

Another excellent place to stay when travelling alone is the Copper & Lumber Store. Like Admiral's Inn, it is located within historic Nelson's Dockyard so benefits from the same amenities both inside and outside the site. The Georgian building that once stored copper and lumber to restore ships, has been sympathetically renovated and now comprises 14 elegant studios and suites.

Summary for solo travel to Copper & Lumber Store

The suites have a 'home from home' feel about them with their compact kitchenettes, sumptuous sofas, excellent wifi and flat screen TV. Staff are incredibly friendly and on hand to help out 24/7. Arrive at the Copper & Lumber Store as a guest and leave as a friend. A great place to stay for either a relaxing or more active break.

Water hammocks in front of Siboney Beach Club

Siboney Beach Club Resort is a beach lover's paradise and the place to come for total relaxation. The hotel is located on a stunning stretch of soft white sand with clear turquoise water. Think comfortable loungers, gentle swims, water hammocks and beach walks. Two beachfront bars and restaurants serve great food and drinks with low key entertainment a couple of times each week. Wifi is excellent throughout the resort and beach attracting those travelling for business as well as for leisure. Apartments are modern with kitchenettes and the local supermarket is just 20 minutes walk away.

Summary for solo travel to Siboney Beach Club Resort

I highly recommend a solo stay at this resort. Rooms are extremely comfortable and secure. The grounds are accessed by key operated gates with security staff wandering too. It is a place to totally unwind with a stunning beach, pool, spa, friendly staff and good food.

Hammocks at Pineapple Beach Club Resort, Antigua

The laid back, all-inclusive beachfront hotel positioned on the Atlantic side of the island offers comfortable rooms with some low key entertainment. The beach is protected by a band of coral making it a great place to snorkel. A hammock and seating area is nestled between trees, offering a pleasant place to read or relax in the shade. Food is exceptional at each of the restaurants and a highlight is to lunch at Outhouse, a Caribbean barbecue and grill set on a hillside with ocean views.

Summary of Pineapple Beach Resort for solo travel

In my opinion Pineapple Beach Resort is a good place to come alone to self-reflect and get away from it all. It is quite an isolated hotel so you may spend a lot of time at the resort. If not, prepare to factor in taxis or car hire expenses. Bear in mind it is an adults only hotel so mainly couples go there.

St James Club, swimming pool

A high-end, all-inclusive hotel on the Atlantic side of the island with lots of organised entertainment during the daytime and at night. The sprawling resort has multiple pools and restaurants. It benefits from two beaches, one windy, fringed by swaying palm trees and the other, a sheltered bay great for watersports. A shuttle takes hotel guests to and from Shirley Heights for a small charge, a popular activity on Sunday afternoons.

Summary of St James's Club for solo travel

St James's Club is a blend of families, couples and solo travellers. There is plenty to do here should you wish, though it is easy to stay within your own company due to the size of the resort and not seeing the same people from one day to the next.

Room only versus all-inclusive resorts

  • There is a tendency to stay on resort at an all-inclusive hotel as everything is already paid for.

  • Some people like to see familiar faces daily so this can be a benefit of a smaller all-inclusive hotel.

  • Tours booked through the hotel will be with others you may already know.

  • Larger resorts offer variety at meal times whereas the smaller resorts may have one main restaurant area for dinner.

  • Room only gives flexibility regarding activities and meal times but can work out more expensive.

  • Room only holidays are good for those who prefer to explore the local area

Recommended activities for solo travel

  1. Swimming with horses

  2. A day at the beach

  3. Sampling local food

  4. Snorkelling at Galleon Beach shipwreck at English Harbour

  5. Shirley Heights

  6. Cookery School

  7. Nelson's Dockyard - the world's only working Georgian dockyard and now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visit its museum, the former home of Lord Admiral Nelson and learn about the history of the dockyard.

Helpful tips for solo travel

  • Many high end properties attract mainly couples and some are adults only. Just be aware of it if you prefer to be around a mixture of families and other solo travellers too. A helpful tip is to google the hotel you are considering staying at. Under the reviews section type 'solo' into the search bar and read the reviews and viewpoints of others who have been to the property by themselves.

  • Don't attract attention by wearing flashy jewellery and wave expensive cameras and mobiles around etc. It's a safe island but just use common sense as you would at home.

  • Book tours and trips via hotels and reputable companies.

  • If you don't want to receive unwanted attention as a solo female traveller consider wearing a wedding ring if you are out on your own.

  • Ask hotel staff for recommendations of places to go to by yourself and organise transport for you

  • Make sure your US$ do not have any tears in them when collecting your currency before travel and also when receiving change on the island. Antigua will not accept them and the bank will not change them.

For further information on solo travel to Antigua, drop me an email at and I will endeavour to get back to you within 24 hours.

Click the link for current prices, availability and to book Antigua hotels via Expedia Group.

Note: I will receive a small commission if you make a booking via Expedia Group's link.

If you make any bookings based on my recommendations your contract will be directly with the hotels/activity providers. I am acting as a referral point only based on information from my most recent visit which may be subject to change at any time.


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