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ANTIGUA:  A BEACH FOR EVERY DAY AND EVERY DREAM

ANTIGUA, West Indies— Located in the heart of the Leeward Islands, Antigua and Barbuda are comprised of a blend of coral, limestone and volcanic materials that have melded together over the millennia to create a coastline dotted with reefs and coves that today provide privacy, calm, warm, crystalline waters, abounding in diverse recreational opportunities. 

Here, clear turquoise water gently laps against 365 sugary white sand beaches creating the most seductively breathtaking seashore in the world. From sunbathing and swimming, to sailing, scuba and snorkeling, these beaches are enjoyed year round by the adventure seeker, water nymph and bookworm alike… while romance seekers come to enjoy the many breathtaking sunsets made even more spectacular by the legendary green flash that accompanies that last dip of the sun.

With more than 65 percent of leisure travelers interested in a beach experience, one might think the beaches of Antigua and Barbuda could get crowded.  Not so. The sister islands’ miles-upon-miles of pristine coastline provide the idealized Caribbean backdrop for people from across the globe of varying tastes and interests.  No wonder celebrities such as Mariah Carey get away to these islands to escape the paparazzi, while some, such as Giorgio Armani, have even built a home-away-from-home here.  But you don’t have to be of superstar status to explore these islands that define the pure Caribbean beach experience. 
Many of Antigua’s famed beaches rest inside the calm, protected waters on the Caribbean Sea. Since all of the island’s beaches are open to the public, the only challenge posed to visitors is determining the one that best suits their mood of the day.
 
Northwest Coast: The island’s developed northwest coast is home to the popular Dickenson Bay and Runaway Bay, which provide a fully-loaded resort beach experience. Or, for those who want a beach close to St. John's, Fort James, a locally popular public beach, and Deep Bay are excellent choices.  A series of four crescent-shaped beaches at Hawksbill are also highly regarded, one of which is great for those seeking a nude sunbathing experience.   And for those who want to party late into the night, a popular evening hotspot is The Beach bar at Dickenson Bay.

Southwest and South Coast: The beaches of the hilly southwest corner of Antigua are generally less developed than those around St. John's. Winding along the coast are Ffryes Bay, Darkwood Beach and Johnson’s Point. Rendezvous Bay and especially Doigs Beach, both located on the central southern coast, are especially quiet beaches as they are only accessible by four-wheel drive or footpaths. And, after a day at Nelson’s Dockyard, Pigeon Point is a great stop off for a cooling dip or a refreshing drink at the local beach bar.  Another popular spot for drinks and even some food is Turners Beach Bar and Grill at Johnson’s Point in St. Mary’s.

East Coast: Half Moon Bay, voted number one on the Travel Channel’s list of the world’s ultimate beaches -- and now a National Park -- is always a great choice. Long Bay, on the easternmost point of the island, is another good choice for families as it is completely protected by its reef.  Also on Long Bay is Barrow’s Chill-Out Bar, a long-established beach bar serving refreshing island cocktails and homemade fruit punch.  Situated at the extreme eastern point of the island, on the road to Long Bay, is Indian Town.  Over the centuries, powerful Atlantic breakers have swept in at the end of a 3,000-mile journey from Africa, carving out a natural limestone arch called Devil’s Bridge. The blowholes and spouting surf make a spectacular site. 

Beaches of Barbuda: The best-kept secret of the Caribbean is the smooth coastline edged with alternating pink and white sand beaches protected by barrier reefs on the island of Barbuda. Nearly deserted beaches combine with an environment rich in marine life offering those who venture over from Antigua the opportunity to enjoy excellent diving, snorkeling, fishing, bird watching, and of course, an escape from the everyday. 
Though most of Barbuda’s beaches are composed of fine white sand, a few are noticeably different.  These are the striking pink “sand” beaches created from the tiniest of pink shells, the color of cotton candy, that are washed ashore in various coves.

The Antigua and Barbuda Ministry of Tourism would like to remind travelers of new passport requirements:  Beginning January 8, 2007, the U.S. Department of State will require all U.S. citizens traveling via air or sea to present a valid passport for travel and re-entry into the United States.  For information on obtaining a U.S. passport, visit the U S Passport Services Web site: http://travel.state.gov/passport/passport_1738.html or contact the U.S National Passport Information Center, (877) 487-2778.

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Media Contact:
Marie Kephart                                    
(407) 838-1827                                  
marie.kephart@ypbr.com

Heather Keroes
(407) 838-1704
heather.keroes@ypbr.com

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