You Do Not Want To Miss Barbuda

Barbuda is Antigua’s northern neighbor and because it’s smaller and less developed, it gets overlooked. Don’t make that mistake. Absolutely go to Barbuda when you visit Antigua. The variety of things to do and see mean you do not want to miss Barbuda.

Frigate Bird Sanctuary

Whether you take a plane, ferry or your own boat to Barbuda, the Frigate Bird Sanctuary is a must. You can only go with an authorized guide. They are serious here about protecting this special habitat and you will be too. This is the largest frigate colony in the Western Hemisphere and worth protecting.

The guides are knowledgeable about the birds and Barbuda’s history so soak it up. You get a fun boat ride too and up-close views of the frigate birds at all stages of development. Our tour guide was George Jeffrey and he is entertaining and educational.

Frigate birds Barbuda
Frigate Bird Sanctuary, Barbuda
Snorkel The Reefs

Barbuda is relatively untouched thanks to less development than its sister island. This applies the water and makes it great for snorkeling. The sea is clean and usually very clear in regular weather conditions. We could see the bottom 12 feet down while sitting on our boat that’s how clear it is. We even had a frenzy of sharks and remoras living under our boat for a few days!

Barbuda Sharks
Sharks lived under our boat in Barbuda

We anchored in Coral Bay and Cocoa Point and saw turtles, southern sting rays, spotted eagle rays and lots of other fish. It is beautiful. You don’t need to be on a boat either. Many of the reefs are a short swim from shore and easily accessible whatever your transport.

Turtle in Barbuda
Darby Sinkhole

Hire a guide and visit this geographic wonder. Wear good walking shoes and bring some water. The hike is about 90 minutes round trip and is interesting. We took a tour of the sinkhole and the caves with Chris, who is based out of Roddy’s Beach bar, so go there if you want to connect. He was great and very accommodating, designing the tour for us.

The walk is on a trail and is relatively easy. Barbuda is a flat island – you can barely see it by boat until you are almost there – so don’t worry about altitude.

Once you get to the sinkhole, which is more a chasm than a hole, you can climb down. It’s impressive and not what I expected. The tallest trees on the island are growing inside the hole. It’s a cool spot.

Darby Sinkhole Barbuda
Inside the sinkhole
Indian Caves

Located near stunning Two Foot Bay on the northeast side of the island, the Indian caves are naturally beautiful and historically interesting.

Hiking Barbuda
Hike Barbuda

Look at the face in the cave, peer into the holes, and even try to find the geocache. It’s a short uphill hike, but not strenuous.

Cave entrance Barbuda
Cave entrance
Indian Cave Barbuda
Inside Indian Cave
Beaches and Beach Bars

Antigua has 365 beaches and they are beautiful but if you’re a beach lover, visit Barbuda too. Snorkel, swim, lounge on the sand. The sand in Barbuda is so soft and it goes for miles.

Barbuda beach
Soft sand beach in Barbuda

It is highly likely you will have the beach to yourself at least for a little while. The beaches in Barbuda are lovely and a key reason you don’t want to miss Barbuda.

When you’re at the beach, visit one of the locally owned and operated beach bars. We visited two on the southeast part of Barbuda: Roddy’s and Shak-a-Kai.
Roddy’s is a bar and restaurant with a menu offering seafood, salads, burgers and pizzas, plus some great rum cocktails.

beach bar Barbuda
Happy at the beach bar

Shak-a-Kai is further east and is a perfect tropical beach bar. Swings at the bar, fun signs and Enoch, the helpful and friendly proprietor, craft a relaxed vibe. Spend your day sipping cocktails with occasional dips in the beckoning sea. You can’t go wrong and you don’t want to miss it.

Beach Bar Shak-a-Kai Barbuda
Shak-a-Kai beach bar Barbuda

Those are five reasons you do not want to miss Barbuda, especially if you’re in Antigua. Have fun and say hi for us!

Barbuda is so small that everybody knows each other, so if you stay for a couple of days, don’t be surprised if you’re recognized as well. It’s like a small town and everyone is friendly. So say good afternoon and smile. You’re on island time.

Ever been to Barbuda and have good memories of your favorite spots? Please share in the comments.

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Barbuda Pin
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Author: Mel

Living aboard a sailboat, blogging about the places we visit and the adventures we have. Love hiking, cycling, scuba, animals and adventure.

22 thoughts on “You Do Not Want To Miss Barbuda”

  1. Oh man! We went to Antigua for our honeymoon and really wanted to get to Barbuda but just didn’t make it. Next time we’re there, we are DEFINITELY going to get over to Barbuda. I had no idea there was so much to do!

    1. Good choice for a honeymoon destination! Now you know for when you return. Maybe for a special anniversary!????

  2. It looks like a hidden paradise. I was just searching for the most beautiful islands around the Caribbiean Sea. I’m glad I’ve stumbbled upon your blog. I’m putting it on my Caribbean bucket list. Thank you for this great post!

  3. Wow! I had never thought about Antigua and Barbuda as holiday spots. Now I have learnt something new ???? . I find it really important that these places continue to be well preserved, so I was glad to hear about the bird sanctuary.

  4. Barbuda is definitely on my list! I’m an avid snorkeler and diver and this looks like the ideal spot. I’m also a sucker for caves and would love to explore them too!!

    1. OMG this would be perfect for you! On one snorkel I saw three turtles and two rays, along with loads of other fish. There are loads of wrecks too because the island is surrounded by reefs.

  5. Wow! Looks amazing. I love the white sand and clear waters! This looks like a true island paradise!!

  6. I went to Barbuda for a few hours when I was in Antigua but it was so long ago I can barely remember! I do remember the bird sanctuary thought because I don’t like birds. Thanks for sharing, it’s a great post ????

  7. Barbuda looks gorgeous. I’m sold. So many beautiful views, and the wildlife looks good too. I could do with a relaxing destination like this right about now

  8. All the different wildlife there kind of reminds me a little of my time in Galapagos – so much to see! I definitely need to take a visit soon.

  9. Oh wow, Barbuda looks like absolute paradise! I’ve never been to Antigua but when I do I definitely want to visit Barbuda. I would love scuba diving, lounging on the beach and exploring the caves!

  10. I am not so sure I would be keen to snorkel with the sharks living under the boat. However, that cave would keep me pretty happy. This is one part of the Caribbean I haven’t been to yet.

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