If you don’t know much about Barbuda then I will forgive you. The island is off the coast of Antigua, is only 60km square and is home to only around 1500 people. So why visit? Well I had heard that it was home to some of the best beaches in the world.
I took the 90 minute boat trip with the Barbuda Express from Antigua. Befittingly we were accompanied by Bob Marley and the Wailers on the boat’s stereo as we were accompanied by a whale in the sea (you can sometimes see whales in the waters between Antigua and Barbuda from February to April).
When we arrived at Barbuda we decided to hire quad bikes to search for the best beach. We had no map, only a vague guess as to where we were and not a care in the world! We thought that we would just head for the coast and drive around it looking for some great beaches.
We knew we were going to find something special when we found a sand exporting business who explained that Barbuda’s no.1 export is sand and that Barbuda often provides sand to other beaches in the Caribbean! So if you find a great beach in the Caribbean it might belong to Barbuda!
We started on the West Coast in Low Bay driving past probably the only bright blue police station in the world. With 1500 well behaved residents the police in Barbuda probably have the easiest job in the world and I suspect they painted their police station bright blue because they haven’t got much else to do!
Low bay is a small secluded bay with a jetty for fishing boats. A nice place but no real beach and so the quest continued.
We headed south and found a sand track which we flew through on our quad bike. There is no real traffic on Barbuda and so you feel perfectly safe when beach hunting. On the south west corner of Barbuda we found an abandoned old hotel which looked slightly ghostly with its faded grey wooden slats. Instead of taking the starring role in a horror film we decided to get back on our bikes as quickly as possible! We zoomed past the port where the Barbuda express docks and went east right the way across the south coast. We arrived at Gravenors Bay with its superb picture postcard beach. The sand was a brilliant white and the beach seemed to stretch for miles.
However when you look for one of the world’s most secluded beaches and so as there were other people on the beach and a few boats moored out to sea it didn’t meet the grade! Our mission was to find the best, most secluded beach in Barbuda and so the quest continued.
We drove back down the coast and arrived at Uncle Roddy’s cafe. Roddy sits behind the bar in his cafe and he smile is almost as bright as the colour scheme on his wooden cafe on stilts. We sat down and enjoyed a beer and fresh lobster (Barbuda’s second largest export).
We had parked our quad bikes across the road and decided to go through the light trees to the beach we saw peaking through. We were presented with a brilliant white beach with the softest sand I had ever felt. My feet just sank into it almost up to my ankle. We looked left and right and could not see a single soul for miles.
We spent an hour swimming in the sea and relaxing on the beach without seeing a single person. In fact our only companions were about half a dozen pelicans who were taking it in turns to dive bomb the local fish. Because the water was so crystal clear they were able to do it with considerable success!
Due to the pure white soft sand, the sheer desertion of the place and beauty of the sea we left content in the fact that at last we had found our perfect beach.
Charles Duncombe is an Antigua Holidays & Barbuda Holidays expert at UK travel company www.holidaysplease.co.uk he took a day to explore Barbuda and stumbled upon one of the finest beaches he had ever seen.