During our stay at Sandals Grande Antigua, we did two wonderful excursions to explore more of the island!
Stingray City Antigua
The first tour we did in Antigua was an Island Safari and Stingray City. This was a spectacular way to see a lot more of the island as well as we got to interact with stingrays! So after a drive in a open back 4×4 truck, we made it to Stingray City. We were given a briefing of how to interact with the stingrays, how to walk in the water (stingray shuffle), and basically everything we needed to know to keep us and the stingrays safe. I was a little apprehensive coming to this tour, sea creatures are not necessary my thing, but after the briefing I felt much more confident and excited!
We then boarded a boat and headed to Stingray City which is in the middle of the sea on a sandbar. I had never been on a sandbar before and it was the neatest thing! Surrounded by water on all sides, with no shore in sight, yet the water was only about waist deep! Then we got in the water and oh my goodness this really was a city of stingrays because they were everywhere! I guess they get fed well by all the visitors that the stingrays know to come back! Our guides were gentle with the stingrays and we were able to feed them octopus, pet them, kiss them and even get a quick stingray massage on your back! They felt so soft and just seemed like the gentlest of creatures! I absolutely loved the whole experience!
After we were done with our stingray adventure, we dried off, came back to shore and loaded back in our truck. The next stop was Betty’s Hope Plantation for a delicious Caribbean style lunch at a restored sugar mill! The food was simple but so delicious and the view was so peaceful!
After that we headed to Devil’s Bridge! This natural rock arch was quite impressive and also pretty terrifying! The bridge was created by several natural blowholes which shoot up water and spray powered by waves from the Atlantic Ocean! The rock felt very slick and our tour guide definitely discouraged us to not try crossing the bridge as you never know when one of the blowholes will shoot up! As I have two little children to live for that was an easy pass for me, but I did see several brave people try to cross it to get that perfect Instagram picture. #notworthit.
Horseback Riding Antigua
Our second Antigua adventure was horseback riding on the beach. This was a really relaxing activity our horses were gentle and sweet and at the end we rewarded them by feeding them some apples! The sea water was kind of rough that day so we weren’t able to go in the sea with the horses, but it was a beautiful day out and we really enjoyed it! We also rode our horses to Fort James which is a historic fort in Antigua that was built to guard St. James harbor by the British in the 18 century. I love learning more about the history when I visit a new destination!
We booked both of our tours through Island Routes which is the preferred tour company for Sandals Resorts. They were easy to book as Sandals Grande Antigua has a tour desk in the Caribbean Lobby! We had a fantastic experience on our tours! We were picked up straight from our hotel and brought back which made it seamless. The guides were knowledgeable, kind, the tours started on time and I thought were well planned out!
We really enjoyed seeing more of Antigua! This is such a beautiful place and we can’t wait to return someday to explore even more of the island!