English Harbour

Photo of English Harbour

About English Harbour

Antigua is a great base for Caribbean sailing, and has been since the days when Horatio Nelson's navy was based here. And nowhere is more perfect for yachties than English Harbour, now a bit ritzy, and very lively during the winter season, but still a very beautiful natural harbour. If you're not travelling with your own yacht, the best places to stay in English Harbour lean towards the nautical and the colonial.

English Harbour is right beside what is probably Antigua's most popular historic attraction: Nelson's Dockyard, a beautifully resorted Georgian era marina, which has been in use since 1745.

Just down the hills from the 18th Century fort is Shirley Heights - these days also known for its Sunday barbecue parties. Fort Berkeley is also here, both forts were built to defend this harbour.

But English Harbour isn't just for sailors, this area also has numerous secluded beaches and coves, a number of which have reefs just off shore - perfect for snorkelling.

What not to miss:

  • Explore Nelsons Dockyard, a cultural heritage site and marina at English Harbour.
  • Climb to the top of Shirley Heights and get an incredible lookout point across the harbor.
  • The diving and snorkeling in the area is not be missed either

Here is our guide to the best places to stay in English Harbour.

The best places to stay in English Harbour

For beach and romance

  • The Inn at English Harbour is an excellent beachfront hotel with a colonial feel and an Italian restaurant. And you're just a stone's thrown from Nelson's Dockyard and Shirley Heights.

Close to the sights

  • Admiral's Inn's 19 elegant rooms are perfect if you like charm and character but are looking for a cheaper option. Rooms here start at just £89 per night and it's right next door to Nelson's Dockyard.

For an apartment or villa

  • If you've decided that a self catering property would be more suitable for your holiday, then we recommend you visit our online booking partner Booking.com where they have a wide selection for all tastes and budgets.

Travel Information

  • VC Bird International Aiport is a 40-minute drive from English Harbour, with direct flights to America and much of Europe.
  • The weather is very pleasant all year round, with lows as high as 20 degrees and highs of above 30 degrees. Between June and November, be aware of the hurricane season.
  • If you plan to hire a car, we recommend you visit our online partner Rentalcars for the best prices.

Still not sure?

Best Hotels in English Harbour

  • Admiral's Inn Antigua 19 rooms from AU$213

    Sights nearby  -  Right inside Nelson's Dockyard. Close to Shirley Heights & St Paul's Anglican Church, the island's oldest
    Views  -  Most rooms have great views of Nelson's Dockyard and the bay
    Sailing  -  Several sailing events held annually
    Diving  -  Soul Immersion Diving Centre
    Recommended by  -  Fodors

    Characterful hotel by the harbour. The elegant rooms feature exposed beams, four-poster beds and wooden floors. Sun drenched terrace with large parasols overlooking Nelson's Dockyard, and charming restaurant serving local seafood. A wonderful spot to soak up the island's history & great for sailors. See More

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  • The Inn at English Harbour English Harbour 28 rooms from AU$724

    Romantic Break  -  Private terrace to take in the view of boats into the harbour, old fashioned style service and romantic ambience
    Sights nearby  -  A stone's throw from Nelson's Dockyard and Shirley Heights
    Restrictions on children  -  Children over ten welcome
    Views  -  Great views from hotel
    Recommended by  -  Frommers, Fodors, Mr & Mrs Smith, Small Luxury Hotels, Kiwi Collection

    Excellent beachfront hotel. Charming rooms feature mahogany four poster beds, ipod docks and colonial style furniture. Tennis courts, heated outdoor pool, spa and gym. Superb Italian dishes at the restaurant, chic bar area. Elegant, exclusive and spacious. See More

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