Antigua or St. Kitts?

Feb 22nd, 2009, 05:51 PM
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Antigua or St. Kitts?

Looking for a candid opinion on which island would be the best fit for a trip this spring. A little girlfriend & I are in our late 20's and are looking to spend 6 days in either place. Obviously beaches are important, but we'd like to find a place that has some fun beach bars. We don't plan on partying until 4AM, but would like some decent nighlife/bars nearby. I imagine that we will venture out (hike, check out another island, etc.) only 1 or 2 of the days. Which island best accomplishes this criteria? Much thanks for any help....
JTL90 is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2009, 03:28 AM
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Hi, tough question because I don't think "nightlife" when I think of either island. Antigua has better beaches and I saw a few beach bars at Dickensen Bay but the island is mostly all-inclusive resorts. St. Kitts has some fun beach bars (Mr X's Shiggidy Shack) on S. Frigate Bay but the beaches aren't that nice. Neither Basseterre or St. John's are places I would want to be hanging around and partying at night. Any other criteria you have that's important? I like to recommend Playa Del Carmen, Mexico (Caribbean coast) to younger people because of the nice beaches, great town (more nightlife) and reasonable prices.
eileen is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2009, 06:48 AM
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Perhaps this will help in your decision:

Antigua has more (365) and better beaches than St. Kitts.

St. Kitts has more and better hiking (rain forests, volcano craters) than Antigua.

Antigua is larger and more populated than St. Kitts and thus by definition will have more "beach bars" but which island has "better" beach bars is impossible to say as each have their own appeal.

It is very easy to get to Nevis from St. Kitts (45 minute ferry ride with numerous departure times throughhout the day). The fasre is around $10US PP each way. You'd have to fly to reach any other islands.

The only island you can reach by ferry from Antigua is Barbuda. There are a couple of ferries that make daily runs. They leave from Antigua around 8:30AM to 9:00AM and return around 3:30PM or 4PM. The round trip fare is about $75US. It takes about 1.5 hours each way. You'd have to fly to reach any other islands.

RoamsAround is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2009, 01:28 PM
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Aside from the above, St Kitts has some great beach bars in Frigate Bay, and there isn't much hiking in Antigua. Though the beaches are better in Antigua, I'd go for St Kitts any day.
bajangirl is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2009, 04:48 PM
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St. Kitts is a more visually beautiful island and has the advantage of easy day trips to Nevis. It's been years since I visited Antigua, mainly because St. Kitts and Nevis became my islands of choice, but the landscape is completely different in Antigua.

St. Kitts and Nevis are dominated by dormant volcanoes surrounded by rainforest, and hikes to the top or just walks through the rainforest are wonderful.

Check out Brimstone Hill Fortress on St. Kitts as a great day trip stop on an around the island tour.

If you decide on St. Kitts you should read the posts at It's a forum devoted to St. Kitts and Nevis.
cw is offline  
Feb 23rd, 2009, 05:49 PM
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I loved my trips to Nevis and Antigua and I merely liked St. Kitts. Liked a lot, mind you, but I still didn't fall in love with it like I did the other two.

Antigua has more beach bars found all over the island, but the clusters around Dickenson Bay and English Harbour are going to be the most hopping. The time of year you travel will heavily determine what kind of nightlife is happening at any given time. St. Kitts has some excellent beach bars, too, including several neighboring ones right on S. Frigate Bay--they're lined up in a row, so you could sample the pourings from each one without any trouble.

Hiking is varied and pleasant on each one. St Kitts has more strenuous hiking as it's more mountainous and much is under cover of rainforest. Antigua is much more moderate but it's open to more views because of less foliage. So, depending on what you're looking for...

For better beaches, hands down, Antigua.

For accommodations I also prefer Antigua, as there are more beachfront options in all price ranges than on St. Kitts. You've got the choice of condos, large all-inclusive resorts, villas, small hotels, all on beautiful stretches of sand. Most of St. Kitts' aren't beachfront, and some that are, are on the Atlantic side so it's hard to enjoy being in the water.

For island tours, I think it's about even. St. Kitts is the more beautiful island overall but Antigua has more varied terrain, if that makes sense. You'll see rain forest, rolling hills, and even some arid zones on the eastern end of the island. For history buffs there's Ft. Brimstone on St. Kitts and Nelson's Dockyard on Antigua. I've enjoyed touring both, but my personal nod would go to Ft. Brimstone.

Antigua has more restaurants than St. Kitts does, but we found good dining in all prices ranges all over the island.

Daytripping to Nevis from St. Kitts is easier and cheaper than daytripping anywhere from Antigua because of the ferry system. From Antigua you'd have to fly. But if money were no object you could fly to Barbuda, an island of almost nothing but fabulous beach, or helicopter tour of Montserrat.

Overall, I think Antigua has the edge over St. Kitts for what's on your wish list, but I think could be happy with either choice.
ejcrowe is offline  
Feb 24th, 2009, 05:18 PM
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Thank you for all of the great replies! They are much appreciated. To take this a step further....any advise as to accomodations on either island? Not necessarily looking for all-inclusives.
JTL90 is offline  
Feb 24th, 2009, 06:26 PM
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Knowing your price range would be helpful and also what you're looking for in accommodation. Do you need a/c? A view from your room? Do you want to be right in the middle of things or just have that kind of nightlife available when you want it, and not to be surrounded by it?
ejcrowe is offline  
Feb 25th, 2009, 05:10 AM
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Ceiling probably around $450/night, AC and ocean view preferred. Don't necessarily need to be in the middle of things as long as we can reach some nightlife by a 10 minute cab ride.
JTL90 is offline  
Feb 25th, 2009, 10:25 AM
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Just returned from St. Kitts. It is a very pretty island with gorgeous beaches (we stayed at the Marriott Vacation Villas and Hotel), good food (especially at the Grille and La Cucina at the Marriott Hotel), funky bars down on a strip walkable from the hotel. But there was little else to do but beach and eat! a nice trip into Baseterre, very quaint.

It is a great place to relax. The beach and pools and restaurants where we stayed were very nice. The beach was special. But if you wish more activity, I would suggest hiking a bit and renting a car.

The people, by the way, are the nicest in the Caribbean.
mweiner is offline  
Apr 11th, 2009, 03:21 AM
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St Kitts wins hands down in my opinion, less touristy, more friendly, quiet beaches, some cool beach bars and great hiking and zip lines in the rainforest. We stayed on Turtle Beach on the beautiful South Peninsula
cariblover10 is offline  
Apr 11th, 2009, 09:41 AM
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We just returned from Antigua again early this morning. The beaches are so tranquil and there is a lot of lush tropical areas. Antigua is a wonderful choice for peope who like to be active as there’s a generous amount of things to do/see. If you're an ocean lover like me, you might enjoy snorkelling on the reefs in the shallow waters. If you just enjoy lying on the beach to work on your tan, Antigua also works. Likewise, if your thing is enjoying a drink at a bar.
St Kitts? I just prefer relaxing my mind and pleasing my tastebuds on Nevis.
Knowing is offline  
Mar 27th, 2016, 07:09 PM
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One thing you may want to consider is safety. Antigua has one of the lowest murder rates in the Caribbean with about 5 per 100 000 in 2015. St Kitts has one of the highest murder rates in the world with well over 50 per 100 000 in 2015.
docjules is offline  
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