A 5-Day Antigua Itinerary For Families

Family with twin babies standing in crystal blue water in Antigua.
Photo Courtesy: Gunjan Prakash

Visit Antigua, a great kid-friendly destination, on a 5-day itinerary for families! Between rolling hills, turquoise waters, and fascinating culture, families will find each day here better than the last. Check out the Donkey Sanctuary, learn about the island’s history at the Museum of Antigua and Barbuda, or simply relax on one of its stunning beaches. No matter what you choose to do here, though, we guarantee your visit to Antigua will be memorable! To help you plan your next amazing vacation, we’ve compiled our best 5-day itinerary in Antigua for families. It has a good mixture of beach time and adventures, alongside time tips for visiting Antigua with kids and even some restaurant suggestions. Plus, where to stay in Antigua with kids. Keep reading to plan your next island adventure! 

Day 1: Monk’s Hill, Donkey Sanctuary, Great Bird Island, Devil’s Bridge

Start your Antigua itinerary for families with a morning hike up Monk’s Hill, Antigua’s lesser-known lookout point. From there, you’re just a short drive away from the Donkey Sanctuary. Kids will love petting these adorable creatures! Since it’s operated by the Humane Society, this non-profit also houses some small cats and dogs in addition to its docile donkey population.

Once you’re done with the donkeys, you can encounter more animals on Great Bird Island, an off-the-beaten-path islet that’s home to hundreds of rare birds, insects, and reptiles. Kids will love exploring the vibrant underwater world while snorkeling, as the island’s surrounding waters abound with colorful marine life. Walk along the shoreline to collect seashells or take a guided boat to witness the island’s rich wildlife, including the famous Antiguan racer snake. 

End the day by watching the sunset at Devil’s Bridge. Located near Antigua’s northeast shore, just outside Willikies Village, this series of stunning limestone arches are formed by seawater erosion. Since there are some tricky paths to navigate here, in addition to powerful waves crashing atop the edge of the rocks, we recommend exploring Devil’s Bridge with older children. Doing so will also provide an opportunity to learn more about the landmark’s history, which is intertwined with the island’s history of slavery. 

Day 2: Explore Antigua’s Best Beaches

A dad and his young son swim in the water off the coast of Antigua.
Photo Courtesy: Kelli Wein

Spend an entire day relaxing on some of Antigua’s best beaches! The island has plenty of hidden gems and popular spots alike that offer calm, turquoise waters and soft golden sands, creating a perfect playground for children. 

Spend the morning lounging at Valley Church Beach in Jolly Harbour. There are umbrellas and chairs for rent, lots of shade, bathrooms, and a calm atmosphere where kids can swim and play. Plus, there’s a nice beach bar for parents. Then, you can continue to the nearby Coco and Ffryes Beach. After a little time in Ffryes, take the kids to Dennis Beach Bar and Restaurant for lunch, a famous local spot that serves casual Antiguan fare. 

If you continue to venture along the coast, you can also check out Pigeon Beach, which features its own play area for children. Or, continue your beach exploration at Darkwood Beach, known for turquoise waters and powdery sand. Enjoy a family swim or a leisurely beach walk as the sun begins to set! The Jolly Harbour area has plenty of beachside restaurants for a family dinner, including Lydia’s Seafood Restaurant. 

Day 3: St. John’s, Fort James Beach, Heritage Quay

Fort James Beach near St. John's In Antigua, one of the best places to visit on a 5-day Antigua itinerary for families.
Photo Courtesy: Visit Antigua & Barbuda

On the second morning of your Antigua itinerary for families, explore the Museum of Antigua and Barbuda in St. John’s, the island’s capital. Your family can learn more about Antigua’s history and see some artifacts from the island’s past. After, you can explore the colorful streets and historic sites like the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. By the Nevis Street Pier, you’ll find Heritage Quay, the island’s biggest shopping center. If you’re looking for somewhere to eat in St. John’s with kids, check out Sheer Rocks or Hemingway’s Caribbean Cafe. 

If you want to spend the afternoon at a beach, check out Fort James Beach, which is just a short drive away from St. John’s. The calm waters make it ideal for kids. Keep in mind this is a popular beach, however, especially with cruise ship dockers, so it may be a bit crowded. Once you’re done at the beach, you can grab dinner in St. John’s and explore the city by night. 

Day 4: Stingray City, Betty’s Hope, Dutchman Bay

Betty's Hope, a sugar mill in Antigua. It's a great place to add to an Antigua itinerary for families!
Photo Courtesy: Visit Antigua & Barbuda

Wake up bright and early to get a head start at Stingray City, where you can snorkel alongside string rays and other Antiguan reef life. First, you’ll begin your tour in the area’s land base, where you’ll be given a quick rundown on what to expect before you speed off in a boat. Then, gear up your snorkel and prepare to spot vibrant tropical fish! Stingrays will migrate to an elevated platform as your boat moors in a white-sand area. Afterward, enjoy complimentary fruit punch onshore (and some rum for adults!) 

Then, you’ll be just a short ride away from Betty’s Hope, a sugarcane plantation where kids can learn more about Antigua’s industrial era, and eventually stop to snap a photo in front of the historical windmills. Plus, there are so many beautiful grassy areas where the whole family can have a picnic together. Or, grab lunch at Ounces Ice Cream Parlor and Grill, and kids can dig into Antiguan baked chicken or BBQ wings and fries. 

Spend the rest of the afternoon relaxing at Dutchman Bay, a tranquil beach that’s very popular with windsurfers. Once you’re hungry, grab dinner at Cecilia’s

Day 5: Rainforest Tour, Shirley Heights, Nelson’s Dockyard

Several Caribbean drummers are playing in Shirley Heights, one of the best things to do in Antigua with kids.

See Antigua from a new perspective on your itinerary for families on a zip-lining tour! One popular option is operated by Antigua Canopy Tours within Fig Tree Drive Rainforest. This unique eco-tour takes families through the island’s lush landscapes via a zipline or obstacle course. Participants can be as old as young as four years old. Many families opt for a 12 + 1 Zipline Tour, which includes beginner ropes as well as some faster, more advanced ones.

In the afternoon, head to Nelson’s Dockyard, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Little ones will love watching yachts and ships sail the marina. You can also explore eighteenth- and nineteenth-century buildings, which have been fully restored to house shops, hotels, and various businesses. It’s also a good place to eat lunch, like at Copper & Lumber Restaurant. Historic forts dot the park’s landscape, accessible by hiking trails to enjoy the area’s scenic beauty. Take the lookout trail by Galleon Beach straight up the hill for an amazing view!

In the evening, visit Shirley Heights. Located 10 minutes from Nelson’s Dockyard, this beautiful, family-friendly lookout provides travelers with striking views of St. John’s Bay. With its history as a former military base, this scenic area is walkable via an intermediate hike, but you can also drive for 360 views. Many prefer to visit near sunset to catch the English Harbour illuminated below. Every Sunday at 4 pm, a large celebration also begins here in collaboration with Shirley Heights Restaurant, showcasing a band, dancing, and delicious barbecue. 

Where To Stay In Antigua With Kids

A dad holds the hand of us son, which a beach bag in the other hand, while meandering the sandy beach.
Photo Courtesy: Carlisle Bay

Need somewhere to stay in Antigua with kids? Check out the Jumby Bay Island Resort, located on its very own island. It has a kids’ club, water sports, and more fun for families! On the southern shore, there’s also Carlisle Bay. Families can also check out Curtain Bluff, St. James Club & Villas, the Royalton Antigua Resort and Spa, and Blue Waters Resort & Spa. Check out our list of the best resorts in Antigua for families to learn more! 

Happy Travels!

A mom holds up her young son at sunset while exploring Antigua together.
Photo Courtesy: Kelli Wein

We hope you liked this 5-Day Antigua Itinerary For Families! From beachside adventures to hiking and cultural experiences, there’s so much to love about this Caribbean island. Enjoy your next family vacation to Antigua! 

*This post may contain affiliate links that may earn us a small commission, at no additional cost to you. Affiliate links in no way inform the hotels, sights, products, or other recommendations included in our articles. All opinions and recommendations expressed here are compiled from submissions submitted by the generous members of our Families Who Love To Travel community.

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Families Love Travel Team

The Families Love Travel Team has a zest for life and an even bigger passion for globetrotting! Comprised of real-life travel professionals, we work hard behind the scenes to provide dynamic solutions for adventuring with children. Our enthusiastic team understands the challenges that often accompany traveling with kids and is committed to making Families Love Travel an inclusive space to convey these experiences.