Events in Antigua

Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta – April

Held each year just before Sailing Week, the Classic Yacht Regatta brings a host of beautiful, traditional sailing yachts to Falmouth Harbour. There are four days of racing and also parades of classic boats – which look magnificent from onshore. There’s plenty of evening action ashore too.

Sailing Week – End April

The Caribbean’s major yachting regatta, with hundreds of boats from around the islands. There are five days of formal racing and then other events such as the Guadeloupe to Antigua race and the Round-the-island race. And of course plenty of after-race action (there is even a ‘Party Schedule’). There are chase boats, or you might even find yourself taken on as crew. The Antigua Yacht Club ( and the Jolly Harbour Yacht Club also run other smaller regattas during the year.

Antigua Carnival – Late July into August

Ten days of steel band music, calypso competitions and parties that culminate in street dances and parades through the island capital St John’s, and thereafter in the Antigua Recreation Ground. After a weekend of festivities and competitions (in which the calypso monarch is selected), dancers spill out onto the street for j’ouvert morning (on the first Monday in August) and then rig up with their carnival costume for the street parade. Held over the anniversary of emancipation from slavery, the carnival is an explosion of revelry and well worth attending if you are on the island. J’ouvert is a public event, but for the street parade you can pay a few tens of dollars to join a ‘band’, wear the costume and join in the dancing.

Antigua and Barbuda Independence Festival – November 1

In celebration of Antigua and Barbuda’s independence in 1981, the island holds a ceremonial parade, with marching bands and fetes, along with a series of other formal celebrations over about 10 days toward the end of October. You may see the streets of St John’s bedecked in black, red, blue and yellow drapes, the colours of the national flag. As a public event it is free to spectators.