Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year from the Adventure Antigua team

to the last drop

On behalf of Mykl, Jill, Nell, Rebecca, Julia, Harriette and Co., JD, Shamel, Lindon, Trevor, Chris, Nicola, Jason, Itano, Serge, Natalie, Titou, and Leslie, I would like to thank those of you who helped our 2010 year be such a very good one. We had some very big challenges and some big changes and with them behind us, we have finished the year far stronger than we started. With this in mind we are eagerly looking forward to the new year and hope that we will get a chance to take you out on the water very soon. Thanks again and happy new year to you all!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

big ground swells this week in Antigua (forecasting)


There is a new publication in Antigua at the moment called Enjoy which generally has the goal to make sure visitors to Antigua and Barbuda know what's happening during their stay. Anyway, it comes out every two weeks and is put together by The Observer Group of Companies with help from
I have a regular column in Enjoy and hope that I can interest you to go check it out. Anyway, my last piece was about ground swell and since today Antigua and Barbuda will be getting some huge ground swell, I figure it would be good to "reprint" it here.

Many people are often surprised by the size of the waves or “swells” that can roll into the leeward or Caribbean side of Antigua during the winter months. How can these big waves turn up without warning, coming in from what is clearly the opposite direction of the prevailing winds? These waves are properly called Ground Swells and usually are generated by strong storms up to two thousand miles away in the North Atlantic. In the winter months extremely powerful cold fronts sweep across North American and often turn into low pressure systems or “Nor-Easters” as they roll into the Atlantic Ocean. If you have ever seen the film The Perfect Storm then you know all about how powerful they can be. These large Atlantic storms are the generators of the ground swell and can send waves all the way to the South American coast. Typically we see these swells once a month from November until May with varying frequency and size. All surfers eagerly check sites like and know exactly when the swells will arrive in Antigua. Unfortunately the only people who really like ground swell are the surfers as beaches and reefs can take a beating when the swells are really big. Historically many fishermen and mariners have lost boats and even crew by being caught in vulnerable bays or coves when swells have turned up without warning. These days accurate swell forecasting on the internet is so advanced that most yacht skippers and owners manage to move their boats from unprotected bays before the swells roll in. What’s so great about Antigua is that with our famous 365 beaches, off shore islands and barrier reefs, there are always many areas that remain calm even during the biggest ground swells. In fact, it’s beaches on the Atlantic side of Antigua that are usually nicest when the swells are rolling. When the waves are too big at your resort or favourite beach, jump in a car and go explore the south or east side of Antigua. Ground swells usually come in from the North East to the North West and typically only last a few days. They don’t have to keep you off the beach but be careful as they always pack more power than one would expect. If you would like to learn more about how to understand the modern forecasting tools like please visit

Monday, December 27, 2010

a surf story


As i pulled up to the beach there was what seemed to be a dense fog sitting over the shore. Without a breath of wind, the crashing shore break was sending a fine salty mist into the air giving a strange atmosphere to the pre surfing sunrise.
Within no time we were paddling out to the break in between schools of tiny translucent bait fish some instinctively jumping out of the way. Less than a mile away we could see that the huge barrels coming off the point were already being ridden by the eager dawn patrol. It was to be expected when conditions like these all came together. Our choice of waves this morning was probably not as good as the one up the coast but we were alone and could take our pick of the best this morning had to offer.
So many times when I am out on the water windsurfing, kitesurfing, surfing, sailing, snorkeling, boating or any of the other things that I've been lucky enough to take part in, I see images that people would have a hard time believing as real. If I had a camera in my hand at times like this people would judge the image to have been photoshopped. I mean, if I have a hard time believing what I am seeing, you can imagine how someone else sitting behind a computer screen would feel.
Sitting on my board waiting for the next set to roll in there were so many beautiful things to take in. A small wave crashed past me minutes before, leaving tiny little droplets of water floating on the glassy surface. Without any wind at all to move them they floated until the next pink swell rolled through.
Pink swell? Yes, pink lit up from the cloud sitting just over us to the west.

Just then two pelicans appeared flying low from around the point "surfing" inches above a small silky wave. This was another of those images people wouldn't believe. Pelicans gliding effortlessly above the critical section of a breaking wave along the entire bay isn't something you see every day i guess, but it wasn't the first time I had seen these guys do it either. I sat there thinking about the dolphins i had seen surfing waves before. They did it for hours surfing in on the waves and swimming quickly back out to wait for another set.

That's what I was doing today too.
A rainbow now appeared just in front of us as a tiny drizzle was released from the pink cloud. As we watched a second one formed just inside of it creating a double rainbow. Off to the right as I looked out at the surfers up the coast I saw a young hawksbill turtle chilling out on the surface, sticking its head out now and then to take a breath of air. Suddenly a nice wave came in and I took off paddling, gaining speed enough to glide down left on the face. The water was so glassy with the absence of wind that it felt like I was flying just like the pelicans I had just seen. Wow, it felt good. All of the images are still fresh in my mind as I glide down the wave thinking about how very lucky I am to be alive and well.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Happy Holidays from the Adventure Antigua Team

So many people around the world tomorrow will be enjoying a special meal with friends and family. It's our sincere hope that you all enjoy the holiday if you are lucky enough to have one tomorrow.
Here is a tiny Antigua, Caribbean gift to you all. It's just an image to look at and hopefully to make you feel warmer if you are in the middle of a cold winter.
This photo below can be clicked on to get the larger size if you think you would like to use it for your desktop's background.


Thursday, December 23, 2010

A new Antiguan book hits the shelves and it's something very unique


There are still a few people out there who wait until the last minute before they buy their Christmas gifts and if you are one of them in Antigua, then you may want to consider THE HISTORY OF SALVAGE IN ANITGUA written by my uncle, Dr. Nickolas Fuller.
The large "coffee table" book is a collection of stories and accounts taken from a long career of yacht salvage here in Antigua and Barbuda. Nick of course is a medical doctor but has spent considerable time saving yachts and their crews from being destroyed out on the reefs around Antigua. After filling boxes and boxes of reports and photos he decided that he had to tell the tales to a larger audience in order to save the accounts forever in print.

Read actual captain's reports and explanations supported by photos of how the boats were saved. In many cases the vessels were not so lucky as you can see in the photo above of one of the many ship wrecks that have littered Sandy Island since the very early days of colonial history to this day. This very interesting publication gives the reader an idea about how easily a skipper can get themselves into trouble and how important it is to have a good salvage company on standby. Everyone considering buying a boat and navigating around the Caribbean should read this to make sure these mistakes don't happen on their watch. Have a read and tell me what you think. You can get a copy at Best of Books, Lord Jim's Locker in Nelson's Dockyard, Catamaran Marina, The woods Pharmacy and North Coast Hardware.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

A new direct flight to Antigua from New York

While North America from Key West in the South East to Alaska in the North West and everywhere in between shivers with extremely low temperatures this week, some people are managing to escape to Antigua's regular warm temperatures via Caribbean Airlines' new jet service direct from New York. What we knew as kids to be called BWIA is now called Caribbean Airlines and thankfully this week they started flying back into Antigua directly from New York City's JFK airport.
It's now so easy to get here once again. All you have to do is imagine that within just a few hours you could say goodbye to the cold and be sitting on a beach sipping a traditional rum punch watching one of my boats go past as seen here in this Roddy Grimes-Graeme photo.

I know it's never that easy, but I am quite sure that for some people this new flight will be very exciting indeed. For more on the service and a bit of back slapping you can click here.
Please tell people about this new direct flight as we want to make sure that it stays here for good this time.
I remember when I was a kid we seemed to have more direct flights from the US that we do now. Glad to see there is a move in the right direction.

Thursday, December 09, 2010



As some of you know, one of my hobbies is photography and quite often it ends up being work too. Almost all of the photos shown on this blog since I started it in 2006 have been taken by me but I also have to shoot images for my brochures and website too. Ever since I first took up photography in university, i have been using photography to help my writing, and since then I have had images published with bits and pieces that i have written in many different magazines and other publications. Recently I wrote a big article for Liat Airline's Zing Magazine. Included in the feature were a bunch of images and I was very happy with the way it turned out. If you like Antigua you should try and get a copy as the article is about what makes our country unique from my point of view. Unfortunately Zing's website only has the words. Click here for that.
Although, I do plenty of photography work, I don't particularly like doing photo jobs or any sort of commissions other than travel related stuff. I was asked several times to shoot weddings. Check out the slide show of some of my wedding images here:

Although I have shot several of them, I don't like the pressure that goes along with shooting them and don't take any wedding jobs at all anymore. When anyone tells me that they need a photographer I point them to Roddy Grimes Graeme who i think is one of Antigua's best photographers. Click here for his site and some of his images. He shoots stills under his name and then does video with his company Acquafilms. Acquafilms mostly does yachting video but does all sorts of other video as well including weddings. I can't find their wedding site at the moment but hopefully will link to it another time.

Anyway, yesterday Roddy asked me to help him out by shooting an event at the Yacht Show that's taking place here at the moment. (I shot the photo above in low light from Xtreme on Sunday evening.) He became double booked because of the recent flight cancellations out of London. A wedding was moved to today and clashed with this yachting event. I said I would do it and have gotten my Canon 5D out and charged all the batteries. Wish me luck.
If you have time and want to have a look at more of my images you can look through some of my sets on flickr by clicking here. (remember Roddy shoots better shots if you are looking for a pro!)

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Catherines Cafe for lunch

This time last year we went on a private tour to Catherines Cafe and it was such a lovely day out. Today we are doing the same thing again and I'm excited.
Catherines is located inside Nelson's Dockyard which means that we will get a great little tour of the Harbour. I mentioned in a recent blog post that the Boat Show starts this week so we will be checking out some of the world's most magnificent yachts today too.

Anyway, Xtreme passes Catherines every day when doing the Round the Island (circumnavigation) trip and it's nice to actually stop off. That's the beauty of private charters. They are costly but can be very much worth it.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Plenty of room this weekend! Adventure Antigua Eco Snorkeling Island Tour by boat

We are doing tours both Saturday and Sunday this weekend and have space for you and yours. I am 100% sure that even if you have lived in Antigua for 20 years you will see, hear and generally experience something new on our tours. Here is a vid of our eco tour which we have on both days this weekend. Xtreme is only available on the saturday. Gimmie a call on +1 268 726 6355 or email us on once you have been to to have a look.