I could sum up Xtreme’s round the island tour in one word – wow! But that’s not my way. Why use one word when a thousand will do?! So here goes……
You are picked up off your hotel beach (in our case, Blue Waters) by a very quick looking and expensive boat. This is a serious piece of marine kit. Not your average sailing catamaran that offers unpadded, plastic seating, with side on views that has the captain whooping when he hits 10 knots! No, these boats had face the front seats, well padded and comfortable, with enough shaded areas to cover most people. And the captain whooped when he hit 40 knots! Now that’s a good reason to celebrate!
The tour took around 6 hours and was in turns exciting, adventurous, informative, cool (both in temperature and enjoyment!) and relaxing. Antigua really is stunning, particularly the North Sound area which was a surprise to me with 22 islands in the Atlantic dotted around. The fast boat we had easily navigated the area and it was a piece of paradise. Not for the inexperienced pilot mind – there were reefs that were above the surface all over the place and I could imagine only the VERY experienced pilots should venture within these islands.
During the circumnavigation you get to see an awful lot of Antigua’s beaches and the other hotels. This is useful as you can note which might look attractive or not, for future reference. For example, we were blown away by Jumby Bay and very much under whelmed by Sandals. Very useful information.
I’ve done many Caribbean tours and most of the time the staff can be a problem. Although it’s paradise to us to them it’s another day doing the same old thing, and it shows. Many a tour has been memorable mainly because of the surly staff, poor service allied with faces that look like they’re chewing a wasp. I’m very happy to say the staff on our trip (captain J.D., Nicky and Trevor) were the best we’ve encountered on this type of trip. They were always looking after their guests, always pointing out stuff along the way and their love and passion for their island showed through, and of course rubbed off on us. I’ve often thought Caribbean companies need to get more professional in the way it deals with tourists – you’re never 100% served well out here because there’s always issues with some staff at some point. But not here with these guys – my wife and I simply could not fault them. Brilliant.
James Bond stuff. Nuff said!
This tour was not cheap. We paid USD170 each. Let me tell you, I know a bit about boats and they would have burnt more fuel than the USD340 my wife and I paid. You simply won’t get a trip like this any other way at this price – so I can say it’s a cheap trip really, considering what you’re getting.
Lunch and drinks:
I enjoyed lunch on the beach at Green Island. It was fairly simple – chicken, salad, plantain and pasta. A touch bland in the pasta maybe, but it was all well cooked and the banana bread after was fabulous! But the highlight is eating with the waters lapping at your feet, the sun on your back and the triple engined boat awaiting your pleasure!
Just brilliant – the highlight of our holiday. It will be the highlight of yours too. So don’t hesitate, don’t worry about the cost, just do it.