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in Anguilla

Destination Information

This British Overseas Territory remains a low-key place, with narrow roads and few large buildings. A tranquil speck in the Leeward Islands, Anguilla is 16 miles long, 3 miles wide and home to about 16,000 inhabitants. The landscape is flat and scrubby, but the sea is a luminous turquoise, and the white-sand beaches are among the best in the Caribbean. Perhaps because of its proximity to the French islands of St. Martin and St. Barths, Anguilla boasts a surprising number of excellent restaurants. Most visitors arrive either by plane from Puerto Rico (75 minutes) or by private hotel cruiser from St. Martin (35 minutes). For the more adventurous, there is an entertaining public ferry.

There is little variation in the year-round temperature, and rainfall is light. The most pleasant time to visit is January to June. 

Editor Tips

Cove Bay

Anguilla has superlative beaches. As the island has developed, my favorites have shifted. Shoal Bay used to be exquisite, but nowadays it can be overcrowded. Meads Bay, on the northwest coast, boasts a mile of sugary sand flanked by two memorable resorts: Malliouhana and the Four Seasons. Cove Bay, on the south coast, offers stunning vistas across to the peaks of St. Martin.

The Belmond Cap Culuca

Set on its own 180-acre peninsula at the southern tip of Anguilla, Belmond Cap Juluca boasts an extraordinary mile-long stretch of powdery sand. The property’s protected bay is perfect for water skiing, windsurfing and sea kayaking. Catamarans and sailboats are available for lessons or charter. For true indulgence, book an alfresco treatment in one of the spa’s beach cabanas.

Light Meals on Meads Bay

Two of my favorite spots for light meals are on Meads Bay. With its toes-in-the-sand informality, Blanchards Beach Shack (Tel. [264] 498-6100) is notable for its fish tacos and mocha shake. (The adjacent Blanchards Restaurant is open only at night and is one of the island’s best.) For a sit-down meal, it’s hard to beat the Straw Hat (Tel. [264] 497-8300). Try the spicy fish sandwich. Additionally, if you ever think of chucking it all to open a beach bar, be sure to read “A Trip to the Beach,” Bob and Melinda Blanchard’s tale of their lives as Vermont-based entrepreneurs who did just that in 1994.

Direct Dial Codes

To phone hotels in Anguilla, dial 1 + 264 (Anguilla code) + local numbers in listings.

Entry Requirements

Passport. Visit, and for travelers’ health information,


East Caribbean dollar (XCD). Set rate valued at XCD2.7 = US$1.00 as of June 2019. Note: Our suggested hotel quotes rates in US$.

When to Visit

There is little variation in the year-round temperature, and rainfall is light. The most pleasant time to visit is January to June.

U.S. Embassy

None. U.S. Embassy is located in Barbados, Tel. (246) 227-4000.