The most northerly of the Leeward Islands, Anguilla retains the laid-back character of a sleepy backwater despite its status as a luxury holiday resort destination. Although famous for its 33 white sand beaches and ecologically important coral reef beaches, it is surprisingly quiet and unspoilt even in high season. Picnics on board or ashore, sunset cocktail cruises, secluded snorkelling trips and excursions to cay restaurants are all great ways to have fun while seeing more of the island. One of the most beautiful bays is Shoal Bay East, while the best diving can be found out at Prickly Pear Cays, an underwater cavern where nurse sharks and barracuda swim through rock formations not far from several sunken shipwrecks.
Nature lovers can view over 120 species of bird or trek in Anguilla’s small but perfectly formed rainforest. A respite at one of the luxury hotels may be needed before taking an historical journey to Anguilla’s top archaeological site, the Fountain and the Anguilla National Trust Museum in The Valley. Culture vultures can take in the many art galleries and interesting architecture, such as the exterior of Wallblake House.