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“Unique Experience...Great Food” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Sandy Island

Sandy Island
Sandy Ground AI2640, Anguilla
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Type: Islands, Outdoors
Activities: Sunbathing
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Attraction details
Owner description: This beautiful island is only 25 by 150 yards and offers a quiet place for a swim, fabulous lobster lunch, or a drink at the beach bar.
North Carolina
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Unique Experience...Great Food”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2011

Spent a relaxing 5 hours on Sandy Island. Simone gave us interesting background info on her family's connection with the island and the struggles to build and rebuild after the inevitable hurricanes. This destination truly makes the most of what nature provides. We had the captain's platter for lunch (unbelievable ribs, shrimp and lobster). Don't miss the creative rum drinks and cold beer. Loved snorkeling and lounging on the sand. Will make this an afternoon excursion every time we return to Anguilla.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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122 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
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English first
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Best day of our trip!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 27, 2011

Sandy Island provided a perfect afternoon of relaxation, snorkeling, drinks, and lunch. The people there are incredibly friendly. It's not too crowded. And prices were very reasonable considering how great lunch was.

Visited March 2011
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, Massachusetts
Top Contributor
119 reviews 119 reviews
59 attraction reviews
Reviews in 43 cities Reviews in 43 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
“a day in paradise with great bbq and full bar”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2011

As if anguilla itself istn good enough,if you take a run over to sandy ground you can catch a small boat over to a small island in the middle of nowhere complete with food,drink,lounge chairs & snorkeling.the day we visited was a bit on the coudy windy side so it wasn't optimum for swimming/sunbathing but i still got some good rays & did some snorkeling.
Note for snorklers: there are small boats & dinghies coming; especially in the morning hours so be watchful.Best viewing spots is the reefs,of course,to the left or right do not try to head straight out where the catamarans anchor as it is too rough and far unless you are an expert swimmer.Saw a decent amount of fish but due to the boat traffic its not going to rate with offshore or quiet beaches (ive snorkeled half the carib and would put bermuda & st john at the top of this list).
Food was excellant; i devoured a delicious plate of ribs.About 6 beers avaialble (standard for the island) and full bar-and i mean full selection of liquors including approximately 15 rums.Try the jo jo a lethal mix of 3 rums that had myself and several others who stayed to the end of the day feeling swell.
Only drawback is the behavior of certain priviledged individuals coming from some of the pricier resorts that think the staff on island and/or boat captains are their personal servants and that they can throw childish tantrums if their food isnt ready when they want it or if you sit in their "reserved" tables.
The staff were nice as could be we had the pleasure to take the last boat off back to sandy ground with them and it was a great ending to a great day.
If you want solitude on this cay,you can have it but dont expect total peace and quiet as it is a tourist attraction

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2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Do not visit Anguilla without visiting Sandy Island”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2011

What a day! JoJo picked us up at Sandy Ground and a few minutes later we were having a rum punch on a tiny island of sand surrounded by the beautiful water you can imagine. The food was fantastic, the swimming was great--my only regret is that I didn't bring my snorkel gear! The service was fantastic. We ate at all the most popular restaurants on Anguilla, but the best service and most friendly hosts were on Sandy Island. I cannot recommend it strongly enough. No surprise that the Bachelor picked Sandy Island as a setting for one of its episodes. Go. You'll be glad you did.

Visited March 2011
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Beverly Hills, CA
12 reviews 12 reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
“Wish we didn't waste 1 of 2 days in Anguilla here.”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2010

I don't know what I was reading that made me want to go here. On paper, it sounds great. Go to a teeny sand bar in the middle of the water half a mile from shore, drink, BBQ, and hang out all day. The boat guy will pick you up and take you back for free whenever. Sounds amazing, right??

Here's what really happened. Waited for 1/2 an hour for the boat guy after calling. Then waited another 15 minutes while this guy waited for other people. Finally get over to the island and they tell you to order food immediately because it takes an hour to make. And that's fine although, after our experience, we are highly suspicious they tell you this so that everyone eats at the same time. Which we did. Like children in a cafeteria.

The beach was not very nice, sorry. It was littered with sea stuff. Coral, seaweed, bits of pieces of this and that. The majority of the water was not very swimmable IMO.

BBQ: I will say that the FOOD was very good. It was your basic BBQ but it was very well cooked and maybe was the only shining moment.

Frankly, there were only 5 other people on the island and we were freakin BORED out of our minds. Seriously. BORED. So we ate, had some drinks and some sun, and at about 3pm were ready to go. The boat driver told us he would take us when the other family was ready. We said NO, absolutely not.

So we waited for 15 minutes while he laid on top of the table arguing with the girl who sold the beers who was wrapped around him until I walked over and said CAN WE GO??

The thing that pisses me off is that we were so nice. We're young and chill. Tipped generously, tipped him for driving us over because all the reviews I read said the boat rides were free, ordered a big lunch, etc. If it wasn't for us and the FIVE other people on the island, they would have had NO profits or business the whole day.

While waiting to leave, we settled our tab to find out that we were charged TWENTY DOLLARS for the boat ride total. So basically $5 per person per way.

The TOTAL amount for a couple of beers, lunch, and the boat rides was $100.

I seriously really wish we had just stayed at our resort or gone to another resort to rent their chairs, have proper table service, and chilled all day.

Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sandyaxa, Manager at Sandy Island, responded to this review, October 29, 2010
Dear Guest,
We are saddened to hear that your day with us was not to your liking. We have since your post shared your comments with the island hosts on duty for that day so that we can avoid future mishaps by staff. We have a great team on the island and your criticisms can only serve to make them even better. Come back to see us, and we promise you the wonderful Sandy Island experience we are known for.

With that said, I do think it is important that we address the non-staff related issues you raised.

Sandy Island is a sand bar surrounded by a protective reef with a shallow bay for swimming on the front side, and rock y out crops on the other side that prevent swimming but allows for therapeutics soaks in the pools among the rocks during low tide. There is a spectacular sea fan bed that wraps around the island, and the reefs are teaming with tropical fish, sea turtles, sting rays and the like. Consequently, there will always be sea fans, bits of coral, sea shells, sea urchins and other underwater commodities washed up on the beach creating a collectors paradise for many visitors. Sea weed is the only thing that we rake on our beach and we actually bury it back into the sand, where it would go naturally had we not rake it. It is very important not to disturb the natural balance and appeal of the island. "Sea stuff" comes with the location.

Visitorship to Sandy Island on any day can range from 2 persons to 100+ persons. The average is usually somewhere in the middle spread out over the day so that the beach is rarely overly crowded. Many of our guests prefer days when the beach is quiet so that they can have that quintessential Robinson Crusoe feeling. Some like yourself I gather would prefer the island when it is bustling with fellow sun, sea and sand worshippers and that is totally fine. That to us represents the unpredictability and excitement of the island, because you never really know who is going to show up, and for the many celebrities that visit the island, this offers priceless anonymity. Again I invite you back to visit us, as no two days are ever the same.

The boat fare to Sandy Island has been $10 round trip for the past 7 or 8 years. If there is misinformation flying around in cyberspace, we apologize for the confusion and will look into that.

Thank you for complementing the quality of the food. We use the freshest ingredients and prepare them very simply, from scratch, per order. This has worked in our favor; setting us apart from other similar destinations. We are known for serving the best lunch of all off shore keys, with the greatest lobsters. We are happy that despite the issues you raised, the food was in your words the "shining moment". That fact put a huge smile on the cook's face. Thanks again for the kind words. Thanks for reading our response, and thanks in advance for coming back to Sandy Island. Chances are that the "sea stuff" will still be there. ;)
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