First of all, thank you to everyone on here who’s offered feedback for me; this was extremely helpful in organizing our first trip to AXA. We booked our flights and hotel at Rendezvous Bay (“RBH”) several months in advance and counted down the days we had to thaw out from a cold Chicago winter.
We headed to AXA on a Saturday a.m. and arrived SXM about 20 minutes late, so we did not make the 2:45 GB ferry we arranged for. We knew this may happen, so we grabbed our bags and headed up where a GB rep was waiting for us to take us to the next water taxi (3:45). We then zipped over to the ferry terminal and had a drink at the little bar in front to kill some time before the water taxi departure.
We arrived at AXA without issue a little later and our rental jeep that RBH arranged for us was waiting for us in the parking lot, so off we were! We were not aware that RBH didn’t have signs for their hotel on the main road, so we missed the turn a few times and discovered we were to turn at the signs for Sunshine Shack and Anguilla Great House. As we proceeded down the road, there were signs for RBH. I loved that this was a little off the main road, as I always say there’s great things at the end of a dirt road in the Caribbean! We checked in and received a lovely welcome Rum Punch and checked into our room….spacious, clean and right on the beach. We couldn’t have been happier with our choice of where to stay.
Our first night, we kept it casual and went to Elvis’ for nachos and drinks. The nachos were huge and really good. After a few drinks with such a long travel day, we turned in by 9:00!
Sunday was our first full day and we enjoyed breakfast at our hotel (included with the room rate) and walked down the beach to Sunshine Shack where we relaxed, had a few drinks and some lunch (great ribs and chicken!) FYI: Sunshine Shack cooks at their own time frame and lunch is ready for all when it’s ready. Be there to put your order in or you may not eat as food is not made to order as most places do. We listed to the live music and made our way to Dune Preserve, which was a really chill bar with more live music. We grabbed a sunset cocktail at the Four Seasons Sunset lounge which was beautiful. For dinner, we ended up at Ocean Echo. My husband didn’t care for it, but I thought it was good (I had crayfish and he had something else—lamb?)
Monday we had some friends coming over from SXM, so we scooped them up at the ferry terminal and headed to Bamboo Beer Box for one of the best pina coladas I’ve had. We made our way down to Straw Hat and had a great lunch and chatted over cocktails. Mead’s Bay was choppy and I wouldn’t not have been comfortable getting in the water—in fact, I heard the red flags were up the following day. However, Rendezvous Bay in front of our hotel, the waters were as calm as a lake! We grabbed dinner at Roy’s which was casual with great food.
Tuesday we explored a bit of the east side of the island and headed over to Gwen’s, where chairs were taken by 11:30. We got in a quick swim at the stunning Shoal Bay and headed back to our hotel where we had chairs with our room. We made our way down to Dune Preserve for lunch which was great. We zipped over to the Malliouhana for sunset drinks and I discovered the frozen mojito. Wow, was it good!! Valentine’s dinner at Blanchard’s which was delicious.
Wednesday we had a day arranged on Chocolat, which turned out to be a perfect day! We met at the dock by Johnno’s at about 9:15 and headed to Prickly Pear (lunch was included) and then to Sandy Island where I discovered the guava colada, which I still dream about. LOL! We were back by about 3:30, so spent some time at our beach before heading off to Cap Juluca for our beach bbq. We had a drink at a different bar in the hotel first and learned they did not take Discover (hardly anyone on the island does) and their system was down so were not taking debit cards. The bartender would not even attempt to run our card as a credit card and I am pretty sure it would have worked. So we paid cash for our drinks and left since our other cards were back at the room and it seemed like a lot of work to go get a different card and head back. I didn’t want to work that hard to give someone $75/pp for bbq (though I’m sure it was really good), so we headed to Mango’s instead. And wow! Mangos impressed and was the best meal we ended up having on the island.
Thursday we did a little exploring and found “the arch” in the morning and then spent some time at our place enjoying the beach. We ducked over to Smokey’s at the Cove for lunch which was good, but the inflatable water park was a horrid view and had I known it was there, we would have passed. Also at Smokey’s was a large day trip boat from SXM with what looked like the cast of Jersey Shore on their booze cruise. We were happy to head back to our place. I enjoyed the frozen mojito and ambiance so much at Malliouhana, we returned for a pre-dinner cocktail. Then for dinner, Picante---more great food!!
Friday morning, we checked out of our hotel and headed back to SXM (there were tears out of me as we were on the water taxi over), and geared up for a few nights on the stunning and quaint island of Saba. Another spectacular island that was much different than AXA.
We’re now in the process of determining how we can do AXA again in November without breaking the bank right before the holidays. We bought the Anguilla Card before we left and had we remembered to use it the first several meals, we would have saved money. We did break even on it though!
Thanks again to everyone who was so helpful in the planning of this perfect trip. The time on AXA was not enough (is any island trip EVER long enough?!) and I believe we found our go-to island! Each place was better than the next and I cannot comment negatively on one thing. Everything was wonderful and the people were some of the most friendly we’ve encountered.
I’m happy to expound on anything if anyone has any questions, but that’s the long and short of it! :)