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Most Popular Places to Visit in Montserrat, Top Attractions
On Montserrat's picturesque northern side, new settlements are flourishing. Ecotourists and nature lovers travel by ferry from Antigua to hike the verdant rainforest trails, spot some of the island's many species of birds, dive and snorkel the thriving coral reefs, and sunbathe on the silver-sand beaches. Rich in natural beauty, friendly Montserrat is a haven for those seeking a slow and peaceful slice of tropical island life and a humbling reminder of nature's brute force. The mountainous island offers some of the most dramatic landscapes in the Caribbean. Montserrat is not as visited as some of its neighbors probably due to darker colored beaches but it offers towering peaks, rainforest-covered slopes, and feisty volcanos (the late 1990s saw the Soufrière Hills Volcano eruption cause huge amounts of havoc.
#1- Montserrat Mountain
Located about 30 miles (50 km) northwest of Barcelona is Montserrat Mountain, the 'Serrated Mountain.' This unique rock formation, sawed and sculpted by thousands of years of wind and rain, is most famously home to a Benedictine monastery, an important Catholic pilgrimage spot thanks to its 12th-century wooden statue of La Moreneta (The Black Madonna), Catalonia's patron saint. Aside from its religious and cultural importance, the mountain also boasts unbeatable views from its peaks.
#2- Soufrière Hills
Fondly referred to as Madam Soufrière, the smoky peak of the Soufrière Hills volcano draws visitors from all over the globe. The mighty volcano, known for its sheer magnificence, is located on the island’s southern side. Notice the remnants of the lava flows and the erstwhile island capital with sobering views of the volcano. Though the volcano is a part of the exclusion zone, visitors can take a guided tour and get the best views of the turbulent peak from several vantage points, including Garibaldi Hills, Jack Boy Hill, and Montserrat Volcano Observatory.
#3- Isles Bay Beach
Another favorite black sand beach of the island, Isles Bay Beach, is nestled in the western part of Montserrat at the mouth of Belham River; the valley has been a recipient of volcanic debris of the active volcano. Go trekking from one end of the beach to the next, seep in the views of the Soufrière volcano, picnic around the shaded area or grab a drink at the famous beach bars; this quiet beach turns into a lively space during weekends.
#4- Carr’s bay Beach
While the volcanic action has fenced off many parts of the island to the visitors, you can still find unspoiled beaches away from the big tourist crowds. A remarkable stretch of the Caribbean Sea near Little Bay, Carr’s Bay beach is an ideal spot for history lovers and sunbathers. Beachgoers can explore the giant reefs and underwater boulders at the south end of the beach; explore the remains of a fort, a war memorial, and the replica of Plymouth Clock Tower.
#5- Montserrat volcano observatory
A trip to Montserrat is incomplete without visiting the Montserrat Volcano Observatory (MVO), which continuously monitors the Soufrière Hills Volcano. Located in Salem, the observatory is the best place to learn closely about the giant volcano & its impact on the island.
#6- Jack Boy Hill Viewing Point
Traveling around the island, one of the best vantage points of past volcanic activities, the serene Jack Boy Hill should be on your bucket list. From sobering views of the active volcano, abandoned airport, ruined Eastern villages to the stunning ocean vistas, visitors can zoom in on the volcano from the on-site telescope. Once you trek up to the serene hill, you can also spend some time relaxing under the shaded picnic tables and soak in the views from the cozy little park. Be a leisurely picnic or inspiring vistas; this well-maintained viewpoint offers the best views of the majestic nature of Montserrat.
#7- Oriole Walkway Trail
Discover the lush wilderness of Montserrat as you take a hike on the Oriole Walkway Trail. Weaving its way through rubber trees, banana plantations, green mountains, and abundant fruit trees, the 1.3 mile Oriole trail offers sweeping views of the island and the Caribbean Sea.
#8- Woodlands beach
One of the charming beaches of Montserrat, Woodlands Bay Beach, is an easily accessible small black sand beach with contrasting turquoise waters. Backed by lush cliffs and rocks draping towards the frothing Caribbean waters, this secluded beach is best known for snorkeling and beachcombing along the dark volcanic sands. Walk along the driftwood bob, enjoy a picnic, spot the turtle tracks or pods of migrating whales; this treasured beach is a fine place to settle down for a beautiful sunset in the serene nature.
#9- Little Bay beach
The gentle waters and the soft gray sand shore are great for swimming, snorkeling, and relaxing under the Caribbean sun. Besides gorgeous waters, Little Bay is a hub of several restaurants and bars to hang out for lunch or drinks while enjoying the view. Try some Caribbean cuisines at the famed Pont’s Beach View, watch the boats on the northern end, or picnic beside the lapping waves; this divine beach is the perfect spot to relax and unwind.
#10- Rendezvous Bay
The only white sand beach of Montserrat, the bay can be reached only via sea or trekking over the Rendezvous Nature Trail. Enjoy the island’s best features with dramatic views of the Caribbean Sea as you go paddle or snorkel. Swim, hike, sunbathe or relax on the peaceful beach; if you’re lucky, you can have the entire beach to yourself. Besides, you can also catch a glimpse of the native Antillean fruit-eating bats as you kayak along the famous Bat Cave.
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