The SpaceLarge, light and airy, with a regular breeze, you can hear the ocean from the base of the cliffs below. Two large rooms are spacious and luxurious and a third is small but comfortable. The downstairs has multiple areas for relaxation and dining, whether indoors during inclement weather or on the terrace.
The master bedroom has a private balcony with table and chairs and a fabulous view over the Caribbean Sea. It also has a recently renovated en-suite bathroom. The two other rooms share a bathroom between them.
The living room area can be opened up to the breeze or closed down if it's windy. There are several sofas and armchairs, a TV with DVD player, and a small selection of DVDs available. There is no cable TV but the internet is (usually) fast enough to stream services such as netflix on laptops/tablets.
On the terrace there is a dining table and chairs, which is where most people prefer to dine, since it is breezy and has a wonderful view. There is also a day bed, with marvellous views over the sea. Our guests report spending many hours relaxing there!
The kitchen has a bar-style hatch that opens onto this terrace. Inside the kitchen you will find everything you need - a large fridge/freezer, stove, microwave, coffee machine, a variety of pots, pans and utensils, and all of the crockery you will need. The kitchen is rather dated in style, but we keep it clean and provide everything you should need to cater for yourselves during your stay. Please note that the oven on the gas stove does not currently work, so we have provided a separate, electric counter-top oven to replace it. There is also a large gas-powered BBQ outside the back door.
The pool is deep and welcoming, for guests who want to get exercise or just relax. There are two sun loungers to relax on at the far end of the pool, with lovely views of the forested interior of the island. Steps for the second-largest bedroom lead directly to the pool, which is otherwise accessed from the terrace.
There are two sofa beds downstairs, one inside and one outside, and we may consider accepting more than 6 guests, but please contact us in advance.
From the side of the villa you can walk through the garden to a path, which leads down through the woods to Woodlands Beach. Please note that we do not own any of the land that this path runs through, so it sometimes becomes overgrown. It is advisable to wear stout shoes for the walk, which is quite steep.
Please note that Montserrat is a remote island. Replacing even very basic household items, appliances, fixtures and fittings is VERY expensive and time-consuming. We have recently completed a series of renovations, but we realise that it is not perfect. As such we do not present Surf Sighed as a luxury villa, with the expectations that this brings. We prefer, instead, to offer the stunning views, expansive rooms, large swimming pool and fabulous peace and quiet at a price unrivalled across the rest of the Caribbean and hope that our guests will bear with us if some of the doors do not slide so smoothly, or the furniture is a little old-fashioned. We are always listening to guests and making small changes that improve their enjoyment of the space, and hope to continually improve.
Please rest assured that we never cut corners in ensuring that the place is spotlessly clean, or on comfort issues such as beds and bed linen, insect netting, lighting and fans.
We also believe in being responsible employers. We pay better-than-average hourly rates to our employees, and also guarantee them a minimum weekly wage throughout the year, so that their income is not affected if occupancy rates drop.
Please contact us if you have any further queries. Guest AccessThe whole villa. We use this entirely as a rental villa now so you will have exclusive access to the house and pool. Interaction with GuestsWe are not always on island. When we are, we will meet you at the villa and show you around. When we're not, we have a villa manager, Kathy, who will see to your every need and meet you at the property when you arrive. There will always be somebody at the end of a telephone or email to help you out should you run into any problems. The NeighborhoodWith the mountains behind and beach in front, the Woodlands area is perfect for all interests. Walk down through the forest to the beach, where you can snorkel, swim or play in the sand with often nobody else around. Or hike up to the jungle in 10-15minutes from the villa and explore a real rainforest. It's centrally located on the island for access to shops and restaurants and is at the end of a cul-de-sac so there's very little traffic.
You can research plenty of information online before you visit and during high season we recommend that you book restaurants and activities in advance.
Ram’s is pretty much the only place to buy groceries on this part of the island. In Brades there’s Ashok’s and Carr’s Bay there’s King’s. Most stock pretty much the same things but at King’s you have the option of delicious homemade frozen Indian curries.
On Fridays and some other mornings you will find local people selling seasonal fruit and vegetables, which is the best way to buy fresh produce.
Locations all viewable on googglemaps (sorry for misspelling but airbnb censor the real name, for some unknown reason).
•Pont’s Beach View - Little Bay
•Ziggy’s – Woodlands (dinner only, quite expensive, but best food on island):
•Watermelon Cottage (very atmospheric, dinner only) - Olveston
•Olveston House (Sir George Martin’s house, although he won’t be there!)
A new addition to the island is Java Lava, in St Peter’s. Open most days 9am-3pm it bridges the gap between coffee shop and restaurant. Visit for drinks and food ranging from snacks to meals – they have daily specials such as rice bowls, burgers, panini, rotis.
Hilltop Café is a must for any visitor. It’s a coffee shop with some pastries and cakes but the main thing you visit for is the atmosphere. The owners have lived on island for decades and David filmed some iconic video footage of the early eruptions and what life was like then. They will show you the video (around 20 mins) that’s basically the same as at the MVO but in more comfortable surroundings!
There are lots of small takeaway places for basic chicken and rice lunches. Some days there are roadside BBQs.
There are few things to ‘see’ on Montserrat - most pleasure is derived from what you ‘do’ here. Relaxing by the pool, swimming in the sea, diving, snorkelling, hiking in the hills – it’s a wonderful place to be.
Check out the tourism website above for most details, but we have a few extra things we can offer through friends: private yoga classes, nature tours.
It is worth checking out some of the island’s artists. Many have exhibitions in Java Lava coffee house or the National Trust. Our favourites are Shan Murrell – Little Island Designs and Franki and Kathy in the shop beside the MVO.
If you hired your car from Winston Telesford, also ask him for a tour that takes you into Plymouth – he’s one of the few approved to operate there and is very knowledgeable. He’s a lovely person. Getting AroundIt is very difficult to get around on Montserrat without a car and we suggest that you arrange car hire before you arrive. We always recommend Winston Telesford as a reliable person to supply your car. He will pick you up at the airport or port when you arrive, arrange your temporary driving license, and take you to Surf Sighed. His prices are US$35 a day and will do deals on longer rentals. Once you have booked with us we will send you his contact details so that you can book your car hire with him. There are other agencies available if you search on Montserrat car hire on the internet but we have never used them and cannot make particular recommendations. Other Things to NotePLANNING YOUR TRIP
Wherever you’re coming from in the world, you’ll need to transit another island in order to get to Montserrat. Most choose Antigua, as there are regular flights and ferries to Montserrat. Guadeloupe or other islands are possible if you charter a plane (this can be cheaper than you think if you are more than two people). Please contact us if you’re considering a charter as we may be able to assist.
Unless you particularly want to overnight in Antigua then take care when booking your international flights. Some arrive without enough time for you to transit to Montserrat flights (which can’t leave after sunset). You should leave a gap of 2 hours between your expected arrival time in Antigua and scheduled departure with another airline. You can always take the ferry, which leaves later, but it doesn’t run every day. In summary – check your onward travel before booking your international flights!
Book flights for Montserrat through SVG Air or Fly Montserrat (they both have websites, but Airbnb hide them if I put them here so you'll just have to search for them).
N.B. Please check hand luggage rules of Fly Montserrat/SVG before you travel as they’ve been known to charge extra for small suitcases as if they’re hold luggage.
For the ferry timetable (buy tickets on departure) you should follow the links on the Visit Montserrat website.
N.B You must be at the ferry terminal 1.5hrs before scheduled departure to complete immigration and customs procedures.
Ferry: EC$150 each way (approximately US$55 or £38)
Flight: Usually around US$115 each way
Ferry: You will be charged a departure tax from Antigua if you have been in Antigua or Barbuda for more than 24hrs (I think approximately EC$40 (£10 or US$15), but it has recently changed).
Flights: You will be charged an EC$55 (US$21 or £14) departure tax from Montserrat.
If you cannot demonstrate that you are transiting Antigua in less than 24hrs by giving them a printed copy of your online airline ticket out of Antigua then you will also be charged a tax of US$37.50 (EC$95 or £24) upon departure from Montserrat.
ACCOMODATION IN ANTIGUA
If you need somewhere to overnight then the following are budget to mid-range options that either we or friends of ours have used:
Near the airport…
(Be aware there’s nowhere to eat near these if you want an evening meal, but a taxi will not be expensive, although check the currency and rate before taking it)
- Wind Chimes
- Carter’s Guest House
In St John’s…
- The Heritage Hotel (rooms can be noisy overlooking the street on a weekend night but it’s comfortable and air conditioned and you can ask for an inside-facing room)
- Siboney Beach Club (on a popular beach, not too far from the airport, and next to a nice bar and restaurant).
- South Coast Horizon (20 minute drive from St John’s, a little basic but lovely, peaceful setting with private, deserted beach and mangrove swamps. A favourite of ours).
- Ocean Point Residence Hotel and Spa (not too far from St John’s and the airport, nice setting, in-house Italian restaurant).
Avoid unless desperate…
Inn La Galleria
Most people here operate with phones, not on the internet (including businesses). You can find most numbers in the yellow pages; either the copy we left for you at the villa or by looking up the Montserrat Yellow Pages online.
There is no phone at Surf Sighed but we have always found it relatively inexpensive to call phones here from our skpe account rather than racking up big phone bills with international phones. If you’re staying for a long time you may want to consider getting a local sim card – you can visit either Flow or Digicell for this.