St Martin/St Marteen
A unique island - half French (great restaurants) and half Dutch (good chandleries) is a legacy from the 1800's. We got there after motoring all night towing a dinghy (dumb!) and stayed in Simpson Lagoon, a shallow protected anchorage where hurricanes destroyed many boats in the 1990's. Orient Beach on the north shore is the spot for those who want to hang out at the beach without being fettered by clothes.
St Bartholomew (St Barts)
Being French, bathing suits were scanty and restaurants were great. We rode around on a Moke, a small underpowered buggy through the hills of this small and expensive island.
We stayed 2 days at this little-visited island as it recovered from hurricane Hugo - a disaster that closed a studio that recorded The Rolling Stones and other class acts in the '80's. The volcano near Plymouth was a tourist draw in 1993, but since has created a disaster for the long-suffering population of this friendly island.
We arrived as the fleet of racing yachts was spilling out of Falmouth Harbour - 200+ sailboats participating in Antigua Race Week. Nelson's Dockyard, the area around the anchorages, has restaurants and facilities for cruisers. Stone towers dot the island, remnants of the sugar mills of past centuries that created the demand for slaves from Africa. The weekly event was the Jump-Up on Shirley Heights, a weekly steel drum and reggae party where tourists and cruisers mix with the locals.
A beautiful island with high mountains, lush rain forests, and smooth roads, thanks to the French taxpayers. Sulfurous steam seeps out of the mountain sides - testament to the volcanic forces lying within the mountains. Our anchorage at Pigeon Island was terrible, but south at Isles de Saintes was more peaceful as we explored Fort Napoleon.
In June we moved onto the Windward Islands.
Unfortunately we have NO pictures of these beautiful islands because of the loss of our storage locker in the USA.