Basseterre

We anchored in Frigate Bay just south of Basseterre. We were rolling a bit so decided to use the flopper stopper for the first time.  Reduced the roll with only one out although later on we started to roll again.

When we recovered it prior to sailing we found that two of the chains had broken, both at the same end so the plate was hanging vertically and doing nothing.

The next day we took the tender up to Basseterre for a walk round and lunch.

Main Street.

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Independence Square.

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The hills behind the town, all the islands look similar due to their volcanic formation.

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Visitor

At anchor off Charlestown we sat through a furious tropical downpour, one of those times you wished you could collect freshwater.

Next thing you know we have a little visitor. Must have been hunting insects over the water and we were the closest shelter.

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Very timid but we carefully built a tent over the top with a towel as it seemed to be shivering and very wet.

Stayed in there for about an hour then became active and scuttled onto a chair where we left it. Gone the next morning – hope it got lots of mossies.

Nevis

Arrived in Nevis and cleared in then relaxed for the day before going ashore the next morning. Lovely people, the whole process was pleasant, questions answered, advice given and swiftly completed.

There was a band in the square and we sat on the boat and had dinner with a nice musical background.  Dinner finished at 2000 and the band was still going at 0400, luckily we were well offshore otherwise hearing loss could have been a problem.

Despite all the blood curdling warnings on the web about dinghy theft in the Caribbean it was not allowed to lock the tender to the wharf in Nevis. We soon found out why, Pelican Security was on the job:

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No light fingers allowed here.

We had a wander about and enjoyed the local architecture.

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Montserrat

After 3 weeks in Antigua we were back to just the two of us and ready to move on. First stop was Montserrat. Well known for the volcano, Soufriere Hills, that decided to wake up in 1995 and has been active ever since.

Plymouth, the capital city and port was destroyed so the new port is now at Little Bay:

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After clearing in we hired a taxi and had a tour. The roads in the northern part are generally good but once you get closer to the volcano they are essentially built on top of the ash and volcanic debris. The island is now a big provider of sand and aggregates for construction, all courtesy of the volcano.

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The edge of the exclusion zone looking toward Plymouth, immediately below the front two condos was a cricket pitch. If you look at the top left corner of the left hand building you can see the score board. There won’t be any sixes scored here.

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The next day we set sail and cruised down the coast, Sir George Martin, who died recently, had a recording studio on the island (AIR Montserrat) until it was destroyed in Hurricane Hugo in 1989. After the volcano he organised a concert to raise money for the island and with the funds this cultural centre was built.

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As close as we got, there is a 2 km exclusion zone off the coast.

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Like being back in Rotorua, sulphur.  A more distant view:

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Deep Bay

Once we were well stored with the essentials for anchoring plus some food we sailed up to Deep Bay.  Well sheltered, excellent holding, nice beach, walks and a wreck in the middle of the bay to dive / snorkel on. The wreck was a barque carrying pitch from Brasil that had smoke coming from the hatch, not allowed to enter St. John they put into Deep Bay and opened the hatch to see what was going on. Pitch, heat and oxygen made short work of her and she lies in the bay with the stub of the mast above water, this happened in 1905.

Kapowai from the beach:

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At times there were quite a few boats and others we were on our own. Tourist boats came most days for an hour or so.

The fort on the hill that used to guard the channel to St. John:

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The view down the channel toward the harbour, 4 cruise liners in:

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Looking down at the beach, note the big hotel with loads of rooms. There was a bar at the end of the beach where we had a beer after a swim. We were well known and met all the guests of the hotel at one time or another – all 7 of them.

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Our hotel was much better,

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Jolly Harbour

We tied up on the 7th March and had a day of relaxing. It was Lois’ birthday on the 9th and I had arranged for Kate, Jordan & Matthew to fly over on the 8th as a surprise. It was a great reunion.

Once they were on board we moved up to Jolly Harbour, one of the reasons being it has a great supermarket only two minutes from the marina.

The beach was great:

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Nelson’s Dockyard

A short walk from the marina is Nelson’s Dockyard which is also a marina. Nelson spent 3 years here in the 1780’s as the senior Naval Officer. It was allowed to fall into dis-repair but was renovated and turned into a marina and tourist attraction. The only Georgian dockyard left.

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As described above

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Typical building

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After that the photographer lost interest and went shopping.

We later came back and had a nice lunch at the old dock where the sails were removed.

Neighbours

Antigua is a base for charter yachts and there is some impressive boats coming and going. Here are two, the older style one is owned by a big sucker and the military style one is owned by a glazier, one who thinks that having 10 is better than 8.

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