Nelson's Dockyard - Antigua

Monday 6th February 2012
Nelson's Dockyard is situated in English Harbour on the west coast of Antigua and just a five minute walk from where we're anchored in Falmouth Harbour. Built between 1723 and 1745 the dockyard was Britain's main naval Station in the leeward islands. Originally named "His majesty's Antigua Navel Yard" it later became known as Nelson's dockyard when restorations began in 1951, due to the fact that Admiral Horatio Nelson was stationed here in 1784.

The work done to restore the yard has made it into a beautiful, tranquil place to escape into a little bit of English History. With a wonderful museum, bakery, boutique shops and restaurants we found the harbour a great haven to spend a peaceful afternoon away from the boat.

Work to Play!

There's always something that has to be fixed on a boat and this time it's the outboard motor on our dingy. In seven years she's barely had a hiccup so I guess it's her turn for some attention...just have to find the problem first!

Super bowl Sunday

Ting Time!!

Falmouth harbour - Antigua

We're back in Antigua and Falmouth harbour has been just a little of a culture shock to say the least. There must be hundreds of millions of dollars worth of yachts all moored here in one place - and that doesn't even include the neighbouring English harbour which holds even more!
We're anchored behind with the slightly "smaller" yachts, that's the Mirabella V in the foreground with the tallest mast of any sailing vessel in the world.

Fresh Fish!

 Finally caught another nice size Mahi Mahi,  lucky for us it happens to be one of our favourite fish and more importantly - he  really helped to extend our dwindling fresh food stores. This little guy filled four gallon size zip lock bags with fillets, making  it well worth the extra 30 minutes needed to land him while we crossed the Guadeloupe/Antigua passage..

Deshaies - Guadeloupe

Thursday 2nd February 2012
The sun doesn't always shine in Paradise, and as we're still in transition between the wet and dry seasons it's not uncommon for us to get a rain shower now and then. However, here in Deshaies bay on the north west coast of Guadeloupe we had about three days of showers with little respite in between!
While we were keeping dry on the boat we made the most of the time; catching up with Internet, playing games on the ipad and cooking up new recipes - Jimmy bought this bag of vegetables, from a small local french market, for just one euro and it contained everything we needed for a delicious soup...
Now and then the rain did let up and we escaped on shore to do some exploring. Guadeloupe is another island owned by the French and the village of Deshaies has some great restaurants, gift shops and dive companies.
We hiked in the hills to the south of the bay for some great views overlooking the village and stopped at Hemingway's restaurant -  unfortunately they don't serve food during the day!

The Saints

Monday 30th January 2012
The beautiful Iles des Saintes, a small group of french islands situated between Dominica and Guadaloupe, are the perfect break for beach time, snorkeling and hiking. We anchored off the main island behind Pain De Sucre piton and were joined by friends off the boat 'Mehari' - a family of eight who have been sailing together for two years - visit their blog here

A few of us decided to stretch our legs and go for a hike to the Le chameau ( lookout tower)on the highest point of the island. Jimmy and I had done this hike before but had forgotten how steep a climb it was. Emma and Levi were real troopers as the hike was a  little unexpected for them and they were only wearing flip flops(and Eric in crocs)! Luckily we were rewarded with some great views along the way.
Half way point
Climbing to the top of the lookout tower to get a better view...a little scary but well worth it.

Eric, Emma, Levi and Jimmy enjoying the view north out towards the south side of Guadaloupe.
After the hike we headed into the town of Bourg De Saintes for some much earned fries and ice cream!
...And back to the beach to meet up with the rest of the family!
Miles enjoying his first fresh coconut and a playful Lizard!
A beautiful present from Lily.


Saturday 28th January 2012
Back in Dominica, a gem in the caribbean crown, and one of our most savoured islands. We've been excited to get back here as Dominica holds some of the most beautiful, untouched rainforest in the caribbean and the lack of hotels, and thus tourists, make it a great relaxing hideaway. Although the number of cruising yachts stopping here has seemed to increased (as well as small independant cruise ships), the islands still holds alot  of the old school Caribbean charm. 

There are a few choices of tours you can take here, our favourites being the Indian River (by row boat) and a hike to the hot springs for a swim. All of which can be arranged by the 'boat boys' who will visit you in their skiffs and pick you up and drop you off.  However, times are changing and even though there are still no big  hotels, word has spread in the cruiser community and prices of island tours have doubled since last time we were here. We opted not to do any tours this time but just to relax and enjoy the area and people of Portsmouth town. The local buses are also a great way to get around and with a little bit of organisation you can see everything without a guide.

Ships washed up on the beach from previours hurricanes

On our last visit Pirates of the Caribbean 2 and 3 were being filmed here in Prince Rupert Bay and we were lucky enough to be anchored next to the Black Pearl and have Johnny Depp pass by everyday on his way to and from filming. Unfortunately this visit wasn't quite so glamorous but we still love the island and the great back to nature feel it radiates.


Hopefully these give you a better idea of where we are and where we're headed!


Tuesday 24th January

We've started to head north and our first stop after leaving St.Lucia is the town of St.Pierre on the north west point of Martinique. The anchorage lies in the Shadow of Mt. Pelee volcano, which in 1902 erupted killing just under 30,000 people. Two lucky residents survived, Cyparis, who was imprisoned in a stone cell, and Leon Leandre, a cobbler in his cellar!

Last time we were here we spent a few days exploring the village and hiking in the hills above, this time we just used it as an overnight anchorage and as a jumping point to get further north to the island of Dominica. The trade winds have been blowing in full swing, on the Atlantic crossing this made for a great downwind sail, now that we're heading north  between the islands it means a lot of wind and big swell hitting us on the beam and some times head on. It's not making for the most enjoyable sailing for me as we end up wet and soggy but Jimmy is Loving the speed and  the opportunity to push Blue Moon at what she does best. 

Rodney Bay - St. Lucia

Friday 20th January

It's a strange feeling to be back in the Caribbean again, a place so familiar to us and yet everything feels new. In seven years a lot can change but really the underlying way of life is exactly the same and that's what we love. We haven't found a cruising community like this anywhere else in the world and we were welcomed back in with open arms.

Making the most of a Christmas present from Jimmy's mum we decided to Literally 'splash out' and spend a week in Rodney Bay marina and give Blue Moon some desperately needed TLC. In four days we had already used over 400 gallons of water as we scrubbed away the thick coat of Sahara dust we'd collected since Morocco. Luckily we were able to balance working on the boat with exploring the local area and celebrating our circumnavigation with good friends.

Caribbean Cuisine

Chicken & Potato Roti
Steamed fish, mash potato, beans & rice, plantain, bread fruit and yuca.
One of the great things about being back in the Caribbean is the local food, made from locally grown ingredients it's real soul food which leaves you feeling like you've eaten a 'proper' meal! Roti's are one of our favourite - it's basically curry wrapped in a flour pancake or wrap. The curry often varies to include either chicken, beef, goat, shrimp and with or without vegetables. Beans and rice are another popular meal and when mixed with either steamed fish, jerk chicken or beef in a kind of gravy it's really delicious!
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