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  #1  
Old 10-31-2007
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Luperon to and through the Bahamas

The wife and I are going to be sailing north from Luperon leaving in early Jan. We're looking for any info/hints and tips from those that have made the trip. It'll be one way with Fla as the destination. One biggie I'm currently deciding upon is where to check into the Bahamas at after leaving Luperon. Currently, we're still on the fence as to whether we'll check out the Turks and Caicos.
Any and all input is appreciated!
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Old 10-31-2007
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Lat...It is unclear from your post whether you are simply looking to make time of have a leisurely cruise north. After Luperon, you might enjoy Provo on the T&C since it is quite civilized with real supermarkets and restaurants where you don't have to worry about the food. For that sort of thing it is BETTER than anywhere else short of Nassau or Florida. Otherwise I'd give it a pass unless you are into Scuba diving.

As far as check in to the Bahamas goes...there are not a whole lot of options from the south. Going the other way, we simply sailed from Georgetown to Provo in one shot. If you want to stop and do some exploring along the way...Matthew Town on Inagua is your southernmost port of entry but is dicey an any kind of weather. San Salvador is another POE that is off the beaten path but more accessible and protected.
If I were doing it and had a little time to kill...I think I would check in on Long Island...then go over to Rum Cay to explore a bit...than over to Georgetown and up the Exumas chain stopping along the way at all the pretty spots before heading to Chubb and acorss to Bimini and FL.

Not much point in paying the $300 entry fee if you can't enjoy it a bit!!
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Old 11-01-2007
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Oh I'll be enjoying it! We've got about two months to get the boat from Luperon to Fla. We'd like to take out time within reason. I'll check the guidebooks and charts. Seems like a long way from Luperon to Long Island! What do you know about Mayaguana? Is that a port of entry? I've received conflicting reports about it and have no idea what the deal is.
Thanks for the reply!
Rick
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Old 11-01-2007
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rick...I have not been there but hear it is QUITE deserted with a lot of coral and big lobsters!
It s not a port of entry according to noonsite which says:

Several boats have had problems stopping at Mayaguana, which is not an official port of entry. The island Administrator handles customs and immigration formalities and must be contacted for permission to stop.
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Old 11-13-2007
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Jumping in on your conversation here, but my husband and I are leaving from the states next week, heading for the T&C and then the DR--most likely Luperon...don't know how long you've been there, but would be interested in any tips on the DR and Luperon in particular--have you enjoyed it? Do you recommend it? We plan to be there by early Dec
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Old 11-13-2007
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Lizz/Kev... We were there in Luperon in 2005 for a month and we hated everything about the place. In my view it was the worst place we visited in 6 years of cruising. Filthy, unsanitary, poor food and water, corrupt officials, abject poverty, whores all over the streets and many cruisers who seemed to be waiting for US statutes of limitations to wear out or the 60's to return.

Others just love the place for the cheap living and some of the country side IS spectacular...but don't swim under the waterfalls...bad stuff in the water!
Some things may have changed in the last couple of years but nothing could induce me to return. If i were doing the thorny path again...I would head to the new marina in Puerto Plata. BTW...how do you plan to be there in early December?? Sailing straight through? Steve Pavlidas' Guide to Turks and Caicos gives excellent advice on the passage AND good chartlets and waypoints for Luperon.
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Old 11-13-2007
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Thanks so much for the info...this will be our first season cruising the Caribbean, so all advice is most welcome. Currently we're in Beaufort and will be jumping off this weekend for the Turks (weather permitting)--there's a chance we might go all the way to Puerto Rico, but if we're feeling antsy for land, we'll hit Provinciales instead and then make a stop in the DR on our way to Puerto Rico--basically following the latter part of Van Sant's path...it just looked like Luperon made sense if we end up in the Turks, but again, any and all advice is welcome.
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Old 11-13-2007
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Lizz/kev...you can't go to PR or the BVI's via sea unless you go out to about 60 west to get the proper trade wind angle. There is no other way to PR except on the thorny Path...so it is pretty hard to end up at the T&C by accident...you need to choose one path or the other and if you are going the sea route you are much better heading out from Beaufort to 60W than trying to bash your way out from the Bahamas.
Assumig that you are not prepped for the sea route...then you will be going down the Thorny Path and you can make either Puerto Plata OR Luperon from the T&C with the right weather but there is NO way to make Puerto Rico without a stop in the DR and several hundred miles of easting into the trade winds and seas (as VanSant makes clear.) May I also suggest that once you make it to the EAST end of the DR and prepare to cross the Mona Passage, that you do not go ashore or leave your boat unattended in Samana. Simply anchor and rest and make your passage at the first opportunity.
We managed to make it from Luperon to the south shore of PR (Ponce...which was WONDERFUL) thanks to weather routing from Chris Parker (contrary to all of VanSants advice!) so I would suggest him as a resource for you on SSB or via e-mail as you make your way:
http://www.caribwx.com/ssb.html

Good luck on the voyage and keep us posted on your progress!
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Old 11-15-2007
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re:

lizzandkevin,
If you guys do end up in T&C and/or Luperon, how about revisiting this thread and sending a real time recon report?
I'll be in Luperon Dec 31 and will need a few boat oriented services (do locals clean bottoms in-water?) before making the jump to Provo.
Thanks!
Rick
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Old 11-18-2007
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Funny how some people don't like Luperon and others do. Official corruption? same as just about anywhere else in the Spanish Caribbean. Disgusting ex-pats? Same kind of folks I found around the docks in Florida and the U.S. Virgins? Abject poverty? I guess that particular observer has had some very limited experience with other parts of the world. Dominicans are certainly far from wealthy in a material sense, but they have a good diet and seem to enjoy their lives. Filthy? Less so than it used to be. Perhaps this observer doesn't remember what the U.S. looked like before Lady Bird Johnson's beautification push in the 1960s.

Peter
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