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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi.

Just returning from a 10 day one-way charter from St. Lucia (Marigot) to Grenada (True Blue) with Horizons on a Bavaria 45 and thought I'd scribble down a few comments. Will not review the boat and Charter company here (though both were fine), just focus on sailing & destinations. Previously have chartered BVIs, Antigua o/w to St. Maarten, and Phuket Thailand, so that's all i have for comparison except B. C. where i sail regularly. Obviously people who sail the windwards regularly will have much more informed opinions, but i figure this might be a useful perspective.

We did Marigot (st lucia) to Soufriere/Pitons to Bequia (SVG, Skipped St Vincent Island itself) to Mayreau to Tobago Cays to Union (lunch stop) to Carriacou to St. Georges (GND) to Prickly Bay to True Blue. Skipped St. Vincent on numerous peoples' advice and b/c of time constraints.

PROs:

1. Great sailing, reliable perfect tradewinds.
2. Large choice of anchorages.
3. Good scenery.
4. Warm but with the breeze not uncomfortably hot/humid and few flies.
5. Generally friendly people (but see CONs, below).
6. Some sea life - sea turtles, dolphins, pelicans, sharks.
7. Apparently good snorkeling but the charter company forgot our snorkel gear unfortunately.
8. A variety of beach bars and restaurants from basic/local to higher end.
9. Many more locals at the beaches, restaurants, sailing, fishing than on my other charters, which was nice.

HIGHLIGHTS:

1. Views of the Pitons, of course.
2. Anchored at Tobago Cays with nothing but seas breaking on a reef and open ocean in front of us.
3. nice, relaxing passages b/w St. Lucia & Bequia and b/w Carriacou & St. Georges.
4. Sailing w pod of Dolphins.

CONS:

1. Most of the anchorages were rather crowded by most standards except when compared to BVIs.
2. Most of the anchorages were mildly rolly, and one night quite rolly despite swells generally 1-2 meters during the trip. To be fair, though, there were some northerly swells and we never bothered with a stern anchor.
3. Except in Grenada, rather frequently being approached by boats looking to sell things, act as water taxi or moorings. A few times this was useful, but on the balance a bit annoying for us. Generally they did not persist but one guy in Clifton harbour was plain aggravating. No issues in Grenada.
4. Offered drugs (Ganja & cocaine) at least 4 times - only in Soufriere for some reason - the guys did not persist when we said no, though.
5. Food was more expensive that i expected.

THINGS I WOULD HAVE LIKED TO DO BUT DIDN'T:

1. More sailing on South coast Grenada.
2. Anchoring at least once on the island of St. Vincent - we skipped it b/c of time and advice, but i slightly regret.
3. Done some more touring via taxi on the islands further afield from the anchorages (i went jogging on several of the islands and they were charming - especially Grenada seemed to have a lot to offer)

OTHER COMMENTS:

1. Food was surprisingly good, probably better than i remember in the leewards & BVI on average, though obviously no where near as tasty as Thailand.
2. Did not encounter any crime, but took precautions like locks and lights.
3. The beaches were lovely, but we're just not huge lying-on-the-beach people.
4. Clearing in/out was easier than i recall in the Leewards (except in Clifton which was still a pain), but the Leewards trip was a few years ago so maybe its changed.

BOTTOM LINE:

Very enjoyable trip, especially the perfect sailing, with a few drawbacks. It was worth while. I would consider another Windwards trip at some point with a slightly different itinerary for variety. Martinique looks interesting.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
thanks for the responses. maybe this thread will be a useful resource in the future.

yes, B.J., they did make us go to the airport at Clifton, Union Is - customs near the waterfront, immigration at the airport. wasnt that much of a pain, just an annoyance. agree, capecodda, - who in their right mind would give customs a hard time?

we anchored everywhere except Soufriere Bay/Pitons and Bequia. We found the anchorages to be rather crowded by our standards, but never had a real problem finding a place except at Saltwistle Bay, Mayreau, which was a freakin' floatin' parking lot.

loved Tyrell as well. loved the windward side of Bequia for a run. Stayed an extra day at Carriacou since it was lovely.

indeed mostly on port tack for the whole trip, but had some beating from south coast St. Vincent to Bequia and along the south coast of Grenada. I was happy enough with the relaxing reaching with great scenery and weather - we get enough beating here in the various straits in BC/Wash where the wind invariably seems to be in your face. plus i needed a relaxing vacation from work.

We had winds mostly 15-20 kts, except 25-30 just north and south of St Vincent/St Vincent - Bequia. swells generally 1-2 meters.

cheers
 
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