St.Vincent and the Grenadines
Don't miss this spectacular part of the Caribbean
Apr. 27, 2009 05:15 PM
The next morning following a special West Indies style breakfast complete with homemade “bakes” and salted cod – we headed to Bequia (pronounced BEK-way), just a short cruise from St. Vincent. As we pulled into peaceful Admiralty Bay – we were met by one of the locals who meet all the yachts that pull into the harbor and lead them to an anchorage that will hold them securely for the evening. These locals will bring you supplies if you wish and offer an assortment of fresh seafood, including lobster and conch (called lamby in this part of the world). They will also offer taxi service to those without a dinghy.
Their colorful boats are a trademark of Bequia and play an integral role in her history. Bequia is a whaling island and even today – on rare occasions stringently policed by international regulations – the entire island gets involved in the capture of a whale. Their boats – while small – are incredibly well built and in no way lack in seaworthiness. Their bright Caribbean colors add to the island atmosphere and are typical of the spirit of the people in these wonderful islands.
Once you are secure – it’s time to take the dinghy and zip into town. There are several little shops, a fresh fruit and vegetable market, lots of vendors selling models of the famous Bequia boats and of course – be sure to get to Frangipani in time for Happy Hour. This is a great place to meet the locals as well as other yachties and sample some of the great Caribbean rums and beers.
The next day we pulled up anchor and headed to Mustique. If you can imagine: an entire island of picture perfect cottages; rainbow colored fishing boats; a story book school house; not just well manicured lawns – but an entirely manicured island; magnificent island estates that are home to people such as Mick Jagger – who hosts a beach party every year to fund the school, Tommy Hilfiger – who sponsors the soccer team, Brian Adams, Phil Collins and more, then perhaps you have tiniest glimpse of what it’s like to be on Mustique.
As you approach the island you realize even from a distance that this is not your typical Caribbean island. Even the beach looks as if it has been staged for a movie set with perfectly placed coconut palms, colorful fishing boats on the shore and the flags of Basil’s, the infamous Mustique bar and restaurant, welcoming you to the island. The island is one of extreme contrasts: fishing boats to megayachts and quaint cottages to mansions with guests houses that would rival most homes. And it is all picture perfect.
If you want to venture beyond Basil’s and the beach and check out the rest of the island, you can call Michael who will pick you up in his covered jitney and take you around the island showing you the best beaches, the magnificent Cotton House Hotel, the airport (flying the flags of the countries of property owners on the island) and of course – the island homes of some of the famous residents.
If you like Blues - a good time to visit is in January or February when they have their two week “Blues Festival”. Money raised during the event is used to send children of St. Vincent to secondary school. You can learn more about this event by going to http://www.basils-mustique.com or http://www.dana-gillespie.com.
Our next stop was Canouan, home of the Raffles Resort and Trump Real Estate Development. This 1,200 acre resort offers lovely hillside villas, a luxurious spa and an 18 hole Par 72 golf course. This is the perfect stop for those golfers who don’t want to take a cruise because there is no golf course! Canouan offers a quiet anchorage for the yacht and guests can get up as early as they like and head to the golf course. For those guests who might not have golf at the top of their list of things to do – how about a day in one of the spa huts receiving a host of spa services? A spa hut is yours for the day – some like the huts in Bali – out over the water – and spa services are given in your hut: massages, manicures, pedicures, facials and more. After a day on the island – head back to the yacht and enjoy another magnificent Caribbean sunset.