Although we have now moved on to Carriacou, we had a great week in Grenada with Steve.
On Sunday we went to the famous Beach Bar on Hog Island and joined in with the fun all afternoon. They have chicken and fish dinners, lots of rum and a live band and you just pull the dinghy up onto the beach. Lots of cruisers and hotel guests milled around and it was a good place to meet people.
We decided to leave before dark though, to negotiate the reef back to the boat.
On Monday we joined Cuddy and 6 fellow cruisers for a whole day tour. Our guide was very knowledgeable about the plants and history of the island and we stopped many times to sample produce taken from the hedges or, it seemed, from people’s gardens!
We sucked on white cocoa beans, saw cashew nuts growing, one nut to each fruit – no wonder they are expensive, visited a nutmeg, cocoa and rum factory and also had lunch in Grenville, the second largest town.
We stopped at a waterfall and managed to avoid most of the vendors, which was quite a feat as they are very persistent.
Grenada was the world’s biggest nutmeg producer at one time but Hurricane Ivan destroyed almost all their trees in 2004 and it takes years for them to recover. We saw the local farmers bringing bags of nutmeg to the co-operative ready for processing and it was quite remarkable to see how labour intensive everything is. Some of the machinery at the rum factory was made in the UK in the late 18th Century and is still in operation.
As we drove through the rain forest, we stopped to see the monkeys and were in luck. I also saw a ginger kitten sitting outside a shop in a cardboard box and was sorely tempted to bring it back to the boat! Sense prevailed though, sadly.
We drove past the old airport, where the plane of the former Prime Minister, Maurice Bishop, is still rotting away. A sad sight. We also saw what they call ‘Janet Houses’. These were a gift from Venezuela after hurricane Janet and housed many of the homeless on Grenada. They stood through Ivan as well, whilst other concrete buildings fell.
The Grenada Chocolate Company now sells chocolate worldwide and this had to be my favourite stop. We had another interesting tour and had hot chocolate tea and samples of their chocolate bars. The parrots were very talkative too!
Rob and Steve liked the rum distillery better but the scum on top of the vats of sugar cane syrup put me off a bit!
After a great day, we asked to be dropped off at Prickly Bay to meet our friends from ‘Blue Moon’, for a half price pizza and it was delicious. We all walked back to Mount Hartman after a lovely evening.
The next day I was 51 and Steve was 59 and as Rob helpfully informed us, our 110th birthday! To make up for his comment he treated us to a fabulous evening in the Cave Hotel and we could keep an eye on Beyzano as she bobbed about in the bay below the terrace, just beyond the infinity pool. Howard and Wendy from Blue Moon joined us and it was a memorable birthday. It was a nice change to have several glasses, linen napkins and lots of cutlery on the table 🙂
The hotel is small but very unusual and the food was amazing. Definitely a place to return to and they also do a Sunday afternoon lunch from 12-8 and you can use the pool.
The views are worth going for too, especially at sunset.
The following morning we were up early, negotiated the reefs and sailed west to Dragon Bay, just north of St George’s. We were lucky to get the only white mooring buoy there and could then do the short dinghy trip around the point to find the underwater sculptures and snorkel over them for a while. They are worth visiting but the abundant and colourful fish are also spectacular.
We stayed the night in the bay, the only boat there. After 5pm you can pick up the 1 diving buoy, a red one but a french boat was turfed off it earlier in the day. Another french boat got a real telling off as they anchored in the bay which is absolutely forbidden as it is a marine park. A local dive school came by and made them move immediately. There are signs saying no anchoring, no fishing and no littering.
The following day we had a brisk sail to Carriacou and are back in lovely Tyrrel Bay. We caught a tuna again!! Nice fresh fish for dinner with christophene au gratin, another dish I learnt at True Blue classes.
When we arrived we dropped the anchor in 2.4 metres of crystal clear water over sand and it was almost as if Beyzy was talking to us! We dropped back a bit, then Rob stopped paying out the chain whilst she pointed into the wind again and suddenly she jerked and he almost fell over. Clearly she was saying, ‘I’m back in Tyrrel Bay, I’m dug in and I’m not going anywhere!’ We didn’t bother going hard astern this time ☺