Our posts of May, June and November 2012, March, April and May 2013 plus May 2014 have detailed information and photos.
This is one of our favourite areas but it gets busy following the arrival of the ARC when everyone seems to head south to Bequia for Christmas and then on south to Grenada before returning north to complete their Atlantic circuit. For the longer term cruisers a better time to visit is April onwards when the numbers of yachts in the Tobago Cays drops from 300s to 5 or so! The price is that not all the bars are still open but the tranquility is definitely worth it.
Bequia’s beaches and anchorage is gorgeous but can become rolly, then it is better to anchor in the north of the bay. You can buy all the food you need and Doris’s supermarket had all the unusual items although they are expensive. Everyone is very friendly and you soon feel a part of the community. Holding is excellent in the sand and the crystal clear water is wonderful.
We have never stopped at St Vincent, although friends have. Sometimes there are break-ins but there have also been break-ins in Bequia at night. If we have another couple on board in the future we will stop, as it seems a shame not to visit an island just because of a few isolated incidents.
The only island we weren’t overly impressed with was Canuoan but all the others in the chain down to Carriacou are well worth a visit. The Cays are spectacular and the boat boys are not annoying at all. They always take no for an answer but if you are polite and friendly it helps as they are just trying to make a living. One tip – never pay the full price and always tell them you live on the boat and are not charterers or on holiday. That helps too. We immediately get the non-charter boat rate then, for example, 2.50 GBP off a loaf of banana bread. We used both entrances into the Cays and the reefs can be seen clearly in most lights. The plotter was very accurate but keep an eye on the depths and eyeball your way in too.
All in all, this area is just lovely with plenty of safe and easy anchorages and great local life.