Martinique-Saint Lucia-Saint Vincent-Bequia-Mustique-Canouan-Mayreau-Tobago Cays-Petit Saint Vincent-Petite Martinique-Morpion-Union Island-Saint Vincent-Saint Lucia-Martinique
Chartering a boat (a yacht, a sailing boat or a catamaran) and cruising from island to island is undoubtedly the best way to enjoy all of the Caribbean's charm in one single trip. The itinerary we suggest here allows you to discover the Lesser Antilles also known as the Small Antilles which is a volcanic island arc located just southeast of the Greater Antilles. This series of small islands is famous for encompassing the best places for cruising and anchoring our boat to experience the Caribbean life that appears so often in our daydreams. Stop dreaming and start living that perfect experience in the Caribbean Sea!
Our adventure at sea starts on the island of Martinique, one of the Leeward Islands. Like the rest of the Lesser Antilles, Martinique is a volcanic island that is perfect for tourism whether you're looking for beautiful beaches to enjoy dolce farniente (white sandy beaches in the south and black sandy beaches in the north) or action such as scuba diving, fishing, visiting corral reefs, hot water springs, mountain excursions, observing ravines, exploring jungle landscapes…the list is endless! If you’re looking for relaxation, we recommend heading to the south coast, one of the least urbanised areas on the island, where you will find the charming beach of Les Salines. After completing all the paperwork, we will embark our yacht or sailing boat charter and set sail for Saint Lucia Island.
Saint Lucia is one of the eight independent islands in the Lesser Antilles. Although Mount Gimie is the highest summit at 959 meters, the island's real icons are the Piton Mountains (in the southwest), two 800 meter high peaks that emerge from the sea. These mountains are represented on the country's flag with two triangles. The town of Soufrière is the base for Petit Piton, the smallest of the twin peaks, and boasts one of the most spectacular landscapes in the Caribbean. In the north, we can dock in Rodney Bay Marina which is an important base for many yacht charters making their way south to the Grenadines, as is our case.
On our third day aboard the sailing boat charter, we will wake up in Saint Vincent, the most extensive island in the country of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and one of the least frequented. France and Great Britain fought over the island in the 18th century until it was eventually ceded to the British in 1783, which is why English is the official language although many locals speak a Creole dialect. The island is a paradise all in itself with beautiful beaches such as Wallilabou where scenes from the famous movie Pirates of the Caribbean were filmed. The capital Kingstown, in the southern part of the island, has a beautiful botanical garden which is worth visiting with a guide. The garden was founded in 1753 and among its many treasures is a breadfruit tree which was brought to the island by Capitan William Bligh after he survived the dreadful mutiny aboard the Bounty. In the city’s restaurants, you can enjoy delicious Creole gastronomy based on products from the sea such as crab, lobster and lambi (sea snails).
Continuing in the Grenadines, now we’ll head to Bequia Island, the second largest in this paradisiacal archipelago. Bequia has managed to preserve its ancestral practices for constructing boats and you can admire this craftsmanship in the naval shipyard. You can also watch how local fishermen throw harpoons with their bare hands (they are the last ones in the world to do so) or you can learn all about sea turtles at the Old Hegg Turtle Sanctuary. Admiralty Bay on the west coast has good places to anchor our boat charter although we can also moor in Port Elizabeth, the capital.
Cruising in a catamaran in a westward direction we will arrive in Baliceaux, another small island in the Grenadines. This paradise, however, bears a bitter history. In the 1790’s, the English army eradicated around 5000 Afro-Caribbeans after defeating the Caribbean Chief, Joseph Chatoyer. Half of these people died in this concentration camp while the rest were deported to Roatan Island in Honduras.
From stories of slaves to stories of multimillionaires. Mustique is a tiny island (6km by 2km) owned by the Mustique Company. They have two hotels and rent the 89 private villas that are constructed on the island. You can only reach the island by private plane or boat as there are no ferries. The luxury and isolation of this place have attracted a good number of celebrities such as Margarita of Windsor, Mick Jagger and David Bowie. Sailing boat charters and other boat charters can only anchor in Britannia Bay so that is where we will spend the night.
The Island of Canouan, located in the heart of the Grenadines, will sweep you away with its combination of luxury and elegance mixed with natural beauty and local charm. If we've charted a boat with crew, the captain of our yacht charter can set anchor in a solitary bay so we can enjoy beaches with fine white sand like talcum powder and corral reefs, or we can moor in Charlestown Bay or Remeau Bay where we can go out for dinner and some cocktails. If we like playing golf, we can head over to the Raffles Resort and enjoy the chance to play on one of the most visually spectacular golf courses in the world: the Trump International Golf Club.
The small island of Mayreau is an ultimate example of a pristine and untouched Caribbean. It's possible to skirt the island and hardly see any inhabited centres since the majority of its 300 inhabitants live in the village of Old Wall, in the upper part of the southwestern side of the island. Don’t miss out on the chance to stroll around this small village where, in addition to reggae bars and restaurants, you will find colourful shops lined with local rum and a picturesque stone church with the lintels of the doors and windows painted red.
If you’ve been dreaming of white sandy beaches and corral reefs ever since you saw the film Pirates of the Caribbean in the cinema, then this is without a doubt your dream place. A large number of scenes from the movie were filmed in the Tobago Cays, a group of five uninhabited cays with phenomenal lagoons filled with green turtles, corral reefs, colourful fish and crystalline waters. This is a scuba diver’s paradise! However, you don’t have to be an underwater diving expert to enjoy the marine life thanks to the Tobago Cays Marine Park where you can snorkel and swim with sea turtles. It’s impossible to remain indifferent to the pleasures of this marvellous natural park, a magnet for many yacht and boat charters that come and set anchor in the lagoon or along the northwestern coast of Petit Tabac.
We’ve been discovering the Grenadines in a sailing boat or yacht for seven days and we still have more islands to explore such as Petit Saint Vicente (PSC as the locals call it). This island is private property and runs as a resort. That's why all along the coast you will easily find lounge chairs and hammocks like in the photo where you can relax and just let the hours go by.
To the south of PSV is Petite Martinique, an island that administratively belongs to the tri-island state of Granada along with Granada and Carriacou. Its population of 900 people is mainly dedicated to activities such as fishing and boat repairs. This island of volcanic origin doesn’t stand out for its beaches but rather for its interesting coastal paths. After a pleasant breakfast aboard our sailing boat or catamaran charter, we will sail to Union Island, the southernmost island in the Grenadines. On the way there, we recommend you make a stop on the tiny island of Mopion, very popular among tourists because of the single thatch umbrella perched in the sand. You will have a good time taking pictures next to the umbrella.
On Union Island we can moor in the port of Clifton, the most popular anchor site on the island because of its proximity to numerous restaurants and bars. The Maroon Festival (in May) and Carnival are just some of the most notable events celebrated on this island throughout the year. We will start heading back since the itinerary must finish where it started, in Martinique. We will pass by Saint Vincent again where we can enjoy views of this marvellous island and its long Caribbean coastline one last time.
On our second to last day, we will arrive back in Saint Lucia. The skipper of our yacht charter can moor in Castries, the capital of the island, if he didn’t do it during the first visit. This is a very active and lively port for cruise ships. Just a few steps away there is a market where local sellers have been gathering for more than 100 years to sell all kinds of fresh products.
Our boat trip through the Lesser Antilles finishes where it started, in Martinique, the island of flowers. Now it’s time to take a look back and see if you made your dream come true. If you were looking for romanticism, you most certainly found it. If you were looking for relaxation, you most certainly got it. If you were looking to discover beautiful secret spots and enjoy authentic pristine beaches, you most certainly lived it with all your five senses. Then you will most certainly come back!
*The itinerary is only a guideline. Errors in the content do not justify grounds for filing a legal complaint. If you want to visit other places, the itinerary can be modified according to your preferences. If chartering a boat with skipper, the skipper may decide to change the planned itinerary due to unexpected and/or unrelated causes to the organisation.
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