Sailing around St Vincent around the end of January was a true adventure! From navigating crowded anchorages to discovering hidden underwater caves, we had a blast exploring this beautiful island.
The sail to St. Vincent was enjoyable and only about 10 miles from our last port of call, Bequia. We arrived at our chosen first anchorage to find it already busy with boats. Unfortunately, the boats didn’t shore tie so took up more space than necessary. So, we decided to move on to the next bay around. Although it very was small, we noticed an anchor symbol on Navionics and thought it would be worth checking out.
Adam snorkeled around the bay with a string line with a weight on the bottom of 2m in length, the idea being Adam could swim around with this, and if it touched the bottom it was too shallow. Meanwhile, Anna and I waited on board in deep water outside of the bay for a thumbs-up. We needed to ensure the chart was accurate and there was enough depth before entering as the chart said it might not have been deep enough in some places.
Luckily it was deeper than that chart stated, like many places around here the charts are not particularly accurate as the areas are not well surveyed. So knowing we wouldn’t scrape the bottom we entered the bay and got to work anchoring in the middle and shore tying to a central tree on the beach. It took us about an hour to complete the anchoring and tying procedure, but it was well worth the effort.
It was really beautiful.
The anchorage “Petit Byahaut (Small Cove)” is now on Navily with our review and pictures. 😊
We stayed there for a couple of nights and enjoyed some incredible snorkeling, including finding an underwater cave that we could swim through.
We also discovered bat caves in the cliff, which you can swim all the way through and out the other side however with a lot of swell coming in at the time we decided not to. We did see lots of the endangered Elkhorn coral, and a diverse range of fish and other corals and sponges.
Another boat we know called Vela also tried to anchor in the same bay with us, but unfortunately, their anchor didn’t hold well in the seagrass seabed and it dragged when setting up the shore tie, it was getting too dark to set everything up in time so they moved around the corner to find space for normal anchoring.
Vela got a great drone pic of us though.
After two nights there and lots of free dives through the underwater cave, we sailed on to Walilabou.
Although we initially planned to get help from a local, as the anchorage was fairly busy, to do the shore tie we declined when they demanded an exorbitant fee. So, we set about doing it ourselves, ending up with nearly all of our chain out due to the deep waters. I swam to shore with a big coil of rope and buoy attached to float it before tying it to a tree and bringing the free end back to the boat.
During the anchoring a number of locals on boats or kayaks hung around and finally once we were anchored, the boat was surrounded by locals trying to sell us vegetables, fruit, and fish. We bought some things including some tasty avocados and fish.
That afternoon we walked to some nearby waterfalls in the Wallilabou Heritage Park and paid a small fee of $5 each to get in to enjoy the refreshing waterfalls and natural pool. Whilst there, we encountered giant bamboo, lots of lizards, and the most enormous wasps we’ve ever seen.
Walilabou is well-known for having some of the Pirates of the Caribbean films set in purpose-built buildings in the area, particularly Fort Royale. This set was used for a number of the films.
After hiking back down from the waterfall, we went to see if a local guy who we’d spoken to earlier in the day was there, he’d mentioned being able to cook us a BBQ on the beach. He saw us looking but by the time he got there we had gone back to the boat, to our surprise he came over on a surfboard and was very happy to cook the fish we had bought earlier and made us a pasta salad.
We ate and drank into the night, with many of his friends also coming to help and say hello. We also tried the famous “St. Vincent Sunset” rum, which was 84.5%! Anna and I mixed ours with ginger beer but (insert name here) had it with only a chaser of water.
We then sailed to another anchorage called Paradise Beach in Troumaker Bay, where we shore-tied once again and anchored in about 20 meters of water. This time we got help from a kind local fisherman and later bought a big fish from him that we had for dinner.
Anna and I hiked up a hill to Troumaker village, whilst Adam relaxed in a hammock onboard and prepared dinner. We made it to the top of the hill sweaty and hot but the view from the top was breath-taking, and Adam managed to take a picture of us as little specs in the distance.
We went to a bar in the village for a cold drink and got some homemade fudge for $1 in the bar we met a lovely 10-year-old girl who had just finished school for the day and needed to wait for her mum who worked there. She was incredably chatty and talked about all kinds of things, including how they still use the whip for disapline in schools in St. Vincent and the girl’s dislike of the “popular” kids.
That evening, we ate the fish we had bought whilst watching the sunset on deck and it was delicious!
As the sun set, some local fishermen attempted to catch a giant shoal of fish, it was all very excting to watch, but it appeared that they missed their chance, and they came back empty-handed. I hope they caught some the next night!
Next we’re off to St Lucia and Daisy arrives!