Les Saintes & Guadeloupe

After Dominica we enjoyed a quiet week at Les Saintes, a small group of islands just south of the bigger island Guadeloupe, which they are also a part of. Tango was safely resting outside Terre-de-Haut, an island small enough to explore by foot if you have a few days. Another option is of course golf cars or scooters. Many choose to visit for 1 day with a ferry from Guadeloupe, which means that there a lot of people in the streets during the day. Perfect for people watching. The island has a cozy “shopping street” with shops, cafes and restaurants, which allowed us a few amazing meals ashore. There are several nice beaches around the island (with goats!), and some good snorkel spots.  

During our stay in Les Saintes our wind vane stopped working, and since this is an instrument we appreciate for our sailing, we wanted to get a hold of a new one as soon as possible. A couple of hours sailing took us to Basse Terre in Guadeloupe, where we found a rental car to drive across the island to Pointe Pitre, where there is a big marina. We were lucky to find what we needed. Off course we took advantage of having a car; ROAD TRIP 😊 We almost stopped at a Rum distillery, almost at a chocolate factory and almost at a banana plantation. Buuut we weren’t quite in the touristic mood, so we spent some time at a lovely waterfall instead. Acomat Waterfall is a bit off beaten path, as it is not as easy to reach as the most popular ones. We stopped at one of the more popular ones as well, but Acomat was definitely our favorite. Not too crowded, crystal clear water and tempting to jump in. You can also find a quiet spot to relax by the river beneath the waterfall.

On our way back to Tango we drove past a guy doing a barbeque in the main road. We stopped to get a take away, but the guy did not agree with that. It turned out he actually had a restaurant below the road, and he convinced us to stop for lunch/dinner. The restaurant consisted of some tables and chairs at something that looked like the local playground, and a building where they had a small kitchen and a fridge with cold drinks. For a while we were the only ones there, except 2 big iguanas in the ttrenes above our head. We have to admit we were a bit on the curious side for how our meals would turn out.  But our chef/waiter was really eager to give us a good experience. He served our drinks together with plastic glasses, and assured us that our barbeque was going to taste great. And what a meal we were served! Although barbequed by the main road, the spare ribs tasted like out of another world. So tender and full of flavor. And lots of them on the plate. Plus salad and fries. And reasonably priced. We were happy! 

Once we had our wind vane working again we sailed Tango up to an anchorage by the mainland, close to Pigeon Island. Pigeon Island is a Nature Reserve, which means no anchoring by the island itself. The area is known for great snorkeling and diving, and you can dinghy out to the island. Unfortunately, the weather was too rough for dinghying out, but we got to enjoy some nice snorkeling in the bay of the anchorage.  Ashore there was really not that much for us, everything was within a small square; with dive shops, souvenir shops and some restaurants. A lovely spot to watch the sunset though!

As the weather was not going to get any better within the next few days, we decided to skip the snorkeling out at Pigeon Island and move on to Deshais, on the northern part of the western island.

It was still a lot of wind in the area, and we were told a terrible story about 2 boats that lost their holding during the night, got their anchor chains tangled together and drifted out and over the horizon in the matter of a short time. The women onboard were screaming and the men shouting, which woke up people in the other boats at the anchorage. The boats were not seen again back in the anchorage. Terrifying for everyone, and we hope everything went well. This happened the day before we arrived, and it goes to show how important good routines when it comes to setting your anchor is (Please fellow sailors; rev up your engine to check the holding of your anchor, and use enough chain!).

In Deshais we actually met up again with a few boats we met earlier, which was really nice. One of these boats was “Cat’s Meow” with our American friends Donald and LaVonne. They had a car for a few days, so we joined them 1 day for another road trip. This time we got to see more of the eastern island of Guadeloupe, and had a lovely day exploring with Cat’s Meow. Thank you for taking us along! 😊

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