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Dominica and St Lucia
Dominica was our next island on the way south.  We had really enjoyed being near Roseau, the capital, on our way up and although it failed to reproduce its charm to the same extent the second time around – mainly because we anchored off and Oh how we rolled… - we nevertheless had a great time doing another tour to a part of the island that had not yet explored.  Here we also met up with Iceni again, a Warrior 40 whom we first met all those months ago in Spain and with whom we crossed the Atlantic in radio contact.

We passed down the west coast of Martinique promptly as we had covered this region fairly fully on our way up (we did ‘pull in’ to stock up on French comestibles, notably bread and croissants!) and headed back to St Lucia, our point of arrival in the Caribbean. It was good to be back, people remembered us – they would with 5 of us on what is in Caribbean terms a very small boat – and we enjoyed seeing more of the island.  After a pause for thought in Rodney Bay we headed down the island towards Marigot Bay.  I had been looking forward to Marigot for months; it is billed in the pilots as ‘idyllic’ and the ‘epitome of a Caribbean hideaway’ etc; we arrived there to find the ‘charming’ bay was in fact lined by a very unpleasant building site, noise, and a charter boat company.  We nevertheless gritted our teeth as the 35 knot squalls ripped through the anchorage and went ashore for supper.  Whilst ashore, and the supper was truly excellent, the little bay filled up – literally – with many dozens of charter boats who had just collected their charges.  Suffice it say that we were literally and figuratively fending off complete landlubbers in charge of huge catamarans who had not the faintest clue how to anchor.  After dark they got to grips with their barbecues whilst bumping into one another and competing to see who could play the loudest music.  I have a lovely memory of one idiot trying to light his gas barbecue by pouring outboard fuel into it and gingerly offering it a lighted match.  I particularly enjoyed seeing the results in daylight!

So we moved off down the coast to the Pitons, two very tall, steep peaks formed by volcanic activity and offering lovely anchorages.  The first of which was 2 boat lengths off a sheer cliff in which a narrow cave housed a colony of bats; I managed to snap a few with the camera and flash as they sped by the boat looking for insects.  We enjoyed some beautiful sunsets here, swimming and snorkelling from the boat and we took a tour inland to see the sulphur springs.  A word about tours:  You can pay about US$100 for a pretty basic private tour in a minivan with a surly driver or you can DIY by taking a local bus (also a minivan, but usually in a poor state of repair apart from the stereo which always works exceptionally well) for EC$3 (about 60p).  Guess which we did!
Date(s): April and May 2006. Album by Gerard Coulson. Photos by Gerard Coulson. 1 - 38 of 38 Total. 5326 Visits.
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The boys on regimental duty during a motoring job

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Dominica & St Lucia 04

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On tour

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'Seacat' and an inland waterfall

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Dominica & St Lucia 14

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Jonty enjoying a rest

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resting on a buttress root

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Diamond rock, Martinique, for Bert!

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Marigot Bay before the charter boats arrived

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Tom

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Chatting

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Dominica & St Lucia 40

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Marigot

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From our restaurant at the entrance to Marigot Bay

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Dominica & St Lucia 47

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I liked the colours!

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Leaving Marigot behind!

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One of the Pitons

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Gardens tour 1

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Gardens tour 2

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Gardens tour 3

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Gardens tour 4

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Gardens tour 5

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Gardens tour 6

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Gardens tour 7

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Gardens tour 8

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Bats at night!

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Dominica & St Lucia 72

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Iain and Fraser on board Iceni

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Dominica & St Lucia 78

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Dominica & St Lucia 79

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Sulphur springs

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Dominica & St Lucia 86

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Dominica & St Lucia 87

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To date the ONLY photo of us all together!

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Phew!

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Soufriere, St Lucia

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