Classic Caribbean Yacht Harbors
Day 1 - Bridgetown, Barbados Barbados has retained many of the trappings of its British colonial heritage. Judges and barristers wear proper robes and wigs, police don helmets styled after London bobbies and cricket remains a national passion. Barbados also has all the sporting appeal of the rest of the Caribbean, with pristine beaches, powerful surf and crystal clear waters. Brightly colored homes and hibiscus flowers mingle with mahogany trees and English churches dating back to the 17th century.
Day 2 - Port Elizabeth (Grenadines) Bequia’s Admiralty Bay is a favorite yachtsman’s anchorage. They ferry ashore to join the friendly, low-key locals “under the almond tree,” the chosen meeting place. Stroll along the Belmont Walkway to the Gingerbread for homemade nutmeg ice cream, or Frangipani, run by the daughter of a former prime minister. Continue to lovely, golden Princess Margaret Beach, or round the bend to Lower Bay. Don’t miss the excellent craftsmanship at the Sargeant Brothers Model Boat Shop, it’s a Bequia specialty.
Day 3 - Castries, St Lucia St. Lucia is the sort of island that travelers to the Caribbean dream about--a small, lush tropical gem that is still relatively unknown. The Atlantic Ocean kisses its eastern shore, while the beaches of the west coast owe their beauty to the calm Caribbean Sea. St. Lucia seems like an island plucked from the South Pacific and set down in the Caribbean. Its dramatic twin coastal peaks, the Pitons, soar 2,500 feet up from the sea, sheltering magnificent rain forests where wild orchids, giant ferns, and birds of paradise flourish. Brilliantly-plumed tropical birds abound, including endangered species like the indigenous St. Lucia parrot.
Day 4 - Terre-de-Haut, Guadeloupe The Iles des Saintes, a tiny cluster of islets off the southern coast of Guadeloupe is what the doctor ordered, if he ordered an unspoiled Caribbean experience. No franchise duty free, no big hotels, no casinos. It is what much of the Caribbean used to be like. Stroll around the little town of Bourg de Saintes. Shop for real French cosmetics from the sidewalk vendors. Grab a seat and a beer and revel in the weather and the pace of the past.
Day 5 - Charlestown, Nevis During the 18th and 19th centuries, Nevis was one of the richest colonies of Britain and a playground of the rich and famous. There are also many tales of chivalry and romance. Lord Nelson's courtship of and idyllic marriage to the Nevisian beauty, Fanny Nisbett is a love story of international renown. The Jewish Cemetery is all that remains of the community, which settled in Nevis after being expelled from Brazil in the 17th century. Its members were valued merchants and are credited with introducing sugar production technology to the Leeward Islands. The sugarcane fields, which once covered the slopes of the island have long since disappeared, leaving the ruins of once busy sugar mills and luxurious great houses. These are the heritage of an era of prosperity when Nevis was known as the "Queen of the Caribbees." Today, this is an island for relaxing and unwinding, with magnificent beaches and tiny hamlets with names like Chicken Stone or Hard Times, which tell their own story.
Day 6 - St. John's, Antigua Antigua is blessed with an abundance of shining white beaches, and many of these have sprouted top-end resort hotels that engender golf courses and other amenities counted among the best in the Caribbean. A pleasant drive up through farms and tiny villages leads to the commanding fortress on Shirley Heights, from which you can survey the town and the harbor of Nelson’s Dockyard across the island. Once a carenage for British frigates, today it is an enclave of shops and restaurants.
Day 7 - Carambola Beach, Saint Kitts and Nevis A classic golden arc of sugary sand at South Friar’s Bay, Carambola is home to the island’s most luxurious beach clubs and restaurants. Umbrellas, loungers and optional water sports abound for those so inclined. Otherwise St. Kitts has other attractions, including a number of lovingly preserved plantation great houses, the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Brimstone Hill Fortress and a scenic narrow gauge sugarcane railway.
Day 8 - Philipsburg, St Martin Since 2010, Sint Maarten has been a constituent country within the kingdom of The Netherlands. It comprises the “Dutch Side” of the island of Saint-Martin, the other half being a French overseas territory. Philipsburg is its capital and a busy deep-water port city. It is a popular port for cruise ships, and consequently boasts a thriving duty-free shopping community, a range of resorts and villas, and numerous leisure and sightseeing activities, as well as a well-served airport.
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