Les Saintes

The passage from Dominica to Guadeloupe was one of the smoothest that we might ever have.

The water was so glassy & there was very little wind so we just motored across from Mero Beach (Dominica) to Terre-de-Haut, Les Saintes (Guadeloupe). With the water so calm & enough solar, we were able to run the watermaker whilst underway 🎉. It made getting a call to do some work at the last minute, a much more pleasant experience than it could have been too. I find a life jacket really sets the tone of a conversation. 😅

Approaching Les Saintes from Dominica made for quite a lovely scene. What with all the rocky outcrops about & the larger islands of Terre-de-Haut & Terre-de-Bas nearby. Les Saintes is actually made up of 9 small islands, 2 of which are inhabited (Terre-de-Haut & Terre-de-Bas). Terre-de-Haut was where we spent most of our time. It’s a busy place with ferries that come & go often & there always seemed to be a cruise ship about as well, but with a seperate dock for the cruisers, there didn’t seem to be any issues with securing your dinghy somewhere, although the dinghy dock did get a little crowded sometimes.

Geoff announced almost immediately that Guadeloupe rates as one of his favourite places so far & I have to agree. If we were able to speak a little more French, beyond the absolute basics, it would make it even easier, but alas we are French impaired.

Checking in at Terre-de-Haut was super simple & cost 4 euros to use the computer & printer, we got there at the end of the day, before it closed at 6pm, which we were quite happy with. I would have sucked if we had missed getting to shore in time & had to do it all again the next day.

After checking in, we checked out the local Discount Market to get some food. The fresh produce was such a lovely sight to see again. Guadeloupe & Martinique are French territories, so are known to have a good selection of food & that’s certainly what we have noticed. Check out the veggies in the IG post I shared

We had one night on anchor, but didn’t like how close everyone was to us & our proximity to some rocks (underwater) & the changing winds, so after the first night we pulled up anchor & decided to get a mooring ball (at Les Saintes you just grab a free one, you don’t book), we decided to stay on a mooring ball for the rest of our stay in Les Saintes, traipsing back to LSM where you have to go to pay for a mooring ball. The balls are reasonably spaced out, & we get one on the edge, which we found spacious enough for us. The mooring ball was slightly closer to shore & the dock, so it made for a slightly shorter run in, as a bonus.

We had a few days there, as we waited for a decent weather window, which allowed us to hike up to the fort, which was a nice enough walk. The fact that it was closed by the time we got there (get there before noon), was just an added bonus, after hauling butt to get there. Our picnic lunch that we brought with us was nice to eat in the entrance tunnel (mostly as it provided some relief from the sun’s heat) though. There were dozens of others who came up after us, which was somewhat comforting, at least we weren’t the only ones to have treked up, only to discover it closed. Then again, most of them seemed to have hired golf buggies to get up to the parking area at least, so really the joke was on us, who still had to haul ourselves down the hill again.

We also did a walk up to Les Chameau Ile Des Saintes which had some tremendous views (we got some great pictures of the boats in the bay, you could even see ours) & there was the hilarious incident with the chickens which I am glad I captured on film. As the only gimp in the family, I have to say that I did find it a little hard on my knees, especially when we scrambled down the hill, instead of scrambling up it at the start.😅 The beach was lovely when you came down though, more so for a quick dip & to chill. The snorkelling there was nice enough, but we have definitely seen better, especially around where we were first anchored, we were a little sad to see so many sun bleached conch shells all over the beach.

The island in general is incredibly beautiful. We loved the chicken & chips shop that was on the way to Carrefour & picked up a cooked chicken there a couple of times. There was also a butcher that had cold cooked chickens that we went to a couple of times with a lovely beetroot salad that we all enjoyed.

We crossed paths with Kim, Cath & Dom again too. They had anchored nearby, so we all caught up for more games a couple of nights too whilst we were there, which was lovely.

This time around it was their turn to leave before us, but a day later we followed them to the mainland, headed to Pointe-a-Pitre.


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