Our cruise from St Barth’s to Antigua was a long miserable day. The winds were 30 kts as opposed to the 15-20 that was forecasted. Our bow spent most of the day underwater but we were rewarded with a beautiful port of Jolly Harbor, Antigua. We had no idea that this was such a pretty harbor with gorgeous turquoise water and a beach that is one of the best we have seen in the Caribbean. We pulled into the marina and docked right next to Dutch Master, a 48ft Hatteras LRC owned by our friends Hans and Judy. It was wonderful to see them and they were a wealth of information regarding Antigua and the Southern Caribbean. They have used Antigua as their home base for a few years and were very gracious and full of suggestions that made our stay the best!! Jolly Harbor is large complex with a great market for provisioning and several fine restaurants and a new casino. Next time we will rent a golf cart for our stay as they make getting around from the outer docks a lot easier. Just before entering Jolly Harbor we witnessed our first active volcano on the island of Montserrat. We were totally fascinated by the site until we realized that we would be battling the soot for the next two weeks. Every day our top decks matched the grey of our hull as the soot settled in a thick coating on every flat surface. Luckily it rinses off without much effort.
From Jolly Harbor we went to the historical Falmouth and English Harbors of Antigua. Nelson’s Dockyard is a restored Georgian Naval Base that is more like a working museum than a marina. We moored in Falmouth Harbor but split our time between the two harbors as they are connected by a short walk. There are many good restaurants, great internet access and hikes to old forts and scenic heights. We did the tourist thing and went to Shirley Heights with our friends Mike and Sara from N47 Wayfinder. It was a fun evening that starts with a magnificent view of the harbors and then a steel band and barbecue. Don’t miss it if you visit Antigua.
The highlight our stay was the arrival of my sister Tina and her sons, Steven and Shawn.
They joined us in Falmouth Harbor where the boys used Seabird for hours of platform diving followed by turns driving the tender around the harbor. The classic boat regatta is starting and the harbor was filled with beautiful sailing yachts. The next afternoon we left for the St James Club in Mamora Bay that was recommended by Hans and Judy. We are very grateful to them as it turned out to be the perfect spot for the family. Steven and Shawn were able to water ski, sail hobie cats, wind surf, kayak and snorkel for three days.
If you want to see “fun” check out the picture gallery. We loved having them with us and hope they will be back soon.
We truly enjoyed Antigua and wish it was located below the Hurricane Line as it would a perfect spot for an extended stay. It has all the yacht services, the people are friendly and helpful and the Island is beautiful. Unfortunately, it is time to move on and our next stop is Guadeloupe and The Saintes.
Not everything was fun. We somehow managed to “fry” our navigation computer. Of course, not to worry, a real ocean going boat has backups for everything. We simply plugged in our backup computer and wala!! It was great until we fried that one too!! We ended up buying a new computer from a Falmouth Harbor store, but decided not to hook it up to all of the equipment except the GPS until we find the culprit. I have no doubt it is some sort of wiring snafu.