Mayreau – Union Island – Happy Island

We were already anchored in Mayreau Harbor, so no sailing this morning. Breakfast was an onion and cheese omelette, sausage patty and fruit. The captain told us about our busy day ahead visiting three islands.

We took the dinghy to the dock and departed with the other passengers. Islanders were working on the cover of a part of the dock as we arrived. A man was on a ladder adjusted the palm frond roof as his machete sat on the dock. We left the dock and immediately saw two large lizards rush across our path.

Mayreau is an island of bars, dogs and goats. We passed many of each as we walked up the only road through the town. The bars were still closed, but several of the passengers had enjoyed the many haunts of the island the night before. The islanders were very friendly as we climbed the steep hill, welcoming us to the island. We reached the top of the hill and visited a beautiful church–stone, stained glass, and polished wood. Behind the church was a nice overlook of the Tobago Keys where we were the previous day.

We left the church, and headed down the backside of the hill to Salt Whistle Bay. As we got to the beach the crew was dropping off the snorkel gear on the dock. We collected the gear and walked down the beach in the shade of coconut trees. Some of the village dogs had followed us, and they sat in the water and then laid in the shaded sand to stay cool. We also got into the warm, clear water to relax. Sheri and I walked to the other side of the island which was in sharp contrast to our tranquil spot, instead there were large waves crashing over the rocky reefs. After a bit of snorkeling and lounging on the beach and in the water, the dinghy came back to take us back to the boat.

We were served lunch which was spaghetti and sauce, salad, and some tasty squash. It was wonderful after a morning of exploring and snorkeling. The captain then moved the boat to the harbor at Union Island, a quick 45 minute sail. The harbor was surrounded by a protective reef and was very calm as we arrived, but the water near the reef was a brilliant blue. Launches started taking people over to the main dock. There were numerous boats we passed in the harbor, many abandoned and not weathering the storms well.

The town of Clifton was a lot larger than others we had been to; they even had their own airport. We found the main tourist market–a bunch of stalls around an open courtyard. We grabbed a glass of fresh juice and bought some apple bananas. We sat in the shade and found some free Internet to reconnect with the world. We finished our drink and walked around the town. There was a gourmet store with an amazing variety of wines; Sheri bought more crystallized ginger and a strong ginger ale (to help with her nausea). I grabbed a Carib Beer, and we hung put at one of the many bars. There were several locals sitting and talking and calling to the people passing by.

After a while we walked to where some nurse sharks were being kept in an enclosed inlet next to a hotel. It was a little sad as the sharks rested on the bottom of the dirty water. We headed back to the dock and talked to other passengers who had bought avocados for the cook. The avocado salad from the previous day’s lunch was so good, so we rushed back to the market to grab a few; they were as large as grapefruits.

We got back to the Diamant and almost immediately took the dinghy to Happy Island. Happy Island is a manmade (by Happy) island in the middle of the harbor of Union Island. It has a bar and that is pretty much it. All of the passengers went over to share rum punch. We sat and talked, and our crew brought snacks (meatballs, chicken tenders, fresh made tortilla chips, guacamole and several salsas) for happy hour. Several of the crew joined us as we lounged at the bar talking about our travels so far. While we sat there, many local sailors came by to enjoy the drinks and company of the bar. The sunset was beautiful as we soaked in the island atmosphere.

The crew took us back to the ship, and after a lounging back on the boat (reading and talking), it was time for dinner. This time dinner was fresh swordfish, with squash, and chocolate brownies for dessert. It was a perfect end to a busy day.