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Old 23-11-2015, 16:36   #1
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Antigua day sails or just stay put - options??

Hi all

I have a 10 day charter coming up in ANU and looking for advice on day sail destinations. Barbuda is the obvious one but also considering NEVIS or GUADELOUPE.

Any and all suggestions welcome - including views on must do spots in Antigua for the 10 days.

Thanks!
YOWER
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Old 24-11-2015, 13:52   #2
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Re: Antigua day sails or just stay put - options??

From English/Falmouth Harbour you can reach Deshaies on Guadeloupe in just a couple of hours and I'd recommend that trip (plus you've got the wind on the beam in both directions, so it is a pretty fast run in both directions). Clearing into Guadeloupe at the little store in Deshaies is easy once you figure out the French keyboard. You can rent a car there to explore the high jungle trails and other parts of the island. From Deshaies there's just Pigeon Island on the western coast but if you decide to head south then the Iles des Saintes are a great visit.
There are lots of great anchorages on Antigua - I've spent a whole week up around Green Island and only left because I'd run out of beer!
Nevis, on the other hand, is easy to reach and worth a visit, but the slog back upwind to Antigua is never any fun and certainly not doable as a day trip or worth it for a single overnight.
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Old 24-11-2015, 16:30   #3
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Re: Antigua day sails or just stay put - options??

Thanks Zanshin - information is much appreciated.

Luckily I am a native French speaker, so the Guadeloupe keyboard shouldn't pose too much of a problem...

That said, you say a few hours to reach from Falmouth - I measure the distance to be around 40nm - ??? Also, do you know if there any good restaurants in Deshaies? I'll Google as well - but in the event you've been to some.

Finally, a stay put in around Green Island to deplete the beer supply aboard has appeal to this Canuck! So will put that option in the hopper too.

Best and thx
YOWer
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Old 24-11-2015, 16:44   #4
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Re: Antigua day sails or just stay put - options??

If you go to Guadeloupe, you could also go to Isle d'Saintes.
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Old 25-11-2015, 16:14   #5
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Re: Antigua day sails or just stay put - options??

There are some good restaurant in Deshaies, one just one the lef-hand side of the dinghy dock, one across the main road on the right of the dinghy and a great italian place just to the right (Mahina). Those are just those I've visited, I'm sure that there are more
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Old 25-11-2015, 16:23   #6
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Re: Antigua day sails or just stay put - options??

Nevis is fun. Also a couple nice spots on the E side of Antigua...east of Falmouth toward Green Island etc.... little traffic down there too. Les Saintes I love if it's an easy stop
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Old 25-11-2015, 17:04   #7
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Re: Antigua day sails or just stay put - options??

I vote Deshaies, then Les Saintes, then Portsmouth Dominica (pick up a mooring in the North of the bay, which are generally well maintained sand screws with a 24 hour patrol, don't anchor off the town and don't moor on the tiny shelf off Roseau). Dominica is my favorite island by far in the EC: truly paradisical and largely "unspoiled" with amazing tall waterfalls in jungle environment full of spice and fruit trees, flanked by hot springs. Hot and cold running water to swim in… what's not to like? Be sure to visit "Screw" after dark… on the way back from Trafalgar falls (go there after 3pm to avoid any cruise ship lot), between Trafalgar and Roseau and South of the river. I won't say any more but believe me you won't forget Screw.

After that, do an overnight passage back to Antigua, anchor off Jolly harbour and check in there, then straight up to Barbuda for your last day or two, before finishing. Green Island is "ok" but coral is wrecked. Very good spot for kite surfing, but can be a crowded anchorage and not great holding. Be aware that Spithead Channel North from Green Island is around 50 meters from its charted position, Eastwards as I recall, but don't quote me on whether E or W. Like Barbuda and much of the EC, do it with the Mark I eyeball. English harbour and Falmouth are rather unmissable in the South of Antigua, but you will likely be chartering out of there anyhow.

Nevis is nice, but really would be better as a part of the Northward circuit from Antigua given your timescale: Barbuda to St. Barths to St. Eustatius to St. Vincent (being aware of somewhat elevated crime there) to Nevis and back to Antigua, with a possible final stop at Montserrat and a brief swing by (not stop) to view the Kingdom of Redonda. But I would choose the formerly mentioned circuit.
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Old 28-11-2015, 15:06   #8
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Re: Antigua day sails or just stay put - options??

Gentlemen - a hearty thank you for taking the time to share your knowledge and advice. The YOWer clan will raise a glass or three in your honour.

Best
YOWer
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Old 28-11-2015, 19:44   #9
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Re: Antigua day sails or just stay put - options??

Quote:
Originally Posted by YOWER View Post
Gentlemen - a hearty thank you for taking the time to share your knowledge and advice. The YOWer clan will raise a glass or three in your honour.

Best
YOWer
More than welcome. Just remember that on the West sides of the islands, particularly Guadeloupe, there is a windshadow developed by the terrain (with the exception of Barbuda, which is not volcanic, but rather is seafloor raised in advance of the subduction zone). There is a likewise "acceleration zone" at the North and South ends of each of the islands in the EC, except of course Barbuda, where the wind is refracted around the ends of the islands. Around a half a mile off each to the North and South as you approach your standard F4 to F5 will be suddenly increased to F7 or F8 for a fairly short time (perhaps half a mile). On the inside of this zone there will perhaps be a second, milder sequence of the same, and if you wish to avoid it, you will find that in the lee of these islands it is fractal, but with a focal point some miles to leeward, in the lee of Guadeloupe South of Montserrat, for example.

Enjoy!
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