Easter in the Islands
11 April 2012
St. Vincent and the Grenadines consists of one large island, St. Vincent, and several smaller islands. Heading north from Grenada and Carriacou, the first logical stop was Union Island, just a short day sail from Carriacou. Union is studded with tall and jagged peaks, reminiscent of parts of French Polynesia. From 2012-04-11 SVG-4-11We managed to catch Union during its annual Easterval, which brought the main town of Clifton to life. Music filled the streets and shops closed as people celebrated Easter weekend. We spent one morning hiking to an old fort at the top of a hill. A friendly dog joined us halfway up, perhaps hoping for handouts, but he wasn't pushy about it. From 2012-04-11 SVG-4-11The dog walked with us the entire way to the top of the hill and waited patiently as we looked around the fort. He finally got his loot in the form of half a granola bar. We walked back down, the dog departing from where he joined us.
We left Union for the Tobago Cays, another short hop away. The Tobago Cays and the adjacent island of Mayreau are part of an environmental protection area. The Cays are home to a turtle sanctuary and an incredibly healthy reef system. The anchorage surrounding the turtle sanctuary was saturated with boats, so we opted for another anchorage just around one of the cays. Blue Heron was dwarfed by several super yachts, but we all shared an equally impressive view of the surrounding islands. From 2012-04-11 SVG-4-11The snorkeling was fantastic, though a strong current kept us relatively close to the dinghy.
With Easter the following morning, we sailed just around the corner to the tiny island of Mayreau. The one square mile island with a population of just 250 people happens to be home to one of the few Catholic churches in the Grenadines. This one has the best views, as far as churches go. From 2012-04-11 SVG-4-11 Easter morning was beautifully clear and the church, situated high on the peak of Mayreau, overlooked the surrounding ocean, dotted with the Grenadines.From 2012-04-11 SVG-4-11 Most of the people attending the service were also from yachts, but the singing was overwhelmingly local. From 2012-04-11 SVG-4-11Though we couldn't understand many of the songs being sung, the mass was impressive and the priest engaging.From 2012-04-11 SVG-4-11 We left Mayreau later that morning for Bequia, a popular stop with yachts. We're looking forward to spending a few days here and exploring the island.