Volcanos and mudbaths
Serenity of Swanwick
Phil and Sarah Tadd
Sat 23 Jan 2016 13:48
On Thursday we had a day out with the ‘Tern’s. Manice arranged a driver for the day, and we saw the sights on the west coast of the island. Despite the island only being 27 miles from north to south it took almost 2 hours to get from Rodney Bay in the north to Soufriere in the South West. The road wound up and down the hills through tropical forests and with fantastic sea views.
Our first stop was the Tet Paul Nature Trail. This is a project by a local farming community, using community members as guides. The trail was planted with the trees and shrubs used locally, and the guide gave lots of information on them. At the high point of the trail we had great views of the Pitons - two very pointy peaks right on the west coast, with a bay between that you can moor in if you get a permit.
Then on to the volcano at Soufriere (translates to sulphur in the air), with is still active and has boiling mud pools, it is well monitored to give notice of eruptions. After a brief guided tour we had our mud bath. By this time the cruise ship crowds were well established, so it was a very communal experience, as we covered ourselves in mud then washed off in the hot spring. Two days and a shower later we are still finding little bits of mud.
Our driver took us to a restaurant for lunch, but we didn’t fancy what they were offereing, so we got him to drive us back into Soufriere, were we found a great local café where they had fish or chicken with a selection of local salads and side dishes, and we had a really good meal for 20 EC dollars (about £5 each).
Our final visit was the Botanical Gardens and Diamond waterfalls. The guides there are all self employed, and we struck lucky with Matthew, who was really knowledgable, full of life and very entertaining, and we are now really well informed about local flora, including the aphrodisiacs
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