Serenity of Swanwick
Phil and Sarah Tadd
Sat 2 Apr 2016 23:23
Well last night was our fourth night in Road Bay and the forecast is for the strong trades that seem to have been blowing for weeks to ease down. 20 Knots doesn't sound too bad but when you add compression zones between islands and Katabatic winds it soon becomes 30 knots.
We have been anchored almost alongside Pan Dai, the catamaran with crew from Torquay that we met in Simpson Bay, and enjoyed a very pleasant visit when they invited us to sundowners on board.
Yesterday we walked to The Valley, the main town, and found an ATM so we are solvent again. It was about four miles and we started on a footpath to the hill to the north of the bay, where we had good views looking out along the coast and down into Road Bay, but the rest was pretty dull walking along roads, except for seeing the BATA shop?(I doubt they had any stock Harry). There seem to be many attractive and colourful gardens here, and we wondered if this was because there is a very nice garden centre near Road Bay. There was also some interesting architecture. We came back in time for tea and cakes on board Serenity with Tony and Debbie from Pan Dai.
Yesterday we tried to see more of the Island. To visit the other bays by boat you need a cruising permit at about £25 a day and have to pay £10 anchoring fee, which all adds up. Most of the bays are day anchorages only so you have to return to Road Bay or Crocus Bay overnight. Bike hire is reportedly available in Blowing Point, but that is across the other side of the island, so we took a taxi tour. This consisted of a drive down to the East end of the island looking at the town, a new resort development, two more beach resorts then down to the west end doing much the same. We were disappointed not to get to see the north eastern end of the island, which is the wilder part, but perhaps it is not easily accessible by road. Our taxi driver was accompanied by his wife, who was telling him what to do and where to take us, which probably didn’t help. The beaches we saw were lovely white sand with fantastic turquoise sea, and beach resorts are being developed but there seems to be little other tourist infrastructure to back it up.
The beach bars and restaurants do seem to be good, and we enjoyed a beer in one here in Road Bay yesterday evening. They had live music: a saxophonist and singer, which we could still hear drifting across the water when we returned to the boat for supper.
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