Sulphur Springs via Fairyland and Superman's Flight
15 January 2014 – Soufriere
We’ve been diving! Soufriere is known for its coral reefs and has a dive centre (Action Adventure Diving) run by Chester. He operates out of a little wooden beachfront hut just outside the Hummingbird Resort. On Tuesday morning he had a dive group of 4 in the morning, so we agreed to go out with the afternoon group and were picked up from Magnetic Attraction at 1pm. Two of the gentlemen from the morning’s dive were back for another go – one had a spear gun and seemed to be in the business of hunting lionfish.
We were taken across to Fairyland – a coral reef on the north side of the Soufriere Bay. I’d been very open with Chester and told him I wanted a refresher dive. He was great – and told Roger – “you go off and enjoy yourself, Sir – I will look after Margaret.” Which he did. It was quite different from the diving courses in the UK – Chester and Adam his no 2 got all the kit ready rather than DIY; and the briefing was very brief. Getting into the water was by somersaulting backwards into the water from the boat, and getting back in was made easier by the driver (a stout party) lowering the gunwhale to allow you to pull yourself back in. I felt like a bit of a stranded whale but hey… no one commented. The only rules were that the dive stopped when air got down to 50 bar (from 215.) There were no rules about depth, staying together etc. The objective was to have fun. We went back for another dive on Wednesday morning, this time to Superman Flight at the base of the Petit Piton. Roger took his gopro camera. The best shots were in shallower water, where there is more light. The colours of the coral were phenomenal, but the photos don’t do them justice
The cost was moderate - $25 US each a dive and $5 to have our cylinders refilled. It was great!
On Tuesday we’d had a long chat with our boat boy Greg.
He has three children: the oldest is 10. His mother bought him his boat from Trinidad, but he rents his outboard for $500EC a month (about £120.) he told us: “I hustle – that’s what I do.” Yes, he does, continually and without remission – but with some style. Roger hustled back and agreed with Greg that we’d go on an excursion to the Sulphur Springs for 200 ECD if Greg would (a) ferry us to and from and (b) go with us to collect the diving cylinders from Chester. Greg arranged for his cousin Tony to drive us. At the “drive through volcano” we had to pick up a guide, Raschida, who quoted her script to us. There was an immense stench of sulphur.
We also went to the hot baths, and slathered ourselves in mud before washing off in the hot pool. A very different experience!
On the way back, we stopped to take a Birds-eye view of the bay and the town.
Next stop, Vieux Fort.