St Martin

Mon 25 Jan 2010 15:48
18.04.028n 63.05.747w
Baie Marigot - yes, another one.
We woke up during the night as something was clanking. Muz was worried as the little GPS had run out of battery for warning of anchor slippage and all the boats that had been near us were no longer there - thankfully while we were sleeping they had moved and we were still snug on our anchor (CQR for those that know of these things). It is quite windy here and a bit rolly. The forecast Force 5 has been very regular, but with gusts up to  Force 7 and 8.
We spent 3 days here to stock up on food and some engine spares and wait for slightly less wind (especially as we watched a yacht come in with a genoa ripped in two).
The island is divided into two countries, with the same name of Saint Martin for the French side and Sint Maarten for the Netherlands Antilles side. (The French part is technically in the EU, but is also a tax free zone, if anyone wants to come to live in the Caribbean, but the Dutch half isn't - don't ask!). The lagoon here is where most of the restaurants and boat stuff is, so we cam in with the tender. We were going to cross to the Dutch half that way to avoid having to clear customs again if we took the yacht, but decided against it.
Markets, upmarket tax free jewellery and clothes with cruise ships off-loading hundreds of passengers, give the place a real buzz. Lots of good restaurants. A complete contrast to the raw natural beauty of Barbuda.
The main harbour entrance