Culebra, Spanish Virgin Islands
Sat, Sun & Mon – 3rd, 4th & 5th May
Highlight of the day was the fireworks display at 2100 hours which we watched from the deck of Savarna where along with Balvenie and Emma Louise (Steve & Sheryl) we were enjoying drinks and puddings!
We had all gone ashore in the morning and watched the Carnival parade for a few hours but the heat and noise got the better of us around mid-afternoon but it was clear that the parade continued for several more hours after we left. It was unbelievably hot and because of the way this carnival runs, there were long gaps between each ‘float’ so it was hard to maintain enthusiasm for it all at times. They have a display area at the end of the route where each group get an opportunity to run through their main performance for the judges (and TV cameras) which cause a long tail back. You had to feel for most of the performers who were gamely doing their best despite the heat and lack of progress, just to keep us all entertained all the while.
On Sunday we took Mark and Amanda from Balvenie ashore to treat them to brunch at the Barefoot Buddha which is a wonderful coffee shop we discovered quite by accident in the pouring rain about a month ago now. Sadly when we finally arrived there, it was closed for ‘refurbishment’ for the weekend. So we made do with coffee and muffins at the Bad Ass Coffee Shop in the boardwalk shopping area. We followed this up with a quick visit to Pueblo grocery store and then back to the boats.
After sad goodbyes to Amanda and Mark we sailed off back to Brewers Bay in preparation for the sail over to Culebra which we did early on Monday morning. We used Flossie for probably the last time and in the light winds we still managed 5 plus knots for half of the 17 mile trip but in the end we had to put the engine on for the last part and made our way in past the coral reefs guarding the entrance to Ensenda Honda which is the big bay on the SE corner of Culebra. In the afternoon we took the dinghy over to the small town of Dewey and had a little look round and saw the biggest iguana ever and enjoyed the experience again of suddenly finding ourselves immersed in yet another quite different culture and language (Spanish) although the islands are in theory very much part of the USA.
These islands are very much known as breeding grounds for turtles including Leatherbacks and we found ourselves surrounded by them almost as soon as we had picked up the free mooring buoy in the picturesque anchorage. This flat bay is protected by a long coral reef that is barely above the level of the sea, but its presence robs the waves and swell of all of their power and leaves a beautiful flat mooring area behind it. Oddly we saw a couple beach their dinghy on it (bearing in mind it would be pretty spikey) to walk their dog there!
Another blistering hot day and you can tell summer is coming here – along with the hurricane season sadly!