The Grenadines

These landfalls between St. Vincent & Grenada are a boating paradise.

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The Grenadines

More than 30 islands and cays, some quite small and uninhabited, make up the Grenadines, which are spread like broken chain links between St. Vincent to the north and Grenada to the south.

One of the most famous is Young Island, a 35-acre resort island located just 200 yards from the southern end of St. Vincent.

With so many landfalls strung conveniently together, each with its own coves, beaches and reefs, this is one of the world's great yachting grounds.

Behind Young Island is Fort Duvenette, perched high atop what is perhaps the most striking landfall in all the Grenadines. Somehow, English soldiers managed to pull cannons up the small mountain (it's a 250 step climb to the top).

Curiously, all the cannons face inland. The English were terrified of the fierce Carib Indians who waged a bloody 7 year-war from their mountain hideouts.

The wharf at Kingstown on St. Vincent has regular ferry service to the Grenadines. The largest of them is Bequia (pronounced "BECK-way"), only 9 miles distant, which is known for its boat builders.

I've been told the largest schooner ever constructed in Bequia was the 165-foot Gloria Colita that traded regularly between Brazil and the U.S.

This apparently is the same ship that soon afterwards disappeared in the Bermuda Triangle and was found by the U.S. Coast Guard in the Gulf of Mexico without anyone aboard. One of those unsolved mysteries of the sea.

Ship building thrives today on a much smaller scale, in the hand-crafted, brightly painted ship models made here. They make terrific souvenirs.

Hunting for humpback whales has a long tradition on Bequia, and the International Whaling Commission sanctions the hunts due to the islanders' Aboriginal Whaling Status. The annual quota is 3 animals and the stipulation that all whale products (oil, meat) must be consumed locally.

This is a different, slow changing part of the world. That's also a large part of its appeal.

Carriacou, one of the largest of the Grenadines, is a next door neighbor to Grenada.

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