Phil's Logs


The Boat

The Crew


DATE: March 09, 2007
LOCATION: Guadeloupe

The anchorage in Port De Plaisance was halfway between the Marina Bas Dufort and the main Guadeloupean city of Port A Pitre and an easy dinghy ride to either. The marina was really a large complex of restaurants and various yacht services mostly on the waterfront encircling the marina basin. Everything you could want or need for a boat. The marina is near is at the finish mark for the famed single-handed sailboat race the Route du Rhum, which begins on the other side of the Atlantic. The place is truly a sailing mans heaven, the Caribbean equivalent of Annapolis. I spent an hour in the restaurant Route du Rhum looking at the pictures of great sailors that adorn the walls, and another hour wandering about the yards looking at some really hot and in some cases famous boats. In the French way, everything was orderly and neat as well as colorful and friendly. A good percentage speak English and sign language is accepted good-naturedly from those who don't. Given its mostly affluent clientele things were still reasonably priced and as always you were not disappointed in the French cooking. Pointe A Pitre on the other hand was a real city. The fisherman would line the town wharf in the mornings displaying and cutting their fish on makeshift boards fixed to the gunwales. The great fresh vegetable and spice markets were at the center of things near the waterfront but there were also bustling, colorful, and at times loud streets chock full of every kind of storefront imaginable, clothing, shoes, jewelry, hard goods, bolangaries and restaurants. I had been waiting to buy a couple of pairs of shorts and light cotton shirts and this was the place. Ponte a Pitre certainly doesn't mind tourist trade and there are plenty of them about, especially near the waterfront but at its heart it is definitely a city for the residents of Guadeloupe, certainly, not as manicured and protected as the marina complex, but to my mind a whole lot more fun. I used Pointe A Pitre as a base to explore Guadeloupe and spent a day roaming the island with a rented car. More adapt now at French road signs, I never became completely lost, perhaps a bit confused, but never lost. I walked a mountain trail in the national park, explored two waterfalls including the famed Carbet falls which can only be reached through a one hour hike through a truly beautiful trail up, over and then down through the rainforest, and then stopped at roadside cafes in some of the small villages. Everyone was always friendly and the language was never a real barrier. But I had spent over two weeks in Guadeloupe and my very loosely kept schedule kept reminding me it was time to sail on, so we took on fuel and set sail bound for Dominica on the 9th. I had waited for a day with the wind a little north of south and with one reef in the main flew to Dominca averaging just a tad under 9 knots over the ground, and this against a bit of current. We set anchor in Ruperts Bay off the city of Portsmouth in time to clear customs and immigration and then after a hard earned locally brewed Kubuli beer set off to explore the city.

Click here for previous log entries. | Next log entry

Site by Brushfire Media
Content © 2006, 2007 Phil Gillihan
All Rights Reserved

home | complete logbook | boat | crew