Mt Carmel Waterfalls

Of course you have to get out and enjoy Grenada. You jump in one of the many privately owned, efficient and fantastically frequent maxi taxis that have different routes around the island, designated by a number on the front screen.

We were heading to Mt Carmel Waterfalls, which we read about in a book called “Ready to get wet? Our top 10 hikes of the Caribbean” written by Mike from zero to cruising and available on their web site zerotocruising . We had to jump the No 1 van from Prickly Bay to St George and then the Number 2 towards Grenville.P1020647a

These guys beep at you to let you know they are coming, a hand waves out the window to see if you want to jump aboard as they scream by and if you blink they screech to a halt and back up a block to load you in. Sometimes the conductor jumps out of the van and stands in the middle of the road with arms outstretched not understanding why you are walking and not jumping aboard. A quick wave and they are off. If you do take up the offer you squeeze into a spot in the taxi seated for 15ish and you are on your way with loud dance and reggae tunes to help the driver and you enjoy the trip. If you pay a little extra EC$ you can even get door to door service.

At one point on our trip to Grenville there were 18 of us in the van. Amazing to watch the dynamics of moving people around to accomodate each passenger and ensure you get everyone in. When you want out you tap on the side of the van or push a button and before you know it you screech to a halt, you are out and they are ready to fill your spot. Awesome.P1020791a

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About 1.5 hours later we arrived at the stop for Mt Carmel waterfalls.

 

 

 

 

It was a pretty easy 15 minute hike along a dirt trail to the waterfall. Akeem also joined us along the track explaining a little about the area. It was quite refreshing standing under the falls and having a quick shower. P1020792aP1020799a

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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We then wandered back along the track and took another path to Basse Falls where the local kids were sliding down the rocks into the pool at the bottom. The kids made it look like fun but their ripped shorts showed what the rocks can do and I don’t think it would be a gentle massage on your skin! P1020812aP1020818a

 

 

 

 

 

We swam in the pool and enjoyed lunch before getting back in a van to head back home to get ready to go out for Fish Fry-day with Shademan.

 

Grenada cuisine cooking classes

Thursday’s 3pm at the True Blue Resort and Marina near Prickly Bay there are Grenada cuisine cooking classes at  the restaurant for guests and cruisers, care of Esther & Omega who entertain you while cooking up a feast. Wendy from S/V Outsider and I decided this was a must and we both enjoyed the couple of hours off the boat. Ended up reconnecting with Alexandra from S/V Banyan and Rebecca from S/V zerotocruising, both energetic Canadians who have been cruising for a while.

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Today we covered Creole Sauce and I must say it was interesting to learn the secret to a good tomato based sauce. I don’t need to buy pizza sauce or pasta sauces any more. Simple so Esther says, no more Ragu sauce!   If you come and visit I will test it out on you and I’m sure you will agree, very tasty. Whats Brett having for dinner? You got it…. Creole sauce.

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Really enjoyable afternoon and an added treat at the end of the lesson; tasty food to sample using the Creole sauce. Yum!

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Island Tour

Australian yachties, (Tolly & Jas from S/V Le Mistral and Ian & Wendy from S/V Outsider) who we have followed down the various islands since Fort de France invited us to join them on an island tour of Grenada with Cutty, who came highly recommended.

We found out why the island is called Spice Isle as we came across an amazingly rich and diverse amount of flora and fauna growing wild all about the island. In one particular spot,  an old plantation Cutty found Ulang Ulang, tumeric, lemon grass; a tooth brush leaf, Cocoa, Cinnamon, Glue berries (used to glue crafts etc), nutmeg to name a few. 

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Below the Brazil Nut. The pod was amazing and of course contains a huge number of nuts.

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You name it and Cutty would stop by the side of the road and show us it growing.

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In the Grand Etang Forest we even came across the beautiful coloured trunk of the Eucalyptus tree, which dots the Australian landscape.

The Grand Etang Forest covers 1600 hectares with some amazing waterfalls, some of which we hope to hike to.

 

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At the top of the forest road we met the Mona monkey who loves mangoes and appears swinging through the trees upon hearing the honk of the van horn.

 

 

 

We stopped in Grenville at the Nutmeg processing plant for a tour. Prior to Hurricane Ivan in 2004 Grenada was the No 1 nutmeg exporter in the world, now no 2. 90% of the nutmeg trees were destroyed and it has taken some time for the crop to slowly come back. Farmers bring the nutmeg and mace to the plant and are paid according to the quality and weight.

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There are huge trays at this plant to dry the nuts before being sent to one of the other plants on the island for further processing. 

 

We visited an old rum distillary Rivers Rum, still producing rum, even though it wasn’t working when we were there. It uses a water wheel to crush the sugar cane and then the sugar is boiled in copper bowls and pumped up to the fermentation tanks before being sent to the boiler and vaporizer. The end product is overproof white lightening fire water. Not our best rum tour. This is not exported and no one in our group bought a bottle, way too strong.

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grenada choc

 

 

Stopping at the Belmont estate, where Grenada Organic chocolate is manufactured, we hoped for a tour but couldn’t because there had been an accident and one of the owners was electrocuted and killed while wiring solar panels at the factory a couple of days before. Needless to say the estate was very impressive and the chocolate delicious.

 

 

It was interesting seeing the island and views, various vendors on the road sides and the houses which ranged from small homes on hillsides with no raod access to upper income homes with 3 car garages. Hurricane Ivan really caused havoc on the island and you can still see that this island with the help of other countries is still rebuilding. We found the people in all the various villages we went to so friendly waving out to us as we drove by or saying hello as we wandered along the streets.  View on tour

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Would definetly recommend Cuttys tour.

At Prickly Bay, Grenada and a tragic event occurs

Well we have arrived in Prickly Bay, Grenada and will be here for a while to get a few boat jobs done and enjoy the island during part of hurricane season.

Unfortunately in our first few days here there was a horrible incident in the bay. We awoke at 5:30 to see the coast guard screaming past us, as he’s at the end of our bay, toward a brand new 80ft multi million dollar yacht on fire. Luckily the crew all got off uninjured but the yacht did not fear so well and burned to the water line. We understand that the cause was behind the electrical panel, which caught on fire. Really brought home to us the importance of safety and staying on top of maintenance etc. Very sad day in the anchorage and difficult watching it smoke and smolder all day thinking someones dream has gone.

The photos below came care of Mark on S/V Sea Life http://ourlifeatsea.com/  5[1]

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Back in Carricou, Grenada

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We spent a couple of days in Carricou. Hillsborough is the main town on Carricou and the port of clearance into Grenada. A very colorful town to wander around and visit the many vendor stores and supermarkets.

 

 

Cycled around the island and got lost trying to get from Hillsborough to Tyrrel Bay as theres not a lot of sign posts on the roads. It was hot and of course we don’t go out first thing in the morning , we head out at noon! Hmmmm you’d think we would learn.

Tyrrel Bay looked very busy with boats but appealing as it wasn’t as rolley as Hillsborough so we headed around the corner past Sandy Island and all the boats moored for snorkeling, but no one out. Will have to go snorkling here another time. P1020600a

 

Tyrrel

Tyrell Bay is a nice calm anchorage busy with many boats either anchored for hurricane season or heading south to the main land, Grenada.

 

 

 

While in Tyrrel we met Simon who sells wine and oysters to the cruisers. The thought of oysters appealed……P1020604aP1020608a

 

 

 

We also caught up for a drink with Jim & crew from Mopion who we got to know while in Chatham Bay and who were on holiday from the States. They enjoyed every minute they could in the water in some of the bays we had also been to in the Grenadines. You see so many of the same yachts on the same route along the way and it’s always neat to catch up and hear different peoples stories.GRP of 8

Off to the main land Grenada.