We ended up staying in West Palm for just over 2 weeks waiting for a weather window to the Bahamas. To cross the Gulf Stream you don’t want Northerly winds so we patiently waited. Not to worry, there was plenty to do in the area including lots of great activities put on by the city and bars and restaurants, which kept us entertained.
There was a celebration for the lighting of a 600 tonne sand sculpture in the form of a Christmas tree. Yes can’t believe its that time of the year again. It was amazing watching them create the tree.
Streets were closed down, tents erected selling all sorts and bands playing on a stage erected in the street. Great turnout of people and the tree looked amazing once it was all lit up. The Palm trees were all decorated, so festive.
Free concert with 3 great bands
There were other creative sculptures placed along the waterfront.
Looks like our weather window is here so we are off with all the other boats that have been waiting.
We decided to stay in Isle of Palm, SC for a few weeks relaxing, getting jobs done and meeting some great locals. When you have to buy a heater for the boat to stay warm you know it’s getting cold and we need to head further south. The weather was great for sailing on the outside (Atlantic Ocean) as opposed to sticking to the Inter-coastal waterway (ICW) so we decided to hit the ocean. We got to use our new screecher, which was great.
At Hilton Head we stopped to check out this golfing mecca. On the way into the dock this dolphin met us and escorted us in swimming along beside us; such beautiful peaceful animals. Ended up riding our bikes out and along the beach. Perfect weather for cycling but still we needed jackets.
We stopped at St Augustine FL and moored just off Castillo de San Marcos. Perfect spot to get ashore and to watch all the tourists out enjoying the boardwalk and riding around in the horse and carts hearing the stories of Old St Augustine. We cycled and walked all about the town area. Got our fill of exercise that’s for sure!
Can you spot us anchored off the fort at the end of the cannon.
In St Augustine we organized a new flag for our boat which won’t fade and shred.
Once we entered Florida the wind seemed to disappear so we decided if we were motoring why not have something to look at, so we re-entered the ICW. Peck Lake just south of Fort Pierce was a very pretty area where you could walk thru the rolling sand dunes to this Sandy beach. Yeah warm at last!
We went through 9 ICW bridges on our last day to reach West Palm where we entered the US nearly 6 months ago. The ICW changed from this natural beauty to being built up with condos and big homes.
Isn’t Florida meant to be warmer?
Our home in West Palm Beach off the waterfront
Time for some big food provisioning and final jobs before heading to the Bahamas and West Carribean/Central America.
We had a great sail over to the USA spotting the apartment towers of Palm Beach from a long way off shore.
Once inside the Palm Beach Inlet we made our way through our first bridge of many to come on the US Intercoastal waterway, to a great anchorage and use of free docks at the City of West Palm Beach. We stayed a few nights on the dock and then moved just off the dock to anchor, but still take advantage of the cities facilities.
Daryl & Annie who we met in Grenada are anchored in the same area with us. Nice going out for dinner again and having a great choice of restaurants to go to.
The Palm Beach area is a happening place with lots of things going on; including free concerts in the park opposite the boat, an outdoor fresh produce market, miles of beach, great selection of shops and a good pathway system to go for walks and ride the bikes for exercise. Brett and I were busy going to his favorite stores; Best buy, West Marine and yes Home Depot.
Palm Beach itself is a classy area with streets lined with palm trees, beautiful homes and expensive shops along Worth Avenue. The floral wall mural was even impressive.
For a bit of culture we went to the Flagler Museum, the winter retreat of Henry Flagler a leading person of America’s Gilded Age. He was a founding partner in Standard Oil and also developed the Florida East Coast Railway and huge luxury hotels on the Florida coast, in the early 1900’s. The 75 room home included technologies developed during the gilded age. Not really our taste in decor though.
We spent just over a week in West Palm but it as time to head North so we are legal for insurance purposes given hurricane season is fast approaching. We are heading towards Beaufort, North Carolina first.