Windward Islands

Information about sailing cruises in the Caribbean Windward Islands
Martinique is the most windward of the Windward Islands and a perfect location to begin a one-way Caribbean sailing vacation to Grenada to the south or St. Martin to the north. Yet Martinique has a memorable week of sailing to offer along her shores. Unmistakably French, this island has extraordinary food and wine. The misty rain forests, historic plantations, and quiet beaches and coves that inspired artist Paul Gauguin serve as a backdrop for fine dining, shopping and exploration. Snorkel the barrier reef in the sheltered waters east of St. Anne. Spend a night in Fort de France, the “Paris of the West Indies.” Then sail up the coast to historic St. Pierre, destroyed by the eruption of Mt. Pelée in 1902. The explosive power still echoes a century later in the 12 wrecks to dive offshore. Under way again, explore the trio of stunning coves at Les Anses-d’Arlets. Sail in the shadow of the towering fortress of Diamond Rock, then heed the silent call of two miles of perfect sand on the southern beach of Grand Anse des Salines.

Sailing Adventures in Every Direction
Starting at Le Marin near St. Anne, you can spend an entire week cruising the coast of Martinique or experience the excitement of blue-water sailing by heading north to Dominica or south to St. Lucia and the Grenadines. Continue further south to explore one of the finest cruising grounds in the world— the special treat that awaits you in the Tobago Cays, where an astonishing composition in emerald-green waters, uninhabited islands and unspoiled beaches surpasses your every expectation of paradise.

Luxuriously French, Incredibly Convenient

Regular flights to Lamentin Airport make travel to Martinique easy from anywhere in the United States or Europe. Le Marin is a 35-minute trip by taxi or rental car.

Pretty as a picture describes our beloved Bequia. You’ll be captivated by the island’s charm while strolling along the lovely harbor with its shops, restaurants, and pastel-painted gingerbread homes. There’s a long tradition of boat building and you’ll find a slew of handcrafted model ships, old nautical charts, and rare sailing books to bring back home.

Peaceful and removed describes this patch of paradise. Green rolling hills descend to sandy white beaches (typical of the Grenadines.) At Tyrrel Bay, under the shade of palms at the edge of the sea, you can watch local men building schooners by hand. Still unspoiled by mass tourism, this is the perfect spot for getting away-from-it-all.

People say that the ‘Nature Island’ is the only Caribbean landmass that Columbus would recognize today. Virgin rainforests stand proud and tall … Untamed rivers run wild … Hundreds of waterfalls cascade from glorious heights where some 160 species of birds fill the forest with song and color. Lucky for us, many of Dominica’s eco-sensitive tourist activities have been integrated into the lives of the locals–a nice change from the traditional tourist kitsch and glitzy resorts found on other islands.

Iles des Saints
The Saints are an archipelago of eight volcanic islets–tropical hideaways scalloped by white sandy beaches and sheltered coves. The 17th century Fort Napoleon is an impressive structure with fine views over the island and surrounding seas. A charming and seductive atmosphere pervades the place. It’s enough to make you want to buy your dream villa and leave the world behind.

Welcome to the island of flowers. Roadsides are splashed with bougainvillea, hibiscus, and poinsettias. The romantic artist Paul Gauguin came here to paint in 1887. The culture is a unique blend of French, African and East Indian influences–a diversity as rich as the landscape itself. Martinique has it all: deserts, rainforests, volcanoes, white and black sand beaches. Accented with almond and pear trees, the beaches are the most exotic we’ve encountered. In town, French and Creole culture bombards the senses, from the colorful Madras fabric to the lively Boules games on the town square. Vive la difference!

No need for a time machine–just go to Mayreau! There’s only one road, virtually no development, and farm animals outnumber people. Ok, so you would not want to move here permanently, but it’s the ideal place to take that overdue break from reality

St. Lucia
This island is a nature lover’s paradise. Here, the dueling Piton peaks serve as an inspiring landmark for sailors. You’ll have a chance to visit waterfalls, hot springs, botanical gardens and the world’s only “drive-in” volcano. Got Boots? Hiking boots are what you’ll need for trekking along trails through the Rainforest Reserve, a favorite venue for bird-watchers. The forest is loaded with flowering delights: giant ferns, wild orchids, and towering stands of bamboo. Shop for the island’s famous hand-printed Batik fabrics, sample the calaloo soup, or step back in time by strolling through an historic banana or coffee plantation. The possibilities are endless…

St. Vincent
St. Vincent glimmers like an emerald in the sea. A boat ride along the coast is the best way to appreciate the island’s volcanic origins; and visit the Falls of Baleine, a breathtaking waterfall that spills from a mass of foliage into a rockbound pool. Kingstown, the capital, is an 18th century town worth exploring. A walking tour begins at the docks and leads to the farmers’ market (Saturday mornings), past shops, restaurants, and old churches. Beachcombers will find beautiful black sand on the Leeward side, proof of the island’s volcanic birth. If flowers brighten your day, take a free tour through the botanical gardens-the oldest in the Northern Hemisphere.

Tobago Cays
The highlight of cruising the Grenadines is the Tobago Cays. They are four uninhabited, palm-fringed islets ringed by pristine, white-sand beaches and clear azure waters. For many, this is the most beautiful region in the Caribbean. The atmosphere is serene, and the intensity of colors sheds a romantic glow. From any of the cays, you can swim or wade to outlying portions of the reef. The Tobago Cays are the closest thing to heaven-on-earth!
Union Island
The most southerly island of the Grenadines, Union Island is a mere three miles by one mile, garnished with two dramatic peaks and a population of 2000. Once you land on shore, you won’t want to leave. Union Island is a sailor’s delight offering pretty anchorages, a couple of rowdy bars, and some good restaurants. There’s mile after mile of undisturbed sand and wild mangos for the taking.

Grenada is the fruit basket of the Caribbean. The fertile soils of the ‘Spice Island’ are perfect for growing cinnamon, cloves, and cocoa beans. Banana trees grow as tall as palms along the sides of the road. The scents of ginger, vanilla, almond, and nutmeg linger in the air, while the countryside explodes with every tropical fruit imaginable. The bustling farmers’ market in picturesque St. George is one of the liveliest and most resplendent.
More information about sailing vacations in the Caribbean Grenadines

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