Monday, November 19, 2012

Back to Cane Garden Bay

When we leave for St. Maarten after Christmas we will likely leave from Leverick Bay at the top of Virgin Gorda.  What a beautiful spot.  We enjoyed 3 nights up there after Don and Pat left us.  We spent an evening ashore being entertained by the Jumbies - young dancers on stilts.  Very impressive and fun to get up and dance along.  We used the marina's laundromat, pool and grocery store.  When you tie up to one of their moorings you get 100 gallons of water and a bag of ice for free!  One day we took the dingy to visit the classy Bitter End Yacht Club resort across the bay and had a beer in the "English Pub."  

Approaching Leverick Bay Marina

Bitter End Yacht Club

Sir Richard Branson's Necker Island-see the remains from the fire? 
The Necker Belle - Sir Richard's luxury catamaran - for charter if you can afford it.
 After 3 days of lounging around and boat projects - cleaned the carb on the generator and installed a new prop on Murphy the dinghy - we set off for Anegada, which apparently means the drowned island in Spanish?  It is surrounded by a huge horseshoe reef which has claimed over 300 ships over the years.  The island is only 23 feet high at its max - so you don't need to worry about getting a nose bleed climbing the hills.  The passage there is well marked and it is north so we had a nice beam reach for a couple of hours sailing up there.  Anegada's claim to fame is the plentiful beach bars, many of which specialize in Anegada lobster.  At $50 for the lobster we opted for the $11 hamburger.  We also chose not to rent a car for the day to drive the 12 miles of road and visit snorkelling beaches and flamingo ponds.  We've seen lots of great snorkel beaches...  and flamingos, well, our Bahamian friends call flamingos "red turkey."  Many people love Anegada so much that they have purchased vacation homes. We met a lady - we think she was the owner of the Anegada Reef Hotel - moved there from Yorkshire 40 years ago.  Wow!

Expert dolphin spotter
But… here we are back in Cane Garden Bay - one of our favorite spots - after a 4 hour beam reach at 7 knots the whole way.  Once again we were accompanied by dolphins for part of the way.

We are surrounded by charter boats. There are very few cruisers like us.  They are only down for a week or two and they've paid a ton to charter so they are here for a good time.  The $30 per night for a mooring ball is part of the experience.  So is the daily trip to town for a tee-shirt and a burger with a beer.  Or maybe several beers.  And many of the beach restaurants feature dinner menus with entrees at $40 or $50.  We simply can't afford to do that for the months that we are down here.

For the most part we also pay the $30 for the mooring ball because they cover the anchorages and there just isn't room to swing on an anchor.  But that's the charm of Cane Garden Bay.  We've found a cool spot where we can anchor that is close enough to shore that we can pick up internet.  The scenery is gorgeous and the live music at night is wonderful.  We have our share of cold beer in our fridge and we certainly aren't lacking for great food.  Last night, Pam made roast pork tenderloin with jambalaya rice and a salad.  We chased it down with Chilean champagne.  Tonight we had Pasta al Deborah - penne with oregano, garlic, onions, bacon and tomatoes accompanied by a Chilean red.  Mmmmmm!

Cooling off in an afternoon squall...
These things come on you fast and leave you fast, Boss!
So that's why we love Cane Garden Bay.  We will hang out here for another day or two and then head back to the USVI to do some boat chores.  Then back home for a dose of grandchildren!


  1. Branson's Neckar Belle, Cane Garden Bay sound so idealic, your lives are a whirl now with new babies/grandchildren, travel. Soon you'll head north again to the excitement here. I love your posts, they make my day and week. things are good here, even our dull winterish days are not threatening as in other places. Climate change is real. Bye for now

  2. There certainly are some interesting names at all the places you've been. Your travel map is getting fuller & fuller with no end in site in the next little while. Almost time to head back home for a short while, get caught up with family, especially grandchildren and then back to your sailing adventures.

  3. Aw love the BitterEnd :) got to get a new t-shirt for our son-in-law when we get back. I love seeing that you're there! Wish we were there to join you. Guess we'll be back soon enough :)
    Hope we get to see you two!


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