Current Position: 15 17.68 N 061 23.23 W Click to view map.
Distance sailed since last post: 59 nautical miles. View the map of our voyage track here
Left Martinique around 10am and arrived Dominica at 4pm. It was a really nice sail with winds up to 20knots. Anchored in Roseau near the cruise ship dock. Two big ships were there for the day.
If you like nature, you will love Dominica for its spectacular natural beauty. Amazing rain forests, lush vegetation, valleys and gorges, and an endless array of hikes.
Our favorite attraction was the boiling Lake.
We hiked with a guide for 3 hours to get to it. It started off through the rain forest, and up into a cloud forest with great views. Down muddy scramble into the Valley of Desolation where the rocks felt soft and springs of boiling water and steam everywhere.
We followed this hot river for a while, I mean rocks, water, trees that had fallen over and up the hill again, this time into some low vegetation.
Soon we arrive at this 70 meters wide crater, throwing clouds of steam into the air. We stood at the natural ledge, once in awhile the steam clears away and you see the boiling water. It is the second largest boiling lake in the world. We sat and had a picnic and admired the views all around us. Our guide said the largest is in New Zealand. It took us just over 2 hours to hike back. At the end of the trail we stopped at Titou Gorge for a great swim through this deep slot canyon that narrows and winds through the mountain and into a thundering waterfall. According to the locals, Pirates of the Caribbean shot some scenes there too.
Our guide was impressed we were so fast.
Probably not so impressed when we told him the day wasn’t over yet. ( after all he was paid for the day. ) Normally he doesn’t plan anything else on that tour because the hike is tiring. We were ready to see more sites we had investigated beforehand! Our next stop was at Trafalgar Falls. Only half hour walk from car park very beautiful gardens all the way to the 2 beautiful Falls, male and female they call it.
Our day ended with a nice soak at Tia’s Spa. Not the kind of Spa you’re thinking! We went down this nature trail, into this luscious valley and jumped into these sulphur springs baths. The Spa also offers private, enclosed Baths if one prefers, but with all the crowds from the cruise ship gone, by then it was late afternoon, Noel and I had the place all to ourselves. Ahhh who wants to be cooped up inside with a view like this? We were surrounded by banana trees, cocoa trees, nutmegs so many flowers, the sounds of all kinds of birds and of course the Springs. It was magical! A short drive through the Botanical gardens and that brought us back home.
The next day we took a taxi up to the Carib Indian village. That was a bit of a disappointment. Not much there really. Except for a guide who told us that only 10%of the Caribs were still pure blood – and they had forgotten almost all of their customs and traditions, which makes it a bit hard to put on an informative display about their past lives!
On the way back from that we visited the Emerald Pool, a world heritage site. Again, beautiful forest, lovely river and waterfall and a plunge pool. Delightful.
Well, that did it for Roseau, so we sailed up to Portsmouth, at the top end of the island, where we took a quiet boat trip up Indian River. Rather like our boat trip in the Amazon – but way warmer this time! Saw kingfishers, iguanas and of course lots of herons.
In the afternoon we were sitting in the cockpit doing not a lot, when we heard this plaintive cry “help! Help!” There was a little girl sailing past in a small sailing dinghy. We still had the dinghy in the water, so we leapt in that, took some extra line, and went off after her. It seems she had lost her dagger board or something, but in any case was unable to tack. No problem, we towed her back to her parent’s catamaran Ondine, and then had a very pleasant visit with Jon, Lucy, and Emma Kate. Well, I guess that is one way to meet the neighbors!
Tomorrow we sail for Guadeloupe – time for some more French cheeses!