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St. Barth’s and Deshaies, Guadaloupe

St. Barth’s is just delightful! Tiny, with narrow, steep roads and villas dotted all around the landscape. The capital city of Gustavia where we anchored is filled with quaint buildings, tons of expensive yachts anchored and tied up on the wharves, and designer storefronts. It is very clean.
The fist piece of rubbish we saw was a champagne cork!

The island is very arid with cactus. So arid, in fact, that this island was not populated by indiginous people. The people now here are overwhelmingly French (as opposed to African or Carribean descent). It quite literally is like being in France.

Tobacco Shop, Gustavia, St. Barth's
Tobacco Shop, Gustavia, St. Barth’s

Street Scene, Gustavia, St. Barth's
Street Scene, Gustavia, St. Barth’s

Street Scene, Gustavia, St. Barth's
Street Scene, Gustavia, St. Barth’s

After being warned it would be impossible to find a rental car Mel spotted an agency that was open. This was a pet store, and I waited among the tropical fish tanks and dog collars to be waited on. We rented a Suzuki speck for (Euro)75 and took off with our British acquaintances Graham and Helen for a tour. Mel had done her research and we set out for Plage Goveneur (Governor’s beach) – wow:

Governor Beach, St. Barth's
Governor Beach, St. Barth’s

Governor Beach, St. Barth's
Governor Beach, St. Barth’s

We then packed up and headed over to the next cove where Plage de Saline (Saline beach) is – another of Mel’s discoveries. Here is a large salt pond and some cafes. We ate at Espirit de Saline and it was good and quite expensive (as is St. Barth’s in general).

Lunch at Espirit del Saline, Saline Beach, St. Barth's
Lunch at Espirit del Saline, Saline Beach, St. Barth’s

Lunch at Espirit del Saline, Saline Beach, St. Barth's
Lunch at Espirit del Saline, Saline Beach, St. Barth’s

We then walked over to the beach proper there. Very nice with several boats anchored just offshore for (I guess) the day.

Saline Beach, St. Barth's
Saline Beach, St. Barth’s

After a swim there and a walk it was time to return to Gustavia and our ship. The staff set up a deck barbeque this night which was fun. They work so hard to set up a lavish spread and then tear it down in minutes flat to make way for the topside entertainment after dinner. Here are some shots of the spread and our mighty staff:

Staff on Seabourn Legend
Staff at the Deck Barbeque on Seabourn Legend

We had a nice sunset followed by a full moon.

Sunset, St. Barth's
Sun setting over Gustavia harbor, St. Barth’s

Moon over the ocean
Moon over the ocean

On Christmas eve morning we anchored off Deshaies, Guadaloupe. Mel and I just love this little town with its carribean pastel buildings, verdant rainforest and attractive coastline.

Waterfront, Deshaies, Guadaloupe
Waterfront, Deshaies, Guadaloupe

Restaurant menu, Deshaies, Guadaloupe
Restaurant menu, Deshaies, Guadaloupe

Fish seller, Deshaies, Guadaloupe
Drive-through fish sales, Deshaies, Guadaloupe

Colorful porch, Deshaies, Guadaloupe
Colorful porch, Deshaies, Guadaloupe

Building, Deshaies, Guadaloupe
Building, Deshaies, Guadaloupe

We went on what was described to us as a ‘pleasant walk’ to Plage Grand Anse. It was not that pleasant a walk, quite hot alongside the main highway for half a kilometer until the turnoff on a gravel road out to the beach – this another kilometer or so. But the beach is beautiful, deep and wide with yellow-tan sand and aquamarine waters. This is a fairly steep beach, so swimming there was one of those washed-out and washed back in experiences.

There is a cafe on the beach which was operating. What it really amounted to was one guy operating three fires on which he barbecued bueatiful looking fresh fish and fish steaks and cooked rice and foil-wrapped potatoes. Of course there were baguettes served as well. Rudimentary, but quite charming.

Plage Grande Anse, Guadaloupe
Plage Grande Anse, Guadaloupe

Cafe kitchen, Plage Grande Anse, Guadaloupe
Cafe kitchen, Plage Grande Anse, Guadaloupe

We walked back into town and shopped a bit. The rum made here is supposed to be the very best. We understand it is made from free-flow cane juice as opposed to being made from molasses. Anyway, we bought a bottle of dark, 6-year rum we will take home and try one day.

Back aboard for sunset, lifting of anchor and Christmas eve dinner.

Happy travels!

-Steve

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