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Royal Clipper

Photo Album

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I finally had time to edit my photo album of this wonderful trip.

Click Royal Clipper and enjoy!
!

Posted by rpickett 22:25 Comments (0)

Royal Clipper

Barbados

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After a rather clumsy debarkation both on the part of the port and the ship, and after an antigen test so we could get back into the USA, we boarded a bus for an island excursion that would drop us off at the airport in about 4 hours.

Barbados is a beautiful island, often visited by the rich and famous. We drove by the exclusive resort where Simon Cowell will be married and did a photo stop at one of the high lookouts of the island.

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Our first official stop was at the St. Johns Parish Church. St. John's Parish Church is the first church of St. John that is presumed to have been a simple wooden building, but its date is unknown. The parish along with St. George, was carved out of St. Michael in 1640–1641. But successive churches were badly damaged by the hurricane of 1675, the Great Hurricane of 1780, and finally destroyed by the Great Barbados hurricane of 1831. The present church building (the fifth) was built is 1836, and the chancel added in 1876. It is the prototype of the restrained Barbadian version of the Gothic parish church, and a beautiful Westmacott sculpture, commemorating Elizabeth Pinder, on the left of the main door.

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Our next lunch stop was Sunbury Plantation. Sunbury Plantation House was built around 1660 by Matthew Chapman, an Irish/English planter, one of the first settlers on the island. He was related to the Earl of Carlisle and through this association, was granted lands in Barbados. Sunbury Plantation House is over 300 years old, steeped in history, featuring mahogany antiques, old prints and a unique collection of horse-drawn carriages.

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After a great filling lunch we took the 15 minute drive to the airport and our flight home.

In spite of some Covid hassles, this was one of the best trips to the Caribbean that I have taken, visiting places the bigger ships can't go. I will definitely do this again.

Posted by rpickett 22:58 Archived in Barbados Comments (0)

Royal Clipper

St. Lucia

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We arrived at St. Lucia this morning to the beautiful harbor of Marigot Bay. Although the bay is spectacular there is not much ashore so we stayed aboard saving our excursion to the afternoon in Soufriere.

There were large estates run by colonizers of French origin in Soufriere, and their descendants still live in the area. The French Revolution of 1789 resulted in many Royalists being executed and the enslaved Africans were released from enslavement. However, Napoleon reintroduced slavery when he came to power. The British invaded St Lucia shortly afterwards, but the enslaved Africans and French deserters fought them in a guerrilla campaign until 1803 when they were defeated and St Lucia became a British colony. Also, during that time, Castries became the capital of St Lucia. Over the years, Soufrière has had to deal with hurricanes in 1780, 1817, 1831, 1898 and 1980, a major fire in 1955 and an earthquake in 1991. Many of these events have had to result in the town being rebuilt several times. Today, Soufrière is more dependent on tourism rather than agriculture. The Pitons are just south of the town and there are several attractions in the area. Many of the old estates are still there such as Soufrière Estate, Fond Doux Estate and Rabot Estate.

Our first stop was the wonderful Diamond Botanical Gardens, one of the best in the Caribbean, and is home to the Diamond Waterfall. Baron de Laborie, Governor of St. Lucia, built Sulphur Baths in 1785, using funds sanctioned by King Louis XVI of France. Troops and invalids used the baths for medicinal purposes, comparing the waters to those found at Aix-la Chapelle.

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We then headed to the volcano caldera - the St. Lucia version of Yellowstone.

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We finished the day with a cold drink, high above the harbor, before heading back to the ship for our return to Barbados.

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Posted by rpickett 23:02 Archived in Saint Lucia Tagged soufriere Comments (1)

Royal Clipper

Dominica

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After sailing the majority of the morning we arrived in the bay of Cabrits, Dominica, out from the Cabrits National Park.

Cabrits is an extinct volcano that was once its own island, separate from mainland Dominica. It was connected to Dominica by the sweeping in of material from Douglas Bay and Prince Rupert Bay.

The word Cabrits is derived from "goat" in Spanish, French and Portuguese, and is a reference to the animal that has been indigenous to Cabrits. Goats were introduced to the island by sailors, who set them free on the island to grow, so that there would be meat available when they returned.

Our excursion today took us on a rowboat ride about 1/2 mile up the Indian River to explore and witness some of the natural beauty of the area.

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Posted by rpickett 14:46 Archived in Dominica Tagged cabrits Comments (0)

Royal Clipper

St. Vincent and Bequia

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The stop this morning was at Kingstown, St. Vincent mostly for the shore excursion to the Botanical Garden. The town itself is not much to write home about, but walking around you can get a sense of how life in the town is. The modern capital was founded by French settlers shortly after 1722, although Saint Vincent had 196 years of British rule before its independence. The botanical garden, conceived in 1765, is one of the oldest in the Western hemisphere. William Bligh, made famous from the Mutiny on the Bounty, brought seed of the breadfruit tree here for planting, c. 1793.

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During lunch we made the short sail to the wonderful little island of Bequia. My brother had been here a number of times, and the highlight was heading to Mac's Pizza and Kitchen for some local beer and a shrimp and garlic pizza.

Bequia is the second-largest island in the Grenadines at 7 square miles (18 km2). It is part of the country of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and is approximately 15 kilometres (9.3 mi) from the nation's capital, Kingstown, on the main island, Saint Vincent. Bequia means "island of the clouds" in the ancient Arawak. The island's name was also 'Becouya' as part of the Grenadines.

Bequia has a history of whaling which may have brought in by the Yankee whalers in the 19th century. Its people are only allowed to catch up to four humpback whales per year using traditional hunting methods, however these methods are regularly abused using harpoon guns and speedboats to surround the whales. The limit is rarely met, with no catch some years.

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After dinner we hoisted sails and set off for Dominica.

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Posted by rpickett 14:50 Archived in St Vincent/The Grenadines Tagged and bequia kingstown Comments (0)

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