Les Saintes is a small archipelago just south of Guadalupe. We left Martinque in the early afternoon and sailed through to night to arrive in Terre de Haut, the main island, the next afternoon. We managed to squeeze our way in between a wreck and a bommie to pick up a mooring buoy very close to shore. We spent the rest of the day relaxing and snorkelling on the wreck and reefs just meters from North Star.
The next day we went ashore to clear in and do some exploring. Everyone was riding around on these electric bikes and buggies which was a bit of shame. We decided to do it the old fashioned way and walk. We were told that Fort Napoleon offered a great view from atop the hill and an insight into the history of the French Caribbean.
The walk was lovely and the view from the top of the surrounding islands was awesome. On the way up we were treated to our first Iguana sighting that posed for a photo with North Star in the background!
We ventured across to the other side of the island to Plage de Pompierre, a lovely secluded beach surrounded with palm trees and to our surprise, a lot of chickens and goats.
We moved North Star over to Isle á Cabrit which is uninhabited apart from the cats and chickens which seem to live harmoniously side by side. Les Saintes don’t offer many anchoring opportunities and with no boat boys offering assistance, we had to perfect the art of jousting. With Sam on the helm, we’d slowly manoeuvre up to the mooring buoy whilst I lean out of the bow with our mooring line ready to joust through the hoop. We didn’t mess this up a single time, however, it was amusing to watch other boats struggle.
We dinghied ashore to explore the island and the ruins of Fort Josephine. However, apart from a good view over the Saintes there wasn’t much to see apart from rubble.
A highlight of our time in the Caribbean has to be the evening we spent ashore with the entire island to ourselves. We forged for fire wood and created a fire pit on the beach to cook our dinner while the sun went down. We felt like proper castaways!
Our final stop in Les Saintes was in Pan de Sucre, part of Terre de Haut. We picked up a mooring ball right under the small piton sheltering the northern side of the bay where the snorkelling was supposed to be excellent. However, to Sam’s disappointment the snorkelling was a little sub par, yet being able to snorkel straight from the boat is certainly a luxury we cannot complain about.
Ever the adventurers we decided to climb to the highest point on the island, Le Chameau at 1000 feet tall. This was a great excursion, starting with a leisurely walk through the foliage it quickly became a vertical climb and by the time we reached the top we were bouldering. However, it was certainly worth the reward; the view over the Saintes and onto Guadalupe in the North with Dominica in the South was quite breathtaking.
Although it was only a short visit to Les Saintes we enjoyed it immensely and would definitely return!