Small Town Explorations

Trip Start Jan 30, 2008
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Trip End May 10, 2008


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Saturday, April 19, 2008

After roughly a month and a half of exploring the Exumas we set off for the much larger island of Eleuthera. From Highborne Cay, Exuma we sailed to the Cape Eleuthera Yacht Club and Resort which tempted us to visit from the incredible description we read in our guide book. About a mile from the marina entrance we were unable to contact the dock master, but thinking the VHF signal was just acting up, we proceeded into the channel leading to a private cove the resort had created. An absolute ghost town is what we witnessed. Not a single transient motor or sail boat in sight and only 3 small charter fishing boats were tied up. About 40 yards from the set of empty docks we finally get in touch with someone who leads us in. While checking in I asked the woman when the High season was supposed to be, "This IS the high season..." she replies. Somewhere there's a developer and some investors sweating bullets. Other than the initial creepy aura, it was kind of nice being the kings of the castle and having everyone cater to just You. haha. It was actually a little difficult to choose one table to sit at in the empty restaurant. Not sure how fresh the food could have been, but it tasted great and we're still alive! From here we traveled around the corner to a huge bay named Rock Sound Harbour.

Rock Sound settlement was real small, but had the largest grocery store we had been to since Nassau!

We were awe struck going inside and had a field day going up and down all the isles, making justifications for why we would need this and that. I mean...they had more salad dressings to choose from that the previous stores had items! Michael and Austin renewed our travel visa here and major maintenance on the generator was performed; changed the impeller for the raw water cooling system, changed the oil, created a new gasket for the raw water strainer, and replaced the fuel filter. The funny thing about this town was how Everyone you passed waved to you. While walking home with grocery filled hands we must have head nodded a hundred times to avoid being rude.

Governors Harbour was our next stop and we anchored right off of this small beach in front of the town.

A nice colonial styled town, with a bakery that sold fresh donuts and an antique library we hung out in while using the internet.

It was in this town that I finally convinced myself to see a doctor about my aching foot. I had got a cut on the bottom of my foot a week and half prior, but in the last couple days it had grown severely swollen and was not only hurting when I put pressure on it, but All the time. The constant throbbing was especially annoying at night when trying to sleep. The clinic in this town had one doctor that I had to telephone when I arrived inside. The doctor that arrived in this tiny Bahamian town oddly enough was Chinese. He spoke English pretty well, but I was thinking to myself of all the places to be treated by a Chinese doctor the middle of the Bahamas was not it. After sitting up on the exam table came the worst pain of my life. The nice, friendly, all smiles doctor took my painful to the touch lemon foot and proceeded to squeeze all the juice out, while I grinded my teeth in horrific pain. My foot had in fact been extremely infected and actually did feel better as I limped out of the clinic, little brown bag full of antibiotics and painkillers in hand, an exhausted soldier after a battle, slowly peddling my bike back to the dinghy. It was here we also were lucky to meet a couple from the Annapolis, MD area. They invited back on their boat where we swapped stories and they told us of their world travels as SCUBA diving instructors! Our next stop was Royal Island, at the top of Eleuthera, a nice day sail from Governors Harbour. During this sail we lost two of our best lures to the razor teethed Barracuda that must have been getting back at us for taking their cousin in Exuma. Metal leaders for every lure now. Towards the end of the sail we rocketed through a narrow cut, aptly named current cut, where we recorded 7.6 knots without sail or the motor! Next door to Royal Island is Spanish Wells, where we currently reside at Yacht Haven Marina



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Spanish Wells is a prominent fishing community that sends most of its Lobster to none other than "Red Lobster."

The locals here have quite the unique accent, a mix between Scottish, Gullah, Southern, and New Jersey if you can begin to imagine that.

At one of the restaurants I ordered the turtle, apparently a very common dish here. I made Michael and Austin try it too and we all loved it!

Golf carts are the main form of transportation here, most outfitted with stereos, and fishing boats of all sizes line the docks. The season has just ended so the docks are jammed packed with fisherman and mechanics scrambling to get their boats in tip top before the start of the next season. The sight of forklifts and people running around, the sound of power tools and engines, and the smell of fresh paint and fish is quite an experience to behold.

The famous, luxurious and touristy Harbour Island is right next door and couldn't be more different.

After a ferry ride through an extremely tricky area known as devils backbone, you step off the ferry boat to locals telling you about their golf cart rentals. We asked to see the golf carts and upon scanning them Michael points to a Monster golf cart.

Lifted with big, all terrain tires this was a golf cart to the max and our choice as soon as we saw it. Cruising around the town in this thing was a thrill ride especially zipping around corners and down narrows streets.



We visited the Pink sand beach and had lunch at the Coral Sands hotel restaurant overlooking it.

As upscale and classy as the place was it was hilarious to see a rooster walking around crowing at the different tables.

In fact, we saw chickens all over the place and sadly even one that almost crossed the road.

A man riding a horse in the ocean, stuffed turtles, and holding the worlds largest coconut were some other highlights before leaving the island.




Eleuthera gave us that desired interaction with Bahamian culture first hand. Since the towns were so small, we really stood out to the locals and they were more than happy to talk to us and tell us about their town and the best places to eat, buy fresh bread, and find certain engine parts. It was a really nice change to be able to buy simple food items like cheese and meat! From here our next adventure awaits in the Abacos and overnight sail away.
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Comments

ncpit
ncpit on

Fantastic!
I have really enjoyed reading the stories about your fantastic journey. I have to admit that I was worried about you boys taking on such a challenging trip like this but when I read about how you are handling situations you've encountered, I become more confident in your abilities to succeed. Please continue to be safe. I'm glad you're having the time of your life. Keep posting!!

Love you guys,

Aunt Nancy

dionthego
dionthego on

Back in Touch again !!!!!!
Hey, Guys... we are back in the country again with easy access to internet again !!!!! I loved the picture of the chichen that nearly crossed the road!!! you still have your wonderful sense of humour !!!!!I bet when you are back in S.C. you'll look back... and say.. 'did we actually DO that trip ?????' That's a bit how we are feeling right now, !! take care and keep one hand for the boat !!!

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