On Her Majesty’s Sovereign Soil

Leaving Sint Maarten (St Martin actually, since that's the French side you're seeing)

Couldn’t help the James Bond reference in the title, it just sounded better than “We went to Anguilla”.  I suppose, like most Caribbean islands, it is a nice place to visit, the people are nice and friendly, the weather is a mix of sunshine (Boom Boom) and some rain, the beers are cold and the beaches are gorgeous.  You walk off the ferry and you feel you’ve stepped out of the current century and back into the latter half of the last one.  That’s not to say that they are backwards, far from it, it’s just the “feel” of the place, with some of the older type architecture, the local accent that has a lyrical beauty to it, and the sun and palms trees do carry you back to when most movies used tropical settings for their “exotic” feel.  If I had stepped off of the ferry in a white shirt, fedora and rugged briefcase, I might have expected to be met by Felix Lighter.

The dock/pier at Blowing Point, Anguilla

We went across by “ferry”, not the normal name I would use for a boat the size we went in.  A nice small twelve passenger boat that I would more call a Water Taxi than a ferry, especially with 450 horse power pushing it.  The captain and crew (well only one on board, but also those at the ports) of the GB Express were the epitome of island friendliness, making the trip across the small stretch of sea very enjoyable.

In true island fashion, when you reach port and ask about a car to rent, you are not reffered to an agency, just simply “go ask for Andy” 🙂  And Andy delivers, a nice enough car (with a few dings and dents for character) and a map of the island, and some advice, like – remember to drive on the Left.   If you are in town, the capital being called The Valley, and you ask someone about an establishment for eating, they tell you “go to Lisa’s”, well, we didn’t get the opportunity to go to Lisa’s but I am sure that the advice would have paid off.

At the Golf Club

We took a little drive around the Golf Course, and admired all the nice work being done there, it is still being developed,but you can still book your Tee time and play a round of 18  🙂

A Bridge in the Golf Course

After the Golf Course, we drove on around the western tip of the island, or the West End and along the norther coast, where we stopped to take a photo of  the Road Bay and Sandy Ground from Back Street.

Road Bay, as seen from Back Street

From there we drove into the, capital “The Valley”, it has some nice quaint places.  The whole island has a laid back feel to it, no hustle, no bustle, no major traffic, just nice and relaxing.

Wall Blake House, The Valley, Anguilla

Even though there were many places I would have loved to have seen, there is no way you can really see and enjoy an island in one day, no matter what anyone says, and I just had to see and experience the beach at Shoal Bay East, my brother-in-law swears it’s the best beach in the world, and it was so good, we really didn’t want to leave.

Shoal Bay East

Shoal Bay Beach

And a brief stop at Scilly Cay to allow me to snap this photograph…

Scilly Cay with Scrub Island in the b ackground

I took some more photos along the way back to the ferry, but it was time to go home and enjoy another day’s end.  Click on the photos to get all 36 images from this day.

The Celebrity Solstice sails into the night

Church and Front Street

First order of the day was morning Mass at the Catholic Church in Simpson Bay, the church of Mary, Star of the Sea.  A very nice little church, and when we walked up to it I thought that it was closed, but the door opened to us and it was cool!  Air-conditioned environment at church!!  It will never happen in Guyana 🙂  Mass was short (most people had to rush to work after),but the service was very nice.

Mary, Star of the Sea

Then it was back home for a non-tourist morning, stayed home, checked mail, etc.  🙂

Then after lunch, back to Philipsburg, this time we took our daughter along, shopping.  After spending some time on Back Street, we ventured onto Front Street, that’s where the Casinos and Jewellery Shops are, but that’s not the kind of “scene” I was looking for, I was looking for the “older” Sint Maarten, and a walk along Front Street rewarded me with a few nuggets.

I’ll just post a few here, click on them to jump to the site with the album, 17 new images added for the fifth day here in Sint Maarten.  I’m hurrying because I’m off to Anguilla!

Check the rest on the site… and another day ends in Sint Maarten…