|Barbuda. Not Barbados|
Barbados is a beautiful island in the Windwards that many winter
weary sun cravers love to visit. The latest island in our travels is often
mistaken for Barbados, but unlike Barbados, the tiny island of Barbuda is
rarely visited by outsiders. Barbuda is in the Leewards, hundreds of miles
north of Barbados, and is not a vacation spot for several reasons. It is completely inaccessible except by boats with very shallow drafts
(bottoms), and most sailors (ourselves clearly not included) with shallow drafts would be foolish to venture this far
into the remote part of the Caribbean Sea. No cruise boats will ever make it here. It is also not on most travel itineraries because there is virtually no
infrastructure here. Minimal power. No hotels. A couple thousand residents and
a couple of makeshift lean-to’s where food might available…if you are here on
the right day.
But if you want to see a Caribbean island that has not yet
suffered the blight of mankind, Barbuda is the place for you. With no lack of
effort we got here, found an anchorage where we prayed the boat would hold, and
were taken on a “tour” by Claude. Claude was a somewhat droll and unenthusiastic host, but
was nonetheless fascinated that we had made the effort to visit his
outpost. We pressed him to show us around his atoll, and he reluctantly accommodated.
|Claude and the intrepid crew|
Basically, Barbuda is a gigantic pink sand
beach. The waters around it are rough but absolutely pristine. Lobsters are
everywhere, and there are almost no restrictions on taking them.
|Gigantic Lobsters...$10 apiece!|
So other than
a visit to their national treasure, a protected giant frigate sanctuary, we
spent the day consuming giant lobster and drinking Carib, the local brew.
|The Frigate Birds on Barbuda have wingspans of 4 feet|
stayed up all night, fearing the anchor would pull and strand us here like
Gilligan and his cohorts. It held and we hightailed it back to Antiqua, proud for having been among the few sailors to have checked Barbuda off the bucket list.
Julianne April 20th, 2017