Eastern Caribbean, Windward Islands, St. Lucia, Grenada
Each island that is part of a yacht charter itinerary from St. Lucia to Grenada is a sovereign country with its own style and charm. The big islands are topographically sensational, with lush volcanic mountains, rich rainforest hikes and beachfront scenery. Scattered between St. Vincent and Grenada are dozens of smaller islands and cays, only a handful of which are inhabited. These islands, known as the Grenadines, are part of St. Vincent to the north and Grenada to the south.
Marigot Bay at St. Lucia is one of the most idyllic protected harbors in the Caribbean, with dense, forested hills surrounding three sides. The Pitons on the southwestern end of St. Lucia make for as dramatic an anchorage as Marigot is bucolic. If charter guests plan to hike one of the Pitons, then the yacht’s crew can arrange for a local guide and an early start (it can get hot on the trail as the day wears on). These hikes are great aerobic adventures and allow for guilt-free dining on board the charter yacht afterward, along with a swim to cool off and perhaps an afternoon nap on the sundeck.
Rarely on the radar for travelers, St. Vincent is a sleeper of a tourist island that a charter yacht can access. This Caribbean island’s interior is as lush and tropical as Bali’s or Tahiti’s in Indonesia or the South Pacific. Cumberland Bay is ringed in palm trees and has a volcanic black sand beach. Locals may come out in their small boats, offering fruit and vegetables for sale. And the Cumberland Nature Trail traverses rainforest and farmland—great for bird-watching.
On Mayreau, the smallest of the inhabited islands in the Grenadines, wake up in the lovely cove known as Salt Whistle Bay. From here, the Tobago Cays and Canouan are close by. The Tobago Cays is a marine park of five uninhabited islands with great snorkeling and diving, and the chance to spot green, hawksbill and leatherback turtles.
Canouan has been developed quite a bit during the past 25 years, creating a contrast with the sleepy local culture. The Tamarind Beach Hotel is here with a golf course and spa where the charter yacht’s crew can make reservations for guests who want to go ashore and indulge.
Grenada is a large and diverse island with a lot to offer. Some charter guests choose to disembark here and stay an extra day or two on land, to hike to the waterfalls in Grand Etang National Park, tour a chocolate factory, see parrots and monkeys in the rainforest, and shop for nutmeg and other spices in the thriving St. George’s market.
A morning hike up the Pitons in St. Lucia, though strenuous, is well worth the views at the top.