St. Vincent is an island of steep-sided mountains, lush rainforest, gushing waterfalls and the place where parts of 'Pirates Of The Caribbean' movies were filmed.
Named by Columbus after the saint's day on which he sailed past it in 1498, the island of St. Vincent is off the beaten track and retains a lot of it's idyllic charm. With fertile volcanic soil - the 4,000ft La Soufriere volcano last erupted in the 1970's. St. Vincent is packed with tropical flowers and fruit plantations. There's even a breadfruit tree descended from one first brought to the island by Captain Bligh of 'Mutiny On The Bounty' fame.
We docked in Kingstown and, after breakfast, went ashore to explore on foot, as we hadn't booked a trip for this last stop. As we passed through the terminal there was a local steel band playing so we stopped to take their photograph and leave a tip.
Our first stop was the police station where the policeman on duty at the front of the station happily posed for a photo with me.
Further up the street we found the prison!
I don't know who lived in this house but it was a house and not a government building.
Exploring further we found St. Mary's Catholic Cathedral and St. George's Anglican Cathedral facing each other across a narrow street.
Entering St. George's we were welcomed by the verger who introduced himself as Mr. Ulric Doyle. Mr. Doyle was very informative and urged us to walk round the cathedral and take photographs, so of course we did.
We bade farewell to Mr. Doyle, after putting a donation in the restoration fund box, and thanked him for letting us look round before crossing the street to survey St. Mary's.
As we walked round this architecturally unusual building we were aware of the sound of children as St. Mary's also houses a school.
The courtyards were absoutely lovely and so interesting.
Then we went inside where it was just as beautiful.
MWM and I had been feeling a little melancholy when we set off exploring because it was our last day of the cruise and we had to pack that evening. After visiting both churches we felt so much better and made our way back to the berth intending to go back on board for some lunch and make a start on the packing. As we passed through the terminal the steel band were still playing and we decided to sit at one of the cafes and have a final rum punch. As we had a few dollars left, which we really didn't want to take home with us, the final rum punch turned into four each and the few people who were sitting listening to the band got in the party mood and were were all singing along - we even bought a copy of the band's CD. I have to say it didn't sound as good when we played it at home!
There was a couple sitting nearby and conspiratorally the male whispered to us that is was his wife's 64th birthday today and he was 84! Nonchalontly MWM cruised over to the band and asked if they would sing and play Happy Birthday to Lily (the man's wife). A few minutes later the singer with the band asked "Where's Lily?" Of course Lily was shocked but stammered "Here". Then the band began to play Happy Birthday and everyone joined in. Lily was thrilled. When the song had finished one of the shop owners went to Lily and said "Thankyou for spending your birthday in St. Vincent". How lovely was that?
Dollars spent it was time to go back on board. By this time we were pleasantly
That evening we had our photograph taken in the square whilst having a glass of champagne before dinner.
After dinner we watched the variety show in the Marquee, then waited for the BIG DRAW. We had filled in a questionnaire which went into a draw that evening after the show. Whoever won the draw would have their bar bill for the entire cruise wiped clean - as you might guess we had our fingers crossed, as our drinks bill was substantial. Unfortunately we didn't win the draw - the person that won only had a drinks bill of £150! Not fair is it?
Retiring early (for us) we stood on the balcony for one last look at the starry sky and the inky blackness before setting our alarm clock; we had to be out of our cabin by 8.30 a.m the following morning, though we weren't due to leave the boat until 2 p.m. The following morning after breakfast we sat on deck taking in the rays reading our books until it was time for lunch, after which we were expertly organised onto coaches to take us to the airport for the journey home. The flight home was uneventful and we even managed to catch a few zzzzzzzzzzzzz, arriving at Manchester Airport at 6 a.m., we were happy we'd booked premium seats as the extra room made all the difference.
I hope you have enjoyed hearing about our cruise. If you are considering a cruise then I would say BOOK IT! It's a wonderful experience waking up each morning in a different place - a fabulous way to see lots of different places without the hassle of getting on and off planes, buses or trains.
Did I tell you we've booked our big next holiday? Two weeks in Goa, India, in November for my birthday! Oh and we have three (up to now) small trips in England in the meantime. Of course I'll report on all our trips so you don't miss out.