Written by 3:04 am Travel Views: [tptn_views]

You’re Going to Need a Smaller Boat: Island Hopping within the Grenadines

We spent the morning hanging across the dock on the lookout for a ship to select us up. The weather began to deteriorate once we finally found the captain. Among his various appearances, he sailed his single-engine ship to Carriacou several times per week and loaded plastic fuel tanks on the market on Union Island, which lost its only gas station in deadly explosion in 2020.

After a wet ride through the waves, it was with some relief that we moored and joined the queue outside the darkened customs warehouse, where we spent about an hour with the squirming yachts and native traders, sharing the vibe of the rare moment when the road between tourist and resident blurs.

After clearing customs, we checked in at the jetty The Green Roof Inn, furnished with old leather armchairs and mosquito netted beds, and got here out at dusk when the tree frogs were whistling. We considered renting a scooter from Wayne’s Car Rental and Bar, a splendidly diverse automobile rental and bar, but videos by Caribbean hip hop artists similar to Coffee and Popkaan playing on the large screen sucked us in there and as a substitute we stayed late at night drinking Carib beers.

The next morning we followed a steep trail to a redoubt within the jungle called the KIDO Foundation, established a long time ago as an animal sanctuary and environmental school. Small boas lay coiled in hole coconut shell bird feeders, a colony of fruit bats hung from the ceiling in a single conference room, and a rescued single-winged hawk sat in a room-sized cage.

KIDO offers a spread volunteer opportunities, including patrols protecting turtle nesting sites. The group has planted tens of 1000’s of mangroves and offers the Green College after-school program, which, amongst other things, teaches island students take care of and plant native trees which have nearly been destroyed by colonial lusts for exotic woods.

In the darkness before dawn the following day, we boarded our last ferry to Granada, often called the Spice Island for its production of nutmeg, cloves and cinnamon. To get there, the ship capsized Kick ’em Jenny, an energetic underwater volcano that occasionally spews out gases so dangerous that boats should change course. Jenny wasn’t digging that day.

In the nice and cozy wind, our backs turned, we watched the Grenadines disappear over the pink horizon. Frigatebirds and gannets hovered above the deck, sometimes resting on the radar before rushing for a meal. On all sides the ocean was rippling mercury-colored. For two hours, sleepy passengers dozed and swayed. In this last passage of our journey from inch to inch of land, every part—water, flora, fauna, and other people—looked as if it would live in synchrony.

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