Harbours and anchorages

This is a list of places we have stayed, and our opinion of them. It is just that, an opinion, clouded by weather, brief experience and the shifting moods of the crew. So taken with a pinch of salty caution, we offer our harbour and anchorage ratings.

Prices are per night for Ty Dewi (48 feet) to boat means that our USB dongle, on a 5m cable hoisted 2.5m above deck, can connect to a free network - usually at the marina.

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The CanarY Islands. Pilot: Canary Islands Cruising Guide, 2006. e-Chart: Navionics 31G. v8.18


Clearance: Customs in Antigua are a pain in the b**t. They exist to preserve their own jobs and nit-pick on anything. Get your paperwork as correct as possible, smile, be polite, don't get upset and allow 2 hours. For example, if one of your crew leaves by plane, they must be signed off your crew list. To do this, they must be present with their passport and proof of flight (but only within a day of their departure). An e-ticket reservation caused problems because it had a reservation number but not a ticket number. 'Well, sir, how do I know you haven't made a reservation then cancelled it and are going to stay on the island?' 'Because, you daft civil servant, if I was trying to break the law I'd not be on this list in the first place and certainly wouldn't be standing here in front of you now....'


Clearance: Don't forget that Monsterrat has been devasted by a volcano and little of the original infrastructure is still in place. It's a work in progress. That said, I suspect that it wasn't the most efficient island in the first place. Customs clearance was easy, they clearly want as many visitors as possible. Immigration was simple too, once we'd bumped into the policeman at the dock - he was putting the police launch back on it's mooring and had fallen in the sea but once he'd changed his boots he strolled with us to the immigration office and happily stamped our passports.


Clearance : I never thought I'd say this, but the French bureaucracy is remarkably efficient. A single form for clearance and immigration, five minutes and a friendly smile. No need to check out either, unless you change the date of departure. Phew.

Guadaloupe - Iles De Saintes (The SaintEs)

Clearance: As for Guadeloupe, apparently you can clear in and out at the Marie in Bourg De Saintes - we cleared in Pointe a Pitre but others said the Marie was easy and friendly.

General: The Saintes are a perfect stop to shorten the distance between Guadeloupe and Dominica. They are also worthy of a visit in their own right, a delightful group of little islands with good anchorages and friendly people.


Clearance: Fairly straightforward once you have found the customs office (A long way from the anchorage in Portsmouth - a boat boy can be useful here for $20EC, take you, bring you back and show you where customs is). Clearance is valid for 14 days without need to clear out again, longer and you need to visit again before you leave.

General: Boat boys are everywhere. Take your pick and be choosy. I suggest avoiding fruit / veg / fish / courtesy flag salesmen, go into town for better at much lower prices. Water taxi or running lines ashore is worth paying for sometimes, no doubt.


Clearance: It's French - it's easy (in Fort de France, go to Sea Services chandlery and do it all by computer) but do make sure you do it. Customs (Les Douane) are vigilent and did once meet us at sea to ask the usual questions. (They have a 35ft red motor boat, usually three people). We also saw them motoring around the Fort de France anchorage with a clipboard and boarding yachts not on their list.