Thursday was a lazy day on the beach after a bit of morning shopping. It is so hot here (sorry Canada) and I tried to stay under my umbrella as much as possible and sip my piña coladas. It was interesting watching the beautiful beach bimbos trying to take pictures of themselves and the no-so beautiful ones wishing they were.
That evening Mon and I went for supper at Chesterfiels on the waterfront. Excellent food and service. Mon had the seafood pasta with cognac cream sauce and I had the blackened Mahi mahi. Yum yum.
Friday morning we decided to go on an adventure and rented a car to explor the island. Sucker Jordan from Angel’s Car Rentals delivered the car to our hotel. He is a wonderfully professional but down to earth fellow. His Caribbean speak is delightful to listen to. With map in hand and Mon as my trusty navigator, off we went. Unfortunately when we got back that night, we made a little boo boo when downloading pics to the iPad and accidentally deleted the memory chip on the camera. So the pics I have of the island tour have been grabbed from the Internet. Thank goodness we had all previous photos saved so not all was lost.
Also thank goodness, people here drive on the right hand side like home. First stop, Dawn Beach for a photo. We had seen this on our catamaran tour and it looked lovely. Truly it is. We stopped at the Dutch/French border crossing for the photo and carried on to Orient Beach with intentions of a 2-hour beach stop to watch the nudie’s parading back and forth. When we learned beach chairs we $20 we decided to carry on (I did get a peak though…Really nothing to get too excited over).
Carrying on to Grand Case, we parked the car and walked past the shopping boutiques and restaurants. Pedestrian and car traffic was light here so we enjoyed a casual stroll. A very lovely town. We got photos of the Los Calmos Cafe where we’d had lunch on the catamaran tour. The waves on the beach were impressive so no chance to dip our feet.
Next it was into Marigot for some open-air market shopping. The traffic here was unbelievable. It took an hour just to find a parking spot. Hot and congested, we were not long making our purchases, sat for a minute to cool off with a cold bear, and then we were out of there. Took another half hour to get out of town.
Next on the must-see list was Pic Paradise, St. Martin’s highest peak at 427 meters. The road to the top is single lane and about 30 degree incline. Quite spooky! We passed some mansions of the very wealthy and arrived at the summit. A short path brought us to the magnificent view of Baie d’Embouchure on one side and Marigot on the other. A fresh breeze at the top made it feel really nice…almost cool (by Caribbean standards).
Knuckles white on the wheel and Monica with eyes closed, we came down in a hurry and made it without meeting too many cars. When we did, we both had to squeeze into the grass on either side. At the bottom, we drove next to Friar’s Bay with intentions of a swim and snorkel. However the waves were so big, people were surfing. Nevertheless, we found a beach chair at the beach bar and enjoyed watching the breakers while sipping a piña colada. A bit of cloud cover made it bearable. We really enjoyed this beach for the afternoon. The kids on their boogie boards were very entertaining.
After the beach we made our way past Sandy Ground, Cupecoy Bay, Mullet Bay, Maho Bay (airport) and finally to Simpson Bay where we stopped for supper at The Palms restaurant. We had eaten here our first night arriving two weeks ago before going to Nevis. Such excellent food and a vibrant Canadian atmosphere. Greg (the owner Originally from Toronto) and his Trinidadian mother greeted us and explained the flavourful recipes We saw Jo, the waitress, again…a delightful young woman from Quebec. I had the drunken ribs and Mon had curried shrimp.
Back to Philipsbirg where Sucker met us at the car drop-off and drove us to the hotel. What a fun day.