Location: Potato Bay, St. Kitts
After a windy first night in St. Kitts, we started our morning out with some wake-up reggae. Coming up on deck, we did not find three little birds on our doorstep, but we were greeted with a double rainbow arching over the lush mountains on the shores of St. Kitts. Breakfast was served at 7:30, a nice helping of eggs and home fries put together by Matt and Steve. After a thorough cleanup, we headed down to the salon for our first academic class of the semester.
Stephanie began our Introduction to Oceanography course today. We went over what the semester would entail and learned some of the history and fundamentals of Oceanography. It was definitely the first time that I’ve shown up for a class wearing a bathing suit, but I have a feeling it will not be the last time. After class, we shuttled into shore for an island tour. It was immediately apparent that this island was much different from Antigua.
Our tour guide Captain Sunshine was stoked to show us around the island. We piled into his van and began to drive through the streets of St. Kitts. There were many houses and shacks that looked like they had been damaged by hurricanes, it was obvious that this was a constant challenge for island inhabitants. Our first stop was at a small park with some old petroglyphs that apparently symbolized fertility. It was here where we met a little monkey friend named Tommy.
The next stop on the tour was at the Romney Gardens. Here we took in views of the lush vegetation found on the island. Apparently, the site was formerly home to a large slave plantation. There was a bell tower remaining that used to be used on the plantation. It is one of the few bell towers remaining on the island as many were destroyed when slavery was abolished. We also got to see a batik fabric dying demonstration and learn about the history of batik on the island. Prince Philip visited this museum in the ’90s and received a beautiful batik portrait that he hung in the royal palace back in England.
Next, we drove up to Fort Brimstone. It was an old English fort that featured elaborate masonry, several large cannons, and incredible views of the island. We spent plenty of time exploring the old fort and taking in the breathtaking views. A bit of yoga was squeezed in at the top of the monkey hill at the fortress. We continued to drive around the island, stopping at a couple of other vistas along the way and munching on some fresh coconut cookies.
Upon returning to Ocean Star, we moved to a more sheltered anchorage to attempt to escape some of the wind. We enjoyed a nice saltwater bath and ate a delicious dinner. Afterward, we had our first Marine Biology class with Steve.
Tomorrow we will be heading to Nevis, where more adventures await!