“It’s the prettiest place I have ever been.”

The title of today’s post.  “It’s the prettiest place I have ever been.” was uttered by Brenda after our first day here in Le Saintes, near Guadeloupe .  That description is in keeping with the sorts of comments we have heard this winter when we asked “what’s your favorite island?”.

I have to agree and should add that it comes with some of the best food we have EVER eaten.  How about foie gras with seared tuna, a sort of “surf and turf” for the refined palate and you get a good feel for what this place is like.

This is the view that greeted me today from Pandora’s cockpit.  Actually, I had been up for an hour or more but work with me on this.  What a view.    Perhaps rainbows are the new sunsets… A short while later a three masted schooner entered the bay under billowing clouds. Today we are renting a golf cart, electric of course, to tour the island with some new cruising friends.   One of our first stops will be at Fort Napoleon overlooking the harbor.  Of course, this area of the Caribbean saw some pretty intense action between the British and French and just about every harbor seems to have it’s own fort.

As you’d imagine, forts tend to be up on hills and getting there can be challenging in mid day heat.   However, in order to justify my daily ice cream fix, I just had to walk up there.  I made it.  “How about an ice cream Bob?”   Yes, indeed.

Pandora is in that mess boats, trust me on that.  And, to prove it, a sort of up close shot. The town looked so picturesque from up on the hill.  All those little fishing boats.  I guess that’s why seafood is such a large part of menu selections. Some mid size cruise ships frequent this island, places that the ships with 4,000 passengers can’t frequent.  This was one of the larger ones. I was particularly smitten by this one, the MS Serenissima, a boutique ship that’s limited to only 100 passengers.  She’s 50 years old and was recently refitted.  I tried to get a tour but alas, no luck.  I did get a lovely brochure at least.  They do cruises in Europe all summer.  That would be so much fun.  They are part of the Noble Caledonia line of smallish cruise ships.
Anyway, I hiked up to the fort only to learn that it was closed on Sunday afternoons.  No logic, at least that I have been able to detect, to when the French close up shop.   So, we will head up there today via golf cart to make the climb easier.

I’ll have more to say about our visit soon but for now how about some “outside the gate” photos.   The fort sports some very impressive walls and even a mote.  I could almost hear Monty Python actors spraying insults from the top of the wall in a heavy French accent. I ignored a No Trespassing sign (heck they were closed) and walked all around the perimeter.  I don’t speak French but the sign I ignored didn’t look particularly inviting.    That tree looked like the perfect shady spot for a lioness and her cubs to lounge around in the heat of the day.   Alas, only goats, always goats. Under the category of “life always finds a way”, I was impressed with the Ficus trees that were growing out of tiny cracks in the walls.   This tree really wants to live.  Not the easiest spot to grow. The water here is very clear and blue, blue.  Not as clear as the Bahamas but beautiful, never the less.
Well, I guess that’s about it for now.  We are meeting for coffee with our friends before heading out for the day.

I agree Brenda, this is a really beautiful spot.  Can I have another baguette?  I guess that will just have to wait until after my first croissant of the day.

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