Sunday, 17 April 2016

Antigua - English Harbour

Hi everyone,
Can't believe it's been 6 days since we arrived here, and 6 days since my last blog.  We are loving it here in Freeman's Bay in English Harbour.  We haven't done a lot but the time seems to have flown by.

A set of boat jobs were done in the first few days...

  • Filled main fuel tanks from jerries and then took jerries ashore to refill
  • Polished s/s
  • Cleaned topsides
  • Cleaned hull

I've also been spending a lot of time on the Raspberry Pi computer project mentioned previously, which I still intend to describe in a future post.

The water in the anchorage is very clean so it's hard to resist jumping in for a swim at least daily.  There are a few turtles in the water and plenty of fish.  A wreck at the S end of the bay which is home to some colourful fish.

Like most boats here we are anchored bow and stern since the tide swirls around the bay.  In light winds and the swirling waters setting a stern anchor is a good way to stay friends with your neighbours!

Needless to say, we've also been ashore every day.  Initially we explored Nelson's Dockyard which is an amazing place.  The old buildings are beautifully restored and have been retasked for modern use. The working marina keeps the site from becoming a museum - very smart.  There is a small museum which has a lot of interesting exhibits.

There are several cafes and restaurants ranging from expensive to affordable.  There is also a good bakery and a small minimart.  The dockyard has a great ambiance, particularly after the busloads of tourists leave.  Diesel, petrol and water are available at the shipyard dock opposite, where there is a small chandlery too.

Nelson's Dockyard - all the original buildings have been restored
Pillars Restaurant in the Admiral's Inn
The marina has been gradually filling as the start of the Classics Regatta approached.

Jetty at SE end of Nelson's Dockyard Marina
Boats moored stern-to in Nelson's Dockyard Marina
More boats
One particularly lovely classic yacht
We have also walked the short distance to Antigua Yacht Club in Falmouth Harbour.  The club is hosting the Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta and we attended the Welcome Party on Wednesday.  We had arranged to meet some OCC (Ocean Cruising Club) members there.  To our surprise we also met the crews of three yachts we cruised with in Sail Indonesia 2012 - Imagine, Infini and Kilkea.  Twas a very pleasant evening.

Lots of boutiques outside Nelson's Dockyard, but this was our favourite!
On Tuesday afternoon we walked out to Fort Berkeley.  The fort protected the entrance to English Harbour, being on the narrow peninsula which runs SE from Nelson's Dockyard.  The fort sited several gun batteries.  Most of the fortifications are still intact, as well as the original stone powder magazine and stone-walled guardhouse.

View SE from above Nelson's Dockyard  - note location of dinghy dock
Rear of Fort Berkeley - note steps up to the Powder Magazine
Inside the Powder Magazine
Site of the eastern-most battery
Today we took our little dinghy outside English Harbour to view the classic yachts racing past.  Twas fantastic, but that's another story.


  1. Thanks to Linda from Montreal! Nice blog at

  2. Hello Mike, This is Brian from Pelagic AP. Did you get the actuator ? Please contact me via email or TXT. I have changed phone providers and the data you sent has been lost in the transfer process. Synthia from s/v Chesapeake had lunch with me and mentioned your conversation at customs. She was impressed with your adventures.