Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Iles de Saintes: The Best of the French Caribbean

Sailing into Iles de Saintes and the protected bay of Terre de Haut is about as close to love at first site as I have ever been.  It's no wonder that the Saints decided to take up residence here.  Once again I am forced to wonder, does it get any better than this?  As you sail across the calm azure water, the colorful little town beckons like a siren.   Tucked into the vibrant green hillside, red roofs, whitewashed walls, a tiny church steeple and pastel-shuttered buildings cluster together along the shore making for an incredibly picturesque scene.  In fact, walking up and down the narrow, winding streets here I kept thinking to myself, "This might just be the most photogenic little town I have ever been".

The French are doing something right and I'm not just talking about the croissants.  Strolling lazily throughout this quaint town of Terra de Haut you get the overwhelming feeling that life is pretty damn good here.  Mopeds zip to and fro, people saunter by with baguettes tucked under their arms, and rusty bicycles lay - unlocked - along white picket fences.  Goats and chickens roam free along the streets and little artisan shops sell everything from local art to breezy Caribbean attire.  Walking around, I was reminded of a handful of beautiful places in Europe that I have travelled to years ago... It's as if the French Rivera and Amalfi Coast hooked up with the alleys of Rome and cafes of Paris and squeezed themselves ever so perfectly onto this beautiful, Caribbean Island.  If I spoke French fluently, you'd probably be hard pressed to get me out of this place.   As it stands, I do not speak French, and as such, going to the grocery store was a bit of a challenge.  I am happy to report that "a la creme de lait" is, in fact, the 'cream cheese' I was looking for.  It's always nice when that happens...certainly better than thinking you are buying pickled onions and discovering those little balls in that jar are not onions at all.


Carl Lambert said...

By the time I'd scrolled down to the picture of the cat, my blood pressure had dropped 20 points. I love reading your blog.

Susanfoster said...

Great photos! Wish I were there!

B.J. Porter said...

We're in Grenada now, and desperately missing the Boulangeries and cheese counters in the French islands. Of course people EAT down here, but they don't eat the same way the French do.

Stock up before you leave Martinique behind you!

Ante Mazalin | SailingEurope Group said...

You guys took some great photos
Iles de Saintes is a nice place

Keep posting :)

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