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Voyage Code: SL220125011
Arrive: Tue 25 January 2022 / Depart: Tue 25 January 2022 at 19:00
With its heady mix of Creole culture and French sophistication, there is more than a pinch of je ne sais quoi in Fort de France. The capital of Martinique, and by far the biggest city in the whole of the French West Indies, if you are looking for Paris in the Caribbean, you’ll find it in Fort de France. The island has been under French govern since 1638 when the first governor of Martinique Jacques Dyel du Parquet commissioned a fort (from which the city takes its name) to keep out invaders. Not even an unsuccessful attack by the British in 1720, nor the French Revolution in 1789, has been able to shake the French govern of the island and today the city’s French and Creole heritage are impossible to untangle. The colonial past is everywhere, take a stroll down the narrow streets and enjoy the remarkable architecture of the Schœlcher Library, St. Louis Cathedral and the Old Town Hall. Among the many legacies Dyel du Parquet left on the island is sugarcane. A drive through the tropical forests will not only reward you with trees bending under the weight of papayas, mangoes and bananas, but will also afford superb vistas of the elegant plant swaying in the breeze. The arrival and subsequent export of sugar brought the French bourgeoisie in their droves and many of their mansions are still standing. Josephine de Beauharnais, the Napoleonic Empress of “not tonight” fame, hails from the island and those interested will find her childhood home, La Pagerie in nearby Trois Ilets.
Arrive: Fri 28 January 2022 at 09:00 / Depart: Fri 28 January 2022 at 18:00
Sitting on the north coast of this lush, tropical island, San Juan is the second settlement founded by European settlers in the Caribbean, and the oldest city under US jurisdiction. The stocky walls and watchtowers here have stood the test of time, repelling notable invaders – such as Sir Francis Drake – and the pirates who historically looted these islands. With massive fortresses, airy plazas and sheer Caribbean beauty, San Juan is a beach-blessed star of these turquoise waters. View less With more than 500 years of European history, Old San Juan gleams In Puerto Rico’s sunshine, with sugar-almond painted facades and ankle-testing cobbled lanes. Decorative balconies and varnished wooden doors add everyday artistry to streets, dripping with history. Soak up the culture at rum-fuelled parties and salsa dances on this Spanish-culture infused island, or recline into afternoon relaxation sessions on sensational slivers of gleaming sand. Kick back on the beach, or satisfy a lust for adventure by exploring sprawling mangrove forests. The magic of sea kayaking after dark here is an experience you won't forget. Break the waves with your oar, and watch as the waters illuminate with neon colour, as bioluminescence creates a mystical, peaceful spectacle. Pocked limestone cliffs and karst landscapes add rugged contrast to the serenity of the beaches, and you can walk into folds of the earth in sea-carved caves, or across cliffs to hidden views of the Caribbean’s expanse. Enjoy a taste of the island’s cuisine by sampling Mofongo – a local concoction of green plantains and chicken. Why not indulge and wash it down with an iced mojito, made from crushed mint and locally distilled rum?
Arrive: Sat 29 January 2022 at 08:00 / Depart: Sat 29 January 2022 at 23:00
Cherry red roofs, yacht-sprinkled bays and a sophisticated French flavour all add to the gorgeous Caribbean allure of Gustavia. The island's capital rolls around a horseshoe-shaped harbour, where gleaming yachts hover and fancy boutiques, bars and restaurants fizz with life and clinking cutlery. Head up to red and white Gustavia Lighthouse to look down over the revered waters, which attract many a celebrity guest and diving enthusiast to these shores. View less Christopher Columbus was the first European to discover this volcanic island in 1493, giving it the name St Barthelemy in honour of his younger brother. The island has a unique history as a Swedish colony, following a deal with the French King Louis XVI to exchange the island with Sweden for better trading rights. It was returned to French control in 1878 and is now a French Overseas Collectivity. Learn more of the Swedish legacy at Fort Karl - which sits on a 29-metre-high hill above Shell Beach. The fort now lies in ruins, but you'll meet wandering iguanas, and the views down of sweeping sea and emerald coastline are some of the island's finest. Down below, a delightful spread of tiny pebbles and shell fragments are scattered like confetti and lapped by crystal-clear water. A little exploration uncovers countless other glorious beaches and natural wonders. Colombier Beach is a little out of the way but cradles silky-smooth sands and typically turquoise waters. If you have chance, find somewhere to settle and sip fruity rum cocktails as the sunset flares across the waves.
Arrive: Sun 30 January 2022 at 08:00 / Depart: Sun 30 January 2022 at 23:00
St. Kitts verdant volcanic slopes rise from crystal clear Caribbean waters, promising a land of escape, relaxation and rejuvenation. A place for ‘limin’ - the local word for kicking back, Caribbean style, you’ll be welcomed to an island paradise blessed with swarming reefs, hidden white-sand beaches, and irresistible shallow seas. Bigger sibling to nearby Nevis, St. Kitts is a place of unrestrained natural beauty. View less Soak up the dreamy Caribbean bliss, or explore sprawling island rainforests, teeming with hummingbirds and the distant sounds of waterfalls, as you walk the island’s vine-tangled paths. A ride on Basseterre’s scenic sugar train is a rumbling, immersive journey through the heart of this Caribbean island of culture and vivid unspoiled scenery. Carriages that once transported crops of sugar cane to the city sweep around long curving bends, revealing a spectacular introduction to St. Kitts. The landscapes here are beautiful, and things are no less spectacular offshore, where glorious crystalline waters invite you to dive with turtles, and explore doomed wrecks like the River Taw ship – which has now exploded with marine life. In Basseterre itself, stop off to see the pea-green Berkeley Memorial clock, which stands in the Circus, surrounded by busy St. Kitts life. Independence Square is also waiting among the city’s charming Georgian buildings. Renamed from Pall Mall on the 19th of September 1983 - to celebrate the island’s independence - the pretty square gravitates around a colourful burbling fountain, and has a dark history, as a former slave market. Wary canons watch out over the waves far below at Brimstone Hill Fortress, a site of significant history, which dates back to 1690. Known as the ‘Gibraltar of the West Indies’ due to its importance at the heart of the British empire, St. Kitts was one of the first island in the West Indies to be colonised. Nowadays, its World Heritage Site fortress offers panoramic views along the coastline it was built to defend.
Arrive: Mon 31 January 2022 at 08:00 / Depart: Mon 31 January 2022 at 19:00
Lush and lively, Antigua is a bedazzling Caribbean destination, gorged with sunshine and crisp white sand beaches. Historic forts, sparkling coastline, and dense rainforest all contribute to Antigua’s land of thrilling natural beauty. With its bright blue to turquoise sea gradients – the beaches are vibrant and plentiful and the island has no shortage to choose from, with a rumoured 365 options. Experience the beauty on horseback, as your ride pounds across the sands, and the wind whips through your hair. View less Choose to loll in a catamaran offshore, or lie back on a bed of the softest sand to soak it all in. Beach shacks cook up fresh seafood and spicy goat meat curries if you're feeling hungry. St John’s glows in the sunshine, with flamingo pink and baby blue paints boldly coating vivid Georgian buildings. Lively markets offer an authentic slice of Antiguan life, while museums celebrate the island’s revered cricketers like Viv Richards, and the story of independence. The whacks and whoops of makeshift cricket games hint at the island’s British history, and you can see more of this heritage at Falmouth Harbour - which was the centre of the British presence in the Caribbean. The area is still filled with sailers and dallying yachts, as well as the only working Georgian dockyard in the world. Built in 1725, the UNESCO World Heritage Site, Nelson's Dockyard, was led by the admiral Horatio Nelson himself and is a fascinating time warp. Hike up to viewpoints here, which reward with glorious views of the forest-clad inlets, craggy cliffs and pointed hills. The stone towers of sugar mills dot the island, and hint at the tragic history of slavery, amid the island's sugar trade past.
Arrive: Tue 01 February 2022 at 08:00 / Depart: Tue 01 February 2022 at 19:00
To fully appreciate the island's unspoiled beauty, a trip into the interior is a must. A good part of Dominica's mountainous terrain is covered with dense evergreen rain forest, where rare plants and animals are still found that have long been extinct on neighboring islands. The Smithsonian Institute called the island a giant plant laboratory, unchanged for 10,000 years. Numerous hot springs bear witness to continuing volcanic activity. Dominica is truly a place to discover nature in all her splendor. But it is not an island for those looking for white sand beaches. Around the mouth of rivers and in sheltered bays, the beaches are pebbly and of dark color.
Arrive: Wed 02 February 2022 at 08:00 / Depart: Wed 02 February 2022 at 23:00
Explore a land of vibrant colour, from the tranquil turquoise water that surrounds it, to the verdant green peaks of its famous soaring volcanic plugs - The Pitons; which give this mesmerising island its form. Waterfalls thunder in the jungled interior, should you successfully drag yourself from St Lucia's gleaming beaches and dive spots - where patchworks of colourful fish dance below the waves. Offering the picturesque island luxury of your wildest dreams, St. Lucia is a cinematic, thrilling Caribbean idyl. Marigot Bay served as the tropical backdrop for 1967’s Doctor Dolittle film, and the island's amiable animal life is never too far away - spot flashes of bright red, as parrots zip between palm trees, before catching sight of dolphins splashing playfully offshore. Vigie beach is a charmed spot to lie back and recline in the sun’s glow, watching as overlapping layers of mesmerising blue hues intertwine. St. Lucia’s iconic Pitons mountains deliver as the perfect backdrop to any envy generating photograph - rising up exponentially from the calm waters like sharp shark fins. Castries is this heavenly island’s capital, and while the Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception may seem a little humble from the outside, the soft sounds of soulful hymns emanating from within are sure to draw you in. The astonishing interior glows with bright frescoes, lit up by the sunlight that spills inside, and atmospheric rows of flickering candles. There's more rich Caribbean colour to behold at the ramshackle Castries Market, where you can take handfuls of fragrant spices, like nutmeg and cinnamon, and enjoy the singsong ritual of bartering, as you move between tables heaving under bounties of green bananas and rosy mangos.
Arrive: Thu 03 February 2022 at 09:00 / Depart: Thu 03 February 2022 at 23:00
A faint aroma of cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and other spices lingers over Grenada's fertile lands. Often called the "Spice Island", Grenada has a lot more to offer than just spices. St. George's, the picturesque, small capital with terraces of pale, colour-washed houses and cheerful red roofs, has long enjoyed the reputation of having the prettiest harbour in the Caribbean. Established in 1705 by French settlers, who called it Fort Royal, much of the town's present-day charm results from the blend of two colonial cultures with a Caribbean atmosphere. The colonial heritage is reflected in remaining 18th-century French provincial houses and fine examples of English Georgian architecture. Around the island, the scenery is equally appealing: the mountainous interior rises from a generally rugged coast, which in part is blessed with dazzling white beaches. Due to its compact size, Grenada can be easily explored, even on just a one-day visit.
Arrive: Fri 04 February 2022 at 08:00 / Depart: Fri 04 February 2022 at 18:00
Knightstown is the largest settlement on Valentia Island, County Kerry, in Ireland and has a population of 156 people. Knightstown itself is one of the few ‘town-planned’ villages of Ireland. The village of Knightstown was laid out by Alexander Nimmo in 1830-31, but it wasn’t built until the early 1840’s when the local quarry was greatly expanded and the works were moved to Knightstown. The local RNLI lifeboat station moved to Knightstown in 1869 from Reenard Point and has since been known as the Valentia Lifeboat Station. View less There is a selection of local coffee shops and bars in the town, as well as Roman Catholic and Church of Ireland churches.
Arrive: Sat 05 February 2022 at 07:00 / Depart: Sat 05 February 2022
Bridgetown, the captivating capital of Barbados, combines faded colonial history, captivating tradition, and vivid white beaches plucked directly from your richest imagination of Caribbean perfection. Recently listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site, thanks to its beautifully preserved colonial architecture, Bridgetown’s mask of modernity covers a core of complex history and fascinating culture. Sherbet coloured buildings line up to overlook the waterfront of the Constitution River at the ‘The Careenage’ - where gleaming ships bob on the blue water, and peaceful strolls along a wooden boardwalk await. Stop for a sobering moment at the commemorative plaque honouring the people traded at this spot, when Bridgetown was the British Empire’s most important harbour, and first stop on the Transatlantic Slave Trade crossing. Just five minutes’ stroll from here is Carlisle Bay - a postcard-perfect place where you'll find crystal-clear, turquoise seawater glowing in the Caribbean sun, and a mile of soft white powder sand. A treasure trove for divers, the shipwrecks scattered below the shallow water’s waves are now inhabited by turtles and swirling, rainbow-coloured tropical fish. Head to the backstreets, where street food vendors serve up spicy chicken soup, barbecued pigtails and thirst-quenching coconut water. There are bargains aplenty to be had on Broad Street, where duty-free malls and souvenir stalls cram together, vying for your attention. Roebuck Street is the spot where one of the Caribbean’s favourite drinks, rum, was discovered - having been created here from the by-products of the island’s booming sugarcane trade. Nowadays, it’s lined with bars splashing every variety of the deliciously spicy dark libation imaginable into glasses. For a touch more culture, visit one of the oldest synagogues in The Americas - Nidhe Israel Synagogue, which was built in 1654. The adjoining museum tells the story of Barbados’ Jewish immigrants, who were instrumental in the island’s development.
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