Friday, 23 February 2018

A fortnight in the Caribbean - Part 4 and final,

My last reminiscences  about Nevis, see Part 1 - Part 2 and Part 3; here are a few more photos taken during our holiday.


Vance W. Amory International Airport on Nevis. It is only used for private aircraft, the main international flights all flying into the Robert L. Bradshaw International Airport on the neighbouring island of St Kitts, just a couple of miles across the water! When you land there, it is necessary to get a speedboat (fast, expensive but damp) or ferry (slow, cheaper but infrequent) to take you to Nevis.

Built in 1778, the Bath Hotel was once a playground for the rich and famous who came to Nevis to take in the hot spring baths. With the downturn of the sugar industry, Nevis stepped into the world of tourism with this hotel, which flourished for about 60 years. Since then the hotel has had various uses, reopening as a hotel from 1912 until 1940. It was used as a training centre for the West Indian regiment during World War II, and most recently, the temporary headquarters of the Nevis police, while the new station was built. (the old one was burnt down, I think, in mysterious circumstances!)

An old, but  now restored, cannon from the 17th or 18th century! This would either have been a part of the island's defences during one of the many wars in that era, or a cannon left behind after refitting of a visiting warship.

The royal cypher of one of the English kings named George. (GR stands for George Rex in Latin). There were three Georges in that era and I would guess this is the cypher for George III, who reigned in Great Britain between 1760 and 1820

View across to Nevis Peak; see part 2 for info on the old volcano.

Amazing views looking across to St Kitts.

Relaxing pool fed from volcanic hot springs.  While we were there, we had a couple of dips in the therapeutic waters; temperature varies slightly from day to day, but on those days it was 44°C (111°F)!  Not easy to get into, but once submerged to neck level, we managed to stay in for at least 5 minutes !!

Further information on the pool.

and some of the history - 108°F seems to be an understatement - perhaps it's global warming!

It was interesting for us to see a couple of baobab trees on the island.  We are of course fairly used to them in some areas of Africa. Both trees looked as if they had been inexpertly cut down or cut back at some stage long ago, as they had a number of branches growing out of the base.  Generally they have one big and thick trunk, sometimes many metres in circumference. Branches normally grow from the trunk a long way above the ground.

Here you can see the thick base at the bottom, with a number of branches growing out of it.

The pod from the baobab contains pips that are slightly sour and acidic. They  can be used as a replacement for cream of tartar.  The baobab is sometimes called a cream of tartar tree.

Driving to our next destination, we had to beware of goats wandering into the road; a common hazard. Also, just take a look at that frizzy wiring - scary stuff!!! But a note of progress - notice that solar panel on the bus stop roof!

Just off the main road are the ruins of New River-Coconut Walk Estates.

The tall boiler chimney is very visible, and the lower building  housed the old steam engine. In the 17th century, the sugar processing machines were driven by animal power,  but the industrial revolution eventually arrived here 150 years later! This suger production facility remained in operation until 1958—the last one on the island.

Underground, a mysterious space....

Machinery, bits of cane crushing rollers perhaps...

More cane-crushing machinery, now protected under a smart new corrugated iron roof. Restoration work on this site has partly been funded by the EU.

Nearby offices are sadly in a bad state of disrepair. The circular columns, stone arches and ceilings are quite elaborate for this industrial development, but a testament to the skills of expatriate British and local craftsmen!

This was the magnificent view that we saw daily from our friends' house, looking over to St Kitts!

I think this is an atmospheric optical phenomenon know as a "sun dog".  We were all lying by the pool when this was suddenly spotted.

To finish on an ornithological note, this is my collage of a brown pelican taking a dive into the sea to fish for its dinner!



I have a new blog purely for our feathered friends which is HERE


Also see my daily diary HERE


and My Life Before Charente (updated  February 2018) 


38 comments:

  1. Hi Diane - frankly this is a terrible post to see!!!! I am in a snow storm!! What an amazing place to have been able to visit and to have a holiday in ... looks quite amazing and how fascinating to have seen the sun dog - incredible phenomena.

    That Manchineel plant sounds lethal ... I gathered it's called by the Spanish "manzanilla de la muerte" ... not very inspiring is it ... but the baths - quite extraordinary to see ... and to spend a bit of time in ...

    Lovely trip ... wonderful photos and your ornithological dive ... good to see - fish for dinner = yes please. Cheers Hilary

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    1. I hope Hilary that you are wrapped up somewhere warm. We have at last got some blue skies here in France but with it comes the chill and heavy frosts!! We have had the most winter rain on record since rain gauges were introduced by Meteo 60 years ago!!

      Yes the Manchineel sounds terrible and I just wonder how many people travelling as tourists are aware of how poisonous it is. We were with friends who knew, so of course we kept our distance. I had though never heard of it before.

      Glad you like my pelican dive, there are quite a few brown pelicans in that area. Keep warm and take care, Diane

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  2. Ah Diane I love yours pictures like always, beauty and fun, I loove the little relaxing pool!!xoxox

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    1. The relaxing pool was amazing, I could not believe how hot a natural spring could be. It makes you wonder just how hot the centre of the world is ! Take care Diane

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  3. Hi Diane, beautiful photos of a stunning place. Poor desecrated baobab! I think you should have gone to live in the Carribean when you left SA - much more like home. Hope your cough is getting better. Kim

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    1. Kim we would never live in the Caribbean. The weather is fabulous most of the time but the cyclone season is more than dangerous. We would also never live on an island, we like to be able to get out and drive to different places and travel easily. There is not even a flight into Nevis.
      The cough continues!!! Take care Diane

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  4. Love the last collage. Very clever. The view from your friends house is beautiful and similar to my nephew's view on St Lucia. It would be good for the whole of the sugar mill to be renovated. Its a wonder you didn't cook yourselves in the pool.

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    1. Thanks Diane I enjoyed making that collage. It is amazing getting into that relaxing pool, once one foot is in you think you will never get any further but you do, it was quite an experience. Take care t'other Diane

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  5. To bad the hotel's springs have mostly been destroyed. I love to soak in thermal waters. A most unusual looking baobab.

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    1. Although the hotel is not there any more or the springs that they used, as you can see we went in and relaxed in the new pool. There are other uncovered areas where there were many of the locals sitting in the waters and soaking. Yes the two baobabs looked very odd. I recognised them straight away but our friends did not know what they were. Cheers Diane

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  6. The weather looks inviting and the views amazing. How did you find the temperatures? I really love the way you've captured the brown pelican too. Simply amazing. xx

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    1. Penny for us the temperatures were perfect, around 30C during the day and no less than 22C at night. We could not have asked for more. Glad you like the collage of the pelican. Hope you are feeling better and it is not too cold. Take care Diane

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  7. I love the photos, the views are amazing!

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    1. Thanks so much, your comments are always appreciated. Hope all is well Diane

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  8. Just catching up after a very busy couple of weeks, Diane. Nearly missed this last part of your account, but so pleased I didn't! More fascinating and beautiful material. I love what you've done with that Pelican collage!

    With my best wishes - - - Richard

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    1. I enjoyed catching the Pelican dive, it was interesting putting it all together as one :-)
      Hope that all is well with you and Lindsay. Take care and enjoy the remainder of the week. Diane

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  9. I love this excursion about Nevis you are sharing. Decades ago my husband and I began a year long travel by living in Nevis for 5 months. So these photos are nostalgic for me. We rented a wooden house for $22 a month; ah, those were the days.

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    1. Thanks Terra for the comment and visiting my blogs. $22 a month LOL I wonder what it would be now? We were lucky we stayed with friends. I loved Nevis for a holiday but I could not stay there for long. I felt very claustrophobic being on a small island and the only means of getting off was by boat. We like to go on long drives regularly and see new things. Hoe you have a good weekend Diane

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  10. Wow, I love these photos. And what an awesome way to live!

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    1. The weather and the place would be perfect if only it was not on a small island, I need to be able to get out and go and see new places regularly!! Thanks for the comment. Keep well Diane

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  11. Your photos are all so interesting...roaming goats, the sun dog, the view and your collage of the pelican. Hope by now that your cough has gone away and you are feeling like yourself again.

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    1. Thanks Karen, it is an interesting place. No the cough is stillannoying me 3 months plus now!!! Happy Easter Diane

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  12. Bonjour Diane,
    Bravo pour cette visite et surtout vos observations passionnantes. Les baobabs sont fascinants! Superbe le montage du plongeon du pélican. Observer les oiseaux à la pêche est toujours un spectacle très intéressant!

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    1. Merci Lucie, je suis d'accord que les baobabs sont des arbres intéressants. Joyeuses Pâques, Diane

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    1. Thanks Regine. I hope you have a good Easter. Diane.

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  14. Your photos are all so good! So beautiful too!

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    1. Thanks very much, your comments are always appreciated, Diane

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    1. Thanks Gloria though I am a bit late in aswering. Hope you had a good one also. Diane

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  16. Wonderful series and how lovely to spend time in the Caribbean. Something I have yet to do. Your pelican diving was brilliant but all the photos were very interesting. I really enjoyed them. Thanks Diane :)

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    1. Thanks Denise, it was great fun watching the pelicans :-) Hope all is well Diane

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    1. Thanks very much. Not a lot of travelling going on at present and we are also very busy with everything else going on. You might though enjoy my bird blog which I started and I am trying to keep going for the moment. See the link in the right hand column under My blogs. Take care and thanks for keeping in touch. Happy weekend Diane

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  18. I have never seen a baobab tree before, that's really neat. I love the canon display!

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    1. Thanks for the comment Rose and it is good to hear from you. I have had little news for this blog recently so the other two have been busy. Take care Diane

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  19. Wonderful pictures! The pelican is fantastic!

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    1. Linda thanks for the comment and the visit. Take care Diane

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