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Mark_Stevens

Mark Stevens is an award-winning travel writer whose specialties include Canada, the Caribbean and boating. Credits range from Sailing magazine and Canadian Yachting to the Washington Post.

Guyana – The Land of Many Waters

All photos by Sharon Matthews-Stevens: www.sherryspix.com

Night has fallen on the Rupununi River in the jungles of Guyana, the stars overhead bright as a Las Vegas skyline. We’re chugging upstream in a battered aluminum runabout, underwater deadheads thudding against the hull every few minutes. Unnerving. More …

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Islands At The Edge

Useful direction markers in the unlikely event you’d ever go anywhere instead of Grace Bay on Provo. Photos by sherryspix.com

Just off Grand Turk Island, in the Turks and Caicos, our excursion boat scrapes the sand when our skipper beaches us on an alabaster stretch guarded by a sloping dune maybe a hundred feet away, bisected by a sandy path …

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Will Your Anchor Hold?

Dropping the hook in Tobago Cays. Photo: Sharon Matthews-Stevens: www.sherryspix.com

So, we drop the hook in the lagoon in St. George’s harbour in Grenada, do a cursory anchor watch, cast off the dinghy and take the ferry to Carriacou for a day of sun and fun. Upon our return early …

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Blue Haven Marina – The Perfect Port of Call

Blue Haven Marina

Munificence – noun: Liberal in giving, lavish, characterized by generosity. It’s summer’s end and you’re heading south to your Antillean berth … But you’ve heard about an archipelago roughly a hundred nautical miles from D.R., roughly thirty from the last …

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On Charter in Antigua: The Log of Blue Voyage

charter Antigua

  Monday 1015 hours. Nelson’s Dockyard, English Harbour, Antigua. “Winds perfect, fifteen knots,” Sunsail staffer Chris Donahue says at the skipper briefing, held in a two-centuries-old building. Blue Voyage, a Sunsail Jenneau 41, is just as perfect as the winds. …

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Every Cloud Has a Silver Lining

cloud silver lining

Clouds are closing in, ominous and black, while a line squall races towards your boat. Might not be the best time to bring it up, but with better observational skills and a bit of background you could have been watching …

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Papiamento Island

Curacao Papiamento Island : Traditional Amsterdam architecture combined with Caribbean colors makes for a whimsical and attractive setting for diners in downtown Willemstad

“I speak four languages,” says the taxi driver as he chauffeurs me from Curaçao’s airport to downtown Willemstad. “English, Dutch and Spanish. And Papiamento.” Papiamento, a mélange of English, Spanish, Portuguese, French and Dutch even contains some African tribal dialect. Spicy, …

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Docking With Dignity

Docking with Dignity: Receiving hands-on tips about Mediterranean mooring from Sunsail Antigua staffer Clive Gilgeours. Photo: www.sherryspix.com

Grenada Yacht Club and twenty knots of crosswinds wrestle with my attempt to bring a forty-foot boat to the dock. In reverse. The boat’s not mine (lesson one – know your vessel) and I have never Mediterranean-moored in my life. …

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Five Must-Do Grenadine Anchorages

A perfect sunset at Bequia’s Admiralty Bay. Photo: Sharon Matthews-Stevens www.sherryspix.com

Plying the passages of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, the waters are at times limpid—sometimes great blue heaving mountains. Picture green islands with white beaches and pastel-painted houses, visit villages where music flows like the tide from whimsical beach bars, …

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Martinique: The Belle Island

The Bay off Fort de France is a popular anchorage for both locals and cruisers seeking a bit of shore bound excitement. Photo by Mark Stevens

If you’ve dropped the hook off a village called Trois Islets in the southern reaches of one of the Windwards’ most picturesque islands, you’re not even overnighting in Martinique’s best anchorage. That one you have to find on your own. …

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Anguilla: An A-List Port of Call

Perfect sand beaches and sheltered waters at Crocus Bay make for happy guests, whether nautical or lubberly. Photo: www.sherryspix.com

From a distance, from my perspective grinding winches during a Heineken Regatta years ago, Anguilla didn’t look like much. Quiet, gently sloping and lacking the drama of the hump-backed mountains of St. Martin off our starboard beam as we sliced …

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Home of the Bequia Blast

So this sailor walks into a bar, plunks down his money, and says, “One Bequia Blast.” Makes sense to the sailor (me). The bar sports a whale’s jawbone for an entrance arch and stools made from whale vertebrae. And it …

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Chasing Ye Pirates and Wind in Antigua

From our vantage point at Shirley Heights 300ft above cerulean waters off Antigua’s most southerly point, we can see the ghostly blue outline of Montserrat. We perch on bastions carved from volcanic boulders, high atop a mountain studded with cacti …

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The Abacos – A Calm and Shallow Sea

Hopetown with its candy-cane lighthouse

We’re fifteen minutes out of Marsh Harbour in the northern Bahamas’ Sea of Abaco, our chartered Sunsail monohull as happy as a Sunday morning. That’s when my heart skips beat. The waters are the colors that you dream about – …

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