Aruba. Dutch Caribbean.

Oranjestad, Aruba was the next island on our Caribbean Island hopping travels. Here we hired an ATV to get around: Pardo Motorcycle Rental. $90 US for a half day. No website, but they hang around the port entrance in Aruba. Vehicle was a bit old and battered but it did the job.

We made our way over to the northwestern tip of the island, to Aruba’s California Dunes and Lighthouse- local name.Hudishibana

Coconuts at the Lighthouse

Moving away from the lighthouse we hit the dunes for a bit of off-roading- windswept with abandoned, albeit colourful, buildings scattered around, the dunes feel a bit wild and bleak.

California Dunes
No marked trails. Hike and off road to your hearts content.

Aruba is a beautiful little island boasting gorgeous weather, fabulous beaches and an ATV in the Outback was a fun way to spend an afternoon.

#InBonaire, Caribbean Netherlands

Bonaire is one of the ABC Netherland Caribbean islands, the other two being Aruba and Curacao. One of the best and cheapest ways to see the island is by scooter. We hired ours through Scooters Bonaire in Kralendijk:

https://www.scootersbonaire.com/

Price was $50 US for a days hire, including a full tank of petrol and insurance. There were no hidden costs- special deals for cruise ships. Helmets are now compulsory in Bonaire.

All set, we hit the open road.

We covered the beaches, the salt ponds and slave huts, restaurants and shops. It is a fabulous island.

Kite Beach, Bonaire
Kite Beach
Salt ponds Bonaire
Slave Huts
Shops and restaurants

To quote George Ezra we were ‘riding shotgun in the hot sun’ seeing Bonaire in style. Ready now to move on to Aruba and Curacao.

Scarborough, Tobago.

Had a cruise stop at Tobago, Trinidad and Tobago a couple of weeks ago. We took an independent trip up to the Argyle Waterfall, a famous waterfall near Tobago with a 3-level drop of 54m into a series of pools surrounded by jungle.

It was a fabulous walk through the jungle up to the waterfall, then a climb up the different stages of the falls and a swim in the top two pools.

Jungle trekking
Wild swimming

https://www.visittobago.gov.tt/

Definitely one of a Top Ten Tobago must do. It was $10 US entry without a guide and a minibus cost approximately $120 US return. between ten of us.

Sugar Trade, Barbados.

MS Braemar was docked on Sugar Berth in Bridgetown. Sugar cane cultivation in Barbados began in the seventeenth century. Initially, rum was produced but by 1642, sugar was the focus of the industry. Barbados was divided into large plantation estates which replaced the small holdings of the early English settlers as the wealthy planters pushed out the poorer.To work the plantations, black Africans were imported. After 1750 the plantations were owned by absentee landlords living in Britain and operated by hired managers. The slave trade ceased in 1807 and slaves were emancipated in 1834.

On the dock there is still the remains of the machinery used to load the sugar cane onto the ships for exporting.

Hello in Bridgetown.

Caught up with the Braemar and Funky Blue in Bridgetown, Barbados.

We had a fabulous, fun day filming for the Funky Blue promotional video and website on the Bridgetown Boardwalk, which runs east-west along the waterfront through the capital city.

The Waterfront, Bridgetown.

Filming finished we headed back to the ship on the dollar bus.

Guitarist Oscar

Back on ship the Braemar set off for a night sail to Tobbago.

Leaving Bridgetown port.