Dave's Grenada & Grenadines

Dave's Grenada & Grenadines

January 16-23, 2010

How did this trip come about?
Well, of course I got bored and figured I could sneak one more trip in. I found out on January 6th that Buffett would be doing a free surprise show in Waikiki two days later on the 8th- not enough notice for mere mortal mainlanders, but possible for this man of leisure! I was VERY close to pulling the trigger on that, being able to get a plane ticket that would get me there in time for about $670 and likely being able to stay with friends. But I couldn't quite do it, very rushed for a place I should be spending more time at.

Then I saw JetBlue had cheap fares to the Dominican Republic, not a bad place for a long weekend and I hadn't been there before.

Another possible option was the Canadian Sailing Expeditions windjammer-type cruise to the Grenada area that I had been eyeballing for years. Apparently I had not been to their website for a few months, because I was dismayed to discover that in November they went out of business. Disappointed, I shot a Facebook note to some friends from my first Windjammer cruise...Sujata replied the next morning with info about Island Windjammers- started by old Windjammer customers and sailing out of Grenada! I was instantly sold and hopped into action, within a few hours being booked to leave the following week. I believe I even got the last logical plane seat into Grenada.

Jet Blue $289 roundtrip
15 Jan Friday 1402 Austin, TX (AUS) 11:58am Fort Lauderdale, FL (FLL) 03:35pm

Saturday 16th

American #479 MIA Miami 07:15AM to SJU San Juan 10:50AM

I had an eight hour layover to take advantage of seeing Puerto Rico, which I had only flown through in the past.

Some rescue workers from Taiwan heading to Haiti.

A stroll around Old San Juan was my agenda.
$19 taxi each way.

I spent quite a bit of time walking around Fuerte San Cristobal.

Walking by Barrio la Perla- somewhere all the guidebooks say to avoid for safety reasons. There was a huge police presence around here.

I had lunch at El Jibarito, a place the taxi driver had recommended for local food.
The place was crowded and had tourist prices. My pork dish was good, although not as good as my favorite Cuban place in Austin.

After lunch it was rainy, so even though I had a ticket for Castillo de San Felipe del Morro I just walked by.

Totem Telurico

Then it really started pouring.

Statue of the city's founding father Juan Ponce de Leon.

Catedral de San Juan, which holds Ponce de Leon's remains.

Statue of Christopher Columbus at Plaza de Colon, the entrance to the old city.

Wikitravel- San Juan
Old San Juan

There were a ton of medical/vet students heading back in from winter holiday, and I got to speak with two vet students sitting by me. Obviously smart enough to be in school and in their mid-20s, but they were kids that seemed a world away from me.

This gigantic dog was on board and didn't require a cage, something I had never seen before. Apparently most of the students get their dogs registered as service animals.

AMERICAN EAGLE #4844 SJU San Juan 07:15PM to GND Grenada 09:27PM

I asked the driver to stop for food and we ended up at this local place. The next day I would also spot at least two KFCs on the island, in addition to the one I saw today in Puerto Rico.

I spent the night at the Siesta Hotel
$112.10, walking distance to Grand Anse Beach
#6 of 40 hotels
Didn't know at the time there was a deal to stay at Allamanda for only $90, or I likely would have went there.

All I was really doing was sleeping here. But it was spacious, clean, had air con in the bedroom (noisy window unit).

My dinner of fried chicken and fries. It was good.

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