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just back from Grenada - trip report!

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the trip was awesome. We stayed in "L'Anse Aux E'pines." the flight to grenada was empty, only about 20 people on a plane big enough to fit about 200. we flew direct from philadelphia for $329/person.
it was nice. i got to lay down and sleep the whole way there. the flight was only 4 hours.
when we got there, we took a cab to our hotel. We stayed at Secret Harbour. It was the nicest hotel
i have ever stayed in. it was all done in hand-carved wood, with a nice big veranda overlooking the blue water,
decorative brick arches, two four-poster beds, the bathroom done in italian tile with this huge wagon wheel window.
incredible. we were overlooking the moor, so there were pretty boats everywhere. breakfast was included.
most days we had a fresh fruit plate and a croissant with this great guava jam and tea for me, coffee for andy.
Day One: we went to the big beach, called Grand Anse. it was nice. there was a free shuttle from our hotel.
at 3:00 we went out on a small speedboat with and employee from the hotel and with a couple we befriended.
they were from london. the boat owner, Cyan, took us to this other small island called, Hog Island, for dinner.
there was this awesome beach bbq. a small group of people
were eating, playing badmitton, having beers and relaxing. great fun.
we fell asleep out on the balcony that night. we pushed our chairs together and laid there under a thin blanket.
the stars were great. you can actually SEE them! not like philadelphia.
Day Two: we hiked from Grand Etang (this crater lake) to the Concord Waterfalls. It's supposed to take 5 hours
(that's what the sign said), but it only took us 2.5. it was TREACHEROUS. awesome though. we were soooo muddy.
it was the best hike i've ever done. very challenging and beautiful. we didn't run into any other people until we got to
the waterfalls, and we lost the trail twice, but it was fine. deep woods off was definitely necessary! no guide was necessary!
Day Three: We did a sail on a catamaran to the western side of the island with some of the other couples staying at
Secret Harbour -- it was a complimentary sail for staying 7 nights or more. it was so awesome. we went up the coast,
in and out of all the little areas and then we stopped after about 2 hours and snorkled and had lunch. we stayed there for about 2 hours.
so that was some true relaxation time. i laid on the netting thing on the catamaran and took a nap.
the way back was really fun cuz the waves were high and we got soaked. we got to guess which waves were going to get us.
it was funny when some people got wet and others didn't, you would point and laugh and then it would get you next time.
:) andy got his feet all burnt.
Day Four: We had breakfast and relaxed on our veranda and the deserted pool that overlooked the water. we took
lots of photos that day.
Day Five: We went into the capital city of St. George's. We went to Fort George where we got great views of the Carenage
(the place where the boats hang out). We went to the national museum, which was small and very informative.
We learned all about what happened to cause the problems in the early 80s. Grenada is called the spice isle, since
they export so much nutmeg and stuff. we got to see some of the original stuff used to harvest and prepare the nutmeg and cocoa for
export. We went to the scary Market Square, which would have been cool if the men there weren't kissing and hissing at me.
We also visited the old French Roman Catholic Church. Thursday night there was a full moon and a lunar eclipse. we had some local beers and a bottle of chilean wine.
we watched the eclipse from our veranda. it was so cool.
Day Six: We took a tour with 6 other people all around the island. it was really cool. we stopped at the concord falls, which
we had seen already. our guide told us all about the fruits and plants we saw on the road. we went to the nutmeg processing plant.
it was really cool. it's all done by hand! i couldn't believe HOW MUCH nutmeg there is there. they export 60% of the world's nutmeg!
we went to this place called Belmont Estate. it used to be a slave place and they still have the bell hanging there that was used to
tell the slaves to go out to work for the day and to come in for the night. we saw the cocoa been process and had some awesome
cocoa tea, which was a lot like hot chocolate. they have a little museum there. we saw the record books of one of the owners
and some other stuff. we had an awesome lunch there, starting with pumpkin soup and this good wheat roll. we ended with fruit crumble -
a super duper dessert. the main meal was buffet style. very yummy. they had yam casserole and bbq chicken, fish, carrots and other stuff.
we saw a few other sites, like Carib's Leap or Leapers Hill, which is where the Carib Indians commited suicide rather than surrender to the
French army. we also went to the Rivers Rum Distillery. that was neat too. we saw the process and then sampled some. whew! 75 proof!
we got to see some other random things, like the old airport with cows on the side grazing. hehe.

overall, the weather was beautiful. Andy and I ate WAY too much. we even had this dessert one night that was bananas and ice cream
with rum on fire! (at the Beach House) the views were great, especially the one from the toilet in our room! the bathroom was huge. the big
wagon wheel window i mentioned before was neat and in the morning, you'd see the sun coming up over the green mountains
and boats floating around in the blue blue blue clear water. there was a great breeze from there.

i miss my veranda and the sound of the water and the boats and the wind. there were nice trees with big pretty flowers on them.
we ate a lot of seafood, chicken, we had a great steak, some local stuff that was great.
it was an awesome vacation. cheap too. we spent about $900.00 each for everything.
not bad for 7 nights!

restuarants to avoid : La Dolce Vita - wasn't good

restaurants that were great: the Aquarium, our best meal was at the Beach House. Deyna's Tasty Food was great for lunch in St. George's, the Boatyard was also very good.

everyone kept telling us how friendly the locals were, and some of them were. we had a number of bad experiences. bad apples, i guess. also, i would advise going to the grocery store to buy bottled water or drinks for your room, since they charge you 3 times the grocery store price at the hotels.

we expected the food to be less expensive at restaurants. i was in mexico last year and a full course meal was dirt cheap. not like that in grenada really. i felt like i pay less for lunch in philadelphia.

ok. i've babbled enough. let me know if you have any questions.

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