Part 4 of 7: Finding a paradise at Hogsty Reef (USVI to North Carolina Trip)

Our trip from Provo, Caicos to Hogsty Reef was okay. After we left my stomach didn’t feel too well – probably from all the fried pub food we had the day before! On top of having a sickly tummy the swell and the angle of the wind caused me to feel green (again).


The full run down about our trip to Hogsty Reef, our discoveries and much more is laid out below and at the end you’ll find the video I made. Unfortunately I don’t think it’s possible to capture the amazing beauty in a video but I did my best!

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Around 8pm I went down to our bed without eating any dinner to try and sleep off my various ailments

It was a loud night filled with very disturbed sleep. At first I blamed the sound of the main sail banging as it bobbed with the swell and then bounced back when the wind filled it. Even though we had a preventer, or rope attached to the boom to stop it from swinging, there was still enough motion in the boom to cause a loud crashing noise.

Then a squall hit while Kyle was on watch

Simon and I listened to the wind increase, the boat speed pick-up and various noises in the cockpit. Kyle’s first reaction was to spill some of the 40 mph gusts of wind off the main. He then furled in the front sail. Simon joined him to help out and then both Simon and I slept in the saloon to be available if Kyle needed us quickly.

Hours later closer to dawn we hit another squall – this one was much larger and longer

Filled with lightening and thunder the seas were very rough and the wind was terribly gusty. Thankfully the swell was slight so we weren’t tossed all over the place. Simon and Kyle put a reef in the main and weathered the storm. (To understand what reefing means, watch Rigging, Sails and Reefing our Oyster 56′)

By 9am the storm was gone and by 10am we were anchored in Hogsty Reef

Hogsty Reef

Upon sailing along the reef the first thing we noted was a shipwreck, then we noticed another and after that we saw a small patch of land with a tiny structure on it looking like a small lighthouse.

Our plan was to sail along the north side of the reef and then enter on the north west corner at its deepest point.

While waiting to get to our destination we put two fishing poles in the water

Within ten minutes the first pole went reeling away. We all jumped up and Kyle started reeling it in. Whatever took the bait literally took the bait. When we reeled in the line the hook was completely missing.

The next line then went and whatever took the line seemed to be in a hurry!

Simon reeled for quite some time. When he first started he reported quite a fight going on but after a while the fish seemed to be lighter. By the time we saw the fish we noted that it was skipping along the top. ‘What the heck,’ we all thought?

When Simon pulled up the line all we had was the head of a Tuna

Hogsty Reef

We presume that a shark must have eaten our dinner.

Ten minutes later the line went again but this time it was only a tiny little tiddler. At least we managed to get a whole fish into the boat! We threw the tiddler back and prepared to anchor the boat.

When entering the reef we couldn’t believe the clearness of the water and the absolutely stunning colors. Talk about 50 shades of blue and green! Visibility was remarkable.

Surveying the ocean floor we noted loads of sand with patches of grass and coral

Hogsty Reef

Kyle and I dropped the anchor in 8 meters of sand and let out 40 meters of chain. The anchor dug in quickly and Simon jumped in to check the anchor. Kyle and I had one concern – there was a dark patch that we were liable to swing over and we didn’t want the chain to hit it if it was coral.

Simon looked at the anchor and gave a thumbs up. He yelled out, ‘it’s dug in perfectly.’ Then he surveyed the surrounding ocean bed and noted that the boat was over grassy patches.

Any small coral patches were behind the boat

We all quickly cleaned up the boat. The sail cover was back on in no time and our small messes were dealt with. Within twenty minutes all four of us were in the water checking out our surroundings.

The first thing we noted was the abundance of starfish under the boat. There was loads of white sand and these dark stars dotted all over the place. Interestingly, by the time we left the following day they were all gone.

Around the boat there were small patches of coral teaming with loads of little fish

The colors of the coral and the fish were outstanding. There were deep reds, bright yellows and blue-black’s that made my eye’s smile. The four of us where giddy with excitement.

We then ran into two good sized barracuda’s

They seemed to be just as interested in us as we were in them. When they weren’t playing around with each other they were following us to see what we were doing!

Sienna explained that she saw a jellyfish and started swimming back to the boat. I didn’t believe her as she’s made similar comments before and there was no sign of the stinging fish.

Low and behold, right in front of me I could see three lovely transparent box-looking jellyfish

I assumed that when I saw a jellyfish I’d get out of the water. For some reason, I didn’t freak out. I was so enthusiastic about the coral and life in the sea that I decided to simply swim away from the stingy inhabitants.

At first it was hard to focus right in front of my nose and then down on the coral but it worked. Interestingly we all got stung quite a bit but I don’t think it was from a full-blown jellyfish. Perhaps there’s jellyfish particles in the sea?! The stings were not too bad. Every time I felt one I just wiped it off and carried on. When we returned to the boat none of us had any marks so it really wasn’t too bad.

Like a drug, the coral beckoned us to view more

We ended up quite a distance from the boat so Simon swam back to get the dingy. We then took our gear to the patch of sandy land nearest to the boat. We hauled the dingy up the sandy beach and we were all in awe by the lack of anything on it!

There was sand and then a higher patch of sand – perhaps more compact? And then there was a single structure to house a light that no longer works.

Hogsty Reef

A rainbow at Hogsty Reef

On top of the compact sand there were hundreds of birds

The inhabitants didn’t seem very thrilled by our appearance so we kept well away from them. Several birds were on the sand and looked like they might have been sitting on eggs so we stayed on the further end of the island.

Simon and Kyle put on their snorkels and headed over to the shipwreck located at the entrance of the reef. Sienna and I followed. Again, we had a wonderful snorkelling experience. The wreck was very visible and once again there was an abundance of all sorts of colorful fish. Simon found the engine and we all gathered around to check it out. There were no jellyfish or stings so that was great.

All of us feeling a bit exhausted clambered back into the dingy and headed back to the boat

Simon saw a stingray so jumped back in. Kyle followed. I took the dingy back to the boat with Sienna and decided to have some girlie time.

Sienna and I ate lunch, I painted her fingernails and we played some games together.

While us girlies were doing our own thing, Simon and Kyle took the dingy to the see a shipwrecked Liberty Boat made in the 40’s that ran aground in the 60’s. It was 2.7 miles away from Britican so it gave Sienna and I some good alone time.

While Simon and Kyle were gone I couldn’t help but wonder what I’d do if both of them were eaten by a shark! I know it’s a terrible thing to think but what would I have done?! Sail the boat to Cuba? Carry on with just Sienna and I to Florida?!

Perhaps I should stop reading thriller books during my night watch!

Sim and Kyle came back. I was very happy to see the dingy speeding over to Britican. They both recited all the fish they saw and explained that the wreck was very interesting to snorkel around.

Feeling tired everyone took a nap. Kyle and I crashed out in the cockpit listening to laidback house music, Sienna was in her bedroom and Simon was in the aft berth completely passed out.

Hogsty Reef

Here’s what the reef looks like on our plotter

Around 5pm I woke everyone up

We cleaned up and prepared for dinner. The plan was to take the dingy over to the sand patch to have a BBQ but our light was fading fast. A storm was on the horizon and we couldn’t determine how fast it was moving.

Just before we started preparing for dinner, we were all sitting in the cockpit chatting. And then we all got a feeling that something wasn’t right.

It wasn’t a feeling that a shark was around or that the storm was imminent. We all instantly heard a noise that didn’t jell with our surroundings. Being 40 miles from any land, off the beaten path, with no one around we all noticed an engine.

Was it another boat? Could it be a plane?

Suddenly on our horizon off the beam of the boat we noticed a very low flying helicopter heading straight for us. Instantly I thought it could be the US Coast Guard…and I hope it’s not because my mom has been watching our track and thinks we’re marooned.

Sure enough, it was the US Coast Guard. I have no idea why they have a presence in the area?! The helicopter circled us and I noted an external camera that looked like it was filming us.

We all smiled and then the helicopter made a larger circle around the whole reef and was gone

For a few seconds I felt angry. I thought, ‘how the heck is it possible that we’re finally in the most remote place EVER and we get a visitor?!’

I got over it quickly as my stomach started to rumble and that always helps to change my focus.

Simon pulled out our Cobb grill. Kyle pealed some potatoes and chopped up some corn on the cob. We grilled the potatoes, corn and a few steaks. The meal was delicious. And what made the whole night truly spectacular was a bright rainbow set to a black sky to our bow and a truly amazing sunset off our aft. All of us couldn’t stop commenting about how beautiful our surroundings were.

And then it happened…

We all watched the very last bit of the sun go down and all four of us witnessed the green flash.

Hogsty Reef

The first I heard of the green flash was when we crossed that Atlantic. Our crewmember, Murray, said that he’d like to see it during the crossing. When I asked what it was, Murray explained, ‘Just as the sun dips down below the horizon, if you’re on the sea and there’s no clouds it can produce a green flash.’

At first I thought Murray was joking but over the course of the summer I met several people saying they saw the flash.

Night after night I kept my eye out for the supposed green flare and never saw a thing

At Hogstay Reef I mentioned the flash and explained if it’s going to happen, it’s going to happen in the next few seconds. We all waited and watched and low and behold, we all saw a green hue just as the last bit of sun dropped below the horizon.

It was anti-climatic. Heck – I thought a beam of green light was going to spread out across the horizon and somehow blow me away with delight. Instead, I simply saw a bit of green as the sunset. I must have played it up in my head too much! Either that or what we saw wasn’t the real green flash.

Needless to say, I can now say I think I’ve seen it!

Overnight sleeping was slightly difficult. The swell was a bit too rough for my liking. Considering our surroundings it was worth living through it.

The next day we did some cleaning, attempted to fix our second alternator. For some reason the output reads that it’s good but somewhere along the wiring the electricity is not charging our battery bank. Unfortunately we had to run our generator instead.

Midmorning we all clambered carefully into the dingy. The swell caused the dingy to rise high above the sugar scoop and then dip down low.

Jumping from one boat to the other was a serious task

Hogsty Reef

We aimed the boat for a second patch of land about 2 miles from the boat. It was the only other part of land that can be seen running along the horseshoe reef. Half way across I noticed lightening and thunder and not knowing how fast the storm was coming we all decided to return to the coral nearest us. Sometimes storms move fast and the seas were getting very turbulent – especially for a small little dingy.

We anchored in sand along the reef closest to the light structure but still within the reef.

To say that the reef was extraordinary is an understatement

Having dived 50’ in the British Virgin Islands a week prior I could compare a typical deeper dive to the reef we could touch from the surface. The colors of the reef were amazing. The fish were abundant – we saw schools of 50 blue fish, 50 black fish… Tiny yellow, orange, purple and blue fish. The coral was just as colorful – if not more. I noted purple fans, yellow-orange brain and red coral that flowed in every direction.

There were little passageways for us to explore heading towards the coast

The coral fans were almost breaking on the surface but the passages went deep enough to swim around. Everywhere I looked there was color and life. I couldn’t help but humanize the fish thinking what they must be talking about with each other. When looking into crevices I’d find loads more fish – many peeping out to look us over.

Out over the deeper sandy patch we found a barracuda and one trigger fish just minding his business swimming slowly and deliberately.

I wanted to stay for hours but the seas increased in chop and the dark clouds were looming

Simon, Kyle, Sienna ungracefully pulled ourselves up into the dingy and headed back to Britican.

With dark clouds and no chance of any snorkeling left to do, we decided to say ‘goodbye’ to Hogsty Reef and start making our way along our longer passage to Fort Lauderdale, Florida. We pulled up anchor around 2pm and started off with very little wind but enough to fill our sails.

Hogsty Reef

To my absolute delight I was happy to find that the swell died down and my slight seasickness completely disappeared. Woo Hoo!

We started off with our front sail poled out on one side and our main let out on the other side – this sail configuration is sometimes referred to as ‘wing on wing’.

The first evening after leaving Hogsty Reef was rather difficult due to a lack of wind. Nothing’s worse than having the main flapping and the boom banging.

We tried our best to change our direction to make the best of any wind we could get

Before bedtime the four of us played Uno as the sun set. It’s interesting to see the evenings get longer as we move north. I didn’t think it would be so drastic but in the British Virgin Islands it was pitch black when putting Sienna to bed at 8pm yet now it’s still light.

Due to the banging sails I had a terrible night’s sleep. At 2am I woke to do my watch and lucky for me Kyle came up at 4am – an hour too early. Doing a two hour watch is definitely better than three hours!

Unfortunately, however, Sienna woke at 4am and it took me until 5am to get her back to sleep. First we tried falling asleep in my bed, then moved to Sienna’s bed, so to stop waking Simon and in the end of the two of us finally passed out in the saloon. Usually Sienna sleeps perfectly fine – even in Force 10 storms.

It’s funny because it’s the actual lack of wind that’s been walking us up!

Below is the brief video I put together for Hogsty Reef. Make sure to sign up to my newsletter to ensure you get notification for part 5 when we sail from Hogsty Reef to Fort Lauderdale Florida: Newsletter Signup!

Hogsty Reef Video



Part 2 of 7: Sailing to Grand Turk (USVI to North Carolina Trip)

Sailing to Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos

Our sailing to Grand Turk trip from Puerto Rico was relatively uneventful. A Carnival Cruise ship passed us early on and we saw a few cargo ships but otherwise there was very little wild or human life as far as the eye could see.

sailing to Grand Turk

If you want to read all the good details about our sailing to Grand Turk trip, please scroll down and keep reading. OR, watch my short video showcasing our arrival, some footage of the island and an awesome Pink Flamingo that we came across.

Aside from doing my 360 visual look every ten minutes I mostly had my head in the thriller book, ‘The Prettiest One,’ by James Hankins. It’s the first thriller I’ve read in years – perhaps over 20 years! I’m more of a non-fiction reader but any book that has the potential of helping me forget my seasickness is more than a book – it’s a possible remedy.

Needless to say I got through the book in two days and it definitely helped me to ignore my queasy feelings

During one of my night watches I surveyed the horizon under a full moon observing a 360-degree vision of dark pale gray water met with a dome of lighter pale gray. When checking the plotter no other boats were in the area.

Considering the deep Atlantic Ocean, the high pale gray sky and the lack of visual stimulus I found myself feeling very alone. With the bright moon only a scattering of stars could be seen so it was hard to even visualize other life forms being ‘out there.’

Eventually a plane that must have been over 30,000’ went past and I said in my thoughts…’that’s nice, I’m not alone!’

My feelings of loneliness reminded me of driving at night. Whenever I was on a single lane road I’d find comfort in following a car or having a car behind me. There was something reassuring knowing I wasn’t on the road alone. Whenever my unknown travel companion turned off the road I said ‘good bye’ as if I developed some sort of relationship with the other driver. When the driver went a different direction and I was alone, I’d seek out another companion to avoid feeling alone for too long.

Perhaps my night watch simply spurred on my childhood fear of being afraid of the dark?!

During the day I don’t seem to need an exterior travel companionship! Although, saying that, during the day I almost always have someone with me in the cockpit.

Sailing to Grand Turk

Our guest, Kyle, taking down the US flag and putting up the Turks & Caicos flag.

When approaching Grand Turk, my first impression was, ‘wow, it’s flat and dry.’ After seeing so many tropical Caribbean Islands with super green foliage and hills if not mountains, Grand Turk certainly provided a different sight.

Sailing along the coast we had to keep quite a distance between the boat and the shore due to low depths and an abundance of rocks. From our viewpoint, we could see the blue Atlantic Ocean met with a long sliver of white sand, low green trees and inconspicuous properties dotting the coast. Aside from one large apartment complex there was a row of homes near the main town with restaurants and small accommodations houses dotted along the coast.

The only landmark that really caught my eye was a ugly cellphone tower half way down the island

Upon arrival to Grand Turk our first job was to clear Customs. The pilot book we used explained that a Customs Office was located at the cruise ship pier located at the south end of the island.

After our welcoming party of eight dolphins, we anchored in sand just outside a rusted shipwreck and saw no signs of life other than a large commercial fishing boat anchoring. My husband, Simon, dropped the dingy and headed for one of the three docks hoping to find Customs.

Within a short time, Simon was back. No luck – everything on the Cruise Ship Dock was locked up!

We then called all three of the Turks and Caicos Customs phone numbers in the pilot book and none of them worked. Considering it was a Saturday we expected a bit of difficulty.

Simon and crewmember, Kyle, returned to the docks and tried a couple other docks. A lovely local man explained that he had a friend that work in the Customs Office and he’d drive Simon and Kyle into town. Simon thanked the man but explained he didn’t want to leave our daughter and me on the boat for too long and asked for another option.

Eventually the guys went to the Commercial Dock where the security guard called a Customs Official who drove over to clear us all in. After all was said and done the whole clearing process took ½ hour and it was very easy.

Simon and Kyle returned to the boat explaining that the area was dead!

They found a large complex called Margaritaville that offers food, a pool and shops but it’s only open when a cruise ship comes in. The security officer explained that the cruise ships dock at Grand Turk during the week only. Later on, another local explained that most of the cruise ship people stay at Margaritaville and only 100 or so venture into the town.

With no restaurant options, we decided to up anchor and motor over to the large vessel anchoring area on front of the town.

Anchoring in Grand Turk was our scariest anchoring experience to date!

Looking at the depths and rocks on the charts and plotter we found a spot that ranged from 2.5 to 4 meters with rocks on either side. The sea goes from 1000’ to 20’ to 3’ in a very short space. There’s a massive ledge that leads to rocky terrain mixed with clear sand patches.

Our first two attempts failed as we tried to anchor on a small rock bed. Both times we dragged. After surveying the charts we noticed a sandy patch further inland however if our swing went too wide, we’d be in danger of hitting bottom.

Sailing to Grand Turk

Britican on the Horizon – we were the only boat there!

Slowly Simon inched us up to the turquoise sand bottomed water constantly watching the depth. I held my breath!

The anchor went down, easily set hard into the sand and we put out 30 meters (90’) of chain to ensure we were far enough back to avoid hitting bottom on low tide. Once the chain was out and we verified the anchor was set, Simon jumped into the water to survey the space under the keel.

Simon popped up and said, ‘let’s put out 10 more meters as we only have 2’ under the keel and if we go back a bit further there’s more depth.’

Considering we were the only boat along the whole coast we didn’t worry too much about putting out a lot of chain. Kyle and I let out more and then we prayed that the wind would hold its course and keep us in the same spot.

Feeling seasick from the swell having spent 2 1/2 days rocking back and forth I was ready to get off the boat and enjoy a beverage and nice meal.

Sailing to Grand Turk

Touching Grand Turk for the first time

Simon lowered the dingy and we all climbed aboard to seek out land, food and drink

From the boat Grand Turk appeared to have several jetties or docks lining the coast. Upon closer inspection, all of them were in a total state of disrepair. Not one jetty had cleats or anything a dingy could tie to. Most were concrete slabs providing no slats or places to feed a rope through. Perhaps hurricanes or bad weather has destroyed them all?! We followed the coast down until we found a restaurant with a place to tie the dingy up on the beach.

Simon and Kyle pulled the dingy up the sand and we tied it to the railing of the restaurant! In most instances the beach was too long for us to pull the dingy to a tree or post. Fortunately this one restaurant had a break wall with a safety railing.

As luck would have it, the food at the restaurant was excellent!

Kyle and I enjoyed blackened Grouper and I have to say it’s one of the best fish dishes I’ve ever had. The fish was cooked perfectly, the seasoning was not overbearing and the sides of salad and baked potato were perfect. Our daughter Sienna had Shrimp Pasta and I was fortunate to get the shrimp – again, cooked to perfection.

At the end of the meal all our plates were empty.

Sailing to Grand Turk

The view from the restaurant

In addition to enjoying our meals, the wine and WIFI were great too. The waitresses were fantastic and the locals all asked us how were doing and whether we liked the island or not. One woman said ,‘if you have any problems, you let me know because it’s very important to us that you enjoy your visit’.

While leaving the restaurant we noticed a golf cart hire option. Our plan was to get up the next morning, do our routine stuff (clean, fix things, etc.) and then head back to land to explore the island.

The following day, after a lovely nights sleep, we all woke and went for a snorkel

Right under the boat we found loads of lovely silver fish with yellow stripes. Some of them were almost 1 ½’ – we threw bread in the water while we were snorkeling and the fish swarmed around our heads. I felt as if I was in an aquarium. The fish certainly had no fear of us.

We found one Stingray, two Barracuda’s (with teeth showing!), several long fish around 3” with a 2” needle at the end of their nose – and on the nose was a big red ball. There were loads of blue, yellow and orange fish. It was great to just jump off the boat and enjoy our sea friends below us.

On another snorkel at the same location, Kyle found a stingray and Simon and Sienna came across a baby nurse shark – about 3” long.

After our snorkel we headed onto land once again

We tried to find another place to bring the dingy up but the restaurant seemed like our only option. We could have beached the boat anywhere but with the tides we didn’t know how far to bring it up nor did we necessarily have to strength to carry it too far.

It’s one thing to neglect locking a dingy and it’s another to not secure it to something on land!

Considering our dingy is brand new I was not going to take the chance of having the tide take it to sea

So…once again, we enjoyed a meal at the same restaurant again. We all had sandwiches and they were divine. Sienna used the pool while Simon looked at charts and downloaded any maps we needed. Kyle and I checked out Facebook and I answered some emails.

Sailing to Grand Turk

Simon figuring out the passage from Grand Turk to Provo, Caicos

Feeling concerned about the wind changing and our swing radius expanding, we decided we’d have to pass on the golf cart expedition and get moving to our next location. Furthermore, strong winds were forecasted and our need to find a safe berth or anchorage was high.

Right behind the restaurant was a small grocery store where I grabbed some tomatoes, a cabbage, broccoli, cereal, some soft drinks and some ice cream. Kyle and I gave the goods to Simon and Sienna who took them back to the boat. Meanwhile, Kyle and I took the opportunity to at least walk into the town and see as much of the land as we could by foot.

I couldn’t help feel like I was walking through a ghost town

Sailing to Grand Turk

From as far as we could see not one person was on the beach!

There was not one person on the beach, many houses where abandoned and several shut up with ‘For Sale’ signs on them. We happened upon one house that reportedly had a ghost and it didn’t surprise me.

Either the town shuts up on a Sunday, the month of May is quiet or Grand Turk simply isn’t a busy place!

Interestingly, however, many of the houses along the front street had plaques explaining what the property was used for, who built it and who the owners were. Grand Turk is known for producing sea salt so many property owners had something to do with the salt beds.

Sailing to Grand Turk

As we progressed into town, we came across an old prison – one that operates as a museum

Unfortunately it wasn’t open. We also found a pink flamingo in the salt beds in addition to some other really amazing looking birds.

Sailing to Grand Turk

The town itself consisted of a bus station, gas station, several small shacks offering food, barber services and so forth. We went into the grocery store and found a lovely selection of fruits, vegetables and dried goods. Everything was quite costly but that’s what I’d expect considering the location of the island.

What bowled me over about Grand Turk, however, were the people

During our walk every single person or group of locals all yelled out, ‘Hi Guys!’ with a friendly wave. The men at the bus stop yelled across the street to us. A group of eight young men on a porch said, ‘hey, how are you guys doing?’ A man driving his car while drinking what looked like a glass of scotch or brandy, yelled out the window, ‘Hey – how’s it going?’ While passing the one person on the whole stretch of the island taking a sea bath, he noticed us and yelled up from his swim, ‘Hi guys!’

Even when Kyle and I went to the beach to be collected by Simon, a man rushed up to introduce himself and helped us get in our dinghy. A young boy also jumped in the water to help steady the boat as Kyle and I jumped in.

Sailing to Grand Turk

Simon taking Kyle and me back to the boat

I felt as if the kindness offered by the local people was 100% genuine

Not once were we approached to buy something. I didn’t see anything touristy. Heck, during our evening meal at the restaurant one woman offered to buy our table a drink to welcome us to the island.

On our visit I didn’t see any large hotels or lavish tourist offerings. Many places along the coast offered small inconspicuous bed and breakfast type offerings. During our walk we did come across three dive shops within ¼ of a mile, so diving on Grand Turks is sure to be popular.

So…for our first visit to an island outside the Caribbean I thoroughly enjoyed it!

Sailing to Grand Turk

A house we passed on our walk

Sailing to Grand Turk Tips

  • Anchoring near the Cruise Line Pier is your best bet unless you have a small keel. Our keel is 2.5 meters and we really struggled in the large vessel anchoring zone.
  • Be prepared to hoist your dingy up the beach or go to a restaurant to tie it onto the rail! I suppose another option is to anchor it?!
  • The mooring buoys are all for dive boats. You can use them but if a dive boat comes you have to get off it immediately. We pulled up one of the buoys and half the strands were broke on the eyelet rope. I dropped it immediately deeming it totally unsafe.
  • There is a Digicel on the island (to buy a SIM) in addition to restaurants with good WIFI.
  • Both the grocery stores we went in had quite a selection of food. We stocked up on meat and dried goods before we arrived in the Virgin Islands. If you’re making our way from the south to the north and have a large freezer I suggest getting meat in Antigua (Grocery store: Epicurean) or Anguilla (Grocery store: Best Buy) before getting to the Virgin Islands and then up to Turks, Caicos and the Bahamas. When you get to Florida food becomes less expensive. OR…there’s a massive Wallmart in Puerto Rico where you can seriously stock up. It’s about a 1.5 miles away from the San Juan Bay Marina.