Tuesday, January 4, 2011

A St. Kitts Safari


There's nothing like seeing a place through the eyes of locals. It's like exploring someone elses's home; only they know the special spots and unusual spaces. That's exactly how I felt on Greg's Safari tour of St. Kitts. A fifth generation Kittitian, Greg revealed the nuances and details of the island that I surely would have missed on my own. The lush scenery above was my view from Greg's Land Rover as we explored the  diverse terrain of St. Kitt's interior.


The Land Rover supplied plenty of views as you can see, above. But we also made lots of stops, sampling genips, gazing at guava and starfruit trees and trying to sneak up on goat herds.

Sugar was the main crop for St. Kitts for centuries so there are scads of old plantations left, like this abandoned house above. There were lots of key lime, frangipani and palm trees in the backyard.

One of my favorite parts of the safari was meeting St. Kitts children. This group was eager to take photos and see their images in my digital camera. They were a jolly bunch, cracking jokes and offering advice on where to go next.


Next was the Whytehouse Estate above, a haunted plantation, which I declined to enter. Built in 1600 as a Carmelite nunnery, it was turned into a sugar plantation in the 1700s.  Reportedly, two families have left the place because of strange happenings like the piano playing itself and windows opening and closing without a trace of wind. Some people have glimpsed a woman in a white dress walking through the empty house. I didn't want to glimpse anything so I carefully walked around the perimeter.


Sugar mills dot the landscape as a reminder of how significant the industry once was. Sugar production stopped in 2005 but St. Kitts still retains a big emotional connection, which is why the mills and plantations remain.


There is no traffic, stop lights or hurry in St. Kitts. Horns only beep to say hello. During the entire three hour tour across the island, I think we only saw three or four cars moving along the roads. It's a peaceful place and  life on St. Kitts is sweet enough to understand  why its earned the nickname of Sugar City.

20 comments:

Jean-Luc Picard said...

You give a better tour of StKitts than anyone else

Wendy said...

As always-enjoy reading about the culture behind the place. Would love to go there one day.

eden said...

Wow, what a wonderful trip! Thank you for sharing. I learn many things about this beautiful place thru your posts. Great photos too

Fly Girl said...

Jean-Luc, thanks!

Wendy,it's a fascinating place!

Eden,I'm so glad you've absorbed some new travel details!

PNR Status said...

Nice post.Thank you for sharing. I learn many things about this beautiful place thru your posts. Great photos too.

Fly Girl said...

PNR, thanks!

A Cuban In London said...

Guavas. Now you got me! :-) Just to think of their ripeness and sweetness is enough to send me on a Caribeban reverie.

Many thanks.

Greetings from London.

Fly Girl said...

Cubano, what I wouldn't give for a fresh guava in this January snow!

mary R said...

I love an island with hardly any cars! This looks like such a great destination! you know, we're moving to DC in the summer, and I can't wait to explore the Caribbean using all your recommendations.

Fly Girl said...

Mary, DC is a great jump off point for many islands. I can't wait!

Rachel Cotterill said...

Ahhh, you always make me want to hop on a plane :)

Heather Dugan ("Footsteps") said...

I'm with you on NOT wanting to see the woman in a white dress! Enjoyable tour. Thanks!

RSA Online said...

How gorgeous! *sigh* I'll trade my snow for your sun ;)

Fly Girl said...

Rachel, plane hopping is the best exercise!

Heather, we would probably be the only ghost avoiders on the tour!

RSA, I bet I have more snow in Chicago than you! Thanks for dropping by.

Spencer said...

Looks like a very pleasant place to spend a few days exploring.

Diedre Johnson said...

This blog is really, really terrific. Your knowledge is so thorough. Read a bit about St. Kitts, hope to get there someday.

Fly Girl said...

Diedre, thank you so much! THanks for dropping by and I hope you visit St. Kitts some day as well!

accumaximum said...

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Fly Girl said...

Accu, I'm so glad you got something from my post. Thanks for stopping by and explaining St. Kitts investment opportunities, I'll keep that in mind!

Jeff Williamson said...

Do you remember where the Whytehouse Estate was located at that is supposed to be haunted? I live in St. Kitts. Thanks.