Sailing the Caribbean – New Year 2011 in the British Virgin Islands

New Year in the BVI’s
So we headed to the BVI’s for New Year with no real plans on where to be for the bells and found THE coolest place to be for New Year 2011….a wild ride home rounded off Pete & Ade’s Holiday!

BVI’s Here We Come

The laughs continued on Ibis with Pete and Adrian on board and having deposited Francois in Philipsburg to go and prise some more lobsters from the deep, we woke early for a 3am start for the British Virgin Islands. We started out under motor and with a light wind mostly from behind us we didn’t really get sailing until mid afternoon. The dark clouds rolled in, however and by the time we reached Virgin Gorda 16 hours later we were under reefed sails and bashing through some nasty swell in the dark. Everyone was glad THAT journey was over!

We had a much needed rest on board and cleared into Virgin Gorda the next morning before a nice fast sail over to Road Town on Tortola. Time here for a bit of provisioning and a couple of rum’s in Pusser’s Outpost! We had dinner in the Bar Fly Wine Bar which sits above my favourite restaurant in the whole Caribbean, Dove, and is owned by the same people. [pullquote_right]”We had some great tapas and a wonderful waiter so we picked his brains for THE place to be on New Year’s Eve”[/pullquote_right]We had some great tapas and a wonderful waiter so we picked his brains for THE place to be on New Year’s Eve. It turned out that he was the drummer in a local band and he recommended we come over to The Last Resort in Trellis Bay for the night….there were also fireworks and bonfires planned for Trellis Bay and he reckoned it would be far more up our street than the no holds barred booze up that is (apparently) Foxy’s on Jost Van Dyke – the alternative party place for New Year.

Auld Year’s Night

We decided to take up his recommendation and after a days sojourn at Cooper Island we headed round to grab our spot in Trellis Bay. Francois flew in later in the afternoon and despite some grey skies and squally showers the party was gearing up.

We had an amazing night all in all; starting off on the beach in Trellis Bay we had an OK buffet dinner at Aragorn’s Studio where a local band kicked in and fireballs lit the walkways, but after a few drinks there we followed the lines of people in harlequin dress queuing up for the water taxis over to Bellamy Cay, the tiny island which houses ‘The Last Resort”. [pullquote_left]”The place was jumping, the atmosphere was great and the band was just FANTASTIC!”[/pullquote_left]What a contrast with the Trellis Bay beach! The place was jumping, the atmosphere was great and the band was just FANTASTIC! Our waiter friend certainly did us proud with his recommendation and we all agreed that there couldn’t have been a better place to spend New Year in the BVI’s. Next time, we’ll book a meal there, too! Of course we all drank far too much and laughed an awful lot and got back to our beds in the small hours.

The Last Resort House Band on Youtube

Al Broderick & the Hot Sauce Band sing Eleanor Rigby
And another song!

New Year’s Day

We sailed back over to Virgin Gorda to check out the next morning and then headed down to Norman Island, home to the infamous Willy T bar to work off the last of our hangovers and get ready for the return trip to St Maarten. I don’t think Pete and Ade could face any more alcohol cos they forewent the topless american women on the Willy T in favour of some snorkelling at the Indians!

We weren’t disappointed; the whole of the BVI’s is a protected Marine Park and the underwater life gets better and better each year. Many of the snorkelling sites are like swimming in a huge fishtank, and this was no exception.

The Journey Home

We left on the afternoon of the 2nd into a 30 knot headwind and 3 metre swells for an overnight sail back to St Maarten! There wasn’t much choice; the boys needed to be back to catch their flights to Grenada and on home to London. It was a wild ride from start to finish; we all took a battering and a soaking with sea water pishing in all the leaky hatches and the entire boat contents flying from one side to the other as we bounced over the waves at 6 knots on a close haul. It was hard to eat or drink anything, but Francois did an excellent job keeping everyone plied with cups of tea….how DOES he do that at 30 degrees?

We did double shifts overnight with everyone clipped on and gratefully made harbour at 6pm the next day after 26 hours at sea! WELL DONE boys!

Sadly Pete and Adrian took another soaking in the dinghy on the way to the airport to catch the plane the next day to Grenada….SORREEEE!! I hope you didn’t develop nappy rash on the flight home??!!!

Read the first part of Pete & Ade’s Christmas & New Year adventures….

Read here what Adrian thought of his trip on board Ibis.

To see when we’re next sailing where, click on our Caribbean Sailing Calendar, or the main menu links at the top of this page, or contact us if you’d like to find out about a private sailing charter on Yacht Ibis.

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