Tour of Crooked Island

On Saturday, we took a wonderful all day tour of Crooked island with De’Angelo Knowles (242-478-0992) and his friend Jack.  Most of the stops along the way were stops to meet various locals such as his high school teacher who now operates a restaurant/bar, his history teacher, various family members and other members of the community.  For us, it was a wonderful way to get a brief view into life on the island.  The folks were welcoming and kind.

We also stopped at some of the fresh/brackish ponds, various wells (including some old ones), a range of churches, a local bar/restaurant for a lunch of chicken sous (a delicious Bahamanian chicken stew) and johnny cakes, a set of caves with bats, and a plantation.

The island was settled by Europeans in the 1780s.  Why then and by whom?  Well, the Loyalists in the new United States weren’t having a great time (I wouldn’t enjoy getting tarred and feathered either) so many fled.  A few fled to Crooked Island.  Ultimately between 40 and 50 plantations operated here. It appears that they were mainly cotton plantations.  They quickly depleted the soil; the economic times changed and emancipation came.  The plantations failed across the board and now lay in ruins in the bush.  De’Angelo enjoys exploring and hacks paths to open a few of the ruins for visiting.    These pillars had a date of 1795.

Plantation gate, Crooked Island

Plantation gate, Crooked Island

General House, Plantation, Crooked Island

General House, Plantation, Crooked Island

The limestone geology here creates many caves and sinkholes.  Rat bats like the caves.  We did too.  We toured three.

Bats, Crooked Island

Bats, Crooked Island

Caves, Crooked Island

Caves, Crooked Island

This particular cave was stunning.  There is a tidal pool at the entrance, but the beach inside rises above the high tide line.  It would be a wonderful place to sit for hours in quiet (well, quiet except for the soft chirping of the bats).

Caves, Crooked Island

Caves, Crooked Island

Not surprisingly, birds like these caves too.  Here is a tropic bird/Bermuda longtail sitting on a nest in the cave.

Tropic Bird in a cave, Crooked Island.

Tropic Bird in a cave, Crooked Island.

The caves were located on the northern shore along a sound.  Yet another spot where the turquoise seems to reach to infinity.

Good Hope Pond, Crooked Island

Good Hope Pond, Crooked Island

At lunch, the kids enjoyed playing pool with the local sharp shooter.

Shooting pool, Crooked Island

Shooting pool, Crooked Island

Along the way, we stopped to pick sweet sapodilla fruits.  What a treat.

Picking Sapadilla, Crooked Island

Picking Sapodilla, Crooked Island

We’re back on the boat on Sunday and will head up overnight to Georgetown to meet family flying in this week.

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