If there’s one place in the Abacos you can guarantee you’ll be surrounded by lots of other cruisers it’s Marsh Harbour. The anchorage is vast and the facilities available in the town are extremely useful. There are marine stores, fishing shops, a large supermarket, bakeries, clothes shops, restaurants, hardware stores, mobile phone shops and much more.
This is why people come here.
It’s certainly not for any picturesque scenes.
The streets are grubby, the people not as welcoming as in the remote islands and the general feel here (in our experience) is that it’s tired and run down.
Anyway, thankfully we are here for practical purposes.
To do List:
Refill gas bottles
Buy some marine related supplies.
Restock the fridge.
Purchase a mobile data plan.
Change the engine oil.
Replace the engine/fuel filters.
A couple of days later and with these all checked off, we’re outta here!
The best memory of Marsh Harbour? Having dolphins play at our bow as we leave.
We motor the 4.5 nautical miles up to Man-O-War island and make our way into an empty bay situated at the narrowest point of the island. This way we can get to the other side to snorkel the reefs easily. Setting the anchor takes a couple of attempts, it just doesn’t want to grip to begin with. As we finish anchoring we see another sailboat coming into the same bay…it’s our friends on DevOcean. They insist they’re not following us but we’re not so sure 😉
Ben, Linda and Marc go snorkelling with their pole spears to catch dinner. Whilst they catch, I capture the moment. Photography has always been a hobby of mine but my lifestyle over the last year has given me the time and motivation to expand my knowledge and skills. My DSLR camera is quite old now but I have no desire as yet to buy a newer one. Instead some new lenses have kept me entertained. However when our sailing adventure started I realised we would be visiting some of the most stunning places on the planet. I really wanted to be able to capture the true beauty of our anchorages, the blue of the water beneath us and the detail of the islands we’d explore. To really get perspective there’s no better way to witness these places than from a bird’s-eye view.
It was when I realised this that I set my heart on having a drone. A couple of months on from the purchase I can honestly say it’s fascinating, addictive and eye-opening. It’s amazing how much more you can see from the air. Many times I’ll review the footage and see things that are just not visible from the ground….large fish, sharks, derelict buildings to mention a few.
Today whilst they snorkel I shoot videos and take photos from above with my remote controlled quadcopter. Down below the three musketeers catch numerous fish. Although, Marc’s catch doesn’t quite make it onto our dinner plate, it manages to wiggle it’s way off the spear just as Marc is walking out of the water!
In the evening we overindulge with a BBQ on the beach at sunset. We enjoy chicken, lamb, hotdogs and of course, todays catch.
We have a couple more successful snorkelling sessions at Man-O-War resulting in us dining on parrotfish and even lobster some evenings. As we snorkelled around a rocky area we peered into a hole to find the defensive crustacean hiding. After a minute or so Ben had managed to spear it and later on I prepared it for dinner. It’s tasty, but I must admit I won’t be splashing out for it in a restaurant any time soon.
We explore the main town at Man-O-War one day where we find a marina, boat building yards and small individual shops offering handmade souvenirs. The shops are located in wooden stilted buildings dotted along the harbours edge. One shop sells unique bags made from sail material and they’re made right here in the shop. I watch them being stitched together for a while but I resist the temptation to buy one.
When the time comes to leave Man-O-War we say our goodbyes to DevOcean as this is the last time we’ll see them. Our route is now going to take us to our last stop in the Abacos before going south to Eleuthera .