Bonjour France!

Published: November 11th 2007
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The beginning of the week was all about the French settlement of Les Saintes, a sleepy series of islands nestled just south of Guadeloupe. The crew of Ocean Star spent their two day stay exploring the quaint little town and hidden beaches, as well as sampling the delights of local bakeries and gelato cafes. Gelato is like the ultimate in ice-cream experiences; the chocolate is rich and gooey and the fruit flavours are like eating strawberries or raspberries straight from the bush at a pick-your-own farm!

We left the Saints after a relatively short stay and moved north to Pigeon Island off the west coast of Guadeloupe, a place made famous by Jacques Cousteau, one of the founding fathers of SCUBA diving. He, along with another Frenchman, Emile Gagnan invented the aqualung in 1943, allowing us to venture beneath the surface of the ocean and explore all the wonders of the underwater world. Cousteau spent a considerably amount of time diving around Pigeon Island and the area is now protected within the Jacques Cousteau Marine Reserve. I took part in 6 dives in total; 2 night dives, 3 day dives and 1 dawn dive - the marine life was phenomenal and I took plenty of opportunity to take photos. To mark the marine reserve, there is a statue of Jacques Cousteau in about 10m of water signalling ok to passing divers - as you can see from the photos, I got to hang out with him for a little while!

We ended our stay in the French Antilles by sailing Ocean Star overnight to Antigua, our next stop. We began our sail at midnight last night, taking 8 hours to reach our new location - Nelson’s Dockyard in Antigua. I was on watch from 3am to 6am and after a little struggle waking up, I made the most of the time to watch the sky for brilliant shooting stars arcing across the Milky Way…

Additional photos below
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