Clock-wise


The road surrounding San Andrés is only about 19 miles long with a few cross-roads in between.  We rented a golf-cart to see the sights that had only one speed, slow.  Besides motorbikes, the majority of the "traffic" encountered were other golf-carts out touring the island.  







We observed how the island stays clean with street-cleaners along the way.












Being a tourism-based island, signage was exhaustive in leading you to local attractions.  Each stop could be experienced for a small fee of around 3000-5000 Colombian Pesos ($1.50 - $2.50), whether a beach, church, blow-hole, lagoon, cave etc.





At the Baptist Church founded in 1844, we paid to climb the bell-tower.  A majority of the islanders are Baptist and apparently also talented gospel singers as heard emanating from any given church on Sunday morning.  











On this highest point of the island was a fantastic view of the landscape and barrier reef protecting the north shores.  The hustle of El Centro town is implied in the high-rise buildings and winding streets do a good job of getting you lost/captured in the shopping district.  Reach sat safely at anchor in the upper left-hand side of the bight.





Continuing clock-wise on our tour, we passed up a few attractions like the blow-hole, lagoon and windward beaches that could be visited for a price, knowing that beaches are our home away from home when traveling by dinghy.  The trade winds were up creating that salty haze over everything and encroaching into a shoreline that appears to have lost a few structures over time.  







The leeward side of the island was significantly calmer.  Not only were the seas down, but the vibe was much more tranquilo.  We passed some divers in the sea and dive shops, noticing that the coastline here was all iron-shore.








Approaching a place called the Cove, we stopped to take in the gorgeous views of the blue waters and scenic surroundings.













Ahhhh yes, we found just our kind of place for a relaxing lunch at the fishermans' cooperative.  











While waiting for our fried sierra (kingfish) and cangrejo (crab) stew to come out, a fisherman dropped a hand-line overboard with a fish head attached.  Thirty seconds and a lot of splashing later he pulled up a tasty snook and a big smile.





Onwards to complete the loop, we made one more fateful stop at Morgan's Cave.  Caves are interesting, right?  Plus there might be some buried treasure from Henry Morgan in there!  




After having avoided most tourist traps of the day, we were finally caught.  


The tour guide was very nice, but it was all a stereotypical replica of pirates' booty, boats and babes.  


Mark's face says it all.









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Like many tourism-based destinations, San Andrés may be encountering a struggle to keep a steady economy.  




In our drive we saw a contrast of nice settlements with colorful houses, scenic homesteads and newish condominium or hotels, alongside a noticeable amount of deserted construction sites.  




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On the up-side for them, the amount of people arriving each week seems to be fairly strong.











The attractions on our mini-tour show one side of local commerce, as people attempt to make a living.    On the water, besides fisherman there are several tour boats, some mid-sized and others support-boats for transporting people to the large party boats or islets.  There appears to be glassed bottom boats to view the reefs... and then there are the jet-skis that circle our boat each day.  


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Back in the commercial district, we found a "Beer Station" opening up and got excited!  We'd discovered this microbrew pub when in Cartegena ~ where Sunny & I lost Mark and Blake for an afternoon ~ and were excited to have a real beer again!  Despite being their first customers when we returned on opening day, we were foiled in that their keg shipments had not yet arrived from Colombia.  So we enjoyed an Aguila beer and decent hamburger instead.  





© M&M 2016