Island Windjammers Sagitta Cruise Review

sagitta-jibsailMost of the articles that I write are not in the first person but this one is different.  I had the distinct pleasure of spending a week aboard the lovely Sagitta and I can’t wait to share with you my amazing experience.

Island Windjammers is an exclusive Cruise Company based in the Caribbean.  Sagitta sails out of St. Maarten while the Diamant sails out of Grenada.  I picked the Sagitta for my Windjammers cruise, specifically the rum cruise.  I convinced a friend to come with me, although I have to say it wasn’t too difficult!

We arrived at the cruise port in the middle of a fairly boisterous tropical storm.  Thankfully they usually don’t last too long and by the time we were welcomed aboard Sagitta, the rain was gone and it was the last we saw of it for the week.

The crew greeted us warmly as we boarded.  They took our luggage from our hands and replaced it with a delicious glass of rum punch, the first of many we were to enjoy over the course of the trip.  Our bags were taken to our cabins and after a few minutes of relaxing we were shown to the cabins as well and given a chance to freshen up before appetizers and the daily rum drink were served.  Every night before dinner, Dave, the rum expert from, mixed up a special rum concoction for us which we enjoyed along with an assortment of delicious appetizers.

By the time dinner was served we had reached our first stop, Anguilla.  The Sagitta’s itinerary includes the Leeward islands of Anguilla, St. Kitts, Nevis, St. Barts and St. Eustastius.  Given the presence of a fairly severe tropical storm we were unable to visit two of these islands but we appreciated the captain’s consideration of our safety much more than we felt the loss of these locations.

We enjoyed delicious meals on every occasion on the Sagitta.  The chef and his crew were amazing and prepared fresh locally influenced meals for us three times a day.  There was a heavy focus on fish and seafood but they were always happy to accommodate any dietary needs or wants if any guest wished special consideration including vegetarian and gluten free options.  Each meal seemed more scrumptious than the last and over the course of the week we dined on coconut shrimp, BBQ chicken, roast beef, tuna steaks, mushroom risotto, pork chops, callaloo soup and much more.  Each lunch and dinner was topped off with a delicious dessert and wine accompanied dinner each evening.  After dinner, Dave would educate us on the fascinating world of rum production while we sampled product from around the globe.

From the moment we boarded until the moment we disembarked the entire crew made us feel like we were guests on a friend’s private boat.  They did everything they could to make our trip as enjoyable and comfortable as possible and were friendly and sociable without every intruding.

Nights were generally spent sailing while days were spent exploring islands and swimming in the perfect Caribbean waters.  The overwhelming stand out of the beach line up was ShoalBayBeach on Anguilla.  With pure white sugar sand and beautiful turquoise waters under an azure blue sky, this beach doesn’t even seem real!  The water is perfect and there are restaurants and bars as well as chairs and umbrellas for rent and wifi making this a perfect place to spend an entire day.  If you can’t relax here, you can’t relax anywhere!  Just don’t forget your sunscreen and beware the rum drinks, they pack a punch!

The island people are friendly and gracious and it is worth making an effort to interact with the locals in some way as you will get a small taste of the culture this way.  Each day offers various options as far as activities.  You are welcome to relax on the boat reading a book or just gazing at the gorgeous sky looking for cloud shapes.  There are always beaches and swimming and some of the islands have hiking and biking options.  Other islands offer various types of tours which can be fun and educational.

Evenings are generally spent on the boat interacting with the other guests.  There are games and it’s amazing the entertainment that is generated from a group of recent strangers in the form of singing, dancing, stories and jokes.  By the time you leave you feel like old friends and indeed you may have formed some lifelong friendships.

I highly recommend taking the motion sickness medication that is provided on the boat if you didn’t bring your own.  If you are not sure if you get seasick, don’t take a chance.  Trust me.  I learned the hard way and it put a slight damper into my trip for the better part of one day.

I’ll wrap up this article by sharing my personal highlight of the trip which was snorkeling for the first time.  I was able to go twice during the cruise and it was one of the most amazing experiences I have ever had.  When you put on that mask and lower your face into the water, all the noise and distractions of the rest of the world fade away as you are transported into a tropical underwater wonderland.  Schools of squid, blue tang, and rainbowfish are just a few of the varieties of brightly colored sea life that I observed.  I even swam with a giant turtle.  It was nothing less than amazing!

If you like boating and you want to try something different from the big cruise ship experience, Island Windjammers is probably for you.  You aren’t going to have all the amenities that you will find on a big ship but what you sacrifice will virtually go unnoticed as you enjoy the personal service and unique experiences that happen aboard the Sagitta and the islands that she will take you to.  Tell her I said hello.

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