The Lesser Antilles Aboard the Sea Cloud: Feb 10—18, 2016

Register for WaitlistTour Details

Price: $8,795
Starting price per person based on double occupancy. See itinerary for details. This departure is currently sold out.
Departs: Bridgetown, Barbados
Tour Limit: 58
Operations Manager: Greg Lopez
Download Itinerary: PDF (299.5 KB)

Route Map

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Tour Leaders

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Victor Emanuel

Victor Emanuel started birding in Texas 70 years ago at the age of eight. His travels have t...


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Barry Lyon

Barry Lyon's passion for the outdoors and birding has its roots in his childhood in southern...


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David Ascanio

David Ascanio, a Venezuelan birder and naturalist, has spent 30+ years guiding birding tours...


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John Harrison

John Harrison is a travel writer and lecturer, and a native of Liverpool, England. He took F...


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Peter Zika

Peter Zika is a field biologist from Seattle, investigating and describing new species of pl...


More Information

Register for the Waiting List

This departure is sold out! Add your name to the waiting list, or inquire about this tour by calling our office (1-800-328-VENT or 512-328-5221), or emailing us (info@ventbird.com).

Sea Cloud

Sea Cloud— Photo: Courtesy Sea Cloud Cruises

 

An Eastern Caribbean voyage aboard one of the world’s most beautiful sailing vessels visits six major islands; seeking specialty birds is an overriding theme, but plenty of beautiful island scenery and interesting botany and geology are of equal appeal.

“Small is beautiful” is a common saying in the West Indies, and nowhere is this more apt than in the string of pearls known as the Lesser Antilles. On this voyage we will discover just how beautiful small is by visiting the five major islands that form the Caribbean Sea’s eastern boundary—Guadeloupe, Dominica, Martinique, St. Vincent, and St. Lucia—as well as the Atlantic outlier, Barbados. Seeking the region’s many special birds is the dominant theme of this trip, but plenty of beautiful island scenery, wonderful botany and geology, and fascinating history are equally compelling attractions.

For this trip we have chartered the peerless Sea Cloud, a four-masted barque widely regarded as the world’s most beautiful sailing vessel. We will spend our days exploring the forests and coastlines of each of these lovely islands while experiencing the Caribbean Sea—one of the world’s most famous bodies of water—under the towering masts and spreading sails of the Sea Cloud.

All of the islands of the Lesser Antilles are scenically spectacular—dominated by steep forested peaks and rugged terrain—yet each island is subtly different from the others. From north to south, our travels will bring exposure to one veritable paradise after another. Most of the islands contain birds found nowhere else, especially a remarkable group of scarce and endangered parrots that include the St. Vincent, St. Lucia, Red-necked, and Imperial parrots, and a dazzling assortment of hummingbirds. Many other birds of equal interest occur here as well, some of which represent widespread families while others signal bird groups not found outside the Caribbean. Each island is limited in its overall quantity of birds, but collectively they offer a surprisingly diverse list of hawks, woodpeckers, thrushes, thrashers, tremblers, warblers, tanagers, orioles, and finches.

Purple-throated Carib

Purple-throated Carib— Photo: Steve Gast

 

Complementing the outstanding birding is the supreme natural beauty of the islands. Among the highlights are the luxuriant cloud forests of Dominica, the gorgeous coastline of Martinique, and the iconic Pitons of St. Lucia.

Adding to the allure is the opportunity to travel aboard the Sea Cloud. Ornate in her construction, resplendent under sail, and owner of a vivid history, this majestic ship sets a standard by which all other ships are measured. All cabins are immaculately appointed and contain private facilities. Public areas include a lounge, viewing deck, lido deck, and bar. High quality cuisine is served in an elegant dining room.

Finally, this departure offers what we think is the finest means to experience a comprehensive trip to the Eastern Caribbean. Unlike land-based itineraries that require numerous hotel changes and unreliable inter-island flights, our ship-based program eliminates accommodation changes while providing comfort and ease throughout our travels.

All nights and meals aboard the Sea Cloud; superior accommodations and cuisine; inter-island cruising; daily shore excursions involving mostly easy walks along roads; mild conditions with warm temperatures expected; rain possible.

Photo Gallery: Lesser Antilles aboard the Sea Cloud 2014, by David Ascanio