December 30, 2011
5 boats grouped together to get a good price on an island tour. We first set off and visited the spice gardens. There we got a guided tour having all manner of herbs and spices pointed out.
Next stop was a local family business that produced all sorts of jams and liquers. Much sampling was done. Then we were off to the seven sisters waterfalls. We trekked through the rain forest until we came to a clearing with 2 waterfalls cascading in to pools. We swam out into the pool and let the cold water shower us. We had lunch there before trekking back to the bus.
Next stop was the coco plantation, where we had a tour detailing how they pick and extract the beans. They then put them in fermentation stacks and finally lay them to dry on big trays that can be wheeled shut to protect them from rain. Every 2nd day women walk the beans to ensure they are not sticking together and help dry them. Finally they are polished before going to be ground.
We got to sample the choclate and also a choclate tea (very like our hot choclate drink in th uk.) The chocolate is graded in percentage of strength. We tasted the 69 and 71 percent.
Last we visited the rum distillery. The machinary is very old and the process is the same as it has been for hundreds of years. They keep distilling the rum until they get it very strong (redistilling any that does not come up to spec) When we sampled the rum it was like fire water!!!
Boats involved were: Secret Smile, Spruce, Christina Pearl, Ocean Lady and Blue Moon