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St George’s - A view from our expert author
Built around a large natural harbour, St George’s white- and pastel-coloured houses, stone churches, terracotta tiles and galvanised roofs fill the hillsides with an exuberance of colour © Paul Crask
Most travel guides, magazines and directories tend to describe Grenada’s capital, St George’s, as one of the prettiest towns in the Caribbean. Whether travellers agree with this sentiment or not, few would dispute that it is certainly very pleasing on the eye. Built around a large natural harbour, the town’s white- and pastel-coloured houses, stone churches, terracotta tiles and galvanised roofs fill the hillsides with an exuberance of colour as they rise up from the water’s edge. Add to this the surrounding blue sea, luxury sailing boats at anchor, cruise ships and a verdant backdrop of mountains and lush tropical forest and it is easy to see why most people reach for their cameras when they see this capital for the first time.
Located in the southwest of mainland Grenada at 12°02’N and 61°48’W, St George’s is the administrative centre and major seaport of this tri-island state. The town is constructed around St George’s Harbour, a natural haven that is said to have been carved by a particularly fortuitous burst of volcanic energy. There are two significant areas of the harbour: the Carenage on the northeast side and close to the main town; and the Lagoon, on the southeast side and home of the island’s main port, a large marina development and an anchorage. To the north of the capital is St George’s Bay and several residential areas including Sans Souci and Tempe. To the east of the capital are the high hillside areas of Mt Helicon and Richmond Hill. To the south of St George’s there are the residential settlements of Paddock, Springs and Belmont. To the south of Belmont is Grand Anse and the southwest peninsula.
Grenada’s capital is a lively place, full of interest, beauty and history.
The capital still bears some of the scars of Hurricane Ivan, though most are healing. Sadly one or two buildings stand in ruin or disrepair, either abandoned or in the process of attempting to raise enough funds for renovation, restoration or, in some cases, a complete rebuild. Despite this, St George’s is a lively place, full of interest, beauty and history. Visitors should be prepared for the hills of the town, some of which are very steep, but which add character and always offer captivating views and scenes of vibrancy and life.
Visitors to St George’s are regular and numerous, thanks to the proximity of the international airport and the cruise-ship berth on the northwest side of town, so Grenadians are very used to seeing their capital even further crowded by an influx of international travellers. They are friendly, welcoming and more than happy to help you out with directions or offer you the chance to purchase their wares. Be sure to engage with the people of this pretty island capital, take your time to walk around and explore, and you will find your visit to St George’s both pleasurable and memorable.