Flirting with the eastern edge of the Caribbean sits a chain of 32 idyllic islands known as the Grenadines. Filled with hidden treasure and far removed from the larger islands of Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic, the Grenadines run deep with rum, wind and crystal blue waters.
Union is a true Caribbean island — with a laid back mentality, the locals live simple lives, free of stress and worry. The northeasterly facing beaches, reliable winds and azure waters make it an ideal place for kiteboarding. With a good local crew and teenagers kiting from sunrise to sundown, it’s great to see the sport producing so much stoke.
40 minutes from Union by boat lies Frigate Island. There’s a stretch of land coming from the main island like a big sand spit in which the wind blows over, creating buttery flat water on the other side. The entire coastline is rocky and the only launch area is the sand spit, which is just big enough to rig your lines, but with any luck, you’ll have this spot all to yourself.
Just in front of Union Island itself is a little island built of discarded conch shells. Manmade with no other purpose than to serve as an oasis for rum lovers with a proclivity for ‘limin,’ there’s a reason they call it Happy Island. After exploring Union Island’s bay with kites, it’s a fun little night trip to head over to Happy Island and enjoy some rum while dancing the night away to some Carribean tunes.
You can’t travel all the way to the Grenadines and miss Mopion. It’s literally a small dollop of sand on top of a jagged reef surrounded by a transparent sea. There isn’t even a lonely standing palm tree. The only speck of shade on Mopion comes from a thatched hut in the middle of a sandbar 100 feet around. It’s a real life desert island. In the background you can see the populated hills of Union Island.
Salt Whistle Bay/Mayreau
The last island on the list, Mayreau, is the smallest inhabited island of the Grenadines. Providing an exotic feel, there’s a sand spit running out from the island covered in palm trees, and with several small bars and souvenir shops playing loud music, it has a typical Caribbean vibe. Salt Whistle Bay is the best kiteboarding beach on the island, and although it can be a bit hit and miss if either the wind direction is wrong or there are too many boats moored in the bay, it’s the perfect place to end a Grenadines adventure.