Thursday, July 12, 2007

Seven Wonders of the Caribbean

After posting the new seven Wonders of the World yesterday, I got to thinking about the Caribbean and what resources - natural and otherwise - we have that can be described as 'wonders'. Besides, since we were dissed and weren't included in the list I have to give the Caribbean some props, right?

So, here's my list of Caribbean Wonders. Feel free to send me a post about any others you can think of!
1) Harrison's Cave - Barbados
It's believed that Harrison’s Cave is the only cave in the world where running water is found along with colour crystal-like formations. The cave has large chambers, stalagmites, stalactites, lakes, streams and waterfalls. A favourite of locals and visitors alike.;
2) The Pitons and Sulphur Springs - St. Lucia
Located near Soufriere, these primeval twin peaks, topping 2,000 feet, are St. Lucia's most famous landmark. Now dormant, the Sulphur Springs are the world's only drive-in volcano. A tour of its bubbly, steamy sulphur springs offers a direct and fascinating lesson in the violent geology of the Caribbean Rim. The Pitons are awe-inspiring, whether from a distance or up close. I didn't make it into the springs because of a near mishap on the road up. (a long story)
3) Bermuda Triangle.
Scary things have happened in that area over the years. No one knows what really happened to those planes that disappeared but it makes you wonder, right?
Click here to read about the mysterious Bermuda Triangle.
4) Salt Ponds - Anguilla
In total, there are seventeen ponds on Anguilla (all salt water -- there is almost no naturally occuring fresh water on Anguilla). Anguilla's salt ponds are so salty that persons used to mine salt from them years ago. While driving by certain ponds, you'll even see balls of salt like cotton candy bouncing across the road.

Along the shores and on the sandbars, you will find many different kinds of birds: different species of ducks, egrets, flycatchers, herons, plovers, sandpipers, and more.
5) Port Royal - Jamaica
Port Royal was the centre of shipping commerce in Jamaica in the 17th century. During that time, it gained a reputation as both the "richest and wickedest city in the world". It was notorious for its gaudy displays of wealth and loose morals, and was a popular place for pirates and privateers to bring and spend their treasure. During the 17th century, the British actively encouraged and even paid buccaneers based at Port Royal to attack Spanish and French shipping.

An earthquake on June 7, 1692, largely destroyed Port Royal, causing two thirds of the city to sink into the Caribbean Sea. Today it is covered by 25 feet of water. I visited the remains of Port Royal a few years ago, but since the water was murky I didn't bother to go out in the boat to view the submerged part of the city. There're still a lot of interesting buildings above ground, though.
6) Grand Etang Lake - Grenada
It isn't everywhere you can find lakes formed in the craters of volcanoes, but in Grenada you'll find three: Levera Pond and Lake Antoine in the north, and the Grand Etang in the center of the island. The 15 acre Grand Etang Lake forms part of the Grand Etang National Park and is surrounded by lush rainforest. My husband and I saw the Lake while on a visit to Grenada four years ago. It's worth the drive, even though most of the trees have seen been destroyed by Hurricane Ivan.
7) Kaieteur Falls - Guyana
The 400 feet wide Potaro River plunges over the Pakaraima Plateau resulting in the world's largest single drop water falls, Kaieteur. Measuring 741 feet, Kaieteur is twice as high as Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe and about five times taller than Niagara Falls.


Anonymous said...

nice pics. you had one i really wanted to see... port royal underwater and i thank you for posting them.

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