Quarantine on Union Island

We left Tyrell Bay on Carriacou in the morning and sailed in light wind up to Union Island. In the last bit, we used the engine. Union Island belongs to Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and that means changing the guest flag and hoisting the yellow Q flag under the country’s guest flag to show that we have not yet cleared in to the country, extra important now during the pandemic.

When we arrived in SVG, you still were allowed to do PCR tests and quarantine on Union Island. A week later, this has changed because Grenada has had an outbreak of covid-19 and everyone who comes to SVG must then clear into Kingstown on the main island further north. It was good that we did not have to do that. Union Island is much closer and also has a better anchorage.

We are assigned a buoy in the quarantine area in Clifton and are allowed to do a PCR test the same day. Then we have to stay in quarantine on the boat for 5 days and if we test negative we can clear in. While we are in quarantine, we are allowed to swim and snorkel on the reef, so we do not feel trapped on the boat.

While in quarantine, we check off a few things from our to-do list; inventory spare parts, fix the lift of the dinghy so we can hoist it up on the side of the boat, clean away rust from installations in the engine room and on deck.

Out at Palm Island are some really big boats for anchor and in the evening we see them light up the water around them. As we sit on the aft deck waiting for the sunset, we see the kites fly back and forth inside Frigate Island.

After 5 days, we receive a visit from a customs official who has positive information with him. We can clear in and he has all the necessary documents with him, so all we have to do is to pay for PCR test, buoy, and clearance.


We were able to stay at the buoy in Clifton until the next day so we take the opportunity to visit Clifton for some sightseeing and maybe a restaurant visit if it is open somewhere.

Along the main street to the south, we find a small alley with the sign Art Center over the entrance. It looks completely abandoned and while we are standing outside looking in, a guy comes and asks us to come in. He says there is a lookout point with a nice view of the bay.

I always want to see a view so we venture into the alley. There are paintings on the walls in the alley and after a few turns, we arrive at a small bar where some local guys are hanging out. They say we can move on so we continue the winding walk past a closed restaurant, some residential buildings with a barking dog. Now there is only one path left and it ends with a few stairs up the mountain and finally, it ends at a small lookout point with glorious views over the entire bay at Clifton. Far out there we see Sally in front of Happy Island.

On the way back we stop at the bar and have a beer and talk to the guys who sit there.

Now it’s time to look for a restaurant where we can have some lunch. The only one that is open is by the square and it is possible to sit one floor up for a view of the water and a little cooling wind.

Chatham Bay

After leaving Clifton, we sail around Union Island past Frigate Island to Chatham Bay to meet Mirja and Håkan who are already here with Flying Penguin. We take the dinghy to the beach and go to Sunset Cove which is open. We decide on lunch there. While we wait for Håkan and Mirja, we each take a cold beer, here in SVG it is the locally produced beer Hairoun that is served in the restaurants and it is perfect to quench your thirst. It will be a dear reunion, we have not met since we were in Carriacou two weeks ago.

Next time

In the next blog, we will write about when sailing to Frigate Island to celebrate Christmas.

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