The rich volcanic soil of Grenada, the largest of the Grenadine Islands in the Southern Caribbean, is the basis of the island’s delicious spice industry. This “Island of Spice” produces nutmeg, allspice, clove, cinnamon, ginger, cocoa, bay leaves and mace. Visitors flock to the island’s spice estates, where there’s often a mouthwatering aroma in the air.

Smorkelling in Grenada

Smorkelling in Grenada

The production of nutmeg is a testament to the hardy spirit of Grenada, as more than 80 percent of the island’s nutmeg trees were destroyed by Hurricane Ivan in 2004. Grenada’s southern position in the Caribbean keeps it out of the path of most hurricanes, but the powerful Ivan ended a 49-year hurricane-free stretch. Grenada’s nutmeg growers lost no time replanting their groves with new varieties intended to survive the next big storm.

 

There’s also much more to this island than its famous spice industry. The mountainous interior features the Grand Etang Forest Reserve, filled with lush foliage, glorious waterfalls, swimming holes and a serene crater lake. Around the reserve, you may also catch a glimpse of playful Mona monkeys or the rare Grenada dove, the island’s national bird.

 

White Sand Beaches

White Sand Beaches

Grenada’s Grand Anse Beach is two miles of soft, white sand, where you can swim, snorkel, dive or try your hand at kayaking or parasailing. More secluded beaches include Morne Rouge Beach, where the calm water is perfect for low-key swimming and snorkeling; and LaSagesse Beach, where a series of trails wind over the headlands.

 

Visitors love to snorkel at Moliniere Point, where a unique underwater sculpture garden attracts hard and soft corals, as well as tropical fish. If you would rather catch fish than watch them, take a half-day game fishing charter in search of marlin or sailfish.

 

Larger cruise ships dock at the Melville Street Cruise Terminal, right next to downtown St. George’s, the island’s capital. Smaller ships dock in the horseshoe-shaped Carenage harbor a short distance away. Enjoy browsing the shops and cafes, as well as the booths in Market Square. For postcard-worthy views, walk or catch a ride up to colonial-era Fort George or Fort Frederick.

 

Talk with your Cruise Holidays personal cruise expert about Southern Caribbean cruise itineraries that include Grenada; they are likely to include the wonderful islands of Aruba, Curacao and Dominica as well.