Its fair to say that we have the advantage of a boat in Scilly so we have the flexibility to go where we want when we want (tides and weather permitting) but all of the things in this blog can be done by tripper boat or hire boat, all you need are the right conditions and a little luck!
My two sisters and husbands were over for a short break. Can you believe they had never managed to get here before. As a result we were anxious to make the most of their limited time and to show them the best of what the islands have to offer.
Their first day, Tuesday 22 May 2018 was a bright but breezy day, warm out of the wind but a little cold in the breeze. Not the best of days for boating so we took the opportunity for a walk around St Mary's. The north end of the islands offer superb views of the Eastern Isles and St Martins and the beaches of Pelistry and Bar Point, the iron age village of Halangy and the burial chambers of Innisidgen so it was a great introduction to Scilly.
Wednesday 23 May 2018 started warm, dry and calm with a good forecast so it was time to go boating and to hopefully see some of the best of the rest.
We set of from the quay on St Mary's in high spirits for Annett in the hope of seeing Puffins. There was more swell than I had hoped for but we could see Puffins in their nest holes below the pink sea thrift and found a number on the water.
We left them in peace and landed shortly afterwards on St Agnes. By now it was late morning, the sun was shinning and it was perfect weather for a walk to TroyTown Farm and and one of their locally made ice creams. Walking the rest of the coast path back to the Turks Head and the quay with my favourite 'ginger ice cream' in hand.
Back onto the boat and we were off to St Martins for a picnic lunch. Landing at Higher Town we picnicked on the vast swathe of Higher Town Beach, a beautiful fine white sand beach with very few other scattered holiday makers. After the picnic we enjoyed reading a few pages of a book or a snooze.
We could have stayed for the rest of the day but time was short and so we were back onto the boat and off to the Eastern Isles. Anchoring near to Great Ganilly, the kettle was on and a cream tea miraculously produced (Thanks Rob Greenlaw and Old Town Cafe) whilst we relaxed in the sun and watched a number of inquisitive seals popping up to check out the boat.
(taken on a previous occasion in the Eastern Isles}
As late afternoon drew near it was time to head back to St Mary's. Heading back towards the Hats Bouy near to Pellistry and Tolls Island splashes in the sea alerted us to marine activity. We headed slowly in the direction of the activity. We soon realised it was a pod of Common Dolphins. As we made are way towards them they turned and headed to us. Soon the pod of 50+ Dolphin were all around the boat, bow riding, playing in the wake. Often these encounters are short, with a quick bow ride and gone, but these dolphin chose to stay and play for 20 minutes or so. We did not chase them, they chose to interact with us which is what makes these encounters so special. After 20 minutes or so we left them, returning to St Mary's ecstatic and buzzing.
The day was not yet over of course. After recharging our batteries we were back on the boat and heading to Tresco. We crept slowly around the Holman on a low tide and into Appletree Bay. We anchored up in the early evening sunshine and went ashore onto this beautiful but deserted Tresco beach. It was one of those rare warm, balmy UK evenings. We lit the BBQ and watched the sun setting over Samson and Bryher whilst we relaxed and ate a simple but very special dinner before heading back to St Mary's in the fading light.