The Windward Islands and the Leeward Islands lie like a ‘backbone’ framing the Caribbean Sea, luring sailors, cruise ships, and charter yachts to their shores for their close to perfect climate, a staggering array of diverse cultures, customs, cuisines and experiences, watersports and myriad attractions.
The term 'leeward islands' is derived from the course taken by most of the sailing ships that voyaged from Britain to the Caribbean. Driven by the trade winds, these vessels normally encountered Barbados, the island most to windward, as their first port of call.
The Windward Islands are the south-eastern islands of the Caribbean and simply called windward because they're exposed to the wind of the northeast trade winds. They include the islands of Martinique, St. Lucia, St. Vincent, the Grenadines and Grenada.
Dominica is the dividing line between the Windward and Leeward islands.
After progressing through the Windward Islands, these ships rounded off their voyages with the islands to leeward.
The Leeward Islands are called leeward because they're away from the wind or downwind (in the "lee"), and they include the Virgin Islands, Dominica, St Maarten (St Martin), Guadeloupe, Montserrat, Antigua, Barbuda, St. Kitts, Nevis and Anguilla.
The climate of the Windwards is marine, and the extreme tropical heat is greatly tempered by the steady trade winds and daily sea breezes. A dry season alternates with a wet season, with the eastern sides of the islands receiving more rainfall because of the prevailing northeasterly trade winds.
The climate of the Leeward Islands is drier than the Windward Islands to the south but does vary from island to island and even in different parts of a single island; rainfall increases with elevation and in more southerly latitudes. Trade winds are a refreshingly soothing tonic to the tropical heat.
For charter yacht guests, both groups have their charms and innumerable reasons to chart a course and explore.
Contact your charter professionals at Luxury Charter Group to organize your next yachting holiday in the Caribbean.
Disclaimer: The information about luxury yachts displayed on this page is merely informational and these yachts are not necessarily available for yacht charter or for sale, nor are they represented or marketed in anyway by Luxury Charter Group. This web page and the superyacht information contained herein is not contractual. All yacht specifications and information is displayed in good faith but Luxury Charter Group does not warrant or assume any legal liability or responsibility for the current accuracy, completeness, validity, or usefulness of any superyacht information and/or images displayed. All boat information is subject to change without prior notice and may not be current.
Related Blog Posts
As travel bans are lifting in some destinations, now is the perfect time to plan and book a luxury charter yacht vacation in the Caribbean and the Mediterranean for 2021. Perhaps the disruption caused by the Coronavirus has left you with a few questions. Here we give you some answers, and consider the benefits of choosing a private yacht charter for your vacation. Learn more...
With constantly changing COVID regulations both at home and abroad, Americans contemplating a luxury yacht charter may like to consider staying closer to home. You can still have an amazing vacation while remaining in US Territories, making both getting to your charter yacht and returning home easier. Do you know about these popular American charter destinations, US Virgin Islands, Florida and the Keys, New England and Alaska? Ask us now Learn more...
The picture-perfect Leeward Islands are a 700 mile long chain of spectacular isles that are scattered across the Caribbean Sea. A private yacht charter here is ideal for maintaining social distancing. It is easy to soak up the sun and enjoy the natural beauty of this cruising area while avoiding the crowds. Learn more...
One of the joys of chartering a private luxury yacht is that the yacht provides it all - the accommodation, the transport, the restaurant, and the entertainment. This is especially reassuring in these days of social distancing. There is something very special about spending quality time in a luxurious environment with your family and friends and no outside intrusions. Learn more...