Throughout the time spent there, we found the feeling of solidarity amongst the people, (particularly evident at times of adversity) to be both admirable and enviable. Grenada is ‘The Island of Spice’ generally because of its mass spice production, but we would go further and say that the ‘Spice’ is also in the people; driven by their absolute devotion to their country. What a delightful, uplifting place it is; The island is beautiful, the people are beautiful, and the vibes … Oh the vibes…what more can we say?
The national flag of Grenada was adopted upon independence from the United Kingdom, 7 February 1974. The flag was designed by Anthony C. George of Soubise in Saint Andrew Parish. The six stars in the red border represent the country’s six parishes, with the middle star, encircled by a red disk, representing Carriacou and Petite Martinique. The symbol in the hoist represents a clove of nutmeg, one of the principal crops of Grenada. It also represents a link to Grenada’s former name, which was the “Isle of Spice”. The red colour of the flag stands for courage and vitality, gold for wisdom and warmth, and green for vegetation and agriculture.
The Coat-of-Arms represents the distillation of a national effort to produce armorial bearings for an independent Grenada, incorporating important historical and indigenous features of Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique, in a design approved by the College of Arms.
The Coat-of-Arms comprises:
1. The Livery Coat or Colour on a Shield
2. Charges or Devices on the Shield
3. The Helm of special design
4. The Mantle which covers the Helm
5. The Wreath to hold the Mantle in place
6. The Crest
8. The Motto
The National colours of Red, Gold and Green, which comprise the National Flag, are used on the shield with the same symbolism attached to them.
The ship Santa Maria at the centre point of the shield and Gold Cross represent Grenada’s sighting by Christopher Columbus, and our continuing link with yachting and tourism.
The Gold Cross itself is significant of God consciousness which underlines the national effort.
The Lion is the first quarter of the shield, and repeated in the fourth, symbolises strength, and the unswerving determination to face the challenges of nationhood with courage and resourcefulness.
The Madonna Lily resting between the horns of the Crescent, (inspired by Murillo’s famous painting of the Immaculate Conception) indicates that Grenada has, since its sighting by Columbus, been dedicated to Mary of the Immaculate Conception and in whose honour the island was named Conception Island; the shield itself rests in a valley between two mountains, representing the spectacularly picturesque topography of the islands.
The Grand Etang Lake is also represented amid luxuriant green vegetation in the foreground of which is placed a sprig of cocoa, with a ripe pod balanced by a sprig of nutmeg also showing the ripe fruit.
Growing from the vegetation on the left side of the shield is a stalk of maize flowering and bearing three ears of ripened cobs and on the right a banana tree bearing a full bunch.
The fruits all represent Grenada’s traditional link with an agricultural economy; the cradle of their heritage.
The Helm is a royal helm, a gold helmet facing front and having seven gold bars across the visor, the interior lined purple.
A star symbolic of our hopes, aspirations and ideals is placed to the forefront.
The crest is made up of seven roses, representative of the seven parishes and set between the two sprays of bougainvillea, the national flower.
The supporters are, on the left, a Tattoo or Armadillo and on the right, the Grenada Dove, representative of the fauna on the islands.
Grenada’s motto, “Ever conscious of God, we aspire, build and advance as one people”, is itself sufficiently eloquent on the subject of those high ideals and principles upon which the nation is founded.
Hail! Grenada, land of ours
We pledge ourselves to thee
Heads, hearts and hands in unity
To reach our destiny.
Ever conscious of God
Being proud of our heritage
May we with faith and courage
Aspire, build, advance
As one people, one family.
God bless our nation.
A beautiful long curve of soft white sand, fringed by sea grapes, almond trees and coconut palms. Grand Anse is Grenada’s most popular beach. The 2km long beach with a gentle surf is justifiable a popular tourist destination and is ideally situated on the sheltered leeward southwest coast. There are many hotels, boutique resorts along the shore, including the some of the most famous boutique hotels and luxury all-inclusive resorts in the Caribbean. The gentle azure water is more than enticing and is perfect for swimming. Many local vendors patrol the sands, but this all adds to the vibrant yet relaxing atmosphere.
On the West coast of Grenada is The Moliniere Underwater Sculpture Park. The unique submerged gallery is a collection of ecological underwater contemporary art, which also serves as an artificial reef. It was created by artist, Jason deCaires Taylor. Opened in May 2006, it became the world’s first underwater sculpture park, open for public viewing. Taylor′s aim was to engage local people with the underwater environment that surrounds them using his works which are derived from life casts of the local community. He installed concrete figures onto the ocean floor, mostly consisting of a range of human forms, from solitary individuals to a ring of children holding hands, facing into the oceanic currents. The best way to appreciate the artistry is to take a dive a few metres below sea level. If diving isn’t for you, snorkelers and glass boat passengers can also admire the exhibition.
Official website: www.grenadaunderwatersculpture.com
Located on the promontory to the west of the harbour is Fort George. Built in 1705 by the French, many of the buildings are now used by the police. One of the rooms has been converted to a gym and another to a sort of sewing room. Much of the fort is still intact and open to visitors. However, the buildings are very dilapidated, from a combination of Hurricane damage and neglect. Having said that, the spectacular 360-degree view across the town, harbour and sea beyond is worth the hike up a flight of stairs to the battlements.
Built in 1705 by the French, Fort George lies on the promontory to the west of the harbour and is Grenada’s oldest fort. It was built to protect the harbour but stands mostly derelict today. The main draw here is the spectacular 360-degree view across the town’s red-tiled roofs and church spires to the harbour and sea beyond. Be prepared for a hot and steamy hike up a flight of stairs to reach the fort.
In the mountains north of St. George’s, Annandale Falls is a 10-meter waterfall plunging to a pool tucked in tropical foliage. A very east waterfall to get to, you will quickly be in awe of the sights and sounds as you stand on the pavement. Get up close and take the short trail to the falls begins at the Annandale Falls Centre. Visitors can swim at the base of the cascades and watch local divers leaping into the water from the top.