View Full Version : Anchorage – Jamestown –St Helena

18th April 2009, 12:07 AM
Anchorage – Jamestown –St Helena
Oct 2008.
It is free to anchor but clearing into St Helena is not. You first have to clear through the port captain who you can get on VHF 07 to make an appointment and ask permission to land. After all of the customs paperwork has been filled in you then move onto the police station which is 100yds up the high street on the right, beside the jail. Here you will again fill out numerous pieces of paper before you pay the entrance fee of £8.00 (UK pounds are legal tender in St Helena but your change will come in St Helena pounds which you will struggle to change in the UK) per crew member and if my memory serves me right there is another fee for something else (which I can’t remember) but it’s not too expensive.
Jamestown is on the north of the island and once St Helena is sighted from the south it can take well over two hours plus to get there. If you arrive during daylight hours you will be met by a small red pilot boat who will instruct you on where to anchor. If the RMS St Helena is in port you might well be asked to moor in the next bay. The anchoring area is quite deep at between 17 to 20m so you will need a minimum of 50 to 60m of chain or rode. We managed to set the anchor first time with 50m of chain in 17m and it held well over the 2 days we were there but more chain would have been safer.
As you can imagine, an island in Mid Atlantic that is only accessible by boat has a very low crime rate. There is only one long term tenant in the St Helena jail and all the rest are normally there for being drunk and disorderly so no real security threat anywhere. Normal security measures of locking the boat when ashore are fine.
St Helena is very much colonial British. It’s very nostalgic place to visit and at least two days are required to see the sights, carry out any boat repairs and provision. I would recommend an island tour by one of the many locals who all seem to be professional tour guides. Don’t worry they will probably find you but if not there is a tourist office directly in front as you walk up the high street behind a large tree. Some friends have recommended Robert (or Rabbit to his friends) as a tour guide due to his colourful banter. Unfortunately he wasn’t available when we were there but the guide supplied by the tourist office was also excellent. There are 4000 inhabitants on the island so everyone knows everybody; your guide will spend all their time waving at all they pass. I won’t go into any more detail of what you will see on your tour as it will spoil the discovery. The going rate for the tour is about £10 each plus a tip if you enjoyed your time. The water taxi runs until around 7 or 8pm but they will run later if you want a meal and a few beers ashore by prior arrangement and a fee (yes, you guessed it) of £10. Annie’s restaurant (on the left, in the park) has Wi-Fi access at an hourly rate and also does good food. If you want to mix with the locals try a couple of the small pubs, you are guaranteed to meet some great characters.
Everything in St Helena is imported and they seem not to grow anything on the island anymore so supplies are expensive and the selection is limited. If you are sailing from South Africa try and provision for the whole journey and only take on maybe some fresh veg at St Helena as it’s very expensive and pretty poor in quality. There are a couple of supermarkets in the high street and each is similarly priced and stocked.
There are very limited parts or anything available here and with no airport unless you are prepared to wait 2 months for the RMS St Helena spares are very hard to come by. Due to the small fishing fleet I would presume there are the skills available on the island to repair most things at a push.
An amazing place and well worth a visit. For the exercise fanatics the challenge of the famous steps is worth a go. If you get chance try and watch a local go down the steps as the technique is unbelievable and very scary!!
Some photos of our stay in St Helena are available on our website.

22nd April 2009, 08:36 AM
Noonsite Link (http://www.noonsite.com/Countries/StHelena)

24th April 2009, 11:53 AM
Link to the World Cruising Wiki's page on St Helena - HERE (http://www.cruiserlog.com/wiki/index.php?title=St_Helena)

St Helena's anchorage off Jamestown.