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Secrets of the Caribbean: Nevis, the Island of 44 Mangoes

By Oliver Pearson   18 December 2019

Nevis may be better known as an untouched slice of Caribbean paradise, but the island also has a local reputation for something much sweeter; the 44 distinct varieties of mango that are grown on this tiny island.

From the Amory Polly to the Grafted and Round Ball Mango, the pint-sized island of Nevis abounds with fresh and varied mangoes. Thanks to its uniquely balmy climate, its soil supports thousands of trees bearing the sweet fruit.

Officially, the island boasts 44 different kinds of mango - an unquestionably impressive record -  but ask any local and you’ll be told that there are probably closer to 200 different varieties.

If you have a sweet tooth, you'd be remiss not to add the island to your Caribbean yacht charter itinerary. The island is part of the Saint Kitt and Nevis, a dual-island that sits between Antigua and the British Virgin Islands. 

As well as mangoes, the islands grows a staggering amount of other succulent fruits. You can pick them yourself, but buying them at the market represents a good way to support local farmers. The Charlestown Farmers Market takes place on Saturdays and Tuesdays, and is located in close proximity to the local port.

The annual Mango Festival

In short, mangoes are big business in Nevis. They’re so popular in fact, that there’s a festival each July which celebrates the delicious fruit which can be found hanging from trees across the island.

Bringing out celebrity chefs and A-list visitors, the event showcases a mouthwatering range of dishes and cocktails that include the varieties of mango that can only be enjoyed in Nevis.

Locals will tell you there are probably closer to 200 different mango varieties grown on the island.

When is the best time to visit?

For those keen to enjoy the mangoes for themselves, a visit in July is essential. Not only is this when the festival brings the island to life, but it’s also the time when the mangoes taste the best.

July typically falls into the low season in the Caribbean, making this a prime opportunity to enjoy a yacht charter and benefit from off-season rates

July typically falls into the low season in the Caribbean, making this a prime opportunity to enjoy an off-season yacht charter.

Peak season in the Caribbean is in the winter; if you are visiting during this time, you can still enjoy the famous mangoes, with certain varieties ripening as early as February and March. 

If you are visiting earlier in the winter, you'll still be able to find a lush variety of fruits. From December onwards, fruits including papayas, pomegranates, and certain varieties of pineapple are abundant across the island. Coconuts, passion fruit, melons and guavas also grow seasonally.

A hidden gem of the Caribbean

An ideal island to visit during a superyacht vacation in the Caribbean, it’s not just the island's ample fruits that make Nevis a standout destination.

The island is famed for its scenic natural beauty that remains relatively untouched by mainstream tourism.  There are plenty of hillside walks to entertain hikers, as well as cultural museums that offer a fascinating insight into the island's history. 

Closer to the water, the shores of the island are lined with powdery sand beaches. Nisbet Beach is a firm favourite among charter guests, renowned for its tranquil waters and good visibility for snorkelling.

The beach-chic hotel of Nisbet Plantation sits along the water, providing a serene enclave for those looking to spend a day on shore as part of a luxury yacht charter.

Particularly accommodating to the superyachts, the nearby Christophe Harbour is a fully-equipped marina for larger yachts to make use of when visiting Nevis and its sister island St Kitts.

Get your yacht crew to whip up a Pineapple Mango Rum Punch

Feeling inspired by the mangoes of Nevis? Why not ask your yacht crew to shake up a pineapple mango rum punch for you. Be sure to bring back some fresh Nevis mangoes from your island trip to serve as the main ingredient!

You’ll need:

  • 3 oz coconut rum 
  • 2 oz pineapple juice
  • 2 oz fresh mango juice
  • 1 oz fresh pineapple juice
  • A splash of grenadine
  • Lime slices
  • Edible flowers for garnish

Combine all the liquids except the grenadine, and pour over ice. Add a splash of grenadine for colour, then squeeze in some lime zest, and garnish with lime and edible flowers.

To experience this remarkable island in style, get in touch with your preferred yacht charter broker today. They’ll be able to advise you on the best yachts for charter in the Caribbean and plan the perfect itinerary which includes the islands of St Kitts and Nevis.

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