Since last writing we have spent some more time in Ria Arousa enjoying some more fine and windy weather there, great sailing. We had a night in a marina at Cabo de Cruz which was luxuriant, the first for 2 months. Really nice friendly place and it was cheap, we did washing and enjoyed fantastic hot showers also some beers and coffees in their sweet cafe/ bar , and of course wifi.
We had a very joyful evening aboard Swallow of Bristol in St Jullian on Isla Arousa with Vicky and Elliot and a friend of theirs who was in the anchorage also, Jon his boat ‘Hecla of Uist ‘.
Then we buzzed of for Ria Pontrverda 22 NM down and round the coast. We anchored in Cambarro which our pilot book said was ‘a gem of a place’ , its an old village which is built on granite bedrock, so the little buildings and narrow streets fit in and around the undulating ground. It was very nice and right on the water, but it was certainly one of the more touristy places we have seen in Galicia. From there we took a bus to Pontreverda its self. Ponteverdra is at the head of the Ria and it is possible to get there by boat up the river a little, but it is too shallow for our draft. Ponterverda was a joy, a really attractive small old city, lovely feel to the place.
From there we have now come down to Baiona, south of Vigo, a 28 NM sail from Cambarro. We sailed down close to Isla Cies which is one of the four islands which lie off the Rias . It is a nature reserve and to anchor there you need a permit. We had applied for one some weeks back but had heard nothing back. It was satisfying to sail close and see the place, which did look lovely, as everywhere on this coastline but also very busy with yachts, motorboats, jet skis, party boats etc. so we didn’t feel too sad not stopping . Baiona is also a jolly place. It is where one of Columbas’s fleet arrived back to from the first voyage to ‘the new world’ . There were 2 ( out of 3) boats to make it back and the Pinto was the fist arrive in Europe, Coulmbas’s own boat arriving in Portugal a few days later. There is a replica of the Pinto in the harbour which we went aboard, very interesting and surprisingly small at only 25 meters.
Last night we were invited aboard a neighbouring boat in the harbour, ‘Island Kea’ owned by Margie and Marcus who had invited several others from the nearby boats for drinks. It was a great evening, lots of laughter and fantastic hospitality. Everyone has similar plans as us, for the atlantic.
Yesterday and today we have completed some jobs aboard before we leave for Portugal, job one : wiring up a new LED tricolour for the mast head , to replace the old filament bulb which was dim and very heavy on power, while Dan was up the mast he also replaced the RCC burgee as the old one had rather faded and worn, fettled up the trim tab on the self steering gear ready for the run, filled fuel tanks ( well partly) , stock take on stores in the hold, painting some of the ply wood shelves and bits which have been waiting for some attention since we launched the boat and while I had the paint brushes out, I ’tiled’ the bathroom floor with black and white square painted tiles.
So we are leaving tomorrow morning for Lisbon. Its 220 miles down from here and we hope to be there Thursday to meet Tom Appleby a friend from Bristol who is flying out to join us for the trip to …. Maderia! So after a relaxing few weeks in beautiful Galicia, we will be pushing on.
After the good strong northerly winds which seem to have been with us for week, the wind seems to have died a bit. The forecast is for light wind, but at least what there is is still from the north, at 5 to 10 knts