Thursday, November 27, 2014

SV Lumina Med Tour. Part 3. Oct 2014

Dear Friends,

Anyway, we now were heading for Tetuan (Marocco).. During parts of the 4 days, hardly any wind (at least no wind against), but were able to cover this stretch of 450 miles in normal time. The last couple of hours, had to circle around before entering the marina, waiting for daybreak…

The Marina Mir is a bit run down but ok. The internet connection not very good. Then Khalid showed up… and not paying attention to my inner voice, he managed to convince us that making a city tour with him to Tetuan (still roughly half our drive) was the best thing. Well, it was all a bit too hasty for our liking. Our guide was clearly in a hurry… Anyway, went to the Medina (old centre) and it is easy to get quickly lost in the myriad of streets and alleys.. Tons of street vendors (from live chicken… we did not… to dried fruits.. we did purchase) a very exotic look, feel and smell…We ended up in a restaurant in the Spanish club, and ordered the famous tagine.. (meat stew kind of thing, with dried fruits).. tasty, but not as good as we had in the Maroccan restaurant in St Maarten..

Couldn’t find a bus back to the Marina, and so had to take a shared taxi.

The next day, after doing some boat chores (laundry) went by bus to nearby Mdiq. Especialy in the evenings lots of activities (street vendors), and we walked around in this wonderful world of strange language, smells, colors and foods. A taxi back to the Marina, and the next day, checking out officially (too bad the marina had no diesel….), and we headed for the strait of Gibraltar (again) now on the way out….. To say goodbye to us a bunch of dolphins and pilot whales swam in front of SV Lumina… I have the feeling we will be back for more…


  Entrance to the Medina, Tetuan                            Dora dressed for the ocasion



nocarpet,nocarpet,nocarpet,nocarpet                           Produce in the Medina



Different beach customs and fashion                            Mdiq boulevard



Too big crowd for so litlle fish                                         Need a pair of shoes?



               Medina in Mdiq                                               Shark bait?


       A goodbye from the Med                                  Take care Flipper

Warm Regards,


Wednesday, November 26, 2014

SV Lumina Med Tour. Part 2. Oct 2014

Dear Friends,

A fantastic sail, over night to this famous holiday island. We anchored at nice protected bay (pointed out to us by the friendly and helpful staff at the marina in Anguilas). At anchor, our SUP board was rapidly deployed and the fun started. Dora is already a well trained and agile SUP fan, me on the other hand have to practice a lot still, however things are improving rapidly. Of course, during setting up the equipment a rather important plastic piece of the paddle went overboard, and quickly putting on the scuba diving gear, not able to recover it.. lost in or better underneath the sea grass.. Not to worry, kind of fixed the paddle MacGyver style and all went well. During our beach excursion were confronted with nude sunbathers and ladies bare breasted (some indeed should, others maybe not so… )

We went the next day to nearby San Antonio, but couldn’t find a good place to tie up the dinghy, so we decided to head straight for Ibiza town… this was no easy sail, (strong head winds and only the last part of the trip we had a favourable wind, making 7-8 knots speed.

It was already getting dark and we still hadn’t found a nice place to anchor. We ended up dropping the hook nearby a small pier and a bunch of small power boats. I knew this was not the best place, but it was only for one night. Very early the next day we went over the Botafoch Marina (the cheaper option around). Tied up next to a wonderful mega yacht, and met Guilherme (from Curitiba, Brazil) who is crew on this vessel. We had him over for coffee and decided that later on that evening we would join and have dinner to gether.

During the day we explored the old part of town of Ibiza and had lunch in a touristy but famous bodega. Then we walked inside the old city. Wonderful place and luckily the high tourist season is over.

That evening we went with Guilherme and his girlfriend Tammy to a very nice restaurant Sansara. Great food, great company.

The next day we set of early to the island of Formentera, and by trying to eyeball our way thru some shallow waters, almost got SV Lumina stuck on the rocks, but we were able to get us out of this predicament and anchored in front of a lovely beach, with pristine water. SUP deployed and of we went. Great fun. That night we anchored in front of another great beach, very tranquil. We needed some gasoline for the outboard motor and se went to shore and tied up the dinghy at the marina… They didn’t have gasoline but advised us to try the gas station further up the road… Well it was actually a fair bit up the road, and of course, when we arrived there.. the thing was closed (no more tourist, no more action). Not satisfied, we left and spoted a nice anchorage.. just beautiful.. however I must say that it looks all very exotic (bare rocks, some cactus etc…) pristine blue water… In my opinion it just can’t match the lush green islands settings in Ilha Grande and Paraty (Brazil, remember, our previous stomping grounds).

That evening we left Formentera and sailed over night to Mallorca. Our friends Gil and Alepio of SV Baravento suggested to anchor in Santa Ponca Bay… indeed nice and quiet. By bus we went to Palma de Mallorca, to amongst others, organize our passports/visa etc etc (we grosely overstayed Dora’s tourist visum for Europe) .. however it was hard to learn where we had to go with our burocracy. We walked around in the old city centre and dodged in and out those great tapa boutiques.. Boy, these people know how to enjoy a good wine, tapas and olive oil…Lovely. The next day we had to return to finalize the passports… great guys at customs and immigration, no sweat all in order.

So we left the next morning this lovely Island. A pitty we didn’t have more time to explore the NE side of the Island. This will have to do a next time around. We found Mallorca much nicer than Ibiza (and Formentera). It looks greener for starters…


     Baia Cala Bassa, Ibiza                                                       SUP time…



                  Blup time….                                           Holiday Island 



                    The SUP board                                               Ibiza, the old town…..



  Tourist Day..                                                         Near Ibiza town



          Chill….cofee break                                    Chill.. Bubble and Tapas break


There is no better life than a good life                     Beautiful anchorage in Formentera



Santa Ponsa, Mallorca                                         Nice anchorage


         Catedral in Las Palmas                                     Las Palmas


Boats, Yachts, Mega Yachts and more boats in Las Palmas…

To be continued and final part 3.


Have fun


Monday, November 24, 2014

SV Lumina Med Tour. Part 1 . Oct 2014.


Dear Friends,

We sailed to Anguilas (Spain) and decided to leave the SV Lumina in this nice marina, and left to explore the city of Murcia (old town centre, where back in the days the Moors had their way..).

We couldn’t rent a car in Anguilas, and so decided to go by train. When we finally arrived at the train station (by foot… side note for fellow cruisers: although the marina is nice, it is quiet distant from the city centre and public transport hard to find..). Had to wait a fair bit for the train to Murcia, but we arrived early evening in this nice town. Via internet we had booked a budget priced hotel in the centre of town, and had dinner at their restaurant (very good choice). The next day we explored the old part of town, a wonderful mix of little streets and alleys. In the afternoon we took the train to Alicante. Also in this town we had booked a budget priced hotel (actually this one was a little bit too budget for our liking, but anyway, it was going to be only for one night). We walked straight to Volvo Ocean Race Village. It was great to taste the atmosphere, as the next day was going to be the start of this mega event. 7 racing machines (now all the same built and equipped) are going to sail around the world. The word comfort does not excists on board these vessels.

Later on that evening we had dinner (rather disappointing… in fact our culinary experiences in Portugal and Spain had us choosing for the Portuguese quisine hands down, so far anyway).

Next morning the start of the VOR. Magnificent… Soon after that we took a bus back to Anguilas.

We wanted to leave the next day, but the weather was not helping, so we ended up staying an additional day (spent on laundry, internet etc etc).

With this over land detour, we had gained some time and we could now skip Cartagena and Alicante, and we set sail directly for Ibiza…


Downtown Murcia                                       Recycling made easy in Alicante



Central Boulevard Alicante                          VOR (Volvo Ocean Race)


  The Alicante YachtClub (Full to capacity)                         I have one…                       



The Brasil 1 turned into a museum                                             Yeah…                              



           Cool Keel                                      No comfort inside the Brasil 1



  3D street art: Neptune….                                   Crowds at the start of the VOR

To be continued in Part 2..

Be good