We set off in some rougher weather, 3m large swell and up to 20 knots of wind. Due to this Kathryn wasn’t feeling great, but at least we saw lots of dolphins and were going nice and fast.
The general plan was to set off in this worse weather and have it drop down to something nice within a day or two. Sail most of the way, and as we approach the UK have a lull, before the subsequent low pressure would start to catch us, and then boost our way into the English channel.
All of this weather planning ended up being fairly accurate and we mostly sailed as planned with a couple of days of motoring in the middle and made it into the UK after 9 days.
On the way we saw these interesting cluster-type things that at the time we thought were some kind of jellyfish, but it turns out were Gooseneck Barnacles in a little cluster.
The blender that we bought in Velas came in handy once again. We still had leftover frozen fruit from our last smoothies to blend along with some fresh stuff, so we had mid-crossing smoothies!
We ended up watching quite a number of films in the cockpit during this passage, so popcorn was also needed.
We came toward England quite close to the Isles of Scilly, and this was the first land we saw, we were almost home. One more night sailing along the English coast and we came in for our approach to Falmouth in very light winds the following morning.
We anchored in the corner of the inner anchorage area, and were the closest boat to shore. It turns out that it was “Armed forces day” and there were quite some celebrations going on, including a flyover of the red arrows just after we anchored, and a parade through the streets of Falmouth. This started to explain the presence of 3 naval boats in the harbour too.
Our friends Tom and Nat arrived in Falmouth shortly after to whisk us away for brunch, and evening BBQ on the beach, and a nice evening in a land bed, which was absolutely great!
Just a few more hops along the English coastline till Hannah is back in her home port of Dartmouth.
We were once again in the land of cheaper food, so decided to have another meat-filled BBQ with Blue Note, Atlas, Extress, and Escapade (who just arrived in time for the BBQ anchored outside). We fetched Escapade from the anchorage in our dinghy which was still inflated from used in Flores, and ended up leaving it with them for most of a week until they found space in the marina.
Sam and Joost contemplating meat purchasesSam BBQing
This was the first of 2 BBQs, but before the second we needed to wear off some of that food. On the morning of the scheduled low pressure, we headed up the nearest hill to a little viewpoint overlooking the harbor and town.
We used roads to get to the top, which were very steep and had many switchbacks, but as we walked along the top of the hill we found there was a nature trail and fruit tree path that we could use to walk back down to the town. And along the way, we saw many a Maderia lizard (why they are all Maderia Lizards here we don’t know).
Velas town and marinaFlower bouquet made by KathrynThree little lizards
Up next Atlas had organized 2 rental cars for us to take around the island and do some further exploring and longer hikes. The weather didn’t start off perfectly, with fog at the top of the island, so we headed to a small coffee plantation and cafe for a coffee and mini tour, before exploring the coast of the north side of the island (with the swell rolling in), and finally heading for our hike in the afternoon followed by a quick drink, and a steak dinner out in the town.
A foggy driveNorth side costal townAdam avoiding getting splashedRout of the walkWalking over a bridgeLesser Kestrel (Falco naumanni)
Getting into the Portuguese cake spirit once again, we set off one morning in search of a cake, however, found ourselves eating a Crème brûlée for breakfast (at noon!) with a coffee/juice.
For the next two evenings on the trot, we met with Tomas and Lindy of Extress on their boat for games night, on night 1 we played Dutch Dominion and Port Royal both of which were fun card games, and along with it, we made hot chocolate with a shot of rum and tasty homemade caramelised popcorn, then on night 2 we brought over Azul, a Portuguese coloured tile game and Werewords which is a guessing game, this night we also took marshmallows over for more hot chocolate and tried an orange liqueur which Lindy had picked up from the shop earlier.
We also hiked up the hill to the west of Velas which provided another view over the town, as well as a view further west along the island over a sheer cliff edge. The hill itself was a very green caldera (a large cauldron-like hollow that forms shortly after the emptying of a magma chamber in a volcano eruption), so once at the “top” you would descend further into this cauldron.
Inside the calderaThe view over the cliffBlackbird in a treeKathryn looking over the cliffKathryn taking a picture over the cliff
We finished off our time in Velas with a final BBQ with at least 7 or 8 boats from the marina and anchorage. This time with 3 BBQs in attendance, and in the boat park area instead of the breakwater to protect us from the wind a little, lots of great food was eaten!
Just before this final BBQ we had also decided to sail to Horta the following day, so this also acted as a farewell BBQ, as we would be speeding along for 1 more week through the Azores before heading in the general direction of the UK with another ~10-day crossing.
But before ending this post, another highlight of this food-filled week would be the purchase of 2 packets of frozen pastel de natas for cooking onboard, and also the purchase of a blender for smoothie making!
St Nevis was rather sunny on our arrival, just with a few very short passing bits of rain.
We moved up to Pinneys Beach where once again we took a mooring ball, though others were anchored around. As far as we could tell we had paid some sort of tax for the usage of the mooring bouys during our stay, so figured we may as well take advantage of that.
We had bought food ready for a BBQ in the evening, which we were planning on having on board, off th back of Hannha as we normally do. However, we looked at the weather, and it didn’t look good for dinner time, so we had the slightly mental idea of having the BBQ in the cockpit.
Now, ignore the smoke, it went rather well, and we are glad to have started it indoors as it poured down throughout the evening.
We moved the BBQ around a few times and eventually found the best space was on the starboard bench, where we could have enough wind catch the smoke and mostly blow it out of the cockpit.
Though throughly smoked, the BBQ was a delicious success.
The next day the rain continued. Infact, it almost rained all day, and was certainly cloudy all day.
But fresh water is valuable! so Kathryn got out and gave the deck a good scrub, one of the first time its been cleaned of salt water since St Lucia.
We spent the whole day on board, writing this a month later it’s hard to remember exactly what we did, but it probably involved food, films and relaxation… (and maybe some blog post writing)
We headed to bed, but at around midnight something didn’t feel right. It turned out that some localized weather was passing overhead, and this had actually turned out that our easterly wind (from the east) had changed into a strong westerly wind (from the west). This had meant that our totally protected anchorage where the beach and island was to the east of us, was now totally unprotected. And what had infact woken us up was the boat starting to go over ~1m waves that had built up out to sea as the wind had picked up to 30+ knots.
It was pitch black, so we have no good video of this, however to build up a picture, we were tied to a mooring bouy with the beach 50m behind us, crashing through 1m waves along with 10 other boats in the middle of the dark night in winds of 30+ knots. Water was spraying off each side of the bow, and the boat was properly moving up and down.
We were slightly worried that the mooring bouy might give way, and we could see people on other boats checking or adding lines, and this was the momment we would have much rather been at anchor rather than on a bouy!
After about an hour and a half the weather passed and the wind returned to light winds from the east. All a very odd occourance.
Our wind instruments actually gave up and just started reading 99, so we have no idea what the winds really got up to.
On the whole, odd, and not the sunny carribean we have gotten used to.
So lets end this rather grey and pictureless blog post here, and save more sunny weather for the next one!
This time the sail was much easier and the motor was not needed at all, although the crossing was a little rough and took its toll on Andrew’s stomach!
We once again met up with Danae and Artemis who had now overtaken us in our adventure since we hopped back south for a few days.
They let us know that some Carnival celebrations would be happening in St Anne, so we went to investigate with them! Little did we know this would be the start of a month of carnival for us.
We couldn’t ignore the amazing supermarket that was Leader Price, so once again headed there for another trolly full of supplies for the coming week.
We probably bought more Brie than we would normally eat in a year during our short stay in Martinique.
Our next stop was Marigot du Diamant, a less visited anchorage in Martinique, according to reviews it can be a little tricky to navigate and anchor in, but we had no problems.
As we approached the anchorage, Kathryn managed to catch a Cero Mackeral which made for a perfect sunset dinner cooked Mediterranean style in the oven for three. This is the biggest size fish we can fit whole (minus head and tail) in the oven 👌
In this anchorage, we got Andrew out on the water for his first-ever SUP experience, and we all (one by one) explored the bay ourselves, including to try and catch a few small waves that were breaking on the central reef.
Next, we aimed to try and find some mangroves and headed all the way into the Fort du France Bay to Petit Ilet.
We anchored just in the lee off the island in mud. Researching the island we knew there were some picnic benches and knew that people came on little tours here so there must be some things of interest over there.
After cooking up some pesto pasta, we headed with the pot in the dinghy to eat on the island and then have a little walk around. The first bit of wildlife to come to our attention were the 2 friendly chickens that wanted some of our pasta. But there was more to see too.
The following day we moved anchorage to the other side of Petit Ilet to be slightly closer to the entrance to the mangrove-sided river, just on the edge of a no-anchoring area.
We took both the dinghy and the SUP up the river to see the mangroves and wildlife that lived in and around them. To our surprise, the most common animal here were the mangrove tree crabs, which are normally bright yellow and seemed to cover every single mangrove we could find, even way up in the canopy, and always hiding on the other side of the branches.
We had to move back to our previous anchorage as a local came passed in his boat and told us that apparently, we couldn’t anchor overnight where we were even though the chart said it was fine. We moved mainly to avoid any further confrontations 😲.
Before we knew it, it was the 12th of February, and Andrew had less than a week left with us.
First on the tourism list for Saint Pierre was the zoo which was literally a stone’s throw from where the boat was anchored, the zoo’s landscape and environment were lovely, based within the ruins of the oldest habitation in Martinique, the main house and its outhouses, including a small hospital and waterwheel were put to ruin by the volcanic eruption which we found out more about in the museum we went to the following day.
Further into the town was a fairly nice and modern museum covering the history of the island, particularly the Saint Pierre area which was dramatically impacted by a volcano eruption.
Saint Pierre was once the thriving cultural and economic capital of Martinique, known for its bustling port, vibrant arts scene, and luxurious lifestyle. However, in 1902, the town was completely destroyed by a massive volcanic eruption from nearby Mount Pelée, which killed almost all of its inhabitants. This tragedy left an indelible mark on the town and its people, and today, the ruins of Saint Pierre serve as a powerful reminder of the town’s rich history and the devastating impact of natural disasters.
Andrew loves a good meal out, so once again we headed to find some delicious food after the museum.
Keen to start heading back toward the airport (a short taxi ride from Fort du France) we started heading south once again, choosing to anchor at a place called Four a Chaux.
There wasn’t a whole lot to see snorkeling this time, but there was a wonderful Hawksbill turtle! (We do love them, especially when the visibility is great!)
Hawksbill turtles are sea turtles found throughout the world’s tropical oceans including the Caribbean and are known for their beautiful shells and important role in maintaining the health of coral reefs by feeding on sponges and other reef organisms. Unfortunately, they’re critically endangered due to threats such as habitat loss, pollution, and over-harvesting, so it was a blessing to see a young one.
Continuing south we entered the Fort du France bay but once again headed deep into it to anchor somewhere new at Les Trois-ilets.
We had already prepared to have a couple of BBQs toward the end of Andrews’s time with us. One just the three of us and another with Extress as once again as they would be catching up with us.
With plenty of BBQable food aboard, Andrew set about making burgers and we lit the BBQ which hangs off the back of Hannah.
Sausages and bacon went on first while the burgers were being prepared. The burgers came out and looked delicious and gigantic, and on they went. Unfortunately upon flipping the burgers, the weight of them had bent the inner BBQ (which is just a disposable BBQ), and the entire thing slipped into the sea.
It’s probably one of the saddest moments so far aboard Hannah, seeing 4 delicious and gigantic half-cooked burgers drifting away downwind to become fish food. 😭 At least the sausages and bacon were already cooked and off the bbq so we got to eat those.
Anyway, the next day we headed back to Fort du France to anchor once again. Extress arrived a few hours later and we brought a bag of BBQ supplies to BBQ aboard Extress so as to avoid any more BBQ disappointments.
Our sailing with Andrew was complete, with Martinique part 2 being the final set of hops.
Andrew decided to spend his final night in a Hotel to freshen up on stable dry land before his cross-Atlantic flight back to Europe. 👋👋
Carnival struck once again, and although the big day would happen once Andrew had left, there were some pre-carnival carnival events to go and see.
The first being the introduction of the carnival queen.
And the second that evening being a show of floats and cars.
Before the two of us could contemplate continuing on to Dominica and then to Guadeloupe where we had arranged to get hauled out in a boat yard for some repainting, there was a little more carnivaling to do. But that will have to wait until the next post, as its quite intertwined with the crossing to and being on Dominica itself.
Located in the heart of the Caribbean Sea, Martinique is a picturesque island paradise that’s a must-visit destination for sailors. With its stunning beaches, crystal-clear waters, and year-round tropical climate, Martinique is the perfect place for an adventure. From the charming coastal towns to the lush rainforests and towering peaks, there’s no shortage of natural beauty to discover.
We sailed from the marina at Rodney Bay, leaving slightly later than planned as we couldn’t check out at immigration over lunchtime, so after a slow morning we set sail after lunch. We were beating hard into wind and waves, slowing progress significantly, and decided to motor sail most of the way so we didn’t get in at midnight. It was still after dark by the time we arrived but having read the reviews on Navily about the Saint Anne anchorage we knew it was going to be safe to do so, it is by far the biggest anchorage with the most boats we’ve ever been to, it still had loads of room and the whole bay was a perfect 5m deep with a sandy bottom. In the morning we looked out onto the sheer scale of boats we were anchored amongst, hundreds and hundreds on sailboats.
Our search for a cheap food shop finally came to an end when we found a ‘Leader Price’! So we went to town on stocking up the boat, It’s perfectly aimed at cruisers with a dinghy dock right next to the shop which you can take your trolley down to. Martinique is a French island so it’s well connected to mainland France with all its great cheese and wine, after this we had the fridge full to the brim, well for the next week at least as we ate through all the fresh produce pretty quickly with lots of people on board.
We knew one of our boat buddies Vela was going to be sailing into the same bay, Saint Anne after crossing from St Lucia that day so we decided to invite them over for a lasagne dinner, they loved the invite after a long day’s sail. Cooking for 8 on a small boat is always a laugh, I think we ate 5 lasagnas with no leftovers 😂
As a gift in the morning from Vela we got a delivery of croissants and fresh bread from a bakery on shore.
On XXX we went snorkeling on the reef at the channel entrance into Le Marin, this was one of the first times we got to try out our new dinghy anchor which we bought in a Chandlery in Rodney Bay. The anchor was well set and we all jumped in to explore the underwater world, not long later I looked up to check on the dinghy which turned out to be much further away than expected! I yelled to Adam “It’s floating away!!” Adam quickly jumped into action and swam after it, only later realizing he still had his snorkeling weights on which made it hard work, luckily he made it to the dinghy and the kill cord was still in the kill switch, so not long and he was back. Turns out the knot had come undone between the dinghy line and the anchor line, after that, we tied it together with bowlines, not reef knots, and haven’t had a drifting dinghy since!
Despite this, we all managed to have a great look around.
We wanted to explore something land-based so we climbed the hill in St Anne up to a religious shrine/ outdoor church and got some lush views on the way (including the picture of the St Anne anchorage earlier in this post)
In the evening we found a very popular beach bar and got some drinks, when the sun started to set we found out why it was so special, the view of the anchorage in front of the setting sun was spectacular.
Daisy makes a cracking carbonara so she whipped us up a quick dinner that evening with copious amounts of pasta 🤤
The mission the following morning was to pick up our 5th crew member, as Andrew flew into Martinique later that day! We sailed out of the lovely protection on Saint Anne and around the southwestern corner of the island to Anse Noir where we did a quick shuffle around of people and got his bed sorted and then picked him up from the pontoon in the little bay in the late afternoon.
Having 5 onboard, where not everyone knows each other/ only one couple was a new experience, it meant Kathryn and Daisy shared the double in the saloon and Adam and Andrew shared the double in the front! Anna got a good deal in keeping the aft cabin to herself 😋
We had organized to go canyoning near Fort Du France the following day so after a very early start we sailed across the bay which only took about an hour to the busy anchorage at Fort du France. Just to add to the time constraint we found the holding to be rubbish so we ended up setting an anchor 3 times which never happens, finally happy that Hannah Penn was not going to drift away after we left, we all hoped in the dinghy and went to land to get a taxi
Andrew had a relaxing day café-ing whilst the rest of us put helmets and wetsuits on and jumped off some waterfalls, abseiled down bigger ones, and climbed and swam through deep canyons, the rainforest all around was gorgeous, so green and vibrant and full of life. It was a welcome change to be in fresh cool water and we all had a blast.
In the afternoon our canyoning guide gave us a lift down the mountain to a shop where we could get some bbq supplies, we met up with Andrew again and went back to the boat for a good old-fashioned BBQ in the sunset.
We heard from some friends that the best snorkeling in Martinique was in a bay called Anse d’Arlets, so we headed there.
On a bouyed-off area (to stop boats from getting anywhere near) there is an amazing little reef, like an oasis of life in the middle of a deserted ocean floor.
We saw all kinds of fish including some super-friendly angel fish.
And we managed to snap this great video swimming behind a Turtle!
I’m the evening we went for cocktails, Adam and Andrew got to talk in-depth about work and the girls chit-chatted in the golden sunshine.
Snorkeling isn’t something Andrew had done much of before so we left him, Anna, and Daisy to go back one more time whilst I checked us all out of the island in preparation for our sail back to Saint Lucia.
It’s now the 1st of Feb and we had an easy downwind sail back from Martinique to St Lucia, so took this opportunity for some boat shenanigans.
We jumped off whilst sailing and you had to swim to a rope dragging behind the boat to get back on board, thankfully everyone got back to the rope in time so there were no MOB maneuvers necessary, getting dragged behind the boat whilst sailing is a fun experience and it lets you feel the power of sails, even when only going 4 knots (any more and you’d struggle to pull yourself back to the steps!)
Sailing around St Vincent around the end of January was a true adventure! From navigating crowded anchorages to discovering hidden underwater caves, we had a blast exploring this beautiful island.
The sail to St. Vincent was enjoyable and only about 10 miles from our last port of call, Bequia. We arrived at our chosen first anchorage to find it already busy with boats. Unfortunately, the boats didn’t shore tie so took up more space than necessary. So, we decided to move on to the next bay around. Although it very was small, we noticed an anchor symbol on Navionics and thought it would be worth checking out.
Adam snorkeled around the bay with a string line with a weight on the bottom of 2m in length, the idea being Adam could swim around with this, and if it touched the bottom it was too shallow. Meanwhile, Anna and I waited on board in deep water outside of the bay for a thumbs-up. We needed to ensure the chart was accurate and there was enough depth before entering as the chart said it might not have been deep enough in some places.
Luckily it was deeper than that chart stated, like many places around here the charts are not particularly accurate as the areas are not well surveyed. So knowing we wouldn’t scrape the bottom we entered the bay and got to work anchoring in the middle and shore tying to a central tree on the beach. It took us about an hour to complete the anchoring and tying procedure, but it was well worth the effort.
It was really beautiful.
The anchorage “Petit Byahaut (Small Cove)” is now on Navily with our review and pictures. 😊
We stayed there for a couple of nights and enjoyed some incredible snorkeling, including finding an underwater cave that we could swim through.
We also discovered bat caves in the cliff, which you can swim all the way through and out the other side however with a lot of swell coming in at the time we decided not to. We did see lots of the endangered Elkhorn coral, and a diverse range of fish and other corals and sponges.
Another boat we know called Vela also tried to anchor in the same bay with us, but unfortunately, their anchor didn’t hold well in the seagrass seabed and it dragged when setting up the shore tie, it was getting too dark to set everything up in time so they moved around the corner to find space for normal anchoring.
Vela got a great drone pic of us though.
After two nights there and lots of free dives through the underwater cave, we sailed on to Walilabou.
Although we initially planned to get help from a local, as the anchorage was fairly busy, to do the shore tie we declined when they demanded an exorbitant fee. So, we set about doing it ourselves, ending up with nearly all of our chain out due to the deep waters. I swam to shore with a big coil of rope and buoy attached to float it before tying it to a tree and bringing the free end back to the boat.
During the anchoring a number of locals on boats or kayaks hung around and finally once we were anchored, the boat was surrounded by locals trying to sell us vegetables, fruit, and fish. We bought some things including some tasty avocados and fish.
That afternoon we walked to some nearby waterfalls in the Wallilabou Heritage Park and paid a small fee of $5 each to get in to enjoy the refreshing waterfalls and natural pool. Whilst there, we encountered giant bamboo, lots of lizards, and the most enormous wasps we’ve ever seen.
Walilabou is well-known for having some of the Pirates of the Caribbean films set in purpose-built buildings in the area, particularly Fort Royale. This set was used for a number of the films.
After hiking back down from the waterfall, we went to see if a local guy who we’d spoken to earlier in the day was there, he’d mentioned being able to cook us a BBQ on the beach. He saw us looking but by the time he got there we had gone back to the boat, to our surprise he came over on a surfboard and was very happy to cook the fish we had bought earlier and made us a pasta salad.
We ate and drank into the night, with many of his friends also coming to help and say hello. We also tried the famous “St. Vincent Sunset” rum, which was 84.5%! Anna and I mixed ours with ginger beer but (insert name here) had it with only a chaser of water.
We then sailed to another anchorage called Paradise Beach in Troumaker Bay, where we shore-tied once again and anchored in about 20 meters of water. This time we got help from a kind local fisherman and later bought a big fish from him that we had for dinner.
Anna and I hiked up a hill to Troumaker village, whilst Adam relaxed in a hammock onboard and prepared dinner. We made it to the top of the hill sweaty and hot but the view from the top was breath-taking, and Adam managed to take a picture of us as little specs in the distance.
We went to a bar in the village for a cold drink and got some homemade fudge for $1 in the bar we met a lovely 10-year-old girl who had just finished school for the day and needed to wait for her mum who worked there. She was incredably chatty and talked about all kinds of things, including how they still use the whip for disapline in schools in St. Vincent and the girl’s dislike of the “popular” kids.
That evening, we ate the fish we had bought whilst watching the sunset on deck and it was delicious!
As the sun set, some local fishermen attempted to catch a giant shoal of fish, it was all very excting to watch, but it appeared that they missed their chance, and they came back empty-handed. I hope they caught some the next night!
On the way to Mindelo we stopped off at a few other places.
Firstly Ilhéu Branco, which is an uninhabited 278-hectare islet. And secondly an anchorage on the south of Santa Luzia
We then headed to Mindelo on the day that they ARC+ would start, but our arrival and the chaos at the anchorage and start line will follow in another blog post!
We didn’t need to think much about our anchorages or how we were getting there, as at this point we were mostly just following Extress and their route on the way to Mindelo.
We stopped in at Ilhéu Branco for lunch, which fortunately we caught just as we approached the anchorage.
We didn’t hang around for long after lunch. When pulling up our anchor though, it wouldn’t come, and was stuck on something on the bottom. We quickly dived in to have a look at what was going on, and it turned out to be slightly caught under a lip of rock. We dragged it out and it came up with ease.
On the way to the next anchorage, we hit a fairly big acceleration zone between the islands leading to some fun heeled-over sailing.
Here you can see Extress ahead of us.
At the second anchorage, we ended up eating aboard Extress once again with some BBQed pizzas 🙂
These little BBQs are pretty awesome. They some with pizza stones, and you can easily pick them up and move them while they are BBQing as the outside doesn’t get hot!
This was our final stop on the island of Sal after leaving Palmeria.
As you can see, we didn’t make our way directly to the anchorage, instead sailing around the bay a little.
What were we doing you might ask?
Playing around on the SUP behind the boat we would answer!
This anchorage ended up being a lot of fun. The exception was the seemingly hundreds of flies that would fly through the boat every single day…
The snorkeling was pretty good, the water was clear, and warm enough to comfortably stay in for hours if you wanted.
We kept seeing turtle heads pop up above the water, but no matter how often we tried to see them under the water, we always failed.
While at anchor we did a little fishing off the back of the boat after seeing the tasty-looking fish swimming around the boat, and we were actually quite successful.
We caught a couple of little tiny fish which we used for bait, as well as a set of small fly lures which landed us a tasty little sea bream
The live bait did get a bite, but unfortunately, the line broke and we never found out what it was.
This prompted a little BBQ aboard Extress with Danae too where we all got chatting more.
We discovered that Danae had a wing foil setup, and the next day we were invited to have a go! On the whole, we were pleased at how well it went! Maybe this is the next toy we should buy? 😉
As the swell picked up, it curved around the headland corner that was protecting us and started to bring swell directly into the beach.
This led once again to another little SUP surfing opportunity, this time within paddling distance of the boat (though it was straight onto rocks)
As the swell continued to build, it also started reaching the beach which made for some better surfing (but we didn’t get any pictures). The following day multiple surf schools showed up to surf this break.
This also lead to some quite interesting swell rolling straight through the anchorage.
By this point, Danae had left to head on to the next island, but alongside Extress we stayed for another night. Extress threw out a stern anchor and we moved further off shore into some deeper water to lessen the effecter of the swell.
Although this swell rolled right through the anchorage, it didn’t end up being an uncomfortable nights sleep for us.
As you may be able to tell, we have fallen quite behind with our blog posts, we have just been having far too much fun and doing too many longer crossings.
We are currently in Barbados having just celebrated Christmas in an Airbnb!
But enough about what’s happening now, time to jump back and catch up!
You can already read about our adventure to the Canaries from Tarifa, exploring the first island, and hopping down to Lanzarote, and that’s where this post will start, exploring the Canaries.
From the marina in Puerto Calero we hired a car to explore Lanzarote. Apparently, all hire cars here are hybrid Fiat 500s.
We headed to one of the main island tourist attractions (the volcano and park) to get our first volcano experiences of the trip.
There were hot water jets, volcanic ovens which cooked food you could eat in the restaurant, burning of wood, not gravel etc.
For some of us, this included a little flashback to our childhood, having visited the island before.
While exploring the Island we spotted a Decathalon and finally bought something we have been thinking about for some time… a SUP!
(It’s going to be getting quite some usage in the future)
On the way to Fuerteventura we saw a very nice-looking Risso dolphin or 2.
We ended up in a cheap marina recommended by our friends on SV Blue Note called Grand Tarajal.
Though generally sunny, one evening we got our first real thunderstorms here since setting off from the UK. The lightning was all in the distance and we managed to get a few nice pictures.
From the marina, we got a local bus up the coast to a town with a resort and hired another car, once again a Fiat 500, and started exploring the island some more.
We headed to the northwest coast to find some surf to try out our new SUP.
And you know what they always say, the best car for unpaved road exploration is a hire car. And that car is a Fiat 500!!! The video below doesn’t do the whole journey justice, and some parts felt like true offroading.
After a 30-minute bumpy ride which nearly caused us to turn around twice, we found ourselves at a lovely beach (and also saw that the northerly route might have been a little easier drive).
The SUP was a “Medium” Itiwit Inflatable Stand Up Paddle SUP (Length: 9′ (274.5 cm) Width: 33.1″ (84 cm) Thickness: 4.9″ (12.5 cm)), one of the surfiest looking SUP they had in Decathlon when we bought it. Also with 232 liters of buoyancy, it should be floaty enough for both of us to use to paddle to shore in the future.
It was quite a bit of fun…
This beach also had a great set of rocks which included a little pool of warm water that got the occasional wave into it.