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Oceanopolis, Brest

Oceanopolis, Brest

The marina that we moored at when arriving in Brest gave us a free ticket to Oceanopolis, a nearby Aquarium.

We took this opportunity to have a day out on land.

The aquarium was about an hours walk from the marina, so we stocked up on icey cold water, and started walking amidst a bit of a heat wave (around 30 degrees Celcius).

Our walk took us along the rest of Brest harbour, then along a busy-ish road with a cycle path, and eventually through an industrial area until finally reaching Oceanopolis.

The aquarium is split up into 3 main different zones. Tropical, Polar and a zone for the local area.

There were penguins.

Lots and lots of penguins.


The cutest of sea otters.

And of course, small fish pretending to be Nemo.

While browsing the shop we found a very cute seal which is now part of team Hannah Penn (also known as Team Saily Mc Sail Face).

Keep an eye out for this cute one in photos to come.

On the way back we tried out a french bike rental app called Donkey republic.

Not many bikes available that worked, most parking places would generally have 5 or so bikes, but only one that wasn’t broken / that you could unlock.

This shortened the trip back quite a bit. Very glad the bike was electric assist.

A short walk around Great Ganilly

A short walk around Great Ganilly

On Day 20 we arrived in the Isles of Scilly, amidst the Eastern Isles, right next to Great Ganilly.

We were only a short distance from Great Ganilly Island, so figured we had better replace our outboard engine oil (a job we had been putting off), and explore the island!

We took the dinghy a short distance to shore and carried it over a bit of rocky ground so it wouldn’t drift away as the tide rose.

Heading counter-clockwise around the island we first found ourselves on a little beach with a webcam (we guess for seals).

There was quite a bit of fishing tackle, ropes and things caught in rocks and on the beach, including this box that said Lowestoft! It’s a small world, as Lowestoft is Kathryn’s mums home town.

The island had a few paths carved out from where people had visited before. But the main inhabitants seemed to be hundreds of sea birds, all of which were flying around keeping an eye on what we were doing…

As we came back around to the western side of the island we got the opportunity to take some nice pictures of Hannah from the shore.

We weren’t ready to head back to the boat, so we relaxed on the beach until sunset.

From the beach, we could see a rock that looked a lot like what Grace described as a giant slug, but we were thinking of a crocodile. So of course, I (Adam) had to go and see what it would look like if I tried to ride it.

Meanwhile, Kathryn was once again getting artsy in the sand.

On the way back to the boat, we could mostly have the dinghy engine off and drift downwind, which was perfect as the seals were out and about.

Day 20: Penzance to the Isles of Scilly

Day 20: Penzance to the Isles of Scilly

There were points where we were considering not heading the Isles of Scilly, as we are on a schedule to reach Porto, Portugal at the start of August. We thought it would be a shame to miss out though, and the long-range forecast looked good for a hop to the Scillies, follows by a crossing of Biscay or to Brest, France.

We once again used Fast Seas weather routing for this crossing, and we included the details of this in our Nic 38 owners forum reply.

The route was all on a single tack out along the cornish coast, past lands end and straight to the Isles. Our track matched this rather nicely.

We did lose the wind for a little bit as we approached Lands End. We could see the wind on the sea in the distance so motored up to it, and that gave us the opportunity to grab this picture of Lands End from the sea.

We headed into the Isles of Scilly at the closest point to us, the Eastern Isles.

The sea continued to look like the picture above (nice and flat) just with short rolling ocean swell.

There was a lovely little anchorage which we shared with 3 other boats, and a family of seals.

We trekked around the nearest island and on our way back from land in the dinghy the seals were all relaxing in the seaweed close to shore and we snapped this great picture.