Combarro - sailing races and Horreos

Susie and Adam (both think they are skipper)
Tue 24 Aug 2010 14:14

20:08.2010    42:25.66N 8:42.07W

We left Sanxenxo/Porto Novo and headed for Combarro which is just at the end of this Ria – a whole 8 miles away.  Combarro is very different to Sanxenxo – it is an old restored fishing village that is quite touristy but not in a ‘pedaloes’ way.  There is a marina but we don’t need anything so we are anchored about 200 metres away from it in the bay.

The  part of the village is really pretty with very old granite houses set in tiny winding cobbled streets lining the shore side.  Along the sea front many of these are now little restaurants and bodega’s with tables outside under canopy covers.  Lots of them also have wood ovens like big chimnea’s for cooking on.  If we ate fish then the food here would be excellent as it is famed for its sea food and the little restaurants that serve what the fishermen bring in, unfortunately for us Spanish omlette would be our only choice so we’ve been eating aboard! 

Below these are Horreos (think I spelled it right) - with the crosses at each end - they love these in this bit of spain, apparently they are for storing potatoes and things - a fancy shed on legs to keep things dry

In the distance - the boat on the left is where we anchored. . . . .

and some tourist

Wandering around the town yesterday there is another festival here – so last night we went to find out what was happening.  We still haven’t got used to how late everything happens in Spain – we went across to the town at about half past eight, the restaurants were all pretty empty and there were a couple of big marquees full of tables and food stalls and bars – all pretty empty, so we had an evening wander  along the sea front.  We then went for a couple of drinks at a bar and had some entertainment  an hour later with a band that were on in the marquee – they were really good. . . .  by now it was about half ten and the restaurants and marquee food halls were packed with people just starting their dinner.   The next event was fireworks at midnight – which we decided to watch from the boat.   Fireworks were brilliant – went on for ages and were set off from the end of the Marina breakwater about 300 yards from the boat so we had a good view, the only worrying bit was there were some fireworks that they seemed to fire across and into the water so they would explode about a foot above the water  - we wondered if any of them would reach us!, but it looked pretty spectacular.   After fireworks at about 0100 it was time for the band on the big stage – we will have to learn to get into the different times things happen as we were worn out then and had to listen from our bed – pretty pathetic really, there were small Spanish children out later than us.

Today has been classic boat races in the bay with rowing and sailing and tonight more music I think.  The sailing boat race just took place and where we’re anchored is part of the course (I guess racing around anchored boats adds to the challenge.  There are some Spanish sailing boats that have one sail that looks like a table cloth on a broom and appear to be tacked using the  following procedure;

-          Notice anchored British boat in path

-          Lots of shouting

-          Let sail go

-          Sail leaves mast entirely and lands in water, boat stops, more shouting

-          Retrieve sail and spend 10 minutes untangling it

-          Hoist sail – by this time boat has drifted back to position at start of manouvre

-          Repeat above process until you can finally squeeze past front of British boat with only 2ft to spare (much cheering)


Here is the boat in tacking process in action .....


and when finally they were passed - looking much more organised


We have been thinking about our next couple weeks plan, we have to stay around this area for the next few days as we have some post to pick up from the Marina in Sanxenxo (our VHF radio has died so awaiting a new one – we were wondering why everything was so quiet on the radio the past couple of weeks) – however after that we are thinking of visiting Baiona, then on to Portugal.  There are not so many places to stop on the west coast of Portugal and other than potentially a couple of stop offs in small towns to break the journey – the main places we will plan to go to are Porto and Lisbon (or Cascais which is nearby and less crowded for yachts).  Looking forward to Porto as it will be the first big city we have been to and the biggest place we will have seen since leaving Portsmouth nearly a month ago – we will be like country yokels!  Apparently we need to visit  the port warehouses in Porto for wine tasting! – so get your Christmas orders in ( although we cannot guarantee not to drink said xmas orders if space on the boat gets tight).  Once in Lisbon we will need to decide whether we go to Gibraltar via the Algarve and Andalucia or instead head straight out to Madeira which is a about 100 miles longer than our Biscay crossing.  However – expect it   to take us into early September before we have seen Lisbon so we will have time to decide before then….

Two things I am missing from the UK (apart from family and friends of course!)– one is tea (I think we have an emergency tea package coming out to us though as we are having to ration) and the second is the lack of flies.  Adam is now skilled at catching and removing house flies from the boat.  It may be raining and cold in Britain -  but at least there are not really any flies.  We have given up on fly spray as it must be pretty nasty stuff.   The supermarkets here have entire sections devoted to fly destruction.