Monday 25th August
We left the anchorage early on Friday morning and motored to
Chipiona marina, having decided to forget about Rota for the time being as they
were so unhelpful regarding a place! We arrived here to find a real gem of a town
albeit full of Spanish tourists.
The marina staff were more than helpful and we have been
given a lovely spacious hammerhead place with enough room to have the dinghy on
the pontoon. We have enjoyed being here so much that we have stayed 4 nights.
The marina is lovely and quiet and the showers and toilets fine; it has a good
laundry with instructions in English, which I made use of this morning.
The town is charming; there are numerous tiny streets with
two or three storey buildings, most with wrought-iron balconies and tiled
courtyards and entrance passageways. The front is pedestrianised and has the
usual small booths selling jewellery and cotton clothing etc. Numerous cafes
and bars line this whilst the beach has wooden walkways, showers, toilets, plenty
of litterbins and some sun beds to rent out. Most of the Spanish tourists come
from Seville for a month in August and the beach is a mass of coloured
umbrellas and beach chairs with several generations of families together. We
have seen the ‘oldies’ sitting in large circles complete with
umbrellas playing some kind of bingo, as many as 20 people!
In the town itself there are some glorious examples of
Moorish influenced properties several churches with brightly coloured tiles on
the outside and minaret type towers for bells. The bougainvillea and hibiscus
plants are everywhere, growing to 20 feet up the sides of the taller buildings
and the various squares have huge palm trees to provide shade. Some of the
streets are wide and tree lined and it is here that several up-market hotels
are located. However there are also loads of ‘hostel’ type
accommodation opportunities – these appear to be large houses – a
bit like our B and Bs at home, with small tiled shaded courtyards with
garden furniture for guests to sit out in.
We have hardly heard an English voice for over a week!
Although we did meet an Australian family on board their catamaran
‘Meander’ – it was interesting to hear all about their
travels having left Fort Lauderdale in May and come to Europe via the Bahamas,
Bermuda and the Azores.
We are planning to leave here tomorrow and sail up the River
Guadalquivir a few miles to anchor near a town called Bonanza!
(See pictures of town separately.)
Jacky and Rob