Atlantic crossing day 7 Arrived in Spain
37: 12.664N 7:24.478W Thurs 25th June @0730 GMT
At the moment we are still feeling a sense of unreality about being back in Spain in what now seems like a blink of an eye (but didn’t always when we were experiencing nasty conditions on the crossing.) It feels good to have completed an Atlantic circuit and know that we can deal with most conditions that wind and sea throws at us now. The passage from the Azores onwards was our least favourite and was the only time that the hours dragged and we wished the voyage over soon. Thank goodness we did have some good sailing towards the end so could enjoy the experience of the boat gliding efficiently through flat seas and lying in a bunk listening to the water swishing by on the hull. Now we have to get back to doing things rather than merely eating and sleeping and tending to the boat’s needs!
We were charmed by the town of Ayamonte (just across the border from Portugal) last time we passed through five years ago in “Red Panda” and it is still delightful. It has all the best ingredients of southern Spain – pretty white houses tumbling down a hill, beautiful squares with tiled walls and seating and the wonderful “paseo” when everyone takes to the streets in the cool of the evening. Families always come out together and the children play happily whilst parents chat in the bars. Friday night we could hear the shouts of kids well beyond midnight and the general hubbub of people enjoying themselves in the town went on most of the night. The Spaniards really must sleep well during siesta time!
We fly back to Bristol on Monday 29th and return to “Goldcrest” on July 28th. The marina here is in a lovely location and very peaceful at the moment as it is pretty empty. It will be interesting to see if it is any busier next month. Looks like we will be cruising in Spanish waters for the rest of this season and we are starting to think about where we will stop for the winter months. Meanwhile, there is lots of work to do on our somewhat battered boat and lots of places to go and people to see!
Goldcrest at full power, mid-Atlantic:
Our Atlantic Circuit:-
Took 2 years 9 months and 21days (although we were off the boat for over a year of that for family & medical reasons).
Was 15,230 nautical miles long (Lagos, Portugal to Ayamonte, Spain - shorter routes are available) and we were travelling for 2,530 hours - that’s 105 days at sea! (but 57% of that time the engine was on – horrendous!)
We sailed 78 “legs”, mostly to different ports (we repeated a few) and visited 3 continents (arguably 4, including Trinidad in South America), 21 countries and 53 islands (there were lots in the Caribbean!).
We visited far fewer places we loved and confirmed our prejudice that there is something very special about being in Europe!