Return to Mindelo 16:53.2N 24:59.49W

Serenity of Swanwick
Phil and Sarah Tadd
Fri 25 Dec 2015 20:09
Our plan from Sao Nicolau had been to visit Boavista. The most easterly of the islands and then go to the southern group of islands (the Sotaventos islands) and leave from there for the Caribbean.  On Monday we changed that plan for a number of reasons.

The anchorage at Boavista is not brilliant: it has some poor holding for the anchor, and it can get dangerous if there is a swell running, and come Monday morning the swell at Sao Nicolau was quite developed.  One of the other islands on our list to visit was Fogo, and we learnt that it had suffered an eruption within the last 12 months - not a comfortable thought. If we were visiting the Sotaventos islands we would have to visit the capital, Praia, on Santiago to get customs clearance and to top up with water, fuel and provisions, and would have had to row ashore in the dinghy to do so.  So given that it is easier to do all those jobs on Sao Vicente, where you can walk ashore from the Marina, we decided to come back to Mindelo for our last few days in Cape Verde.

We had a fantastic fast sail back from Sao Nicolau, covering the 45 miles in 8 hours from taking up the anchor to being tied up with the engine off in the marina. We have now got our clearance, are well stocked again from the lovely ladies in the market, and have just had a great Christmas lunch with Manice and Larry from ‘Tern’ of Falmouth, which is moored next to us.  All being well we expect to leave on the tide at around midday on Boxing Day, together with ‘Tern’, which is heading in the same direction as us.

This evening, Mindelo is in full festival mood.  Part of the town has been closed to cars and the whole population is out in their Sunday best. Its a lovely atmosphere, and a great end to our stay in the Cape Verde Islands

Photos: Phil getting the mainsail up, ‘Tern’ of Falmouth with Sao Nicolau in the back ground, ‘Serenity’ ready for Christmas lunch.

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