Hoga Island

Saturday 12th August 2017

 

After the hustle and bustle of Banda, we are enjoying restful days here in the peace and quiet of the lagoon between Hoga and Kaledupa Islands.

 

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KAledupa is the second island from top in the Wakatobi chain, off the

South-East corner of Sulawesi.

 

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We entered the lagoon through the gap in the reef south of Hoga Island (beneath the resort icon) and anchored on the Hoga side.

 

Of the three resorts on Hoga Island, only one is still operating, and that was a very low-key operation a walk along the beach.  The nearest towns were across the lagoon on Kaledupa, and apart from a local ferry that seems to run daily, there was very little boat traffic other than fishermen in their dugouts.  So it was a wonderful place to stop and catch our breath. 

 

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Looking back towards the reef, beach and boats anchored outside the lagoon.    Looking forwards towards the south end of the lagoon.

 

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Across the lagoon to the towns on Kaledupa.                                                     Bajo Sampela, a village on stilts, on Kaledupa

 

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From the beach at Hoga Island across the reef to the lagoon.                     The beach at Hoga Island.

 

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The “Welcome to Hoga Island” sign tells of better days.                                 No vehicles here, unless you count this set of wheels.

 

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We had daily visits from local fishermen selling their catches.  Steve was more interested in the tiny but very noisy engines in their canoes.

 

We asked about the location of good snorkelling and dive sites at the resort, and all went for a snorkel first to see what the nearest ones were like.  The underwater landscape was stunning – the first time I had snorkelled over a sheer drop-off from a reef into deeper water, and if it wouldn’t have meant losing my grip on my snorkel my mouth would have dropped open in wonderment. 

 

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The edge of the reef as it drops off into 30-metre depths.

 

Steve then went on a couple of dives with the resort, and was lucky and glad to be taken under the wing of a lovely young lady from Holland, Leanne, who was actually there on holiday herself, but was happy to give him some help with conquering his buoyancy issues.  Not only did he see some great coral and fish down there, but his skill and confidence in the water improved enormously under her guidance.  Later that day Steve went to collect Leanne and her partner from the beach and brought them back to the boat for sundowners.  She was very interested in the set-up of the boat as they hope to do something similar in the future.

 

In between times, we caught up with domestic jobs and knocked a couple of jobs off the boat list.

 

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A few chores had to be done, even in this island paradise, so on went the watermaker and immersion heater, and out came the twin-tub.

It was a bit too windy for the washing line, so I decorated the guard rail and used plenty of pegs!  It didn’t take long to dry.

 

Of course there were the usual social events that happen spontaneously as soon as a group of boats are in the same place, and we enjoyed an impressive array of home-made cakes brought by the different  boats with delicious coffee on board Unwind one morning, and sundowners ashore one evening.  They were typical laid-back yachtie events, and made such a nice change from the full-on rally festivities.

 

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Leanne (right) and Cynthia joined us for sundowners on the beach.

 

We have not yet decided when we will leave, but are certainly not in any hurry to do so!