Vasco da Gama
Ian Strathcarron
Wed 13 Aug 2008 16:26

Formentera, whose name derives from the Latin Frumentaria, supplier of wheat to the Romans, has gone from being an underpopulated island of a few fisherman and farmers, to a hippy paradise, to a rich man’s playground.  We have seen at least a dozen huge, opulent and exotic billionaire’s super yachts, as well as hundreds of glossy power boats and yachts.  Every boat seems to have a party going on and the atmosphere is very relaxed.  It’s my favourite of the Balearics, as, perhaps because it’s small, low lying, without much infrastructure, it’s been ignored by developers and is still wild.

We have been at anchor for the last 5 nights, 4 in Formentera and 1 in Ibiza as we sailed across, it only takes 2 hours, to drop Peter at Ibiza Town to catch a plane back to England.  We were going to stay at Botafoch Marina until we were quoted the price of E230 (£180) for 1 night, so we anchored for nothing in the next bay instead.  Peter soon found, as I suspect all our guests will, that he spent almost as much time with a spanner in his hand as a gin and tonic.  This is because, as the man from DuoGen said, ‘cruising is all about fixing your boat in exotic locations’.  Fortunately for us Peter is a very experienced sailor and very practical as well as being a great raconteur who kept us laughing for days.   Missie, who is a close friend, and knows I am no Ellen MacArthur, wanted to see for herself the phenomonem of Gillian and Ian sailing around the world. 

Tomorrow we must leave this paradise as we have a date with the Raymarine engineer in Palma de Mallorca on Monday.