36:59.8N 7:50.7W Praca Larga Anchorage Olhau near Faro
Mon 21 Sep 2015 19:53
17th September, all was better as the weather improved and we sailed handsomely ,flying the cruising chute towards our destination, the anchorage inside the Ilha da Culatra which lies in a Poole Harbour like bay near Faro. It was a beautiful day as we sailed past the block graph high rises of Vilamoura and Albefuera set in between high orange sandstone cliffs. As the orange ball of the sun set from lower to upper limb Rob laid out the anchor in a deep pool with the company of 55 other resting sailing boats.
Ilha da Culatra reminded me of what Sandbanks in Poole must have looked like before the developers moved in and spoiled it forever. Over 3000 people live on the island in tiny, smart single story shacks with only a ferry connection to Faro and Olhau. All around us sandbanks and mudflats revealed themselves as the tide drops so birds and men alike could fish.
Very close to us a fisherman was feeding out his drift net through a stainless steel hoop on his little boat. Red weights suspended the net a metre or so above the sea bed and all that could be seen from above was a single white float to mark the spot from which he would haul in the net. I made a mental note to steer well away from that area when we left the next morning even though it would probably be well beneath our keel.
In the dark hours the engines of fishing boats could be heard coming and going along with the cries of curlews.