Monday, August 31, 2009

Greece to Tunisia

17th May 2009

Westward Ho! Goodbye Greece.

We headed off today in a Westerly direction. The wind is supposed to be from the South but there is very little that we can see here. Unfortunately, the steep swell remains from the previous days and we are motoring with a cross swell that is having us over from gunnel to gunnel and probably not doing the engine mounts any good at all nor is it any good for the rigging as we have the mainsail up with one reef to try and remain more upright. Very uncomfortable and we hope it settles down soon. We seem to have had no good sailing for months and both of us will be glad to get all these miserable passages over and done with - it has been a slow and arduous slog and is set to remain that way until La Coruna in Northern Spain. Therefore, we will keep an eye on the weather and simply slog it out as far as we can whilst we can make progress Westwards - The forecast looks ok for the moment but means that we will be motoring until we run out of fuel. Options are; Malta, Carthage (Tunisia), Tabarka (Tunisia), Sardinia, Balearic's, Spain and Gibraltar. Very Very unlikely we will get to Gib before the next bout of strong Westerlies arrives to halt our progress.

18th May 2009

We had a decent bit of sailing for about 5 hours yesterday after my griping and then the wind died and we motored all night with a swell still coming from the South. The light breeze headed us just before dawn and slowed the boat speed with some weird chop but later this morning it veered and we were able to get the head-sail out but still with the motor on. At 11am the wind picked up a bit and we got sailing proper until we were reefing the main and jib in a NNW F5-6. It has calmed a bit and the reefs are now out again with the wind at 60 degrees to the starboard. We are keeping a Westbound track to keep some degrees of leeway in the bag for when the wind starts to head us, theoretically, we now have 13 degrees that we can pay off if we need to.

A few ships were sighted last night and came fairly close, one was a tug with badly lit tow but I remember the light signals from the Malacca Straits and managed to pick out the tow with the binoculars.

Fliss wants to stop at Carthage because it is supposed to be an interesting place and I just want to keep going whilst the weather allows us to. I think that we will have to flip a coin for it and, even if I win, we might end up in Carthage anyway! Problem solved.

The forecast is looking not too bad at the moment although it may be breezy tonight and we might have to use those spare degrees but the weather on Tuesday night, Wednesday morning looks ok for a transit of the Malta/Sicilian channel which normally has strong Nor'Westerlies blowing down it.

19th May 2009

A little bit of sailing was done yesterday and we managed about an hour at 5am and a couple of half-hour stints since. Other than that, it has been motor-sailing to keep us going. Unfortunately, the sea here is nothing like the English Channel and sometimes is lumpy and confused even when there is little wind. Therefore, when you feel that there is enough wind to get you going, the sea stops you dead in the water. The sea is now calm with a gentle swell but no wind to speak of and so we are motoring again.

Malta is 70 miles away and we have about 200 miles to go before we are out of the Sicilian Strait. It looks as though the winds will head us a bit there but it is to be expected since the geography of the place enhances the general trend of NWesterlies. Also, we are expecting stronger currents against us here as the land squeezes and accelerates the Eastbound trend.

20th May 2009

Last night was dead calm as we rounded the bottom of Sicily and took on the rest of the shipping that was doing the same thing. There are no separation zones here and that made life interesting for Fliss who did the first dark watch. After my watch started, we hugged the coastline and most of the big ships stayed to seaward where I could see them clearly without the backlighting of the towns/villages. However, this meant that we were in the firing line of the fishermen whose paths are more erratic. Still, with the engine going, we had radar on which makes life so much easier since it sees boats that are almost invisible to the naked eye.

It's a lovely day today and the sea is calm for a change. Usually, even though there is no wind, there are waves around that slow us down. Here in the shelter of the Strait of Sardinia it must be sheltered since we are close to land and the strait is only 150 miles across so no mush coming from distant winds. The wind is light at about a F3 and it is perfect sailing weather if only we had the time for it. Unfortunately the wind is coming directly from where we want to go and we are passage making rather than sailing. We stayed close to Sicily hoping that the NWester would curve around enough with onshore breezes to get us along. Unfortunately that is not the case, it curved enough to be useless in any direction and therefore we are now motoring offshore to see if we can make a more-or-less direct run to Cape Bon (on the African Coast) once the land-effect reduces. It will be nice to go sailing again without the pressure of needing to be somewhere sometime.

It looks like we will have to stop before Gibraltar as we have just finished one tank of fuel and have started the second. That's 200 litres used which is Eu200 (Greek prices) and much more will used by the time we get to re-fill. So, the plan is to go to Tunisia to top up and then that should get us to Gibraltar where fuel should be duty free (or at least a bit cheaper than Spain). The port in Tunisia that we have earmarked is Tabarka which is the Westernmost port of entry/exit almost on the border with Algeria. They have a fuel dock there and we hope that we can re-fill directly from the bowser. We are not sure how long we will stop there, it depends on weather and how long it takes to check-in/out.

21st May 2009

We motored up the side of Sardinia and then cut across towards Africa. The wind picked up a bit but, for some reason, the sea became very choppy and heading into wind was too difficult and we kept the engine on to keep boat speed up. Eventually, we decided that it was too mucky to keep heading in the direction we wanted and we decided to head to Pantelleria Island where we could make the decision to anchor or keep going. I went to bed leaving Fliss as decision maker and soon the seas eased and we were again able to make a decent heading and turn the engine off. At about 04:00, the wind died altogether and we are now motoring.

The forecast is for no wind for a couple of days and then for some Easterlies. The long term forecast (1 week, and therefore probably fairytales) is that a big fat high pressure is going to run across Europe giving Easterlies in the Med by Wednesday. We have decided that we can therefore stop in Carthage for two days to re-fuel, re-water, re-provision and still see the old city and ruins there. The marina is Sidi Bou Said and a port of entry. The thought is to then leave on Monday and run for Cartagena in Spain as long as the weather keeps promising favorable winds.

We arrived in Sid Bou Said at 20:00 our time and 18:00 their time. They have done without daylight savings this year and are therefore the same as BST. They gave us a berth about as far into the winding marina as possible and we reversed up the line of boats and got in no problem since it was dead calm with no currents. The lazy lines that they use to Med moor were absolutely filthy and dripped muddy gooey goop all over us and the boats sandwiched in beside us. The harbourmaster and police were still open and so we managed to clear in without fuss except that they rushed me so much that I forgot my glasses and therefore had difficulty not only with the French language but actually seeing the forms to fill them in. Afterwards the police wanted to come to check the boat. They did not even look at it but were saying something along the lines of "Un Petit Cadeau" - we gave them a few euros and they were happy with that.


Last night just before it went dark I either saw a shark or a sun fish, there was this dorsal fin swimming by the side of Naz for ages. I also saw a great shooting star which went on for ages, they really are fantastic to watch especially if the burn out slowly.

22nd May 2009

We decided to do the whole of Tunis and Carthage in one go and hired a taxi for the day. We decided that we could therefore have a guided tour and also save on one nights marina fee. It was about 55 euros for 2 nights stay. The driver spoke English well enough and we set off for the Tunisia museum first. Lots of statues and mosaics later, we went to the centre of Old Tunis - Medina. This is an area of winding souks dating back hundreds of years and full of gold and carpet shops. The driver had organized a guide who would walk us through and describe the area - he really just wanted to take us to his mates shop where he could earn commission on what we bought but he was sorely disappointed with the way we held onto our money. The whole place is a maze of alleyways covered along most of their length with a long stone arch making a covered tunnel - very nice and we could have spent much longer there browsing if the guide hadn't decided to drag us back to the taxi.

From there, we went to Carthage and another museum (yawn) and then onto a variety of the old ruins. The size of the town over 2000 years ago was enormous with pillars and carvings from rock brought from across the Med in Greece and other places. However, eventually we got over-ruined and we asked our guide to take us to Carrefour for some re-stocking. My credit card did not work at the checkout which was a bit embarrassing but a cashpoint nearby sorted the problem out.

23rd May 2009

This morning, we checked out with the police and they again wanted to come and look at the boat. We assume that they wanted another lump of baksheesh. I had found a plank and rigged it from the quay to the back of Naz so that we could get on and off and it worked even it it was a bit wobbly. I walked across and turned to give the policeman a steadying hand. He was not shy of large dinner portions and halfway across there was a large CRACK and he plummeted into the stinky water with a big splash. It was lucky that he was not hurt since he collided with the Aries breaking my wooden tillerpilot attachment and completely dislocating the main gearing. The problem was getting him out of the water again but two locals managed to drag him up the quayside. All credit to him that he held onto our passports and they are ok but a bit smudged. Not so lucky was his mobile phone. After he had got over the shock he started demanding that we replace his mobile phone and cigarettes. We said that the boarding plank belonged to the marina and he should talk to them an I got on with fixing the Aries. The poor guy will now be the butt of the police and marina staff jokes about the size of his belly and other things.

We motored around to the fuel quay and paid 0.91 Dinars per litre (1.8 Dinars to the Euro) and therefore had a saving equivalent to the cost of our stay. After refueling we set off at 8:30 local time and are now motoring with a light breeze just aft of the beam. Maybe I can get the cruising chute out and we can sail later. We are hoping to get all the way to Gibraltar on this leg but it is going to get breezy sometime between Tuesday and Thursday so we shall have to keep an eye on it (not that we can stop anywhere along the Algerian coastline since they make life difficult for unannounced yacht arrivals).

Friday, August 07, 2009


5th - 8th May 2009

We arrived at Simi in Greece yesterday and the small town is absolutely beautiful nestled around a small bay and stone harbour. The pastel coloured houses and small churches cling to the steep sides of the surrounding hills and many of the dwellings are only accessible by foot.

I managed to get on with a few maintenance jobs such as winch maintenance, rigging check and engine service. Re-fuelling was a simple operation since the local garage has a fuel tanker that drives along the quayside and blocks the traffic whilst the driver passes a bowser across and we re-fill. No messing around with moving the boat – great service!

The harbour is also very cheap. We tried the tricky Med-Mooring again yesterday and had two local guys take our lines ashore for us and tie us off. One of them asked for 5 Euros for berthing and we expected that this cheap sum was for one night only. It now appears as though the 5 Euros is the fixed price for a stay here as long as we want to. We are loving Greece already!

The people that we had drinks with during our stay in Datca (Turkey) turned up. Morris sails single handed but has his ex-wife over for a holiday at the moment. She likes the luxuries of life but 40 foot boats do not offer what she expected. Their toilet blocked the day after her arrival and had not been fixed since and so a bucket was the order of the day. Morris spent much time trying to fix the blockage and eventually took all the piping out and purged it by poking a boathook down it. At the same time, there was a long local procession going on that was celebrating Greek independence from Turkey and they marched grim-faced past the stinky operation.

Our time spent in Simi was a great rest from our recent long-hauls and we really enjoyed our time there.

9th May 2009

We had a relaxed departure from Simi at about 08:00 after getting the dinghy on board but after I let go the stern lines, we found that a mooring line on a small dinghy next door had wrapped itself around the Aries rudder and we were stuck. Morris from the boat next door came to the rescue and got aboard the dinghy and freed us.

Our aim is to cross the Aegean sea and get as far as possible towards the Southern tip of Peloponnisos where we will eventually head to Malta. Unfortunately, the forecast of NW-N winds did not materialise and we were headed with a wind direction of 280-290 degrees which was much too bothersome and had us over on our ear blowing F4-5 with choppy sea so we have decided to call it a day having only made it to Knidos in Turkey (36 degrees 41' North, 27 degrees 22.5' East). We shall see what the wind is going to do early tomorrow morning and try again.

10th May 2009

The night at anchor was gusty with the wind blowing through a gap produced by the isthmus between the mainland and the headland. Our anchor alarm went off twice as the wind moved us one way and then the other. On the second occasion, I found that a charter boat was much closer than it previously was and appeared to be getting closer still as it hunted wildly around its chain. The people were in the cockpit but not doing anything constructive and so I thought it best to get our hook up before our chains got tangled and we both ended up on the breakwater. It was a vain attempt because they were too close but our motoring forwards and calling to them seemed to gird them into action and they upped their hook and re-placed it where it stayed put.

We left early bound Westwards. The first hour was a good sail followed by about 2 hours of motoring. The wind picked up again giving us a close haul and we soon had one, then two reefs in the main. With a general plan to be heading to the Southern tip of Peloponnisos, we wanted to go over the top of Nisos Astipalaia but were making hard work of it so we decided to stop there and leave again very early morning. Plans then changed as the wind eased a bit and we motored hard to get over the top of the island and then bore away for some good sailing Westwards again.

If we had time to read the Pilot book, it mentions gusty conditions around the South of Amorgis Island - up to F7/8. We already had 2 reefs in the main when the wind started to pick up and head us again so we rolled more and more of the jib away and pounded away towards the setting sun with spray covering Naz from stem to stern - yuk! Our destination was now Nisos Milos and we managed a heading that took us over the top of Nisos Ios. As quickly as the wind begins, so it stops. Suddenly the winds died and I had not even got around to unfurling all the headsail by the time I had to furl it fully and turn the engine on.

11th May 2009

This morning before sunrise, the breeze came back at a respectible 60 degrees off the nose and we made good progress to our new anchorage. It would have been quite nice to keep going with the current conditions but we tried that yesterday and it all turned to Poo. So, we are happy to stop at Nisos Milos for a rest - Malta is out of the question until the weather settles in that direction so we can afford a short stop.

The anchorage is quite pleasant but the cliffs of the surrounding islands are white/yellow/red and look like a quarry. Oh, there is also a quarry here as well. 36 degrees, 46.5 North, 24 degrees 33.5 East.


Tempers are a bit fraught on Nadezhda at the moment, it seems that what ever we do we get a smack. Yesterday we had force 7 headwinds all day & most of the night. We stopped for a rest at 9:30 this morning and are off again. 12 hours rest then back out to sea. Excuse my French but it I'm bloody fed up with it.

Unfortunately Pete and I have different wish lists. I want to stop at night whilst we can before we have to head off on long passages and Pete wants to carry on doing overnight sails. I really don't like being out at night if I don't have to due to it being bloody cold, dark and loads of shipping. Yesterday was the icing on the cake for me. Anyway I can understand why he wants to keep going. We're both dreading the passage home as it's going to be really hard work, especially if we just keep going. I'm all for doing it the easy way, running over to Tunisia, Algiers & Morocco and Pete is more of the opinion to just make a dead run to Gibraltar. We have to get across the Bay of Biscay before Mid August as gales kick in then. Anyway enough moaning!

Not sure what happens next as the weather is set to go against us for a few days so we can't stop unless we carry on up the Greek Coastline & then run up to Sicily.


So, just to keep the pressure up, we had a few hours sleep and then upped anchor at 8pm for another westwards hop to the bottom of Peloponnissos. There was absolutely no wind and the seas were glassy all night so we motored along until morning brought us between Maleas Pt and Nisos Kithera.

12th May 2009


We are heading for an anchorage on the Peleponnisos Islands and then we'll move again tomorrow slightly further up the coast ready for the jump across to Malta. By going slightly further up it cuts half a day of the passage time to Malta which is only about 3-4 days.

Calm Night and Moonlight

Moonlight Reflected in Calm Morning Sea

It is a busy stretch of water here. This morning I slowed down to let a super tanker go past me as we were both going around the same headland and cutting in close to the shore. Anyway as I watched him go past and around the headland a yacht appeared going in the opposite direction. They hadn't seen each other as the land was in the way. Huge puff of smoke as the supertanker & the yacht were on a collision course. The tanker must have put his engines hard in reverse to miss the yacht. Both Captains must have had brown pants as they nearly hit, they were so close.


From Maleas Point, we had a light breeze close-hauled on the Port Tack that increased enough for us to turn the engine off and pinch up to our desired course. We arrived at Porto Kayio (36 degrees 26'N, 22 degrees 29'E) and we will stop for a day and then move on tomorrow to Methoni (45 miles West) which is about as close as we can get to Malta without actually going there. There we will wait for the weather to settle before we move on.

13th May 2009

This morning was very peaceful and we relaxed reading in bed. We had a restful day yesterday and visited a tiny chapel on the headland nearby. The Greeks seem to have a habit of building churches in the most inaccessible places on headlands or steep sided mountains well away from habitation. I cannot understand why since the building of them must have been exceptionally difficult and visiting them a real chore. Still, I suppose that the road to God must be made difficult or it's not worth it!?

The afternoon was very gusty and a single hander came in late in the afternoon and plonked his hook right in front of us. Since the holding in the anchorage was not the best due to sea grass, we decided to move along a bit and probably put ourselves in a windier spot for the night. Fliss had little sleep as a result.

14th May 2009

This morning, the winds had died and we motored hard against the leftover little waves that have a wavelength too short to ride over and so we ploughed a course to Methoni. We rounded Ak Tainaron which, withstanding Tarifa near Gibraltar, is the Southernmost cape in mainland Europe and, looking up the cape, you can see the snow capped mountains of the Taiyetos which rise to 7500 ft.

The wind came fairly light and we close-hauled our way to our destination with glorious sunshine.

Having motored quite a bit recently, we had quick look around and a walk to the Diesel station. It ended up a long way but a kind hotel owner was going that way and gave us a lift at least one way. We don't exactly need diesel but we are just keeping things topped up.

15th May 2009

This morning, we took a walk into the old ruins of the castle at Methoni. They are quite grand and at one time had a small town within the walls until the French eventually razed the houses and settled the people outside the walls due to sanitary problems. The castle obviously did no good whatsoever since it was built by the Venetians, then occupied by the Turks (Ottomans) 1500-1686 before being retaken by the Venetians again 1686-1715. The Ottomans eventually retook the castle in 1715 before giving up to the French in 1828. So much for fortifications.

We returned to Naz as the wind started increasing from the SE. This had been forecast and we took the breeze up to Pilos (36 degrees 55'N, 21 degrees 41'E) where there is good protection from the SE Gales that are forecast (Methoni is open to the SE). The marina was full when we arrived and so we tied up to the ferry quay where we were being blown off the hard concrete and visited the town. Later, we moved off to anchor where we felt a little safer given the expected increase in wind speed.

16th May 2009

We have been into Pilos town again today. It is quite quaint and packed with locals sitting outside the numerous cafes drinking beer or fancy coffee at xx Euros a throw. I don't know where they find the money considering that they are not working whilst they are lounging around. At 2pm the whole place shuts down until 6pm so the cafes should be even more busy right now. We threw our mouldy veg away hoping for some fresh replacement but will now have to wait until gone bedtime before the shops re-open.

17th May 2009

Goodbye Greece!


29th April 2009


Yesterday, we left Cyprus bound for Turkey and were hard on the wind with engine running most of the day. We managed some sailing and bashed our way to windward straining the sails and leaning over on our ear. Thankfully, the seas became less confused and the wind died overnight giving a flat calm that we motored gently over. This morning the wind picked up a bit from behind and we were eventually doing 7.5 knots towards the harbour town of Kas. The coastline looks very interesting and seems like a great place to explore if time was on our side. We have resigned ourselves to the fact that we no longer go sailing but simply bash away at passage making with only one aim - getting from A to B. We need another year just to touch small areas of the Mediterranean.

This morning, we have found out why the Northerly winds are cold. They are blowing off the snow-capped mountains here but we had a cracking sail over the last 20 miles of the passage.

We arrived at the small harbour here in Kas at lunchtime and prepared fenders and lines for our Med-style mooring attempt. The harbour is long and narrow and the wind was blowing straight into the entrance meaning that we would have to reverse to the dock with a cross-wind. There was not a lot of space to be found but, as I tried to slow our wind-blown progress towards the dead-end by reversing, the prop-kick started a turn exactly adjacent to a small slot between moored boats. We dropped the hook and kept reversing straight in and an English guy on the boat next door took our lines. Beginners luck we suspect.

Seconds after we got lines ashore, a local man zoomed up on a moped and told us that the Coastguard had ordered us to take down the courtesy flag that we were flying otherwise we would be charged Eu400. We think that the problem with our home made one was that the Crescent shape was not crescent shaped enough (a problem when taking a pattern drawn on paper, translating it to cloth and then trying to stitch the cloth to a red background). The guy threw us a new flag that we quickly hoisted - welcome to Turkey.

We paid the harbour fees for 3 nights (Eu55) and then went to check in. The harbourmaster was the first call and both John from Aldora and ourselves wandered up and searched for the hidden office. Once found (and a boat surveyor grabbed as an interpretor) we were on our way to becoming legally in the country. When asked where we had come from, we told them that we had come from Cyprus. "North or South" they asked. "South" we replied. "Then you cannot enter Turkey, it is forbidden" they responded. "You must sail to Meyisti and check in there and then come back to Turkey" they said. Meyisti (Kastellorizo) is a Greek island about 12 miles away.

So it appears that the Turkish and the Greek Cypriots are still at loggerheads and the Turks are trying hard not to enter the European Union by being childish over the matter. John intervened and said "Oh....WE have come straight from Egypt". I promptly took back my exit papers from Cyprus and flourished our Egyptian exit papers and told them that it had been a long sail, I was confused and that we had also come straight from Egypt. With the matter resolved, we had crossed hurdle number one and paid another Eu55 for the privilege - welcome to Turkey.

Next stop was Customs but they told us to go and see Health. So we went to the Health department who wanted photocopies of our quintuplicate form that we had already filled out at the harbourmaster and they then rubber stamped our paperwork. Then, to the police who wanted Eu30 for visas (rubber stamping galore) and onwards to Customs (and a few rubber stamps). After customs, we then had to return to the harbourmaster for more form filling and Eu5 payment for tonnage (plus a couple of rubber stamps) before being sent back to Customs for the final salvo of rubber stamps on our paperwork - after 3 hours we were officially landed - welcome to Turkey.

Oh yes. We are not allowed to flush toilet waste into the water for fear of fines but the facilities in the marina cost Eu0.50 for use of the toilet and Eu3 for a shower. Welcome to Turkey. A quiet anchorage is sounding very appealing.


30th April 2009


The weather blew up in the harbour today and poor old Nazza got too close to a large local Turkish Gulet and came off worst. It was blowing stink sideways-on and the large local boat kept creeping over towards Naz. Anyway they touched and Naz got her wooden rail caught underneath their boarding ladder, making a dent. First injury in 25 years. Pete spent all day being seriously worried about another collision. It did calm down later though.

So Turkey, it's stunning. The town is beautiful with lovely little cobbled back streets, café culture and shops selling everything that I wanted to buy, if only... The people are friendly and I love it, I really want to go back to Kas but as a tourist (by plane) and spend a week exploring it, family holiday next year???

1st May 2009


We got up at 7am and motored back to Kekova Roads (Approx 36 degrees 09' North, 29 degrees 49' East) with a swell behind us from the 35 knots of wind of yesterday. The morning was calm and peaceful and the anchorage between the rocky hummocks was beautiful. We had breakfast and launched the dinghy and went out across the bay to the sunken city (not fully sunken and most above water). These are ancient ruins and we do not know the history to them but believe them to be thousands of years old.

Back across the bay to the village of Kale Koy that is built from the waterline up the hill to the old Castle on the top. The castle dominates the surrounding area and the way in which the higgledy-piggledy stone buildings reach up towards it is very picturesque. We took a walk through the village along small stone pathways that constantly seemed to be someones backyard and were stopped by a grizzled old lady who was sitting cross-legged on a raised stone patio. She waved some bead bracelets at us said "One Lira" and, since I wanted the photo opportunity, we bought one. She then tried to unwrapped a bundle of cloth with one arthritic hand whilst squinting and making hard work of it. We helped a little and found cotton shawls inside and she held up 10 fingers and said "Lira". We ummed and ahhrd a bit when she pulled the sympathy trick by patting her legs and saying "Kaput" so we bought one and gave her a 20 lira note. She held onto it and we tried to explain, using sign language, that we needed ten lira change. It was then that she decided that she was blind and firmly gripped the note in from of her. We eventually recruited help from a teenage lad and explained to him our predicament. He carefully explained to her what was needed and a gentle tug of war started with the 20 Lira note. He eventually extricated it from her iron grasp and the deal was done with change that he produced.

We wandered up to the castle for views right across the bay and then we walked along the ridge of the hillside where ancient sarcophagi stood - massive tombs of hewn rock. From there we could see right down into the village where an old woman was dancing in the square waving a 10 Lira note.

After a beer in the local restaurant - courtesy only you must understand since we used their pontoon to tie the dinghy up against, we set off back to Naz. By this time, the wind was blowing hard again and we had a difficult job getting the dinghy around the small headland against the chop and got a serious dowsing in the process. It seems that, regardless of forecast, the wind picks up to 20-30 knots by mid-afternoon.

2nd May 2009

So, we picked up the hook at 6am this morning and it looked as though we would only make it as far as Kastellorizon before the wind wakes up. However, we kept on ploughing on and were surprised when we did not get any afternoon strong winds. The forecast for tomorrow is for favourable winds and so we hope to push West as far as we can get. As it turned out the winds stayed light so we decided to carry on to Datca, Turkey.

3rd May 2009

The timing was just right as we approached Datca during darkness and the horizon lightened just as we dropped the hook. After a couple of hours morning sleep we wandered around the town and had a couple of beers with a South African family who are here cruising.

4th May 2009

Today we decided to check out of Turkey and go to Simi (Greece). I went to the harbour master and he told me that we had to pay an agent to go to the bank and pay some money for our Gross Tonnage. We had already paid massive amounts to Turkey during our check in process so I thanked them and we pulled the hook up and buggered off the 12 miles to our Greek port of entry.

Having worried about not having exit papers from Turkey, we were surprised about the informal reception we had. So we are now checked into Europe and Turkey simultaneously and can go where we like.

Simi is a little jewel with steep hillsides and a small harbour with stone built houses rising vertically from the shoreline. All of them painted in different pastel colours – lovely.