Today's journey took us across the Golfo di Sant'Eufemia, a wide and sweeping bay. The harbours along this stretch are shallow, small with very few places to anchor and avoid swell. It's a pretty exposed bit of coastline so with a pending mistral on the way we were keen to press on and cover 50 miles to reach Vibo Valentia (top of the foot) in southern Italy.
By mid afternoon there was a gentle breeze, sails were unfurled and stayed filled whilst we continued to motor to keep up speed. A few minutes later we were able to actually sail but it was shorted lived, all of 1.5 hours but appreciated anyway given our lack of sailing this season.
Subsequently the fishing line was deployed, this time with the 'finnish minnow' fishing lure - the freebie lure that we recovered from being wedged in our rudder last season. Eight hours later and still no bite!
Vibo Valentia is a commercial and fishing port. Several oil storage tanks and a number of chimneys are the focal points but tucked in the opposite corner are two well run marinas both in close proximity and similar in price. We decided upon Stella del Sud given its reputation for being an Italian/Canadian family run business with an onsite bar and extremely helpful and knowledgeable staff. The marina staff certainly made the mooring easy as we suddenly acquired an extra set of hands on board who swiftly dealt with the lazy lines (of which there are two). This left us somewhat shocked and surprised but it made for a lovely change - someone else doing the messy job. This is the second marina that we've visited where recycling is enforced with harsh penalties if not complied with. Our berthing fee should have been at the summer rate but Angela was kind enough to offer us mid-season price at €40 a night.
view across the harbour
Vibo Valentia is non-touristy, roads and pavements are crumbling from cars that park randomly completely blocking access for pedestrians and other vehicles. It's total chaos added to by small vans that stop randomly to sell local fruit and veg. No wonder the paving and curbs are in such disrepair!
Marina Stella del Sud is an ideal location for a bit of R&R and top up on fuel whilst waiting for a Mistral to pass. Surge could be felt in the marina but our mooring springs took the 'snatch' out of the ropes so on the whole it was pretty comfortable. Following the mistral we then had a terrific thunderstorm... torrential rain including some very loud cracks from lightening strikes!
We haven't seen too many British flagged vessels since leaving Civitavecchia so it came as a pleasant surprise to meet Keith and Sue off 'Just Tinkerbelle' and spend an evening together tasting the local Calabria wines.
Total distance this season: 898.62 nautical miles