10 July 2010
Come Saturday we slipped our lines from our bouy - now a more discreet one - and headed for the small bay on the west coast of Isola Caprera named after the hero of the unification of Itlay. The breeze was in our faces, so we motored some of it but fitted in a nice sail down the Gulf of Moneta, which cuts southwards between Isola Giardinelli and Caprera. This gulf shallows quickly with rocks to both sides, so a course of 170 degrees that heads you towards the green bouy about half way down is a good one. This leaves behind you the bays of Spalmatore and Porto Lunga. Although they're pretty, Blue Bayou had warned us that the buoys here are not administered by the National Park, and are charged for - at EU50 a night!
From the green bouy continue on 170 to 180, until the gap between the rocks bears at 90 degrees. The chart shows that the first 'rock' is two outcrops, and indeed it is, but it is extremely hard to make this out from either direction. But do not try and go between the final outcrop and the beach, as it gets shallow. The picture is the pass through the rocks from inside the Cala, and the outcrop to the right (north) is actually two separate tiny islets.
In the channel, we saw least depths of 9.5m. Inside, there is plenty of room to anchor in anything between 4 and 10m of water, mostly on sand. There used to be a big Club Med centre in this cala, but it is all closed down and boarded up. The little huts stand open on the hillside, forlorn reminders of a lost lifestyle. It must be quite a blow for local employment.
For us, though, it's a boon. The cala is not very busy during the day. One tripper boat comes in to put people on the beach, and another one anchors for a while to let people swim. You can reach the main beach by car and a few people find it. Otherwise it's not very full, and by nightfall there is just a handful of boats, and the birds are by far the noisiest company. On Saturday night we could just hear the club music from Spalmatore, but that was all. On Sunday, profound hush enveloped us.