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2013 Cruising in Greece
Sailing TB from the Villaine River in 2009 and on to Greece in 2011. Explore the southern Peleponnes in 2012 and the Aegean in 2013. 2014 saw us sail up the Evia Channel to the Sporades island group.
Menorca to Sicily Sept 2011
PW
29 September 2011
Sailing from Mahon to Sardinia and Sicily.

With Chris S. safely on board and settled in, we had a peaceful night at anchor in Cala Taulera near Mahon. At 08:00hrs on Wed 14 Sept, we weighed anchor and set sail for south west Sardinia about 170 nM away. The wind was about 10kts from the north and once we cleared the south east corner of Menorca, we had a cracking sail on a broad reach on a course of 105° Mag towards Sardinia. When the wind died at around 20:00hrs we had sailed 72nM in 12 hours.

Under easy sail.
Sailing free towards sardinia.
Click here to see larger image in PhotoAlbum 'To Sicily'

After that it got a bit boring as we chugged along under engine with the autopilot steering. We had plenty of time overnight to enjoy the clear skies and perfect visibility to take in the constellations overhead. It was a bit of a novelty and revelation for Chris as it was a first time for him to be on a darkened out sailboat at sea and miles from land and any light pollution.

We sailed into the new marina at Puerto Touristico, Calasetta, Sardinia at 18:00hrs. We touched the bottom at the entrance to the southern leg of the marina but there was plenty of water where the visiting boats berth. This is a relatively new marina, pretty cheap at 22.00 Euros with friendly staff. The town is attractive but we made a bad choice of restaurant on the second night as the food was not very good and the waiters far too pretentious.

Calasetta Marina.
Traditional sailing boats in Calasetta.
Click here to see larger image in PhotoAlbum 'To Sicily'

We kept an eye on Chris as he was showing a lot of interest in the ferries to other islands and the mainland. Even though Woody and I had been on our best behaviour, we wanted to be sure he didn't want to jump ship.

Chris in Calasetta Marina.
The Ferry from Calasetta, Sardinia.
Click here to see larger image in PhotoAlbum 'To Sicily'

Centre of Calasetta
Centre of Calasetta.
Click here to see larger image in PhotoAlbum 'To Sicily'

After a couple of days in Calasetta we moved on towards Cagliari. We anchored at Golfo di Teulada for lunch. It was a bit crowded - two other boats in the rather large bay!

Centre of Calasetta
Centre of Calasetta.
Click here to see larger image in PhotoAlbum 'To Sicily'

That evening we anchored outside Porto di Teulada overnight. It was a safe anchorage but the port is in the middle of nowhere; so I don't know why anyone would want to go into it overnight. Chris (with more than a little bit of advice from Woody) cooked a hot curry on board that evening. Luckily we had enough wine on board to soothe my palate.

Teulada anchorage.
Only other boat anchored outside Porto di Teulada.
Click here to see larger image in PhotoAlbum 'To Sicily'

Next morning, Sunday 18 Sept, the forecast was for strong winds building during the day and overnight. We had a good sail to Cagliari, arriving at Marina del Sol in the north east corner of the harbour in Cagliari at 16:00hrs. This is a stronghole for live-aboard sailors. The marina itself is a bit run down but it is very safe and has loads of character and full of interesting people.

The Minstral blew for two days with winds consistently exceeding 30kts. Cagliari is a lively city and we enjoyed our stay.

Teulada anchorage.
Plotter track in Sardinia.
Click here to see larger image in PhotoAlbum 'To Sicily'

By Wednesday, the Minstral had blown itself out; so we decided to go for Sicily. It was a bit of a mistake really as the wind might have gone but it left a strong northerly swell which was right on the beam all the way to Sicily. With no wind, Tobin Bronze rolled like a bastard all the way. Which was very unpleasant! By the time we got to Trapani - 178 nM and 33 hours later, the swell was moderating but still it was a very uncomfortable trip.

Sicily.
North west Sicily, north of Trapani.
Click here to see larger image in PhotoAlbum 'To Sicily'

The highlite of the stay in Trapani was a visit to the medieval mountain fortress of Erica. There were also some pretty nice seafood restaurants in Trapani.

Smug git.
Dining in Trapani.
Click here to see larger image in PhotoAlbum 'To Sicily'

A few days later we were moored in Palermo where we had arranged another crew change. Chris was heading off home while Roger was joining up for the trip to Zakinthos.