SVs Saraoni and Sundari

07 April 2020 | Westin Hotel, Brisbane, Queensland
28 March 2020 | Paihia, Bay of Islands, NZ
24 March 2020 | Paihia, Bay of Islands, New Zealand
06 March 2020 | Waitangi, Bay of Islands, NZ
25 January 2020 | Scarborough marina, Redcliffe Peninsula, Queensland
16 January 2020 | Christchurch
22 December 2019 | Christchurch, New Zealand
16 December 2019 | Christchurch, Canterbury, NZ
28 November 2019 | Christchurch, SI, New Zealand
19 November 2019 | Picton, Marlborough, NZ
04 November 2019 | Collingwood, Tasman, South Island, NZ
04 November 2019 | Collingwood, Tasman, South Island, NZ
29 October 2019 | Nelson, South Island, NZ
22 October 2019 | Christchurch, Te Waka o Māui, New Zealand
15 October 2019 | Scarborough, Queensland
05 October 2019 | Scarborough marina, near Brisbane, Australia
16 August 2019 | Southport Spit, Gold Coast, Australia
06 August 2019 | South Stradbroke Island, Gold Coast, Queensland
15 July 2019 | Boatworks, Coomera River, Gold Coast
25 May 2019 | Biggera Waters, Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia

Lukim Yu Wantaim, Vanuatu!

02 September 2018 | Mare, Isles Loyaute, New Cal
Alison and Geoff, hot and sunny
Unnerving! - the reef break at Lenakel by the anchorage.

We're heading back to the Loyalties after a pleasant, but brief, stop in Lenakel, Tanna's somewhat decrepit main centre. We are taking advantage of a nice beam wind to make the 130 mile hop back to Marè in the Loyalties where we will stop for a few days while a big fat high (bfh) rolls by below us, strengthening the trade winds to an uncomfortable strength.

Our main purpose in going to Vanuatu was to extend our customs limit on Saraoni in New Cal. By leaving and re-entering we are allowed another 6 months before an import tax of 18% is payable. We don't need an extra 6 months, but we do want enough time to choose when to make the hop down to Aotearoa rather than be forced out by the Douanes!

It's a bit of a culture shock going to Vanuatu. New Cal. is an affluent western country, albeit with an indigenous 3rd world layer. Kanaky in New Cal. is like Vanuatu, but bolstered by an economic subsidy from the French state. Is Vanuatu poor? In many ways, it is, but the ni-Vanuatu are a resilient, self-reliant lot. The majority of the people own their own land, build their own homes, grow all their own food, have few problems with crime or violence and have retained a strong identity with their family, tribe, language and culture. There's no easy economic value to place on all that, otherwise they would probably be considered a lot wealthier.

We'll be back in Vanuatu on our next trip up to the islands, whenever that is. It's not such an easy country to visit, as the chain of islands stretches South East / North West. Any progress along the chain makes it agonising getting back against the trades. It's easier to head on to the Solomons, then PNG and Australia.

Tanna, in particular, is a popular, but tricky place to visit. It's the second island in the chain from the South after Aneityum, where we stopped last year. The only safe anchorage is Port Resolution. This is close to Tanna's famous active volcano, Mt Yasur, but there is no way to clear Customs and Immigration there, no bank and no fuel unless you pay someone to take you over to Lenakel, an expensive 1 and a half hour ride on a rough road. Lenakel has the services, but it's not close to the volcano; its 'anchorage' is pretty hairy at the best of time and has to be abandoned quickly in any onshore winds, or big southerly swell. We must have had two of Lenakel's calmest days, but the rollers crashing on the reef that gave the anchorage some shelter, were still quite spectacularly unnerving!

Another difference between the close neighbours of New Cal. and Vanuatu - it's a lot warmer further north! The southern winter sailing months in New Cal. are more like a NZ summer. It's great for walking and cycling, but a bit on the cool side for swimming, snorkelling and diving. Tanna was a lot warmer; the water off Lenakel was crystal clear and significantly warmer than New Cal.

Thanks must go to Iau and Willie, Lenakel's Customs and Immigration officers. Iau kept in touch with us all the way from Kuto in the Isle of Pines. What bureaucrat anywhere in the world would send you a personalised email after leaving a country thanking you for visiting and wishing you a safe trip? Can you imagine that when flying into and out of somewhere as an ordinary tourist? Vanuatu Customs is up there in our estimation for general niceness, with Fiji and Yemen. Maybe Yemen is still ahead! The Port official in Aden actually burst out in song after welcoming us on radio when our yachtie convoy of 20 arrived off that country's troubled port city back in 2010. More was to come when we checked in, when all we got were smiles, and 'Salaam Aleikums!' Poor Yemen and the Yemenis, now devastated by a forgotten but deadly civil war, sponsored and subsidised by the U.S. and the Saudis.



Coastal supply boat at the Lenakel wharf



Coastal supply boat leaving Lenake





Lenakel stores




Outrigger with a Mercury outboard


Comments
Vessel Name: Saraoni
Vessel Make/Model: South Coast 36
Hailing Port: Tutukaka, New Zealand
Crew: Alison and Geoff Williams
About:
Saraoni is named after an island in Milne Bay which guards and protects one of our favourite anchorages - Kana Kopi Bay - frequently occupied by us while we were teaching in Alotau, PNG. We have lived, cruised and worked for the last 30 years on three very different boats. [...]
Extra: CONTACT DETAILS Telephone / SMS number +64 28 432 5941 NZ mobile no.) +61 477 285 361 (Australian mobile no.) Email saraoni@gmail.com (main email address)
Saraoni's Photos - Main
A collection of photos taken during the Tiki Tour of the Southern half of the South Island, November / December 2019
40 Photos
Created 15 December 2019
9 Photos
Created 2 April 2019
Photos taken of Saraoni. All interior photos were taken in the last week.
10 Photos
Created 2 April 2019
The ABCs - Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao are mostly low lying dry, scrubby islands in the Western Caribbean near the Venezuelan coastline
15 Photos
Created 21 May 2014
12 Photos
Created 20 March 2014
4 Photos
Created 9 March 2014
Images taken in and around Suriname's capital
40 Photos
Created 9 February 2014
River Images
8 Photos
Created 28 January 2014
Images of the 2 islands in the Cape Verde island group we visited on our way across the Atlantic in 2013 - Sao Vicente and Santo Antaao.
37 Photos
Created 26 December 2013
3 Photos
Created 16 December 2013
1 Photo
Created 16 December 2013
21 Photos
Created 23 August 2013
What we saw in the USA
14 Photos
Created 21 August 2013
9 Photos
Created 19 August 2013
Unexpected meeting with old friends "in the woods".
6 Photos
Created 24 June 2013
A brother found amongst the gorges of the Cevennes
5 Photos
Created 10 June 2013
Photographic images of our long walk along the Appalachian mountains in the USA
26 Photos
Created 10 June 2013
17 Photos
Created 19 December 2012
15 Photos
Created 25 November 2012
9 Photos
Created 16 November 2012
25 Photos
Created 15 November 2012
16 Photos
Created 20 October 2012
2 Photos
Created 4 June 2012
Greece is in the throes of a recession, but they still have the last laugh - never far from the sun, the sea, colour, culture and bags of history. The photos document our Aegean odyssey from May to September 2011
31 Photos
Created 17 December 2011
O.K. We're mad, but we somehow prefer a home on the sea to one on dry land.
12 Photos
Created 17 December 2011
Kathmandu, Patan and Bhaktapur - the three ancient city states of the Kathmandu valley have mediaeval architectural wonders in their Durbars and old town areas - a meshing and merging of Hinduism, Buddhism and materialism
9 Photos
Created 17 December 2011
Some of the shots taken of us while on one of our 30 odd days on the three main mountain trails we walked in the Anapurnas and Helambu region of Nepal's side of the Himalayas
10 Photos
Created 15 December 2011
People make the Himalayas a unique place to walk through. From Hindu rice and buffalo farmers in the foothills to the Buddhist villages in the highlands so influenced by Tibetan ancestry and trade over the passes
16 Photos
Created 15 December 2011
Nepal has ten of the world's highest mountains within its boundaries or shared with India and Tibet - these are truly giant peaks!
22 Photos
Created 15 December 2011
These were all photographed in the wilds of Chitwan and Bardia National Parks - which are two of the last havens of biodiversity in Nepal's low lying Terai district.
18 Photos
Created 14 December 2011
Saraoni hauled out on Finike's hardstand for biennial maintenance and painting
3 Photos
Created 26 April 2011
8 Photos | 1 Sub-Album
Created 6 March 2011
4 Photos
Created 6 March 2011
Ruined city
4 Photos
Created 10 January 2011
3 Photos
Created 10 January 2011
12 Photos
Created 10 January 2011
7 Photos
Created 30 December 2010
5 Photos
Created 28 December 2010
6 Photos
Created 11 December 2010
The small rocky island of Kastellorizou is Greece's most remote island
7 Photos
Created 11 December 2010
Cruising and walking Turkey's Lycian coast September and October 2010
19 Photos
Created 11 December 2010
8 Photos
Created 6 December 2010
Images taken while walking sections of the 500 km Lycian Way or Lykia Yolu on the South West Mediterranean Coast of Turkey
11 Photos
Created 9 November 2010

Post Circumnavigation

Who: Alison and Geoff Williams
Port: Tutukaka, New Zealand