02 July 2016 | Fornells
The town of Fornells is on a large bay with a narrow entrance from the north coast of Menorca. It is a revisit for Carolyn who brought Mitch and Josh here to sail dinghies for a holiday about 11 years ago. ‘Menorca Sailing’ is still here and the dinghies and windsurfers are out each day. We anchored just south of the town beyond the main area of mooring buoys and opposite the southern end of the island in the bay. The holding seemed reasonable in about 8 meters of water but we have read warnings about the ground being so chewed up by anchors that it doesn’t hold well. We spend the day on ‘boat jobs’ including trying to cut out a template to paint her name onto the stern of ‘Fid’ the dinghy. It took a while and then Chris tried to apply the first coat but the wind had got up and the dinghy was bouncing about a bit.
We went ashore the first evening and walked around the small town. It’s very attractive with many of the older traditional style of houses and a number of bars and restaurants. Trip Advisor had recommended ‘La Guapa’ in one of the back streets and it lived up to its billing. We had Tuna Carpaccio and a very nice home grown salad as starters and then both enjoyed the ‘Crusty Lamb Cutlets’ along with some Vino Tinto. We declined the offer of coffee, but accepted their offer to sample their homebrewed limoncello which they put on our table and left us to top up our glasses - it was delicious nowhere near as sweet and sickly as the manufactured versions. We agree with Trip Advisor, well worth a visit for the quality of food and the friendly staff.
The next day we spent much of the time on research for the trip across to Sardinia and the harbours we will want to visit. We use ‘Noonsite’ on the web and the Cruising Association’s App ‘CaptainsMate’ to get other sailors views of places and have both the charts and the pilot books for the area. A general plan emerged to head for the south west corner of Sardinia and work our way around to our reserved berth at Cagliari from there. We have flights booked to return home for a summer break on 21st July. We are watching the weather in the 200 miles between us and Sardinia closely each day now to understand the patterns of wind and waves to help us spot the right weather window to cross. The trip will take around 32 hours so probably leaving early one morning to arrive the following afternoon.
We also managed to get the second coat on Fid’s name but when the template was removed the result was a bit of a mess with paint running inside the card template. Bouncy seas stopped any delicate work then but the next morning Chris spent an hour or so with q-tips and acetone cleaning up the mess. We will have to do some more touch up when we can get her on a solid surface as the paint edges of the letters are somewhat ragged at present.
That evening we walked about the town making a couple of purchases until Chris had a ‘Pizza urge’ as we walked past such an establishment. It was Friday and that’s our traditional pizza night but after the experience he reluctantly had to agree he needed to curb these urges as this was the second ‘only average’ pizza we have suffered recently. ‘Boat pizza’ made on board Splice is much nicer!
Today is Saturday and there are forecasts of stronger winds overnight tonight so we have decided to pick up one of the mooring buoys here (E30) for the night in case the holding is dubious in 20knots plus. With these strong north winds the swell on the north coast will not be fun for a couple of days so we are a bit stuck as we wanted to explore more of the Calas to the west of us on this north coast but conditions will not be suitable. We will decide tomorrow when we see the forecast where the next harbour will be.
Photo: The town of Fornells from our initial anchorage in the bay.