Rick & Ami's 8 Year Sailing Adventure

...or, how to log 8000 miles in 8 years!

12 January 2010 | Southern Caribbean
01 January 2010 | Bahia de Chalon, Colombia
19 May 2009 | San Blas Islands, Panama
25 December 2008
05 August 2007 | Mochima, Venezuelan coast
25 May 2007 | Trinidad, West Indies
28 February 2007 | Trinidad, West Indies
23 December 2005 | Trinidad, West Indies
12 August 2005 | Trinidad
14 July 2005 | Trinidad, West Indies
28 June 2005 | St. Lucia, Eastern Caribbean
09 December 2004 | Peru
10 June 2004 | Chatham Bay, Union Island, The Grenadines
19 March 2004 | Trinidad, West Indies
22 December 2003 | Trinidad, West Indies
11 December 2003 | Trinidad, West Indies
13 November 2003 | Trinidad, West Indies

Happy New Year from Colombia!

01 January 2010 | Bahia de Chalon, Colombia
"I'm going to lose weight, stop smoking, and spend more quality time with the kids." Every year, Rick announces the same three New Year's Resolutions. He cracks me up.

It's New Year's Day. We're anchored in Bahia de Cholon, a beautiful, quiet, mangrove-lined bay on the Caribbean coast of Colombia. It's so tranquil here, though we are only about 15 miles down the coast from the hustle and bustle of Cartagena. We're fully provisioned, have completed our many boat projects, and are ready to spend the next 4-6 months in very remote places. We're waiting for a good weather window to sail to the San Blas Islands of Panama.

New Year's Day is a good time to reflect on the highlights of the past year. Our eighth year on the boat was full of delightful adventure, new experiences, and plenty of challenges. We logged about 1250 nautical miles since leaving the ABC Islands in November 08, sailing from Curacao to Cartagena, then to the San Blas, and back to Cartagena.

We fell in love with Colombia....the Latin music, the rich culture, and the friendly people. The old walled city, El Centro Historico, was magical, just exploding with history and charm. We loved to walk the streets in the evenings, delighting in the old Colonial architecture, the flower-laden balconies, and narrow cobblestone streets. It was not unusual to hear a band playing traditional Colombian music on the corner, with an accordion, a local flute, a clarinet, and some drums. And maybe a dance troupe, asking for tips from the Colombian tourists, as they dance their traditional Afro-Colombiano folk dances in the public squares.

We were captivated by the natural beauty of the islands of the San Blas archipelago, along the Caribbean coast of Panama. We anchored alone off many a deserted, palm-fringed island. We explored miles and miles of coral reef. And we got to meet the indigenous Kuna Indians, the only inhabitants of the San Blas, who live as they have always lived, primatively, in near isolation. What a treat to visit their villages, and learn about their lifestyle and culture. A really special treat, as the only visitors the Kunas are likely to meet are cruisers like ourselves.

We also enjoyed a wonderful visit with family and friends in California last summer...lots of love and laughter.

We hope this next year brings everyone lots of love and laughter, good heath and hope, and some adventure....

Nuevo ano feliz!!!!!
Vessel Name: Tara Vana
Vessel Make/Model: Nautitech 435 catamaran
Hailing Port: Laguna Beach, CA
Crew: Rick & Ami Bergstrom
About: With little previous sailing experience, we decided to sell everything we owned, buy a cruising catamaran, and explore the world.
Extra: Retired at 40, we've been living aboard Tara Vana in the Caribbean since Sept. 2001. It has been a rich and varied experience. New people. New cultures. Lots of dance and music. And spectacular scenery.
Tara Vana's Photos - Main
Cruising the Colombian coast....wandering the streets of El Centro Historico in Cartagena....we fell in love with the Colombian people and their colorful Latin culture...
40 Photos | 3 Sub-Albums
Created 6 January 2010
A slice of Paris in the Caribbean, "...French wine and cheeses; warm summer breezes..."
29 Photos
Created 5 January 2010
Stunning scenery, welcoming locals and a strong music culture endeared us to the islands of the Eastern Caribbean
45 Photos
Created 5 January 2010
Trinidad feels like home...we spent a good part of our first 6 years on the boat there...we have family there now and so many wonderful memories...!
1 Photo | 6 Sub-Albums
Created 5 January 2010
We've explored so many incredibly beautiful places in the Caribbean....take a peek at our paradise!
55 Photos
Created 4 January 2010
100 miles north of the Venezuelan coast, these islands of the Dutch Antilles offer spectacular diving, sailing, and cruiser socializing
39 Photos
Created 4 January 2010
We loved exploring the underwater world of the Caribbean, especially in Bonaire...meet some of our newest friends!
33 Photos
Created 4 January 2010
We so enjoy the other cruisers we've met along the way...a wonderful international community of fun-seeking, adventurous spirits...
71 Photos
Created 2 January 2010
We loved Venezuela, especially the remote offshore island groups of Los Roques and Las Aves.
39 Photos
Created 1 January 2010
Take a virtual tour of our boat! We've got lots of cool pictures....
30 Photos | 8 Sub-Albums
Created 1 January 2010
We delighted in the scenic beauty and tranquility of the San Blas Islands, and enjoyed meeting the indigenous Kuna Indians
45 Photos
Created 30 December 2009
A quick get-away to see this part of the world and visit our friends on SV ZEN
34 Photos
Created 21 October 2009

Who: Rick & Ami Bergstrom
Port: Laguna Beach, CA