Tourism in Barcelona

Barcelona Port

We’re on our way home for a few weeks and spent a couple of days in Barcelona en route.

More Maintenance (& Improvements)

The AC panel has been tidied up with a new remote panel; the base of the mast has been prepared for painting; the tender cover has been repaired; the network has been tweaked; a new smart TV has been has been installed.

Back in Palma

New Genoa Installed

We left Gruissan a few days later than planned – flat tyre on the car, boatyard not ready to put the boat back in the water, bad weather, and finally, a broken tap in the guest head.

Eventually we set sail and sailed straight to Sóller, Mallorca – 202 nm in 29 hours. After a very pleasant quiet night in Sóller (for a change), it was round the coast to Palma and the home for the boat for the next few weeks.

There’s another long list of jobs before we’re ready to start the ARC+ in November – digital fuel and water guages and calibration, new chartplotters, a remote control panel for the generator (the panel on the genny is inaccessible), engine and generator service, new foresails (already installed) – the list goes on and on. We’re also filling the boat up with spare parts.

This weekend we had a break and hired a car. Yesterday we drove up to the north of the island and visited Polença and Alcudia. Today we went east to Santanyi and Cala Figuera. Back to work tomorrow!

Back to Gruissan

After lots more maintenance and lots more visitors (Carol, Ruth, Jo, Spider, Gill, Andy) we left Palma on Wednesday 27 October for the short trip to Andratx before the long trip to Port Argelès-sur-Mer.

A final evening in Andratx (most of the mooring buoys had been removed) was very pleasant and the next morning we motored north to the Spanish mainland and on to the French border, ably assisted by Batty. Approaching Port Argelès-sur-Mer we flew the Code Zero (a lightweight sail for reaching) but after a few minutes a huge gust luffed us up and the bowsprit, holding the tack of the code zero, broke and the sail flogged itself to pieces.

The fun wasn’t quite over as the next morning at Port Argelès-sur-Mer the wind was Beaufort Force 9 gusting 10! Needless to say, we stayed put until early afternoon when the wind dropped and we motored the final 35 nm to Gruissan.

On Sunday we spent the morning preparing Mistral for the winter e.g. removing sails, protecting lines, removing the bimini, filling the fuel tank etc. The boat will be at Gruissan for the winter before new adventures in 2022.

Thanks to everyone who helped us in 2021 – friends, family and contractors!

Maintenance Week

Releasing the Outhaul
Releasing the Outhaul

Chartplotter, mainsail furling, mainsail service, RPM gauge repair, rust stains from cleats, loose oil breather pipe, the list goes on and on. It would seem endless without the help of Mike and Guardian Yacht Services.

Round the Island

Mallorca, that is.

With Shirls on board again and fair weather forecast, we thought we’d sail clockwise around Mallorca.

On The Beach
On The Beach

Our route was Palma – Andratx – Soller – Deia – Soller – Pollensa – Port Petro – Sa Rapita beach – Palma. The fun started in Deia when we dropped anchor to go to lunch at the famous Sa Foradada restaurant. The anchor got stuck in rocks, I missed lunch, and we waited until 1015 the next morning for a diver to come and free our anchor.

After a second night in Soller (wind and rain, lots of boats having problems in the middle of the night) we continued on to Pollensa, Port Petro, the beautiful Sa Rapita beach and back to Palma. But not before the cockpit chartplotter packed up and the mainsail refused to furl. The joys of boat ownership.

August in the Balearics

August has been and gone and with it some of our guests – Laura, Rory, Laura 2, the Nicols family (Calum, Ceri, Isabel, Mia and Tilly), Amanda and Valerie.

We’ve done mostly short trips exploring the south of Mallorca and anchoring overnight when the weather was suitable. Cala Blanca, Andratx, Soller, Deia, Sa Rapita and Las Isletas have all been visited at least once. We’re looking forward to returning to Portals Vells but in August it was always too crowded.

It was lovely having our French neighbours on board (neighbours in France, not French!). Everybody did plenty of eating, drinking, swimming and snorkelling, and we even managed an evening of Mario Kart!

Sailing Again

We are finally on the water at last! The boat reentered the water at Gruissan at the beginning of August and since then we’ve sailed to Argeles-sur-Mer, Palamos, Barcelona, Soller (Mallorca) and Palma. 296 nm.

The leg from Barcelona to Soller (on the North-West coast of Mallorca) was particularly noteworthy. We had a force 6 on our beam for most of the day and we blasted along at 8-9 kt! The maximum (GPS) speed we saw was 9.3 kt and the average for the passage was 7.7kt.