We continued to hop along the coast of Southern Italy and made it as far as Brindisi. The thing about hopping along the coast to arrive at a destination some way off is that it means you are doing very long days and when you arrive you have no energy to go off and explore. This means you probably need to stay at least two days to be able to see any of the places you stop at. Each time you anchor it is necessary to lower the dinghy into the water and reverse the process when it is time to go – so its a bit of a pain.
As it happens, we have only managed to go ashore in Santa Maria di Leuca and Brindisi.
In Brindisi, we moored stern to the quay in a fab location by the Appian Way steps; the boat was thoroughly put to bed; we had completed our log updates; changed into our shore clothes and even applied a little lippy (Just Sarah!), we were just getting ready to disembark – so some considerable time had elapsed…when an official in a Brindisi to Corfu Ragatta 2019 T-shirt showed up and told us emphatically that we couldn’t park there. Grrr! Where was he when we came in??
So, we headed off again, this time to the marina. We were tied up securely by about 7pm. After sorting out the paperwork with the office (all in Italian!) and getting ship shape we decided on a pizza supper in the marina restaurant. (42 Euros per night, laundry, more sinks at various heights and showers and loos than I have ever seen in any marina, friendly marineros and staff, just a bus ride out of the main town.)
Our plan was to carry on up the east coast to Vieste and then a short 50 mile hop across to Croatia. By now we has spent a lot of time motoring and looking at the weather for the next five days we would be doing a lot more motoring, we decided that the best possible chance of sailing to Croatia would be the following day. So plan A was abandoned in favour of a crossing direct from Brindisi. The following morning whilst Ian sorted out an issue with the batteries and filled up with water, I headed to the mini market to stock up on supplies for the thirty hour crossing to Ubli, Lastovo, Croatia.
We managed to sail all day and all night and then motored the remaining 30nm when the wind died to 6 knots.
En route we saw a couple of pods of dolphins and some big fish swam with the boat for about an hour.
Now that we have given up fishing after the fishing line debacle in Syracuse, we see fish! I could practically have scooped them out with a net! Typical!
Lastovo is absolutely GORGEOUS! We found the check – in process to be smooth and efficient. The people were lovely. The place is spotless. We hired bikes from Dado at Rentacarlastovo and he brought them right to us. We enjoyed a big day cycling all round the island although we did find 5km of up on a gravel road in 35 degree heat quite a challenge!
We arrived back about 1800h in time for a refreshing beer with our new friend.
We didn’t even mind paying the National Marine Park fees of 200Kn/night. That’s about £25.
After three days we had a great sail north to Korcula and a pretty anchorage on the east side of an isthmus. Then the following day we managed a nice motor/sail east and round to an anchorage south of Korcula Town.
We have been here three days and its going to be hard to leave. We are in a fab, safe anchorage. It is only a short dinghy ride to Korcula. There is a pleasant breeze. The water is crystal clear.
Now, THIS, is what I signed up for!