Tag Archives: anchorages in Croatia

Onward and Northward

Heading North from Uglijan opp Zadar via Molat to Olib and back down to Dugi Otok.

After Paddy and Louis departed for Zadar we headed north towards the island of Molat. There is an anchorage on the east side of the island which is protected from south winds that were expected for the next couple of days.

We had a good sail up and were pleasantly surprised by the space available in the anchorage. The depth was 6 metres, the water clear and the swell non-existent. Perfect.

Next morning, we set off to walk across the island to the west side via the village

Post off ice and Post bike in Molat town.

to the harbour of Lucina on the west side where the ferry comes into.

Harbour front in Lucina.

The harbour front was lovely and we enjoyed a chat with some Yorkshire Tikes (Rondy and Dave on Elise) who were proudly flying their white rose.

David and Rondy told us of the traumas that occurred here during the storm of the 2nd August (we were in Uglian with Paddy at the time) when six boats were washed ashore in the eastern anchorage. Trees were felled and all kinds of damage was done. Again, we realised how lucky we had been to be in a protected anchorage.

We left Molat and headed to Olib.

Again expecting south winds. This bay on the west side of Olib offers good protection. We anchored off near a de-commissioned mooring block and had a quiet couple of days here. We decided to walk across the island to look at the anchorage on the other side.

Setting off down a track bounded on both sides by dry stone walls with styles. Just like Yorkshire!

The main track petered out and soon we found ourselves battling through the undergrowth, brambles, bilberry twigs and overgrown trees and shrubbery in an attempt to reach our destination. After what seemed like an eternity, we burst out of the vegetation on to the main concreted path that leads between the two coasts; sweating, cursing, scratched, bleeding, with leaves in our hair and thorns, spikes in our skin.

Definitely beer o’clock even though it was only 1130h!

We heard about an intriguing sounding Donkey Festival

taking place on Dugi Otok some time in August so we about faced and headed south. We found a great anchorage north of Sali town and whizzed into Sali in the dinghy that evening, arriving in the harbour to be shrouded in wisps of smoke and clouds of cordite from the fireworks display floating off into the atmosphere.

The place was buzzing. We discovered that the following evening there would be a parade, donkey music and a donkey race. We were up for that.

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The parade was led by the Old Timers (see pic) followed by a stream of men marching along blowing into cow horns. The noise produced was reminiscent of donkey braying and was accompanied by a beating rhythm created from clanking pieces of metal inside an old fashioned hot coals style of iron.

The marching band playing cow horns and iron!

They beat their donkey tattoo all down the harbour front, sashaying in and out of each other in snaking lines.

It really was quite a spectacle, if somewhat limited in its dynamics, being essentially one note from the horn and one rhythm from the iron. However, what it lacked in musicality it more than made up for in volume. The great cacophony continued to reverberate round the harbour and everyone enjoyed the quirkiness of it all.

Next the donkeys came behind, being alternatively cajoled, tempted and bullied into following along.

One guy leading a donkey had carrots tucked into his belt.

Here we were fortunate to be sitting near a delightful Croatian lady from the island who had lived in California since 1967. She now come ‘home’ every year with here husband Tony who was the flag bearer of the parade.

Then came the donkey race…a mad dash round the harbour on the aforementioned donkeys. This was quite a sight to behold. Poor donkeys.

There was an out and out winner of the eight or so donkeys in the race and he was duly presented with a huge prosciutto ham. I don’t know what the donkey was given.

After all this excitement, we bid farewell to our new best friends and headed back to the boat.

In Murter once more, we refuel-ed, stocked up on provisions and water, did a stack of laundry and prepared for the next few weeks.

We met up with two Brit boats and had a boozy and very late night on Linea with Chris from Windependent and Miles and Bridget from Nirvana.

We then had a good sail south to Rogoznica from where I would be leaving Ian and Linea to pop back briefly to the UK for a reunion with the girls I used to share a house with on Brudenell Avenue whilst at Carnegie – Leeds in the 80s.

Next time, read about my weekend in Leeds and after that about our time with Keira and Lucy as we take in some of the southern Croatian islands.

Carry on Croatia

Old Town Quay Trogir

So far we remain very impressed by Croatia. There are beautiful islands, pristine waters and stunning coves. There is interesting history and stunning churches, buildings and monuments. The sailing has been good and there are loads of free anchorages so living is relatively cheap.

We were very much looking forward to visiting Old Korcula town as we had heard so much about it. What worried us was how we go about visiting without it costing us an arm and a leg. After much research and advice from fellow cruisers, we decided we would anchor a couple of miles away and zip in in the dinghy. We visited couple of times and one evening we attended a farmers’ market. It was a very low key affair with mostly wine, tomatoes, olive oil and lavendar on sale – but pleasant enough. We bought some red Crno Suho Vino Plavac Mali and a white Petrusac made from Posip grapes from this characterful guy with a splendid moustache.

Next day, we did a drive by the monastery so I could take a decent pic. Here is the Franciscan Monastery of Badija.

After our Vrnik anchorage, we were heading for Loviste on the tip of the Peljesac Peninsula. We made the journey in good time and anchored off. It was a huge bay with good protection from wind and swell. We took the dinghy ashore and found a nice quiet village with supermarket, post office, bars and restaurants.

Next stop was Scedro Island and then we made the jump to the archipelago of the Pakleni Islands which look like a series of joined up epiglottises!

The Pakleni Islands.

We headed for an anchorage but it was so incredibly busy with day trip boats from nearby Hvar. It was noisy and unpleasant and there was a lot of swell from the boats buzzing about like mosquitoes. In the morning, we were getting too close to a boat behind so we decided to leave. However, the wind, once we were outside the protection of this anchorage, had really got up and we battled and bounced into it for a couple of hours. Then we had a fantastic sail northwards with three reefs in the sail.

It being a Sunday, we passed some one hundred and fifty charter yachts heading south on the first day of their week’s charter. We were the only boat going north – it was like dodgems! A lot of the charter boats were over-powered and struggling with too much sail. We were glad to have only a tiny bit of sail out. We arrived on Brac and anchored in a still and calm bay east of Milna, Uvala Lucice (middle bay) It was all peace and quiet. We tied back to the shore and stayed there for a couple of days.

After a further stop in an anchorage (deserted) on the south coast of Solta island we made our way to Ciovo to the north and anchored off a lovely camp site. Then onwards to Trogir. I had booked us onto the town quay there so we could fill up with water and pick up crew.

Despite the searing heat bouncing off the quay and the buildings, we had to crack on with all our jobs and Ian had to go to the dentist for what turned out to be root canal treatment. He is feeling much better now.

We had a little time to wander round old Trogir, which is beautiful before it was time to catch a bus to Split airport and pick up Paula.

Next time, read all about our lovely week bobbing up the coast to the north to reach the fantastic Krka National Park.