PORTUGAL - Cascais, Arrabida, Sines, Sagres, Lagos and Portimao
Once we had recovered from the drama of the huge waves hitting the marina, we felt ready to move on. Along with our friends on Edewsia and Jolli Jumper, we moved back out to the Cascais anchorage which, in the right conditions, is idyllic.
On a calm, mirror like morning we weighed anchor to sail to Arrabida, in company with Edewsia and Jolli Jumper.
After motoring for the first few hours, the wind came up enough for the kite to be raised as we approached Cabo Espichel.
The wind was not strong enough to get us to the Arrabida anchorage before dark so we dropped our kites and motored at 6 kts. The approach to Arrabida is a little tricky as it is surrounded by shallows with only one narrow channel to follow. As we started the approach, concentrating hard to ensure we didn't take the wrong course in, we were somewhat taken aback to have a large black rib, with 2 Policia Maritime on board, roar alongside and ask ( very politely) to come alongside to check our papers. Clearly we had been overly worried about the narrow channel. We, of course, complied immediately. With papers checked, they informed us that Arrabida was a nature reserve and had anchoring restrictions but we could anchor about 500m off the shore which was fine in the conditions. The Policia Maritime were exceptionally polite and thoroughly professional.
Rounding Cabo Espichel
Arrabida was a beautiful anchorage but the 20 knt kabatic wind did keep us awake until it turned off at 3am. Needless to say, when we weighed anchor to head for Sines the following morning the wind had once again gone off shift. Sines, the birth place of Vasco da Gama, proved to be a charming place but after a few days, in which we helped Ted on Edewsia with an engine problem, we were keen to get round Cabo de Sao Vicente before the weather turned against us.
Again in company with Edewsia and Jolli Jumper, we slipped Sines marina at 3am to ensure we got to the next anchorage at Sagres before dark.
We took advantage of the calm weather to sail very close to Cabo Vicente - quite spectacular.
After a rolly night at anchor off Sagres we sailed slowly to Lagos to meet up with our friends on Ocean Warrior before they sailed for the Canaries.
We had an enjoyable evening with the Ocean Warrior crew, but Lagos Marina was very expensive so we slipped for Portimao where we intend to spend the winter, assuming we like what we find.
Cabo de Sao Vicente