The time spent in the Canaries so far felt like a holiday – relaxation, discovery, enjoyment.
After leaving the marina in Arrecife, we headed south to Playa Papagaya (a number of small sandy beaches that attract some naturists) where we anchored for three nights. We swam, sunbathe and went on a day trip ashore. We discovered the location of the Museo Atlantico – an underwater museum exhibiting ten sculptures of the British artist Jackson Taylor. This would have been interesting to visit but since the sculptures were on the sea bed (at a depth of twelve metres) I was not compelled enough to take scuba diving at a very dear price.
The island has many attractions – caves, volcanoes, salinas, Timanfaya National Park, vineyards, etc. We had visited some of the Canary Islands before and this time we want to make the most of our proximity to the water. The overall dryness of the scenery is slightly off putting for me, but Sorin quite enjoys it…
Our newly made friends (a delightful French family with two young boys and Nelson, the cat) joined the anchorage in Playa Papagaya for the last evening. Every year they spend six months at sea and six months on land – probably best combination to remain ‘grounded’! They are a bunch of special people, and so we are very grateful to have crossed paths.
The highlight of our stay in Playa Papagaya was Sorin harpooning his first fish on our last day. More and varied captures followed.
After managing to lift the anchor (tangled around and under volcanic boulders) by numerous manoeuvres under Sorin’s skilful instruction (from the water where he could see the anchor chain) we headed to Rubicon – touristy lively place with a posh marina and lots of bars and restaurants. Live music everywhere.
After provisioning, we headed south-east to the Isle of Lobos, a nature reserve for over 30 years – largely unspoiled, here life abounds and the surrounding waters are perfect for snorkelling and diving. The island is named after the sea wolfs who once lived here.
We had a fantastic time – my first snorkelling experience of the trip, canoeing to the nearby lagoons, long walk in the natural reserve and many scrumptious captures with the spear gun. Great stay overall!
The winds were due to pick up, so we sailed south on the east coast of Fuerteventura to drop the hook in a better protected anchorage – this was Puerto de Rosario, in the capital of Fuerteventura.
Fuerteventura is the second largest island in the archipelago. We sailed along its vast deserted beaches and high dunes of white sand that gives the island a unique sense of solitude.
We did not have the chance to see much yet, but overall, the island seems to be more colourful than the neighbouring Lanzarote – in architecture and in its volcanoes – surreal piles of exotic spices: saffron, chilli and coriander!
Once the strong winds settle we will continue our sail south and then west to Gran Canaria.