Although Menorca is a much flatter island with hardly any mountains, it still has amazing cliffs and caves forming a very interesting coast line. Lientjie and I were permanently positioned on the deck, armed with cameras and binoculars and got totally lost in the beautiful sights of massive caves, fringed with ink blue water! With hardly any wind and very smooth water, we could get very close to the shore. It needs to be seen to believe! Really stunning!
We stopped at a small island just before Manor (capital of Menorca) for a very welcome swim. For the first time we had to get a trip-line fixed to the anchor in case it gets caught underneath one of the cables running on the bottom. It took a fair bit of manoeuvring as the line was too long and we were unsure of how to do it. Lientjie had to handle the trip-line while I anchored! Letting it down was one thing but pulling it up became a problem as it got caught and entangled in on the bridle. The captain endeavour to work on a better plan and the next time we had to use it, it worked like a charm!
Mahon: Anchoring is only possible in a bay just outside of Mahon called Cala Taulera. Space were limited for a big yacht and it took a double try to get the right spot with the edges of the cala getting very shallow. Our Pommie neighbour on the boat “Annette” is just about a local in the bay and chased us away from where we were the first time – reckoning we are imposing his safety zone and might put his boat in danger. Reluctantly (due to his attitude) we moved and waited a while for some boats to leave before finding a good spot. In the process our dinghy that was drifting alongside slowly filled up from the engine water – luckily Lientjie noticed it and could pull it away, but only after it took in plenty of water!
To the astonishment and entertainment to many of the boats in the bay, our neighbouring yacht (also from the UK) had a beautiful nymph in pitch black long wavy locks, having her daily shower on the front deck without a shred of clothes on (as you do when you shower, I guess) and her cheerful partner was holding the makeshift shower (a 5 litre water bottle with holes punched in the lid … yes , correct … that is how much detail could be observed!) Johann was distracted by emptying the dinghy and we gave him a running commentary of what was happening with the neighbours (he somehow found time to have a quick peep). We thought she must have been very dirty as it was a very extensive (intense) shower and turning and swirling in the few drops of water which looked more like a movie shoot than a cleaning exercise to us! At least she was good-looking and the boys and men had some free entertainment before the sun sets!
We were now anchored right underneath the massive Fort La Mola , which made the captain very excited! He would not let a fort go past without visiting it. Luckily I had company on board and happily took him ashore to roam the ancient ruins all by himself!
Going to Mahon from the anchorage is a long way and it left us feeling slightly uncomfortable leaving the boat in this overly filled anchorage for that long. So, at dusk we took the dinghy around to one of the neighbouring towns (San Carlos) where a festival was in full swing. (Celebrations involved horses dressed up with decorations on their fore heads with tail ties embroided with colourful flowers as well as colourful saddle cloths. This festival dates back to the Middle Ages! Unfortunately we arrived just in time to have missed the horse stunts but dodging the fresh droppings everywhere in the streets was enough evidence to us!)
What a charming little place! The half circled little harbour with its stone walls, shops, stalls and restaurants all around it makes a charming picture! Walking a street up from the shore we hit a fabulous merry-go-round with quite a variety of entertainment for the kids and semi-adults and a massive sausage sizzle (see picture!) and more leather crafts and handbags! Goodness me … I didn’t think we could look at one more handbag that we haven’t seen before!
Going back to the boat at night was pretty interesting with no headlight and going through channels and around small rock islands – we first thought a boat was anchored in the channel and left his navigation lights on until we heard this big commotion and realised that we almost hit it! The same happened with the next vessel – a power yacht that we just could not see if it was moving or not until they blinded us with a spotlight to warn us that they were just about upon us!
We left at about lunch time the next day knowing that we will have to come back to Mahon (as we need to pick up a few items we have ordered online and haven’t yet seen the place.) Rumours have it that Mahon is most of the time fully booked and very expensive. After proper investigation by Johann, it sounds like it was the case and that they have shot them in the foot with their ridiculous prices, so much so that it scared customers away and Johann found it to be only two thirds to capacity and that the prices are not that outrages at all (apparently a special price at the moment). When we get back, a dock might be worth the while if we want to spend some time to see the city.
Going more to the south we found Cala Canutells to be just the place we want to stay. A narrow cala with mooring buoys to be tied to the front and back of the boat which will keep us securely in place. The water was just beautiful, blue and clear with a fair bit of fish. Lientjie swam out to the beach and I just floated around the boat on the safety ring enjoying the cool blue sea! We later on went in to town and for the second time ever found ducks on the sea! A sangria has never tasted better when having a fabulous view to go with it!Looking back to all the places we have been in Menorca … this must be one of my very “special” cala … small, intimate, no room for big speed boats… just a local holiday beach with the charm of a countryside town! You got to love the ducks that is sharing the blue clear water with us! I can settle here – easily!
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