Home > Croatia, Europe > September, 2009 FROM BORA TO SIROCCO—more Fall in Croatia

September, 2009 FROM BORA TO SIROCCO—more Fall in Croatia

September 16th, 2009 Leave a comment Go to comments

 In Cres we were dealing with forecast bora winds which blow from the NE, and now barely a week later we are dealing with strong sirocco winds from the S or SE that blow from Africa carrying strong winds, and hot air.  Just when we were enjoying the seasonal change to cooler days, the sirocco kicks in with warmer temperatures and we are looking for sheltered anchorages that will keep us safe from that direction.

After leaving Cres we headed for Otok Krk and the town of the same name. After a 30 plus NM passage over the top of Otok Cres we arrived in Krk  (pronounced Kirk).

Romanesque Cathedral in Krk

Romanesque Cathedral in Krk

 Upon arriving there the mooring opportunities were limited so we continued a couple miles further to Punat, which is a large protected bay with an equally large marina—over 1,300 boats—which makes it even larger than Marina Dalmajcia where we will store this winter. 

Mega Marina Punat

Mega Marina Punat

The first night we anchored off the marina—after all we are now “retired” and on a fixed income.  The second night, the weather forecast was unsettled with possible high winds so we went to the dock at a cost of 45 euros per night, water an electric included.  Still not a bad deal.  Of course, as is often the case here the forecast strong winds never materialized.   However, they did have a laundry (wash & fold) and we were able to provision. 

Punat Sunset

Punat Sunset

On Sunday morning we took the dinghy to the Franciscan monastery on the island of Kosljn in the middle of the bay and attended yet another Croatian mass.  Not understanding a word that is said does not distract from the amazing art, architecture and music that we have enjoyed as we have attended primarily Catholic services since we have been in the Med.  After the service we walked the many paths across the island—a tranquil and very peaceful place dedicated to St. Francis of Assisi its name saint.  

Monks Arrive by Boat for service at Monastery on Kosljn

Monks Arrive by Boat for service at Monastery on Kosljn

 

Grounds at Monastery

Grounds at Monastery

 

Statue of St. Francis of Assisi on Kosljn

Statue of St. Francis of Assisi on Kosljn

The only thing we found odd about Kosljn were all the “no dog signs” on an island dedicated to the patron saint of animals.  Wonder what St. Francis would think of that?

Later that day we determined that for less than we spent on the cab from Punat to Krk we could have moored at the town quay in Krk for the night—live and learn. 

Krk Quay

Krk Quay

We did get to see the end of a bike race that was held in Krk that Sunday. 

Bike Race in Krk

Bike Race in Krk

Yes, both Red Bull and Coca Cola (in bottles, not cans) are big in Croatia.  Imagine bikes cruising at a high rate of speed through narrow streets that are mostly slick blocks of marble—scary.

 Getting a taxi back to Punat from Krk proved to be a challenge, but once again a friendly Croatian came to our rescue by telephoning a cab on his cell phone.  

We spent another night in Punat anchored off the monastery, and toured the town of Punat before leaving for Otok Rab, our next destintion. 

Enroute to Rab

Enroute to Rab

The ancient town of Rab is beautiful with many historic buildings, but is famous for its several medieval bell towers that dominate the horizon as you approach from the sea. 

Ancient Town of Rab

Ancient Town of Rab

Medieval Towers at Rab

Medieval Towers at Rab

The harbor is very protected from all directions except the SE which is the sirocco—forecast while we were there.  We entered the harbor at mid-day, stopped at the fuel dock to top off tanks and then proceeded to the town quay where we moored for a couple of hours to tour the town and have lunch.

Destiny at Quay in Rab

Destiny at Quay in Rab

Yes, those are palm trees you see in the foreground, and they do seem a little odd since this is still the northern Adriatic.  The winters are obviously more temperate here than in New England. 

The town has a wall that envelopes it on all sides and the requisite medieval bell towers (four to be exact) and a clock tower.  The streets are the ubiquitous marble slabs that threaten a broken ankle or worse. 

After a brief tour of the town and again considering our cruising budget we opted to move to a quiet little cove just across Fumija bay from the town and drop an anchor with line run to shore.  

Destiny Moored to Shore in Rab

Destiny Moored to Shore in Rab

 This method of mooring is quite prevalent and necessary in anchorages here that are either very crowded or too small to allow for adequate scope on the anchor and swing room.  After setting the anchor a line is run from the boat to shore and attached to a tree by chain.  We use the small winch to bring it taut, then put a fender on it so it is visible.

There is a small water taxi dock in the cove which is a great place to land Jolie for her walks, and so far we have had the cove to ourselves.

Cove on Penisula Frkanj, Rab

Cove on Penisula Frkanj, Rab

 Just down a path from the dock adjacent to our anchorage is a lovely little “beach” i.e. rock front restaurant called Frkanj on what they refer to as the “Love Island.” 

Restaurant Frkanj

Restaurant Frkanj

 The forecast sirocco wind was piling white caps up on the opposite side of the peninsula from our anchorage where we had lunch at Restaurant Frkanj, and we were glad to have decided to stay put for another day to let the wind and seas subside.  Waves were washing over the spot where people sunbathed yesterday and took a leisurely swim.

Waves Wash Up on South Shore of Rab

Waves Wash Up on South Shore of Rab

We have more than a month before we need to be back in Sukosan, and are in no hurry to leave a comfortable anchorage until the sirocco subsides.  Next stop is back to the southern tip of Otok Cres and then to Otok Pag, one of the few large islands we have yet to visit.  So many islands, so little time. 

Fall is a great time to be in Croatia despite the wind and some rain.  We have yet to have a day that is a wash out, despite weather forecasts that would seem to expect that.  The nights are overall cooler and we are seeing some seasonal changes in the vegetation. 

Fall is Showing in Foliage

Fall is Showing in Foliage

We fill our days with beautiful scenery, and are still swimming—not something we would be doing in Marblehead.  Oh yes, and Jolie gets lots of dinghy rides which she loves, and Kent is still trying to catch a fish.  Life is good. 

Carol Cools Off

Carol Cools Off

Speed Dog

Speed Dog

The Fish are Still Winning

The Fish are Still Winning

Carol, Kent & Jolie

S/V Destiny in Otok Rab, Croatia

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