Almerimar, Granada and seaside commune

Trip Start Jun 02, 2012
Trip End May 31, 2014

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Flag of Spain  , Andalusia,
Sunday, October 7, 2012

5th October 2012

San Pedro Bay

What a smashing time we had at Almerimar. We met some fellow yachties and made friends with them all to one degree or other. Almerimar was the perfect spot to stay for a while and some of our new friends were over-wintering there.  We walked, did a quiz, met up at the pub, had meals or nibbles on other yachts.  So a good time there for me to satisfy my social needs and time for Steve to make some chandlery purchases, look into boom brakes, fix the dodgy outboard, get the AIS sorted out, buy an external hard drive for films and have a crane made up!

 Captains Comment:  

  All the repairs and refit are just part of life on a small ship and the crane as described is to assist in lifting T3's engine on and off , a vital bit of kit since I damaged my hand the last time I fitted it to T3, so much easier now! Any way a feller has to have some thing to do with his hands!!

 A huge thankyou to all our new friends who helped out with the technical bits.

to continue...
On Thursday a storm came over Southern Spain and we had very strong winds and torrential rain.  The rain became a stream that washed down the roads straight into the marina. It didn't last long but we read that 10 people had lost their lives because of the flash flooding in Southern Spain. By Saturday all was clear and sunny again.

On Sunday 30th September we hired a van for 25E from a guy at the  pub and went off to Granada for the day.  The place is so popular we had to buy the tickets 3 weeks previously and hope that we could get there ok.  Heather had spotted the van for hire in the local news sheet and told us about it.  Otherwise it meant hiring a car for 3 days at 135€. It was an easy drive along the motorways to Granada and then we followed signs to the Alhambra Palace.

We spent a wonderful afternoon and evening in the grounds of this fabulous world heritage site and were exhausted by the time we returned to the van at near 8pm.  See photos.  It’s somewhere you have to go and see for yourself if you get the opportunity.

After 11 days at Almerimar we left on Tuesday morning for San Jose 37nm further East to either anchor or stay in the fishing harbour.

On the way across the bay we saw some huge jumping Tuna fish, 2 jumping Swordfish and more flying fish but no Dolphins.  We had to motor all the way because there was little or no wind and it was right on the nose again.  When we were approaching San Jose we noticed loads and loads and loads of flotsam and jetsam in the sea.  It could only have come from being washed into the sea from the gales and torrential rains that we had last week.  Anyway the sea was full of bamboo, prickly pear tree stumps, oranges, lemons, wood of every shape and size, crates, piping, metal drums and even what looked like a shed roof!  A serious lookout had to be kept to avoid all this debris.   The bay before San Jose looked very sheltered and so we decided to go in there and anchor up for the night.  What a find.  It was a good sized bay surrounded by the mountain landscape and sheltered from the swell.  Steve and I took lots of pictures of the sunset which we hope have come out.

The next day we spent time giving Dunikolu a good clean up and polishing her stainless steel and giving her decks a good scrub.  As we were cleaning we noticed that there were some naturists on the beach happily mixed with the other sunbathers. Steve decided to go into the water with JUST his snorkel and mask on and clean the hull underwater with a broom!!  No photos for this readers!

After some lunch we launched Thunderbird 3 and we set off for the beach 100m away.  The purpose was to walk along the beach around the bay to the other end and then return.  We now knew where all the flotsam and jetsam was being washed ashore.  The shoreline was full of the bamboo and everything else that managed to make it’s way ashore.  This was to our advantage though because we became beachcombers and found a new plastic bowl, a new crate, a bamboo stick (I’ll think of a use) and a white upholstered seat from a motorcruiser!  Our booty was taken back to Dunikolu in T3 and we now had a fancy new helm seat!  The bamboo was going to hold a net/fabric curtain to keep flies and midges out!

As the evening drew in Steve became concerned about the depth of water we were in. It was only 1.5m there so we weighed anchor and motored across to the other side of the bay to be sheltered by the rock face opposite.

This was a mistake as it turned out.  The boat was sheltered from the wind but not from the swell.  We got supper and then watched a movie with the use of the new terra-byte external hard drive which has hundreds of films downloaded onto it. After the film it was a very uncomfortable sleepless night for me rocking from side to side again. 

In the morning when Steve found me bleary-eyed on the couch he thought it prudent to weigh anchor and move back to our previous anchorage to take stock and wait for me to get a couple of hours sleep.  A little while later we were off to San Pedro, another anchorage, for the night.

We arrived at the anchorage about 3.30pm to find a hippie type commune with naturists!  How does that appear in your minds?  It was in a tiny bay very well sheltered from the wind and swell and a good depth of water right up to the beach.  Modestly I put my swimsuit on and went in for a swim to cool off because it was still very hot. 

Steve donned the snorkel and mask and went off to the beach.  I wasn’t sure that I could make it or not to the beach but seeing him get there ok I set off again.  The water temperature was just right to cool you down but it wasn’t cold at all.  As I got to the beach Steve was headed back to the boat.  He saw me on shore and shouted to me to stay there and he would get T3 launched and come over for me.  I was quite happy to swim back but stayed put.  He got T3 down and launched and came over for me. He said that as he was getting back to the boat he was stung by a jellyfish on his foot. It was a very nasty sting all right and his foot was burning from it.

He got us back to the boat and we put Anthisan on the sting, got a cold basin of water to cool it down and then some vinegar to dab on it.  After a while it calmed down but it smarted for several hours and was not nice at all.

One of the naturist men was canoeing out to collect the wood that was drifting about.  He had a stockpile on the beach.  The people who live there make their homes from old buildings that they utilise or they make a covering over a cave entrance, or build their own structures from the driftwood etc.  We noticed that mobile phones were used and solar panels were set up, and that one house had a store of water that the commune dwellers used for showering.  There was also a large notice on the beach asking people to clean up their own rubbish to keep the area clean, tidy and hygienic. A small building was used as a bar/cafe too so any backpackers/visitors could get refreshments.  Looking closely through binoculars you could see many dwellings in the hillside that were almost camouflaged.  

BBQ chicken and salad for supper followed by another film before the previous night caught up with me and I zzzzzzzzz out.

Friday 5th October

Another day here at San Pedro relaxing on board.  Joining in with the naturist style of life I had a couple of swims during the day checking out the jellyfish first…. while Steve went fishing from the cockpit and caught lots of fish for supper.

So that’s where we were at that moment.  I was sitting in the cockpit with my sundress on, the sea was calm, the wind non-existent and it was 7pm Spanish time.  We moved on to Garrucha to meet up with Steve’s mate Dean and his wife Sue the following day.

Saturday 6th October

Happy Birthday to my son Philip.

The beach was busier today with backpackers seemingly arriving from nowhere.  There must be a trail through the valley but it’s well hidden.  Masses more flotsam and jetsam was being washed inshore and by the time we were ready to weigh anchor, we were surrounded.  A calm start to the day’s sail with nil wind so we motored again.  Boohoo.  However, as we rounded the headland Steve said it would be perfect for the cruising chute to be used.  So out the chute came and up she went and looked lovely.  The red and blue colours looked a picture.

We didn’t get much out of her though and we were barely moving along the coast.  I suggested we might move the sail round the front more to catch the breeze and Steve agreed to give it a go.  The cruising chute effectively became a spinnaker sail and we then gained some speed and progressed well to Garrucha.  The wind was gradually increasing all the time and we got 8knots out of the sail before we had to take her down as the gusts were approaching 20knots.  We were almost at the harbour by then so a gentle sail in was all we had to do before berthing in the Puerto there.

The wind was still very strong but we filled up with water, plugged in the electricity and tidied up the decks and cockpit.  We both looked as though we had been through a wind tunnel when we finally got below and looked at each other.  Steve’s fresh caught fish were for supper and they were delicious. A few hours later the wind had completely died down and it was like a millpond. Steve’s friend Dean had arrived in Garrucha and text to say they would meet up with us tomorrow at 5pm.

7th October


This morning the Capitania came along to check us out and because it was a Sunday he said for us to drop into the office next day to do the paperwork, gave us his master key for the gate and went off! 

We had a wander about to check out where things were and then sat and had coffee in a quayside restaurant.

The afternoon was spent giving the boat a thorough clean inside.  Steve decided to take the cooker apart and clean it and it sparkled again.  We had just about finished when Dean and Sue text to say they had arrived in the port.

They came on board and we had some drinks and nibbles and they were shown around the boat!  We hadn’t made any plans and having few provisions on board we thought that we could all go out for a meal somewhere.  Dean and Sue ventured that we could go back to their apartment 5Km away and have some dinner there and stay the night.  All we needed was our toothbrushes.  So a short while later we were off to their apartment in a golf complex.  It’s actually Deans’ sister’s but they use it a couple of times a year so it was a home.

We had a meal in one of the restaurants there and went back to the apartment for the night.

8th October 2012


In the morning we had breakfast on the balcony with views to the sea and mountains but it was too hot for me to sit there

Dean and Sue wondered if we would like to go to Iceland on the way back to the boat to get some stocks.  A great idea!  So they took us to Iceland and we got stocked up with loads of stuff from home and we had the car to load it into!  Luxury.

Then we drove through Vera where the flash floods had ripped through the town.  Roads had been washed away, houses flooded and 2 people killed there.  We could see the effects of the water and the people were still clearing up the mess.  Now we could also see why the sea was so full of debris.  There was so much loose scrubland and litter that it was literally washed out to sea.

When we got back to the pontoon gate an English guy came over to us and started chatting.  His sister was in the hospital suffering trauma from her house being flooded, another person had drowned in a lift and another in an underground carpark.  It brings it so much closer when you know of someone who has experienced it.  Thankfully his sister was recovery physically but he wasn’t sure how long it would take mentally for her recovery.  We wished her a speedy recovery through him.

So back to the boat, a haircut for me and Steve, supermarket shop done and all ready to move on to another anchorage tomorrow.

At this point we would like to say a big thanks to Dean & Sue for a night away from Dunikolu. It was great for a short while to get into a bed that was not moving! Thanks and maybe we will see you in Italy next year. 

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Sheila on

Sounds like you are having a wonderful time. I am very jealous of your life style.I looking forward to setting you soon.

Jacky Crompton-Meehan on

Hi Jill and Steve - still love reading your blogs. You're so lucky to be having that fabulous weather still as its been really awful here with rain again today. Went to the theatre this afternoon with Peter, Tony and Janine and saw that ventriloquist that we saw earlier in the year. He was part of a variety show act. We're off to see him again at the Underground Theatre on October 28th. See you soon as well. Happy sailing x x x

Rosie on

Hi Steve and Gilly, great to read your news, been busy here enjoying our new grand daughter Emilia Ann Hopper born to Ben Karan and Joshi on Thurs 27th Oct, she weighed in at 8lb 5 Ozs with lots of dark hair and Peachey Perfect completion , all perfect. Sarah and Guy just back from a wk in France and off to Vietnam for 10 days to celebrate Sarah's Nov. 3 rd birthday soon, everybody here seems to be getting colds, fortunately mine I got over in 24 hrs, I'm off to visit a friend in Chaminoix this wk end Fri till Mon, been quite workwise but now picking up thankfully, looking forward to seei g you very soon
Love and big hug Rosie xxx

Phil on

Nice blogging Mum....not long until your 'home holiday' Px

Pauline and Roly on

So the adventure continues and sounds great! Seeing some of the flood devastation and hearing personal stories must've been quite an experience and upsetting though. Love all the photos! We had sunshine most of today which was quite a tonic!, love, us xx

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