Inland to Santiago De Compostella

Gosh eight days have past so quickly.  Now….25th July

Having been so long in the coastal town of A Coruna we decided to have a day in land to Santiago De Compostella which is an hour south west. We took a bus from A Coruña (6 Euros) and had a lovely day wandering the streets of this historical town.

One of the Apostles -James was believed to have been sent to Spain to “spread the Christian word” and it is said in the year 814 that James’ tomb was discovered. A church was built in his honour and as news spread believers began the pilgrimage to see the relics. Settlements arose which in turn grew over hundreds of years  to the city it is now. There is a cathedral and numerous grand buildings in many styles denoting their age, eg. Baroque, Romanesque, Gothic and Renaissance.

To this day pilgrimages, known as The Way of St James are made by approximately 2 hundred thousand people each year.. 100km by foot or horseback. and 200km by bicycle are the recognized ways of travel and rewarded, not only spiritually but by a wearing a scalloped shaped shell (the grooves of the shell come to a single point representing the various routes pilgrims take) .


It is very interesting the way it developed with local wealth increasing and the type of community evolving over time.

The whole visit was definitely worth it.


Chris took some photos on his I phone so i await his skills to transfer onto the blog!   Tom Jones was billed to be singing here tonight but due to  a throat infection it was  cancelled. so there would be some sad ladies out there waiting in earnest to throw their knickers on the stage  ( I believe that happens in the uk  even now !!)



Speaking of performances I have been wondering if my brother Matthew has sung in this cathedral… maybe he will see this and let me know.  :)

The fog banks have begun to lay their thick mist along this coastline making visibility rather poor. This may impinge on our immediate plans but I think it has a pattern so talking to the ‘old sea-dogs’ in the know may help………


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Ribadeo to A Coruna

After 5 nights in Ribadeo we  set off along the coast to the  find a lovely anchorage in the Ria de Viviero… namely Vicedo. It took  4 attempts for the anchor to hold in the weedy sandy seabed, but it was worth the perseverance as this was a memorable point of our journey.. for me anyway, because this was the first anchorage that felt truly idyllic apart from The Scilly Isles we visited earlier in our trip.It had tiny bays with pale yellow sand that beckoned us in…it was gorgeous. Of course approaching from the sea allows you to find the deserted ones that the land folk cant get to.

Cave at Vicedo

The sea was cold but very refreshing.. now i am even more happy!

We saw a group of  Long Finned Pilot Whales as we approached Vicedo. 6 of them ! What a wonderful sight. They had a strange bulbous head and very dark in colour. Chris spotted them off the port bow . I didn’t have time to get out my camera so we just watched them cavort in the sparkling sea hoping the German friends in their yacht about a mile back would catch sight of them too.

We had two night’s in the bay then took our anchor up and ventured along the coastline to the  Ria De Cedeira  (I get confused with all the similar sounding names so hope i have them all in the correct order!) We motor sailed in the light 4- 5 knots winds with a calm sea. The weather is now much more stable and consistently sunny with occasion cloud cover. The temperature is perfect for us…. BLISS.

On this leg we came across another Westerly boat (  Westerly Oceanranger that is similar to ours) sailing towards us. AND it was the first British boat we had seen: indicating we were now in an area more likely to see fellow Brits as mostly they tend to miss this northern coast of Spain to get to the Med and A Coruna is usually their first stop off in Spain. We got excited and changed our course to sail about 100 yards to their port side………………………………………………. Believe it or not . they didnt see us!  Either that or they ignored us. Perhaps they were asleep in the cockpit…. not very reassuring.

Anyway we stayed in Ceidera for a night, which was a lovely large natural harbour.

Ceidera Bay










On the 19th, with a calm sea and NE winds we docked in Club Nautica Marina. the older of the two marina’s in A Coruna . This is nearer to the older part of town and has all the amenities you want in the Marina. Mind you the washing machine did take 3.5 hours to complete its cycle!

H tower.. the landmark to find when entering the harbour at A Coruna

All week this busy  city had a Medieval Festival in full flow. Not sure what we expected but it was fantatstic. Loads of  street entertainment, food stalls, jewellery and other trinketry ( is that a word?) plus much, much more.We spent many hours sauntering the streets taking in the sights, aromas and sounds in this old ( medieval) part of the city/town.  I took enough video clips that will keep me busy for a few hours to make a short film.. watch this space:)

The band plays at the Medieval Festival in A Coruna

We have  met up with an English couple who have been this way some years back on their boat. so it has been nice to socialise at a level of communication that just ‘flows’. They are fun and interesting( Pete and Pam on their Moody-“Renegade”.

The German couple Helmut and Linda are also in A Coruna now so the G&T’s have been flowing!.

We have come so far and still content with this life style. I doubt we will get as far as the Med this summer as there are so many places to see.

We may not even get to the Northern border of Portugal.. “Who cares, we can go wherever we like”. This is the beauty of what we are doing………


The first Lighthouse in Europe… Hercules

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The Galician Coast



On the morning of the 11th June 06.00hrs we slipped the pontoon at Gijon and set sail for Ribadeo. leaving the Asturian coast to meet the Galician coast.

We began sailing but soon had to take the sail down in the 6 knots of WNW winds. The sea was calm and the swell was slight which made for a more comfortable ride this time.. Oh! ..we are so longing for the wind to change direction to give us a good sail…. :)

The sunrise that greeted us over the horizon was fiery red licking its way through the clouds. It never fails to mesmerize me …


The swell increased slightly before we got into the marina at Ribadeo.( 16.00hrs) The first of the Spanish Rias we hoped to explore :)


Where to today? Decisions, decisions

Ribadeo marina

We decided to stay a few days and wait for the wind to change and explore the area. I had expected a smaller, quainter town but it was much larger and not quite the ‘river’ experience I wished for.. (maybe I was being naive).


However it grew on me and it had many redeeming points of interest.

There are some wonderful buildings.. and not all of them are that old either..

It does has a medieval history and later in the 14th century became a commercial trading centre… mainly dominated by seafaring trades supported by the farming communities in the ‘interior’.

The estuary is tidal of course, and after a wet trip in the dinghy up stream to bird watch we acknowledged that we had to respect this ever changing waterway with it’s tidal flats. reed beds and debris or old bits of broken boats sticking out of the water . OR get stuck! therefore we chickened out doing it again!

We have had nice coastal walks and looked forward to todays’ (Sunday 15th July) market which only consisted of about 12 stalls of fresh local produce..

Chris is drooling over the Spanish Chorizo type meats hanging  in many shops and markets we find on our travels.. ah…and the cheeses.. they make for very appetizing lunches with fresh crusty bread and olives.. and perhaps a glass of wine? :)

The smiles say it all!

    We are now beginning to recognize a few boats and their occupants. Usually flying the French or German flag. It is nice to be able to chat ( albeit them speaking English to us due to  our abysmal attempts at any other languages!) and give advice or help if needed or just comparing notes.  We have met one English woman here who lives in Spain and whom just inherited her father’s boat.. apart from this lady, still no Brits!

We always thought we could communicate quite well when abroad but realize now that most other people understood us better than the other way round.. Here is very different. Even the Spanish language book we have for sailors isn’t helping much . The dialect must be far different!!  I get my little sentence ready and practiced before going into a shop only to end up having to use my hands, smile and point to be understood…. and when you need a battery for a kindle book light ( when you have forgotten the light to show them.. becomes rather difficult! ) Mind you… I think this is all part of our journey the wider sense of the word.. :)

 Plan to leave in the morning to go west some more… maybe Viveiro……… MAÑANA




Spoke to Adam today.. have been missing them terribly.. good to hear they are ok xx


Moreno’s Tower, Ribadeo













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Howard and Chris M … please come back , we haven’t seen any dolphin, porpoise or whale since you left!!

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Rain in Gijon !

No wonder they call it the Emerald coast…… It does rain here.  We sailed along the coast to Gijon. ( pronounced  CHiCHon… the g and J sound like the Scottish CH in loch…….. go on …..have a go !!)  A much larger place this time. The Spanish holidays are definitely in full swing now. There very few Brits. In fact not seen many at all en route so far.  No doubt when we reach La Coruna we will see more as that is the usual landing place across the Biscay for many.

The marina has full amenities and is close to the ‘goings on’ in town. Mind you . we cannot find a Chandlers anywhere. which is unusual for a town with such a big marina) I do prefer the smaller places but they tend to not have as much in the way of getting washing done easily etc ( ….when bent over a big bucket and scrubbing clothes by hand, i think of my grand parents and their parents before them hunched over back breaking work…. we are so lucky these days).

Gijon Marina

The rain/ mist has made it feel quite damp aboard but we are lucky to have a small electric fan heater to keep the chills at bay.

We found a restaurant where i had a fillet steak that they brought out on a ‘sizzling platter’  with a burner underneath which you could then cook it to your liking. What a great idea. it was kept warm and each piece cut off and eaten to perfection.. Mmm

We missed the Wimbledon final were our very own Scotsman Andy Murray was playing in the final against Federa. The first time we have had a Brit playing in the final since 1976 ! Unfortunately he lost… we got to a bar as it finished!

Somoya is behaving really well. No major problems and only a few niggles like the hatch hinges and handles  which really need changing, more due to there age than anything.

We are adapting to boat life quite well. It is cramped at times … like being in a small caravan when it has been raining all week!  Storage has worked ok but the need for better hanging space for clothes is always there. a hanging pole over the ‘seaberth’ may be an option to maximise the usage of space. cooking is no problem but we have been eating out ( which we must curtail as the money runs out!!) The Oven is poor. It takes at least twice as long to cook anything and top temperatures will not be that hot.  I think we will invest in some kind of BBQ that can be attached to the outside of the boat.

We are extremely pleased we forked out the expense and  had the chart plotter placed at the helm. It has made life much easier particularly when navigating at night or coming into harbours. I still plot our position on the charts every hour or so just in case the electronics fail.  All the time and effort Chris  and Niall put onto the electrical system has paid off with no problems there either.  We have used the generator  to top up battery power when not in a marina but as we have not had any great length of time away from a power source we have yet to test that to its full. The amount of water in the tanks still have never been an issue for us yet, not run out anyway!

My neck has been suffering on the bunks though… am waking up most mornings in pain. Not sure what to do about it yet. . will have to think about that one.. meanwhile painkillers are a wonderful thing! Interestingly  Chris’s back problems are much better which is a good thing…. :)

I think we are ready to be getting a bit further away from the wetter days now so aim to leave early tomorrow and head for Ribadeo. … Our friend Clay from the USA asked me to get the “map” page up and running. I haven’t quite worked it out yet! it seems to just bring up google maps and not a blog map that records your journey… …  will keep looking Clay :)

Going to hire bikes for the afternoon……….. That’s one thing ii would like aboard…. well one of many things…. like a bath,, Jacuzzi, comfy bed, fridge freezer….!!….. oh well.. one cant have everything  :p

Cheerio the noo

P.S. Birthday greetings to our friend Mike Howes who is currently sunning himself ( or birdwatching morelike) in France!




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