Thursday, October 6, 2011

Rota to Mazagon

We arrived in Rota in marina at about 7 in the evening. From sea town looks like most of the Spanish coast - hotels and tourist development of medium uglyness. After the dinner we still went on shore to stretch our legs. And we were very surprised. Behind the first row of modern concrete buildings there was beautiful old town center. It was getting to dark to make photos of all the beautiful old buildings and pretty streets, so we decide to get up early next morning and make another stroll through the old town.

This is a covered market place - the inner yard.

This is one of the entrances.

Few shots of the streets.

A pretty entrance to a house.

Even some modern buildings were made with more taste than most we've seen.

This is probably called "Geranium alley".

On main square there is a church and a beautiful palace.

This is how palace looks from inside.

And this is one of the entrances to the church.

Rota was a real revelation and we were thrilled to discover such a beauty. From Alicante we were making 30 - 40 miles per day (with an exception or two) and we did not have much time to explore the land and this was a nice change.

Next day we planned to get to Mazagon. The wind was very weak, so we motor-sailed most of the day. Again we did stop for swimming, water was calm and warm - 27 degrees C. Atlantic ocean presented its gentle side again. 

Right in the middle of our lunch we saw a dark grey speed boat coming toward us. It was Guarda Civil, the Spanish police. They told us, that we were in the army firing practice area and that army wants us to move towards south. They were very polite, telling us exact course and range to were we need to sail to get out of the dangerous area. We altered our course, but the feeling that Spanish army has something against us got stronger and stronger. I mean, it is one thing that they circle around us with battle ships and fly the helicopters 5 m from our mast, as it happened at Garrucha, but do they really need to shoot at us? We reached the border of the shooting practice area in about an hour and the minute we reached the coordinates the shooting begun. They were obviously waiting for us to clear the area.

We reached Mazagon at around 7 in the evening. We stayed on boat, since there are only tourist developments around. Again marina is behind two giant breakers, lower being 7 - 8 m high. It made us think how it really looks here when Atlantic is not so benign. 

We are staying here for two nights since we are expecting a delivery of gennaker poles we ordered in Almerimar. And then we are sailing towards Spanish - Portuguese border.

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