Sailing Long Distances

Spanish lifestyle, passion, and socializing


The virtues of a perfect sunrise and tide made us fly further east, to the town of Ayamonte in Spain at the river Guadiana. The river defines a long stretch of the border between Portugal and Spain, separating Andalusia from the Algarve. It is the fourth-longest in the Iberian peninsula, with a course covering a distance of more than 400 nautical miles. The river flows from the east to the west, turns south to the border towns Vila Real de Santo António on the Portuguese side and Ayamonte in Spain until it fades into the Gulf of Cádiz.
What a difference six little hours made. A hot gentle breeze played with the sails when we entered the Guadiana river. Pine forests filled the air with its sweet fragrance at the Portuguese side, underlining we’re getting closer to the Med, to higher temperatures. According to the magazine ‘The Portugal News,’ boats will be able to travel along between Vila Real de Santo António and Mértola 40 miles up the river. The six million Euros project is expected to be completed by 2021 to develop the entire region.
We passed the Portuguese marina Vila Real de Santo António close by. The waterfront with historical buildings looked inviting; free berths were at hand. A stop here seemed pretty alluring. Yet, the crew was clearly programmed for Spain. After almost ten months in Portugal, it was time for new impressions, a different lifestyle. And we got it sooner as we had expected, when I called the marina Ayamonte via VHF radio. It’s what sailors cruising these waters are supposed to do; call the marina upon arrival and wait for further instructions. At first, no one answered. Well, there are… Read More