Mediterranean Sea Sailing Long Distances Spain


It’s one of the benefits of this coast that the sailor can pick and choose the distance to sail as many marinas and some anchorages divide the way to Barcelona or further north to France. We almost dashed out of Port of Vinarós at sunrise, sailing fifty miles to Tarragona. Vinarós is a fishing town with a promenade on the north side and a poverty-stricken surrounding by the look. The marina and the life-aboard community of Germans and Brits had a strange, uncomfortable atmosphere. We got the impression that the English took stock of our boat, our possible wealth, and turned their heads as soon as they realized Athene was entirely out of reach for their budget. Shocked, they lost all communication skills spontaneously. However, when we cast off early morning, they couldn’t get out of the boat fast enough, watching a real yacht sailing north. That’s the good part of writing, teeny-weeny revenge in arrogance.
Since this is a sailing story, I’m pleased to tell you that we did it! Halfway. Late afternoon the wind picked up to twenty knots, broad reach, and pushed the boat to Tarragona. Not so long ago, I wrote that the wind made the boat fly. Today, she barely did five and a half knots instead of seven. Valencia was a catastrophe for the underwater ship, as barnacles had conquered it. I had jumped in the water and had done my best to get rid of them, but some scratch wounds were all I achieved.
We arrived safely in Tarragona and moored in one of the few available berths in the marina. The following day in the office, I had the privilege of getting to know Helena. She was right in the middle of teaching me the correct pronunciation of her name when the phone rang. A catamaran sailor called in and asked for a berth. She said, no space and hung up. Minutes later, he called again, and the languages swiftly altered between Spanish and English. Helena got furious, and it was hard not to overhear the conversation. She hung up again and said, idiot. I love plain English.
The history of Tarragona is pretty much the same as Cartagena, first the Phoenicians, later the Romans, and more recently two German sailors.
The main sights are Roman buildings and nine churches, with the impressive Cathedral. Approaching from the sea, we saw modern Tarragona and its economic power source with a large port and numerous chemical industries located south of the city. 
The city is almost cozy in comparison to Valencia. People gravitated at the long Rambla and side streets. Uphill the old town with its typical narrow streets give the city an easiness, small hideaways when one feels for. Helena mentioned it. The central living heritage is the Popular Retinue, a parade of dances, bestiary and spoken dances, and the human towers. These towers are as famous as dangerous. I saw a photo of eight human levels, men standing on each others shoulders. The one on top is almost fifteen meters above ground level.