Leg 1 - La Rochelle France to Bilbao Spain
Updated: May 12, 2022
Let the adventures of Sailing 45North begin.
After four weeks working on preparing for our journey and getting several after market upgrades completed in La Rochelle we finally set sail for Bilbao Spain on Saturday March 5 at 0600hrs Central European Standard Time. It was a 210 Nautical Mile voyage and for Janine twice as far as she has ever sailed before. Thanks to countless hours reviewing weather forecasts and routes to follow we had very good winds for most of the trip but we did hit a hail storm along the way. Seeing dolphins in the Bay of Biscay was definitely a highlight. Arrived safe and sound in Bilbao at 8pm Sunday local time and docked at the Getxo Marina for under 30€ a night water and power included. Toured the town and visited the Guggenheim Museum. The new EOVOLT bikes were a big help to see more of the city and get to the further out spots.
Sunrise and farewell to La Rochelle.
Janine and I sailed in three hour shifts as it was going to be almost two days to get to Bilbao. Hot bunked on the settee in the main salon to be in good hearing distance if needed for sail changes or assistance. We stayed more off-shore to keep in the better winds but it did add a few extra miles to travel.
Crossing all the way through Latitude 45North - New boat is cristened.
It's official - we are now in Spain and changed over the courtesy flag.
The basque city of Bilbao has much to see and do. The Vizcaya Bridge was built in 1893 and is a transporter bride that links the towns of Porugalete and Las Arenas (part of Gexto) crossing the mouth of the Nervion River. Locals call it the Puente Colgante ("hanging bridge")
The Guggenhium Museum Bilbao. The "Puppy" in the front is totally covered in live flowers.
La Salve Bridge crosses the river and on the 10th anniversary of the bridge the Guggenheim Museum (foreground) added a huge red arch across the top.
From inside the Guggenheim.
Massive art and sculptures were all around the art district.
A mix of old and new.
View down the Estuary of Bilbao.
It was so cool to see the dolphins. Unfortunately trying to video them was not easy.