Season 2 - Legs 21-29 Sailing around the Menorca island
We spent most of the month of July sailing Menorca. After a great seven hour sail from Mallorca along with guests Michelle, Mark and Erin, we had the pleasure of exploring nine ports of call. As you will see from the pictures, this island is much different from the other Balearics. When we arrived in the port of Mahon, we did a crew change and invited Amy and Patrick on board for a week sailing up the eastern coast. It was great to have friends on board as there are not many original "knock-knock" jokes left between the two of us.
Entrance to Cuitadella, our first port of call. It was founded by the Carthaginians, in the 4th century.
On 9 July 1558, the Turks under Piyale Pasha and Turgut Reis with a powerful Turkish Armada of 140 ships and 15,000 soldiers, put the town under siege for eight days entered and decimated the town. The town was defended by only a few hundred men. All of Ciutadella's 3,099 inhabitants who survived the siege were taken as slaves to Turkey together with other inhabitants of surrounding villages. In total, 3,452 residents were sold into slavery in the slave markets of Istanbul (Constantinople), Turkey.
Erin enjoying the sights of the historic old town.
And then there was the rest of the crew.
The gargoyles on the Cattedrale di Santa Maria were all different and very interesting.
An obelisk was set up in the 19th century by Josep Quadrado in the Plaza d'es Born in memory of the offensive, with the following inscription:
Here we fought until death for our religion and our country in the year 1558
Checking out what is behind the key hole.
Hats off to her.
In the 17th century, many of Ciutadella's civil and religious buildings were built in the Italian style and gave it a historical and artistic unity. The city has a population of about 30,000.
A beautiful downwind sail to Cala Sud. The crew also loved the new Wingaker spinnaker.
Sundowners after a full day on the beach.
And spectacular sunsets in Cala Sud.
A short sail along the coast and we are safely anchored in Cala Porter. There was a little bit of swell but not too bad.
Michelle framing up the shot....
After one night in Cala Porter we are back on the move heading to the next port of call.
Limestone seaside with many caves built over the last million or so years.
Entering the city of Maó (aka Mahón)
A lovely dinner out with the Desborough clan.
A sharable dinner. Check out the blue rare steaks that each of us can cook to our own perfection on the fired rock grill on the table. A wonderful meal.
Mahón officially Maó, is the capital and second largest city of Menorca. The city is located on the eastern coast of the island, which is part of the archipelago and autonomous community of the Balearic Islands.
Mahón has one of the longest natural harbours in the world: 5 kilometres long and up to 900 metres wide. The water is deep but remains mostly clear due to the port's enclosed nature. Mayonnaise is considered to have originated in Mahón, which we did not know at the time.
Santa Maria de Maó. In the middle of the fourteenth century a first temple was built, Gothic style but smaller. With the assault of the city under the command of Barbarossa, the building was badly damaged and in the eighteenth century lightning ended up completely deteriorating it. It was rebuilt between 1748 and 1772 under British rule.
The original entrance to Mao. The archway is all that remains of the city walls.
Panoramic view of Mao. 45NORTH is at the Isla del Rey dock which is near the beginning of the city harbour entrance.
We had dinner on the Island sitting under Olive trees.
After dinner venture back to the dock.
The next day we headed back to the Isla del Rey to check out the old military hospital. It was during one of the English dominations, in 1711 , that a naval hospital was built on the island by order of the commander John Jenning , from that moment renamed as "Bloody Island" .
This hospital was used to treat the wounded and sick of the English army, but later it was also used by the Spanish, French, Americans, Dutch and, of course, also by Italian soldiers.
In 1968 the naval hospital was abandoned, like the rest of the island.
Last but not least, in 1888, the remains of an early Christian basilica dating back to the 6th century AD were discovered on the Isla del Rey, which consists of an E-shaped building with numerous rooms and corridors. Check out these pictures of the medical rooms that have been meticulously restored.
Pharmacy. Odd that there was a cash register as this was a UK military hospital.
Operating room. Wonder why there were glass OR tables?
And, the last room at the far end of the hallway was the morgue.
We picked up new crew - Amy and Patrick and headed up the cost to Illse de Colum.
The water all the way up the east coast was 28-29 C. We all spent lots of time in the water.
Considering this was the Med it was not too bad snorkeling in Illse de Colum.
This video is too funny,
This was a weird looking motor-yacht that anchored off our stern.
Sea level picture from Patrick's Go-Pro.
Another dip before we pulled up anchor.
Amy on the foredeck to run the anchor windlass.
Probably the largest light-house we have seen this season.
Welcome to Port d'Addaia
Amy going for an evening paddle. The water in the port was over 31 degrees.
Next port of call was Calo de Ses Mandres
Lighthouse of Calo de Ses Mandres.
More beach and snorkeling time for Patrick and Andrew.
The next port of Arnel d'en Castell. A touristy beach town.
The end to another terrific day exploring Menorca with Patrick and Amy.
Sailing to our final port in Menorca.
July 22-25 Farnells
The town square was all covered in sand and there were two grand-stands setup. Volleyball tourney?
First out were the giants. Turned out this weekend was the annual Menorca festival with celebrations in all the towns and cities on the island. Good timing on our part.
Then came the horses.
Followed by the horses on their two hind legs charging through the crowds.
Yikes. Someone is going to get hurt.
And that ends our journey exploring Menorca. Tomorrow is our big 220 nautical mile sail to Sardinia Italy. Our longest passage for this season.