Friday, 19 June 2015


Leaving Curaçao behind us we edged North dropping the hook at Santa Cruz , a nice anchorage with caves that have formed all the way along the coast. A good place for a snorkel. We were leaving at first light and managed to get a good nights sleep. We set sail for Aruba with the wind inevitably behind us but a pleasant 20 knots with just the Genoa out we tootled along nicely between 5-6 knots it was not til we were 10 miles or so that the wind started to pick up and reduced sail. We had decided to spend the night in Rogers Lagoon on the Southern tip of Aruba ....there are three entrances one for the fishermen which basically appeared to go straight over the reef! Not for the feint hearted! Another for the big tankers stopping off at the oil refinery and the other down a marked channel which was for all other shipping. Normally it would have been easy to pick out but when it's blowing 40 knots its sometimes not easy to distinguish the buoys......we edged slowly in and finally dropped our hook in 6 metres in what was I'm glad to say good holding. Taking a good note of the way we came in and the buoys lit up at night just in case we dragged,we set the Anchor Watch on the tablet but also decided we would take it in turns to stay up on watch. Whilst the sea was flat the wind was howling! Finally at around 1 o clock we decided the anchor must be well and truly holding....we had not moved an inch off the spot! Trying to get some sleep and waiting for the wind to drop a little we set sail for Orangestad about 12 miles up the coast.

Clearing into Aruba is different and to be honest a bit of a pain. Thirty minutes out of Orangestad you must notify Aruba Port that you wish to come in and clear Customs and Immigration. We did this and were told to wait for an hour then call back. This was a pain as it was still blowing 30 knots and milling about was no fun.....we waited an hour and got back on the reply we waited some more hour and a half later and very exasperated we got the Marina on the VHF and told them of our predicament. They contacted Customs and lo and behold next time we called Customs they answered! By this time there were three boats waiting to come in....a small Venezuelan  motor boat shot past also going to Customs and we met him on the Customs Quay shortly cannot be in a hurry with this process it's pointless! The Customs Quay is lined with big black Tractor tyres and there is no way to avoid marks on your boat unless you come prepared with something to cover them. You identify the boats that have been to Customs by the dirty marks on the hull! All in all it took us over four hours to check in and I really am not looking forward to repeating the process over again when we check out!

Aruba is the most American of the three islands we have been to. There are lots of Malls, Starbucks,Dunkin Donuts and many very expensive watch and jewellery shops. Not really our scene but it's very comfortable and being in the Marina we have use of the pool and the Renaissance private island so it's not all bad. The iguanas line the dock during the day and they seem to really come out when the fishing boats return.....I thought they were herbivores. They a
So have a cinema here so John and I have been to the movies for the first time in many years ....2 for 1 Monday's through to Wednesday so seemed like a good idea.

Every day we study the weather in the hope that the wind will drop for long enough for us to get around the corner but so far we have been out of luck. When the wind drops it just doesn't give us enough time to move down the Colombian coast and we really don't want to be stuck in Capo de Vela for any length of time waiting for the right weather to move on's better we wait here I think. So fingers crossed for the weather to be on our side soon. In the meantime we'll just enjoy the sun, sea and local brew....

1 comment:

  1. It makes me feel I've kinda missed something , bypassing Aruba on my passage from ABC to Colombia.
    Great to have these reports ;-)