Sunday, June 17, 2012

Puerto Pollenca June 17, 2012

We sailed the 50 miles to Pollenca, stopping at Cala Agulla, a nice bay that’s sheltered from the blustery SE wind for an overnight stay. Overnight the wind reversed directions and started to blow right into the bay. The calm, sheltered anchorage quickly became extremely rolly, so we took off early next morning and sailed, closed-hauled, the rest of the way into Pollenca Bay. We rarely use the engine these days; by taking the time and waiting for favorable weather window, and with anchorages that are all within half-day’s sail, we always sail. It feels great!

Plenty of boats anchored in the Bay of Pollenca 

Polenca is a large, sheltered bay, and some cruisers stay here the entire summer. This will be our last stop before we depart Mallorca and go to Menorca, the eastern Balearic Island. We have been here for a week, just relaxing and visiting surrounding areas. The town at the bay is a large resort town with plenty of restaurants and shops. The old town of Pollenca is actually about 10 km inland, located to provide some safety from attacks by pirates. We took a long walk to the old town on a lovely Thursday morning. It’s a picturesque small town, with a beautiful town square, tidy ochre-coloured stone houses, winding lanes, and of course fine churches, including the 18th-century Parroquia de Nostra Senyora dels Angels and the Convent de Santo Domingo, where it holds Pollenca’s Classical Music Festival in July and August. The musical activities take place in the Cloisters and the grand piano is already there. We also walked 365 steps up a steep hill to visit the chapel El Calvari. It’s a small chapel with a Gothic Christ on the altar carved in wood.  After a lunch rest at Manzana y Peras at Placa Major, we continued for an hour-long hike up a hill to visit the monastery Puig de Maria. The monastery has a commending view over the Bay of Pollenca to the north and the Bay of Alacudia to the south.

Climbing the steps to the chapel El Calvari

The view from Puig de Maria  

The next day, while resting to recover from our long walks, we watched a neighboring boat getting stuck on a shallow patch. The inner Bay of Pollenca, where it is more sheltered, is very shallow with only about 3 meters deep. That’s fine for sailboats that typically have 2 meter draught, except there are some shallow patches less than 2 meter deep. This German boat dropped anchor at the proper depth, but overnight is swung onto the shallow. We spent several hours tried to winch them off, but in the end we needed the help of two powerful dinghies from a nearby sailing school, one pulling a halyard to heel over the boat, and another dinghy to pull the boat off the shallow and against the fresh afternoon breeze. It was quite an exercise. Afterward we had a wonderful supper with our new friends, Achim and Hartwig. The roast suckling pig and lamb shoulder were wonderful!

Lots of help to get Lazy Life unstuck from a shallow patch

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