Sailing South of Spain
From Girona twords Barcelona, than to Walencja and next up to Gibraltar. Spanish sea coast is not only long (Mediterranean Sea coast 1,670 kilometers) but also extremely beautiful. Stunning views, small towns with bays next to cliffs or amazing white sand beaches. Sea full of life, corals and ancient underwater ruins, hidden beaches and lots of amazing places where you can get only by a boat. This and even more are waiting for you in South Spanish.
My Spanish sailing experience started in one of the most beautiful ports in Spain, Palamos, and we continued along sea coast.
Since I did not have any experience sailing on this water. I decided to go for a few days certificated course to increase my sailing skills but also to get more familiar with Mediterranean Sea. I found a company called Blue Oyster Sailing, based in Gibraltar but also sailing through whole south sea coast and organising sailing for milage and experience. And it was a perfect choice. I not only increased my skills but also met a group of other young people who came with the same reason.
Bays full of boats, people snorkeling, sailing or just enjoying the day at the sea is what you expect to see. Although I do not find Spain as a cheap destination, it definitely is one of the most beautiful.
What to Pack
Packing for sailing in Spain is pretty similar to what you might need in Italy, Croatia or other Mediterranean places. Well maybe except some Spanish dictionary.
– lets start from a good backpack. Suitcases are not going to be very useful and on yacht, storing a suitcase might cause lots of problems. A good waterresistang backpack would be a much better choice. You might also consider a dry bag for all those important things, documents and electronics. I’ve learned how useful a dry bag is in the hard way when my laptop drawn in marina with a small backpack I had.
– wind/rain jacket, the more water resistant the better. Rain jacket is a must!
– comfortable, short clothes and something nice for evening. Spain is famous for its night life, you would not want to miss it as almost everyone is going out over evenings. Pubs, restaurants and local places are full of life
– waterproof case for you Go Pro camera or for your mobile phone
– swimming or diving suit and a snorkeling mask. Better have it with you. In Spain there are a lot of beautiful snorkeling places. And a good well fitting mask is a must have. Rental masks might not fit you well or be used and not that clear. So get yourself a nice diving / snorkeling mask.
– European socket adapter or universal adapter is something you would not want to forget as in smaller ports it might be quite hard to get a suitable adapters.
– what else? Why not to take some toys. Inflatable toys, water guns, body paint, some games and a country flag, or even some small candles for a romantic evening on the beach
What to buy before entering a boat
Comparing to other European countries, I consider Spain as middle expensive. Of course, the more out from touristic places you go the cheaper it gets and since Spain is beautiful and have so much to offer, it might be a great idea to plan and spend some time sneak through tiny streets, beautiful small markets or even supermarkets and try products you have never tried. Since you are in Spain. You have to try Tapas. Ask locals where do they go and what do they like the most! Sangria is a great choice too.
Watch out !
Better learn some Spanish before coming to Spain! As in some places it might be hard to persuade people to use English or they simply wont understand you at all.
Cafe is served here in a very small cups. A typicalblack cafe is very similar to Expresso shots with just a little more water. If you are a cafe lover you are not used to drink it like thatmaybe look up for Starbucks or other brands.
Sangria is great, but is also a silent killer! It might knock you down after few glasses, better to be aware before you order another one 😉
Siesta! Is very common in Spain. A long Lunch break over the time when the sun is in the highers place. Some places can be closed over that time.
Driving as crazy, speed limits and parking everywhere. Driving in Spain is great, but might be just a bit frustrating. There are lots of speed cameras on motorways and in the bigger cities, so be aware and take the foot of from that pedal.
Although it is a very much hated topic. I do and I will always be recommending to get one. Especially for a very active trips. Just imagine you are sailing to some beautiful small bay, where you can only get by boat. You have a great evening, some alcohol you slip and hurt yourself. Please do not! But if you do getting a coast guard or a helicopter might be pretty expensive and might take the fun part out from the trip.
All in all note :
4 / 5
Although I do consider Spanish coast as one of the greatest ones. As a travelling and sailing destination I would not give it maximum stars, some marinas might be quite expensive or overbooked. Great ancoring or most beautiful places are full of private tours and a bit crowded. You might even be asked to pay for ancoring and other prices and costs are just overprised.