We left Porto Pino, Sardinia on September 11, heading for Porto Vecchio, Corsica. On the way we stopped for one night each at Malfitano, Capo Carbonara, and Arbatax. We then sailed overnight from Arbatax to Porto Novo, Corsica arriving early on the morning of 15 September. We spent the night at this quiet anchorage before heading into the marina at Porto Vecchio the next morning. Porto Vecchio is a cute town on a hill at the end of a long fjord-like bay that funnels the wind like crazy. The marina leaves much to be desired but when it is blowing over 30 knots consistently, it good to be able to get off the boat and walk around and sample French and Corsican cuisine.
We had dolphins visit Sabbatical III about 20 miles north of Arbatax. Here is a short video of their visit:
We left Carloforte on August 29th with the intent of stopping in Porto Pino, our favorite nearby anchorage, on the way to Corsica. Nine days later, we are still in Porto Pino. One reason is that we cannot seem to find a forecast that will permit us to sail (as opposed to motor) to Corsica, which is about 190 nautical miles north from Porto Pino. The second reason is that we really like Port Pino so we are happy to hang around here. The water is crystal clear and the bottom is white sand. There are at least three good walks: i) a two mile long sand beach, ii) meandering paths in the pine forest overlooking rocky coves (watch out for the big snakes though), and iii) a dirt road along the western edge of the“saline” (salt pond) where we sample the sweet wine grapes hanging from the vineyards that come down almost to the waters’ edge. There is also a restaurant that we love, Blue Marlin, located on the narrow channel from the sea to the “saline”, with simply prepared and inexpensive Sardinian food, good music, and friendly service. There is an Italian deli/bakery with fresh bread, almond cookies, and cured meats, a butcher shop, a small grocery store with the essentials, and a gastronomia with roasted chicken to take-out. This is pretty much all that we need with one notable exception – there is no decent artiginale gelato. One place cannot have it all. We even have a place to dock the dinghy well up the channel (info provided by “Vera”).
Tomorrow we will rent a car for the day and drive to Cagliari and visit the Immigation Police once more and this time we think we will actually get our Italian residency cards. We will see. We will remain anchored in Porto Pino for at least a few more days before heading for Villasimius (for a few days) and then overnight sail to Corsica if weather permits.