School Starts

School started today.

I have to get up at 06:30 to get a shower before the rest of the house wake up. It is about a 40 minute walk into school and by leaving a bit earlier I can stop for a coffee on the way.

Our teacher is called Ivana and is a lovely girl pretty close to 6 feet tall with a dramatic presence. Women of that height are very rare here.

The school has a very nice atmosphere and the coffee keeps coming. I suspect most of the staff speak pretty good english but in the main there is a strict spanish only rule.

We start at 10:00, break at 12:00 for an hour and finish at 15:00.

Ivana has very clear diction and is clearly slowing the pace for us. I’m getting most of what she says.


An outside view of the house where I am staying in Balvanera.


These pictures show the striking facade of the Abasto shopping centre. Once a fruit and vegetable market it has been restored and transformed into a modern retail/cinema/restaurant complex.

Calle Florida

Bunos Aires - First Day

This morning I had to go into the Rayuela to discuss arrangements for my classes. I took the
Subte from Jujuy station. Many of the stations featured tiled murals.

There are many Galician links here. This sign for the Galego Immigration Museum was near Rayeula on Chacabuco street.

At the school I met two classmates Aaron from Perth and Angie from Edmonton. We were given a welcome briefing by Alejandro, the director. Classes start next monday.

Afterwards I went on a walkabout for several hours.

A sculpture park not far from Balvanera.

Casa Rosada next to Plaza de Mayo in the centre of Buenos Aires. This is where the day to day business of the Argentine government is conducted.

More palm trees. These are in Plaza de Mayo.

Plaza de Mayo

Avenida de Mayo. A lovely wide tree lined avenue linking Plaza de Mayo with Congreso.

Not far from Plaza de Mayo is Florida Street. A busy pedestrianised shopping thoroughfare.

Another Galician connection.

Lots of street theatre and musicians.

First impressions of Buenos Aires are very favourable. It has a well laid out lovely built environment with many wide avenues and grand edificios. Most streets, of those that I have seen, are one way. It would be difficult to get lost here.

Balvanera is close enough to walk into the city centre.


I had an early flight and was up at 05:00. Zelina, the owner with her husband of Pousada Baluarte, had also got up early and made some coffee.

My taxi was waiting at 05:30 and got me to the Airport in plenty of time for my 07:10 flight with
GOL. It was my third flight with GOL and again they were excellent. There was a two hour delay on the onward flight from Sao Paulo to Bunoa Aires.

Formalities on arrival in Buenos Aires were very quick and I was able to withdraw some cash in Pesos in the arrival hall. Fixed price taxi tickets to central Buenos Aires cost A$88. One buys a voucher which is presented to the driver. All very easy and efficient.

I will be trying to learn some Spanish while here and the school,
Instituto Rayuela, had found a place for me to stay. The house was in Balvanera to the south east of the city centre. On arrival the area looked a bit tired and rundown and the house was undergoing some sort of renovation.

However it was nothing like Brazil. I felt I was back in Europe and it was nice to be able to relax a bit and wear a watch again.

My host, a young teacher, was very, very friendly and welcoming. Sadly the house was not quite what had been described. There were a lot more people living there, and it had clearly seen better days.

I had an early night.

Aratu to Salvador

As usual a lot of things were left to the last minute.

Finally, by mid afternoon, I had the boat pretty much squared away. All running rigging, the sails, and boom had been removed and stowed below. The diesel tank was topped up, fridge emptied and the gas turned off.

All electrics were shut down but the wind generator was left operational to keep the batteries charged.

Manfred from the yacht club kindly volunteered to check the boat from time to time and came out for a briefing.

I was taken ashore in the yacht club launch and took a taxi into Salvador where I stayed at
Pousada Baluarte. A lovely little guesthouse tucked down a side street not far from the Pelhourinho.

After venturing out for a quick steak I had an early night.

Travessia Baía Regatta Day 3

Today there was wind from the start. Proceedings got under way at 11:00 and 6 hours later I moored in Aratu having crossed the line last again.

Winds were mainly F2-3 and in these speeds Kiriwina is very slow. Even if all her cruising gear was taken off she would still be slow. That said, it is not a whole lot of fun coming last all the time.

Travessia Baía Regatta Day 2

Yet another lovely day but there was no wind. At start time (13:15) it was virtually mirror calm. The course was shortened.

Sails hanging limp as day two of the regatta gets under way.

Some larger boats have moved off in very light variable winds. Meantime Kiriwina was drifting back towards the committee boat....

....with a boat speed 0f 0.3 knots. This was less than the slowly flooding tide.

Some boats motored away from the start line. Around 14:30 the wind picked up and it was possible to sail all the way to the finish line off Salinas where we arrived at 17:00.

Kiriwina was again last but at least the committee boat was still on station and we were recorded as finishing, Unlike yesterday.

In the evening the club had arranged a buffet meal and everyone went ashore to mingle. Due to my very limited portuguese not much communicating was done but this foreigner was made very welcome.

When it came time to return aboard the shuttle launch arranged by the club did not appear. Some members arranged another shuttle in some very overloaded dinghies.

Travessia Baía Regatta Day 1

This was the first time I had entered a regatta. About 30 boats from Aratu Iate Clube and other clubs in the area had entered.
At 10:35 I dropped the mooring and motored off to the start line off the entrance to Aratu inner channel.

At the start boats were tacking back and forth to gain optimum position at the start. At around 12:10 we were off.

Travessia Baía Regatta Day 1, Start line.

Kiriwina is not built for speed and fully loaded for cruising, as she is now, she is slow in light winds. The bigger faster boats disappeared into the distance. The course involved tacking to a point just north of Salvador harbour then steering for a point north of Ilha Itaparica.

By the time was approaching reached the first checkpoint the committee boat had left position and was proceeding to the finish line. I got to Itaparica in the dark long after the others had finished and this despite having to motor sail some of the way. At anchor off the marina I decided not to go ashore.

Itaparica to Aratu

I needed to get back to Aratu. Tomorrow the Travessia Baía Regatta starts from there. I left Itaparica at 09:00 and moored off Aratu Iate Clube at 12:45.

Aratu Iate Clube - Clubhouse and pontoons.


I picked up my certificate this morning and left for Itaparica at just after 12:00, arriving at 15:00. Again the winds were light and it was necessary to motor sail.

Passing Fort San Lourenco at the north end of Ilha Itaparica.

Naval de-gaussing station off Fort San Lourenco.

Kiriwina at Itaparica Marina.

Fort San Lourenco.

In and around Itaparica.

Portuguese style exterior tiling.

Footpath paved with shells.

Hotel verandah.

Waterfront with Salvador in the background.

Church square.


Today I left Aratu at 06:25 bound for Salvador, arriving at 09:30.

Brazilian law allows a visitor to remain in the country for 6 months in any one calendar year. However a boat may remain for two years provided that it is registered with the authorities as "laid up and not in use" when the owner is away.

Firstly it is necessary to obtain a letter from the relevant mooring installation, in my case Aratu Iate Clube, stating that the yacht is moored and not in use. This must then be endorsed by the Capitania dos Portos and with the ship's papers presented to the Receite General who will open a file and issue a certificate confirming that the yacht is laid up.

I was told to come back and get my certificate tomorrow.

Lacerda Elevator Salvador - Upper Entrance.

Looking down on the Centro Nautico and Marina at Salvador

Salvador Town Hall

Plano Inclinado linking upper and lower Salvador.

Bar Galicia in the Pelhourino where two bad guys attempted to pick my pockets.

Overlooking Centro Nautico and Mercado Modelo with the Lacerda Elevator to the left.


Günter and schatzi at Aratu Iate Clube about to leave for their flight back to Vienna.

I spent the day pottering about the boat and arranging my flight to Argentina on 24th April. I will be flying with GOL at a cost of Reals $810.37.

Kiriwina is entered for the forthcoming Travessia Baía Regatta run by Aratu Iate Clube.

Itaparica to Aratu

Today we returned to Aratu, leaving Itaparica at 08:00. Another lovely day motor sailing in light winds.

Cora-Mae under full sail.

Voyage time to Aratu, 4 hours.

Kiriwina on her mooring at Aratu Iate Clube.


Another lovely sunny day in Itaparica.

Mama Nora, the laundry lady, with Günter...

....and self.

Salvador to Itaparica

Another early start at 08:45. We were bound for Itaparica.

A small south african Junk rigged yacht passed en route to Itaparica.

We arrived at Itaparica marina at 12:40 and immediately dinghied over to the sandbank for a walk and a swim.

A very large dugout canoe used for fishing.

Itaparica marina.

Kiriwina interior.


Yesterday Günther and I arranged to leave our boats at Aratu while he returned to Austria and I travelled to Argentina. The moorings are very safe, secure and sheltered. Ideal for leaving the boats unattended.

This morning we left early at 06:25 bound for Salvador.

Another Brazilian chemical tanker at anchor off Salvador.

Approaching the fort at Salvador.

We were all fast in Centro Nautico by 10:35. This was to be a short stop allowing Günther to complete formalities before leaving on the 15th.

Ilha dos Frades to Aratu

We left the anchorage at 09:35 and went back round the eastern side of Ilha do Frade to Punta Guadoloupe where we anchored at 11:00. It was calm and the water was clear so we had a swim and snorkeled on the reef before gong ashore for lunch.

Vultures on the beach at Punta Guadoluope.

Anchorage at Punta Guadoloupe.

An afternoon breeze sprang up and the anchorage became quite bouncy. We left at 14:00 bound for Aratu.

A Brazilan chemical tanker moored near the entrance to Aratu channel.

Aratu channel. Brazilian contrasts. A dugout canoe with Brazilian made cars lined up for export in the background.

At 17:30 we moored on allocated buoys at Aratu Iate Clube. Apart from the excellent Iate Clube there is very little of interest at Aratu. We were there to enquire about the possibility of leaving the boats moored for an extended period.

Ilha dos Frades

Got up quite early and dinghied ashore for a shower under the waterfall.

Exposed beach at low tide.

Lots of these crabs with one large claw.

Tororó Waterfall (Shower)

After a short walk ashore we left Tororó at 11:00 bound for Ilha do Frade, motorsailing in light winds.

Church at the northern end of Ilha do Frade.

We anchored in a sheltered bay, tucked away on the north west corner of Ilha do Frade, at 14:50.

A lot of work was going on upgrading the waterfront and roads on this attractive part of the island. It was late afternoon and the mosquitos were out in force.

Later in the evening at 21:10 Kiriwina grounded astern in soft mud. I had underestimated the tide. By 22:45 she was listing 10º to starboard and the skipper was becoming a tad concerned. At 23:30 the tide turned and she refloated at 00:50 when I moved her to deeper water.

Anchorage location.

Tororó Waterfall

Tororó waterfall, situated on the western side of Ilha Mandaratiba, is about 10 miles from Itaparica Marina. The route shallows in places so we left around 11:00 on a rising tide and arrived at 13:40.

Günter on Cora-Mae

A privately owned island en route.

Tororó waterfall.

When we arrived off the waterfall there was a party in progress. A large group of Brazilians were celebrating a birthday. We dinghied ashore to have a look around.

As the tide comes in the beach is completely submerged. This did not bother the party goers who remained where they were merely placing their food and beer clear of the water.

Tororó waterfall. Flow varies considerably with rainfall.

Some people arrived by dug out canoe. (very common in these parts.)

Others in the main party boat.

While we were there a band showed up in a canoe.

Self with the band canoe behind.

Palms on a private estate a little further north on Ilha Mandaratiba.

Another dug-out canoe tucked away near the falls.


Itaparica island is about 12 miles from Salvador. In the morning Günter and I visited the Capitania to buy a large scale chart of Baía de Todos os Santos. As a security measure we had decided to travel in convoy assuming that the banditos would more likely to attack lone vessels.

With one thing and another we were not ready to leave until 16:00. This put us off Itaparica in darkness and while the marina approach is pretty straightforward it was complicated by numerous buoys, beacons and structures which were not on our new charts. Not to mention many anchored yachts without lights.

We crept in and moored alongside at Itaparica marina at 19:20. A turkish restaurant in the marina complex served excellent steaks.

4th April

Behind the marina there is a fresh water spring where lovely mineral water is available for free. The marina staff said the water supplied on their pontoons came from the same source. Günter and Schatzi went off sightseeing while I spent the day flushing my fresh water tanks and refilling them with mineral water. Unfortunately to avoid all sorts of things growing in the tanks I had to add some bleach to the water.

Spring water filling point constructed in 1842.

Leaking fresh water tank purchased new in 2006. Until I can repair it Kiriwina's water capacity is reduced by 30%.

Marina pontoons at Itaparica.

Marina shore complex including offices and restaurants.

5th April

In the morning we dinghied out to a nearby sand bank for a swim and snorkel. The water was not very clear with visibility only 1-2 meters and probably not unconnected with the multiple rivers which drain into the bay.

In the afternoon we caught a freelance mini bus to a nearby beach. These are VW Kombis or similar and pickup/drop passengers on request.
Itaparica has a completely different feel to Salvador.

For the first time I was able to relax and walk around normally. Attacks on gringos are quite rare here compared with Salvador.

Praia de Areia - Itaparica


Manfred Marktel, about to depart on "Maus" for another trip to an island somewhere in the south Atlantic.

Günter wanted to check at the police station to see if any progress had been made on recovering his camera. Dream on! The police were on strike and had posted helpful notices in Portuguese and English informing all and sundry.

A sculpture site near the site of the first church built in Salvador (sadly recently demolished). Günter and girlfriend Schatzi who has joined him for two weeks.

A view from the Pelhourinho over the harbour towards Ilha Itaparica.

A second way to move between Cidade Alta and Cidade Baixa. The plano inclinado Goncalves. Cost R$0.05 (the same as the Lacerda elavator).

Günter, Shatzi and self.