We are very lucky because we can both easily work from home. During lockdown we got permission from the city authorities to move Mastegot from Port Marina Palamós on the Costa Brava to Port Vell, Barcelona.
Since then, we have lived onboard and enjoyed working on the water. She is very large, light and airy, with plenty of space for us both. One of our daily delights onboard checking out the new boats that have arrived at Port Vell while we eat breakfast.
Port Vell’s facilities are excellent, with security, 24/7 gym and staff on hand. (The speed of the wi-fi could be improved though!) The biggest attraction is the location and the harbour is surrounded by good restaurants. Some of our favourites are: El Vaso de Oro, Barceloneta, Surf House, El Merendero de la Mari and Pez Vela.
SAILING WITH MOTHER
After three months living in Barcelona during lockdown from mid-March to mid-June, we jumped at the chance to invite family and close friends to sail when it was allowed. A sailing day felt like a freeing experience after being locked down for so long.
One of our most special guests was my mother. She was very happy all day long, singing and smiling. It was our first time all three of us had sailed together.
We love to make the most of our holidays, but we run our own demanding businesses, so we need to check our e-mails every day. That said, checking e-mails onboard isn’t terribly hard work!
Since May, we have held two or more video-conferences each week from Mastegot. It hasn’t always been easy because of the slow internet connection but most went well. There is one spot in the boat that is perfect for videoconference because it looks like we are at home. Since the boat is always moving, you have to keep an eye on where the sun is at all times.
As you may have guessed, the family’s favourite activity in summertime is sailing. This year, we have had to sail closer to home than usual. Here's where our travels took us:
First, we sailed to Port-Vendres in France. Located on the rocky coast of the Mediterranean (known as the Vermilion Coast) at the gateway to Spain, Port-Vendres is a natural deep-water harbour. The scenery is very similar to the Basque Country. If you visit Port Vendres, I highly recommend La Cote Vermeille restaurant by the port. It’s managed by two brothers who create delicious French cuisine.
Then we sailed to Cap de Creus on the Costa Brava to meet friends for the weekend. Cap de Creus is a natural park where the effect of the north wind – the Tramuntana – has shaped the environment in very beautiful, rugged and unexpected ways.
Our third stop was Cadaqués. As well as being one of the most beautiful villages on La Costa Brava, it was also home to Catalan surrealist artist Salvador Dalí for many years. It has been well protected thanks to its location and it retains the essence of a fishing village. There is a wide array of art galleries and small local shops to explore.
And finally, we sailed to Port Vell in Barcelona to prepare for our long summer holidays.
MORNING VIEWS IN BARCELONA
Since late July we’ve sailed around the Balearic Islands including Mallorca, Menorca, Ibiza, Formentera and Cabrera. On 7th September we arrived in Barcelona at Port Vell. We really enjoy having breakfast in the cockpit. The temperature is around 15o C and we get to enjoy beautiful sunshine most days.
If possible, we prefer to anchor in a bay rather than in a marina or harbour. To make sure we have safe and quiet nights, we always check where the wind will come from during the night, as well as the direction of the waves. This summer we have enjoyed the quietest night anchorages. In the morning, we love to start the day with a swim – there really isn’t anything better.
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