Learning to Sail EP 3 – Overnight to Cabo Roig
We do not have a car. But we have a boat. So we are discovering towns on the Costa Blanca that we can sail to. This was a very near destination, only 5 nautical miles away so about one hour. Well, if the winds were good. The wind was coming straight at us so we tried to tack back and forth going out to sea and into land thinking we could make some progress. After two hours or so we turned on the engine as we had gone nowhere. You can see our attempted course which is the yellow line below.
We arrived at the Cabo Roig Marian, Coordinates: 37°54’N 00°43’W and called the office on our VHF radio. Most all ports are on channel 9. This was the smallest marina entrance we have seen just wide enough for Smiler to navigate through and my depth finder was showing 1.7 meters. Our keel is 1.5 meters. A harbor employee was waiting for us on the dock and showed us where our berth was.
It is a small beautiful marina and our spot was on the end of a dock at the opening to the marina so we would have plenty of action to watch as the other boaters came and went. The Marina is a short walk to town along a beautiful promenade that circles the entire cape. There are no services here, not even a small store with beer and ice so you will be making a trip into town to get supplies. I am also pretty sure there is NO FUEL so plan accordingly. There is a small restaurant and beach bar that has basic meals such as hamburgers ($5.50 – 7.00 euros) hot dogs, sandwiches and a few Spanish tapas such as croquettes. The location is beautiful and the food smelled pretty good. There is also a walkway leading directly into the beautiful Mediterranean waters for swimming.
We walked to town numerous times over the next two days. It is only about a 1.5 kilometre walk and absolutely gorgeous. Saura Supermarket (Avenida del Velero S/N Urb, 03189 Cabo Roig) is the nearest store and is well stocked with a carneceria but no fresh fish.
Once in the main part of town there is a strip of restaurants stretching for at least 8 blocks. This is very much a foreign community and all menus and signs are in English. There are a number of Indian restaurants, fish & chip places, Irish pubs, Thai food and Chinese. All the wait staff insisted speaking English even though I was speaking to them in Spanish. It’s a nice place and we would certainly come back, even if just for a day to have lunch as it should normally only be about a one hour sail, or motor here. At night we noticed, even in the pandemic, there were quite a few cafes having live music and entertainment.
That night we picked an Indian restaurant. Most Indian restaurants on the strip have a similar menu offering. $25 euros for poppadum and chutneys, two starters, two main dishes, two rice or nan and a bottle of wine for two people. This is an excellent deal and way too much food though we did find ourselves almost finishing the whole thing. Our restaurant was named Shakira. We always order our food extra extra extra spicy and they did an excellent job. The chutneys were delicious, our starters were Malai Tikka, a chicken dish marinated in curd, cashew nuts, coconut, almonds, lemon and white sauce and Aloo Chop, a minced lamb and potato cake that was deep fried. Our mains were a very spicy Chicken Tikka Masala and a Lamb Madras Vindaloo Faul. The Shakira Special Nan was stuffed with chicken tikka, cheese and coriander and the Shakira Special Rice had mixed vegetables, onions, egg and peas. With all the other flavors I would have preferred just a plain basmati rice to balance everything out. What impressed me also was the amount of options there were that we could choose from. I definitely recommend this place.
We also got lucky on this trip as their weekly market was taking place. We love the markets here and find ourselves doing much of our shopping for produce at these open air farmers markets. Unlike back in the States the farmers markets in Spain are way cheaper then the grocery stores, sometimes less then half of what you would pay. For example a kilo of oranges in the store can be $3 euro a kilo where as at the market you can get 3 kilos for $1 euro. That is a big difference. The market is located just behind the main strip of restaurants and sits overlooking the sea.
We spent two full days here and enjoyed some excellent snorkeling. The water here is very clear, even in the marina.
We stayed one extra night as we were having fun and also we were hoping for some better winds. That didn’t happen and we ended up motoring all the way back to Torrevieja but it only took us one hour. Below is the full video of our trip. Thanks for reading and if you have been here yourself please leave a comment below telling us about your experience!