Wednesday, October 19, 2022

Goodbye Gibraltar. Hello Morocco!

 The 3 weeks we spent in Gibraltar were amazing and we got lots of tasks done on the boat.  Lana worked hard at provisioning the boat for the Atlantic crossing and even joined a gym for a week.  The girls had unparalleled freedom in Gibraltar, and wandered the streets freely as a team, which they loved. 

We had some interesting company in the marina and there was a huge super yacht that used to be owned by a Russian Oligarch (not sure which one).  It was seized and auctioned off for half its value (a paltry 30 million!).  Every day we would walk past it and admire the infinity pool on its back deck!

There was also one last round of family 10 pin bowling.  The girls had improved so much in the 4 games we played.  Maybe there is a future professional bowler in our family?

But, it was time to move on and see someplace new.  So we untied from the comfy marina in Gib, and headed 30 nautical miles to Tangiers in Morocco.  The Strait of Gibraltar acts as a wind tunnel and is notoriously windy with a fair bit of current to make the sailing spicy.  So we timed our trip with some good wind (going in the correct direction) and a minimal amount of current.

The wind in the Strait was predictably strong and maxed out at about 30 knots.  It was a bit bumpy, but the sailing was fantastic, and we made it to Tangiers in record time.  Here is a quick video of the crossing shenanigans.

The happy crew upon our arrival into Tangiers.  The port is lovely and very new in Tangiers - it was built just prior to COVID.

Once checked in and tied up snugly in the marina, we ventured out into the old town Medina of Tangiers.  It was beautiful and packed with interesting nooks and crannies.  This photo is taken from a prominence in the Medina and looks back out over the marina where Oyai is moored.  

First stop:  Traditional Moroccan dinner with Cinnamon Chicken Couscous, and Lemon Chicken Tangine.  So delicious!

Wandering around town, we discovered endless street markets and local culture.  You can find everything from school supplies to fresh meat and underwear within the same stalls.  The family has all been very engrossed in absorbing the local sights and sounds that are around every corner.  Everyone here is very helpful and friendly.  We occasionally are approached to come look at Moroccan rugs, but we politely decline and everyone parts as friends :)

Micah has been asking to have a pet chicken on board Oyai for a couple of months now (seriously).  We thought she was kidding at first, but she is very committed to this plan.  Here we came across some live chickens for sale and she got very excited!

Lana took the girls to a Moroccan Spa/Hammam.  Lana enjoyed the vigorous exfoliation and relaxation, but the girls were less than impressed with the scrubbing experience.  Lets just say that they won't be asking to go to the Spa again in Morocco.  Live and learn.

We will stay in Tangiers for about a week while we wait for suitable weather to blow us south towards the Canary Islands.  It's about a 4 day trip and we will likely leave sometime next week.  Stay tuned for more Morocco adventures, and please consider following our blog and leaving any comments you'd like to share!  Until next week...

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