We arrived in Terceira 90 miles from Sao Miguel. We had a good sail, although everyone was disappointed that we could not try out the new spinnaker. We had left at 4am and arrived around 5pm. The marina is right next to a beach and quite tight. After a few attempts to moor on the waiting pontoon without luck we found a free berth. The pontoons were as short as the guide book warned, so I carefully leapt with the fear of being catapulted straight off. It all went well and we were soon plugged in and enjoying a beer. Our cheapest marina berth at €6 a night including electric. Unbelievable!
There are two beaches here. Neither if which we went to. The weather was rather grey for most of our stay. The boys have also declared they ate a bit beached out. The breaking waves on the beach were also declared not right for body boarding. In fact they were too small. At the beginning of this trip they would have been too big! Either they have grown or their confidence has. I suspect a bit of both.
Praia da Vitória is on the east side of Terceira. It is a lovely place with lots of shops including a big Continents and a Worten (where we bought more DVDs).
We spent our days doing school and maintenance jobs. The ice creams were more expensive here so our daily trip was no more.
We met a couple on Gwarr who had participated in ARC Europe last year. Dennis and Sarah were a lovely couple. We enjoyed sharing stories with them over a glass of wine. In their recommendation we went out for a meal on our last might at a restaurant called Restaurante O Pescador. The boys were allowed to have the steak on a hot rock. At €18 each more expensive than we would normally allow but they ate it all and it kept them entertained. The waiter was also very friendly and proud of his home. He even offered to take us to his house so we could meet his 6 year old son and swim in his pool the next day. The boys liked this idea but the weather window meant that we needed to move on.
The shower block had a bath in the ladies and gents so the boys enjoyed having a bath whilst Russell and I had a beer in the beach bar opposite. It was rather much colder than the other beach bars we had frequented, but the beer tasted just as good.
On Friday 28th of June we would set sail for the UK. 1109 miles to the Scilly isles. A further 70 to Padstow. The forecast looked good for favorable winds and we would ride the Azores high heading to the UK. At the time we did not know that we would be bringing the UK the hottest day of the year so far at 26 degrees. We were really bringing the good weather just as we had been asked.
We decided to start the trip when we were ready rather than start with an alarm and an early morning leave. What would an extra 3 hours on an 8 day trip make! Ethan and I went off to buy bread and also a cuddly bull. We have many teddies on the boat and it was decided that a bull from Terceira, the home of bull running in the Azores had to be done. We are now the owners of Bernie Bull. Those who know the real Bernie Bull of Marchwood yachtclub will likely find this name as funny as Ethan did.
So at midday we said goodbye to the Azores and hoisted the sails for our longest family trip.
Quite a steep walk to the top.
A ship leaving ... soon be our turn.