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BlueMoment Harbour and Marina Guide

28O 05.1'N

MARINA SAN SEBASTIAN
LA GOMERA

17O 06.5'W
San Sebastian, La Gomera
Passage Notes

If coming from the SE coast of Tenerife then expect to lose most of the wind once you round Punta La Rasca and enter the wind shadow of Tenerife and the massive bulk of Mt. Teide. If the prevailing Northerlies are blowing it is worth making a fair bit of Northing in these calm waters, as the wind acceleration zone off San Sebastian may provide you with a hard beat in up to 30 knots of wind for the last six or seven miles if you approach from anythng S. of West. Even if leaving from Los Christianos it is probably worth working your way a couple of miles North before you hit the zone, but you could sail direct from Los Gigantes. You usually see the zone before you enter it as a clear line on the water. Reef in plenty of time and you will have a fun sail - the seas are usually moderate.

Entrance

Just make for the end of the breakwater. It is a large harbour with plenty of room to round up inside and take the sails down, but watch out for the regular fast ferries entering and leaving and the odd cruise liner. The marina entrance is fairly obvious, in the NE corner of the harbour. There is a waiting pontoon immediately to port as you enter the marina. During office hours you will be able get someone who speaks English on the radio, but this is less likely out of hours. A member of staff will almost certainly appear to direct you to a berth, however.

Formalities

Very straightforward. The marina staff are extremely helpful. If leaving the Canaries from here to cross the Atlantic then they will organise an official exit stamp for you - very necessary when entering the Cape Verdes or one of the Caribbean islands.

Facilities and Charges

This is a very popular, comfortable and well-run marina on a very lovely and largely unspoilt island which is a pleasant contrast to Tenerife. No security gates, but there is someone on duty 24 hours a day and the risk factor feels low. The shower and toilet block is excellent and well maintained. You are right in the middle of the attractive miniature city of San Sebastian, a short walk from the shops. The big supermarket lets you take trolleys back to the marina and even sends staff down to collect them. Reasonable charges - 11 euros a night for a nine metre boat. The staff are extrememly helpful - Jose, the manager, ordered a new battery from Tenerife when we needed one and it arrived the next day.

There is a fairly basic chandlers come fishing shop, and if you need some work done on your boat try contacting Andy, a helpful German who has lived there for five years. He made an excellent job of fixing a couple of deck leaks for us.

Communications

Regular fast ferries to Tenerife. The 'Garajonay Express' passenger ferry runs to Playa de Santiago and Valle Gran Rey and provides a pleasant way of seeing these two ports without actually sailing there. Buses to most places on the island. Cheap car hire arranged through the marina (25 euros a day).

Lots of internet cafes. Best and closest is wireless access at Ambigu, a cafe/bar at the corner of the main square and only a couple of minutes walk from the marina. If you need plain vanilla internet access then Planet Fun has terminals that allow you to purchase as little as 20 cents worth of time (6 minutes).

Things to Do

Wander round San Sebastian or walk up to the statue of Christ on the cliff above the harbour (40 minutes, wear boots). Swim off the black sand beach. Take the Garajonay Express to Valle Gran Rey. Make a point of hiring a car and getting up into the hills - this is a spectacular island, especially the National Park. If you are into walking there are hundreds of miles of walking routes.

For a detailed account of Fairwinds' time in La Gomera see HERE