Port calls: Aprilia Maritiima- Novigrad - Pula - Unije - Molat - Bozava, Dugi Otok - Ilovik - Martinscica - Unije - Brijuni - Umag - Aprilia Marittima
Days cruised: 14
Difficulty of sailing route: suitable for beginners
Timeplan: daily transfer to new destination
Self-sufficiency needs: 2 days, port calls every other day
Day 1: error-picture, what's wrong here?
The five senses is on land?
Right, the AIS signal of the five senses is clearly coming from land. To our surprise, exactly this was the case upon our arrival. Following the refit of the deck, ugly scratches were made into the blue color of our hull but the travel lift. Thus, the boat had to be lifted out of the water again and Tito, the boat varnisher, completely rehabilitated the damage. Nevertheless, we spent the first night in the boat, but ashore—funny feeling so high up... and in the dry.
Day 2: Cranes
The travel lift can carry up to 80 tonnes of load. So with the five senses this monster had an easy game. Her 6-ton empty weight was a rather small effort for the powerhouse. Foam mats were laid between the straps and the hull. This time, the blue paint was no longer damaged.
Barely in the water, we were chased away from the loading area. After all, more boats were waiting to be allowed to be watered. So the boys and I departed alone, because Sabine and Leonie were in the supermarket to get supplies and drinking water. The experience of us three motoring and docking alone was a very special experience and totally enjoyable!
Day 3: Translating to Novigrad
Croatia is an EU member, but the coastal state has not yet joined the Schengen area. This means that a port of entry must be approached as soon as possible at the entry into Croatian territorial waters. Anyone who has not properly cleared all formalities in the country of origin could be stranded here in the course of entry. I summarized the steps necessary for the departure this year in the spring. Novigrad is a seasonal port of entry, so in July you can easily complete all the formalities, provided all the documents are in place and in order.
Above all, we like to be in Novigrad, because in addition to a well preserved historic old town and nice shops there is also a very good selection of restaurants. Recommended for fish lovers is the restaurant marina. As the name suggests, it is only a few steps away from the marina—but be careful, it's not in the marina. If you want to enjoy good Italian cuisine, you can find it in the old town, right in the pedestrian zone. La Trattoria offers the best Foccacia and pasta.
For lovers of good Istrian cuisine with beefsteak or grilled octopus, it is best to go to the "Gatto Nero."
But before I could get off, I still had to clear the halyard of our code zero. When the sail was launched, the top part of the halyard had twisted so strongly that the sail could no longer be moved up or down. So I had to go up and solve the mess. Leonie cranked me up heroically into the mast-head and I used the action to film a few shots.
Day 4: Novigrad-Pula
Sailing along the coast, we saw gloomy clouds above the mainland and also some lightning. However, we were able to keep ourselves at a safe distance and reached the port of Pula before the storm. Shortly after the feast, it soon became apparent how a summer thunderstorm, including a strong breeze, can make itself uncomfortable in the marina.
Fortress of Pula
But then: radiant sunshine and in the evening an impressive cloud spectacle at sunset.
Harbour giants of Pula shortly after sunset
The restaurant "Alighieri" has its garden directly on a secluded square in the old town and invites you to enjoy Istrian specialties. The above link will take you to a more detailed description.
Day 5: Kvarner Bay and Unije
The aim of this year's trip was to devote much more time to bathing. So we steered Unije to moor in one of the bays to the east and enjoy the crystal clear water. Our choice fell on Maracol. In the course of the crossing we saw again the water turtle, which I had already encountered in the autumn. Their tank is remarkably heavily covered with corals and crustaceans. The Bay of Maracol is a popular place to moor. Thus, we certainly did not arrive too late in the area well protected from the Bora.
The buoys are very close to each other and you have to use the attached docking lines. Maneuvering in this little space, especially with boats above 50 feet is a real challenge. Therefore, we chose to maneuver classically "Roman Catholic" and were thus successful on the first attempt. Caution: Hang the mooring leash at the bottom of the shekels, not on top of the buoy!
The village of Unije lies a CA. 15 minutes walking distance from Maracol. In a small shop one can get food and goods of daily need. The Konoba "Kod Joze" is open only during the season and offers ground-level local cuisine. After the time when there is no school, a small airplane brings the children of the inhabitants every morning to the appropriate educational institution to Mali Losinj.
So we enjoyed a little walk through the place and could discover some very picturesque corners.
The next day, the buoyancy of the salt water and also our new bathing island were tested extensively. On YouTube, I found a drone video video from the bay.
Day 6: Mali Losinj
After a bathing day in Maracol, we only left in the afternoon to put a short distance to Mali Losinj and spend the night there, in the restaurant "Baracuda" where we had reserved—a complete success!
Day 7: Premuda and Molat
On our trip to Molat we simply could not sail past Premuda. The small harbour is protected by a reef in front of the only and homonymous place. Again there was the wonderful opportunity to bathe in crystal clear water and at noon we returned to the grill "Grmalj." From 13.00 pm there are local (and partly in the sea) specialties, prepared over an open-air charcoal grill. It's worth a visit!
Despite our late arrival, there were still enough berths in Molat. The snack bar and the Konoba at the harbour were all inviting, but we opted for the grill restaurant at the end of the harbour basin. The spare ribs were super tender and nicely grilled and Moritz had emptied the entire plate in a flash. All the other dishes were perfectly prepared and so Luis ate an entire beefsteak in just a few minutes. Top service rounded off this evening wonderfully.
Day 8: Dugi Otok-Sakarun and Božava
From Molat, it was only a stone's throw to Darling Otok and to Sakarun, one of the most beautiful bays in Croatia, past the wreck of the 1984-up Italian freighter and then we bow to Sakarun. After another bathing stay we sailed around the North Cape of Dugi Otok to Božava, a small town on the east side of the island. Leonie really wanted to test how it is to be pulled from the boat. Well, if children want to make their experiences, then you have to leave them, I mean ;-)
Day 9: Submarine bunker and Ilovik
Only half a mile away from Božava is an old submarine bunker. So we grabbed the Dinghy and explored the ruins of this relic. We had a bit of a queasy feeling at the approach, but once we had explored the building from the inside, this feeling was quickly dissipated. Here's the video.
After we had also tested the cool wet extensively, we went on to Ilovik, where we fixed the buoys. Here there is an interesting difference to otherwise often installed systems: The Bojentrosse is carried out by the buoy to the top.
So you do not get stuck below the buoy, but you snap the harness that protrudes above the buoy. A very comfortable way to moor, because the buoy is easy to reach. However, it is not allowed to get too close to the mooring, because otherwise the large buoy will always hit the hull and cause damage.
Day 10: Cres-Martinsisca
We have such fond memories of Martinsisca and the Konoba Koralj that we really wanted to anchor again. The city harbour is quite clear from the square, but the Bay offers very good anchorage and is also well protected. Nevertheless, I was glad to have put enough chain, when at night the wind suddenly abruptly refreshed and naturally turned and suddenly came from northwest, unlike before on the day from the southern direction.
At full moon, this photo of our five senses was created:
Day 11: To prepare for Brijuni as close as possible to overnight stay: The Anchorage Bay Soline at Veruda
At the beginning of the trip, we had replenished our natural gas reserves in Veruda and already decided to anchor on the way back in Soline. The bay leads in a whole piece into a very well protected area and offers for muddy ground and about 4–7 meters of water depth best conditions. On the shore, there are always small grill-restaurants and you can swim here of course very well. In the morning, a baker with his boat leaves the yachts and offers besides fresh bread also eggs, cakes, and fruit. At night, the wind had refreshed considerably, so the next morning the strong south wind had built up respectable waves. Luckily, it was not far from here to our next stage destination: Brijuni.
Day 12: Brijuni
We had already explored the island last year and already knew what was waiting for us. However, we had not yet reached a large area and so we concentrated on the zoo and the Dino Park this time.
To our amazement, we found not only the obligatory dino replicas, but also petrified Dinospuren...
In the evening, a storm began, as we had seldom experienced. The wind pushed the water so heavily into the small harbour that within minutes the pier and jetty of the ferry were flooded. We found our Dinghy after the storm on the pier again; it had been washed ashore by the flooding.
The mood after the thunderstorm caught Leonie on a panoramic picture.
Day 13: Umag
In order not to always drive over Novigrad and to prepare us for the trendy Bora and to make altitude, we ran to Italy before the trip to Umag. The last time we decided. The place is very busy and invests handsomely in infrastructure such as greenery, pedestrian zone in the old town, etc. Nevertheless, the junk shops at the harbour and also in the historical centre are not only overpriced, but simply not beautiful to look at. We just don't feel comfortable here, even if the children love the amusement park of course.
Day 14: Aprilia Marittima
With typical gusty, but luckily only slightly unusual Bora, we returned after the clarification to Italy again. The last evening we spent at the "all Griglie," with excellent food again and very nice and almost upscale service. Definitely a tip that we will remember. Yes, and when the holiday comes to an end, it is sometimes too screaming...