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      Hi all,

      The last few winters have been pretty appalling up here in Scotland. The Bavaria 40 which I bought in 2009 has teak decks, so I’ve opted for the expensive option of winter storage undercover to protect them from snow/frost/water damage (I got a quote for £15,000 for replacment!).

      An option we’ve been considering is overwintering somewhere like south-east Portugal, maybe going out there a few times to do some winter sailing. We’re going to spend a week in the Tavira area in February to check out the local marinas.

      Does anyone have any experience of doing this, and any advice, suggestions, warnings, etc?



        The thought of wintering in warmer climes must sound appealing to many of us.
        I suppose if you normally have the boat out for the winter over here, then it will not be too different it terms of not being able to pop out for a weekend blast when the weather allows.
        However with the boat so far away, even still in the water I would think that the usage and costs will pretty much even out? (Taking into account getting her there, and flights etc.)


          You could be correct. Costs will be pretty much similar. I looked online and got prices for marinas in the Algarve. Although that would be cheaper than what I’m paying for indoor storage per month, we’ll have to factor in flights, saving time off for the winter months, etc. Getting the boat there would probably be ok, as my son is a delivery skipper and can get crew who want experience.



            Sunshine sounds great and the savings on a like for like basis do stack up…. perhaps a while to wait though until you have the time to stay out there and enjoy it?


              We’re wintering aboard in Cartagena, Spain – it’s near Murcia / La Manga. The climate is benign – sunny with 15-17deg by day, cool at night, but we only run a heater for an hour or so each evening. Little rain. The community is excellent, with 20 or so couples and families staying aboard. There’s a weekly BBQ, plus Spanish lessons and various ‘outings’. Good walking, within an easy cycle ride. The town is very ‘Spanish’, not an ‘English Breakfast’ in sight. It was has lots a chartacter and history having been founded by the Carthaginians.
              It’s worth a look.
              On the Algarve, Portimao is reasonably priced and has a good commumity, though the towns not up to much.



                Although our boat is in Brittany, I know the area John is in very well as we spend about ten weeks each year , as landlubbers, in that part of Spain. If you are looking at this stretch of coast just to the East is the Marmenor, ‘the minor sea’. This is a large area of landlocked sea, entered by a canal through the Lamanga strip. It is ideal for winter sailing as it is protected and there are several sailing clubs and marinas. At the Eastern end of this inland sea but with access from the Med is San Pedro del Pinatar. My son had his Sigma 33 there for a year and it is a very nice marina with all facilities. The Yachtsman restaurant does good food and the town, which is a 15 minute cycle ride through the salinas, ( home to large numbers of flamingos) is mainly Spanish although there are a reasonable number of holiday homes.
                I suspect that this may be a less expensive marina than Cartagena. The sigma cost 2600 euro per annum and i suspect that if my son would have been able to pay in advance he could havew negotiated a lower figure.
                Regular cheap flights are available to Murcia (San Havia) and Alicante from UK.

                Anywhere on this stretch of coast makes a great base for exploring the Balerics.


                  Thanks for all the advice folks. It sounds like it’s definitely worth looking into when we’re out there in February. I’ll give feedback when (if?) I return.



                    My boat is in Cartagena also, although I’m not living aboard it’s a beautiful place, I can also recommend Albuferia on the Algarve, my boat was there for a while , it’s probably the cheapest place on the Algarve but lots of places around the town is ten minutes away, the marina is very friendly too.

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