Fender to Fender

Thursday 29th June 2017

Getting on and off the boat from our stern-to berth at Vuda Marina is, to say the least, interesting and each yacht is squeezed in literally fender to fender. Our view from the stern is of a boatyard, we are less than a hundred metres from the noisy boat lift and a fuel depot sits just outside the perimeter. However, the place has a friendly, ramshackle feel, there are plenty of trees to cheer things up and the marina staff were welcoming and seem efficient, we rather like it it here.

We arrived in Vuda Marina yesterday after a nice couple of days in Musket Cove. Musket Cove Resort, famous for its annual September regatta and the warm welcome it offers to yachts all year around, is on an island in front of a basin surrounded by reefs. The channel in is narrow and busy with yachts, resort dive boats and ferries, for the first time in Fiji, our charts were a bit off but luckily it was well marked and the day was bright.

Musket Cove

We arrived to a calm blue sea, white sand cays and a sprinkling of superyachts, Rick even managed, at the poolside bistro, to find that elusive burger, we decided to stay a day or three. But as is the way with living on a boat, by mid afternoon a breeze had sprung up, the tide had come in and we were bouncing about in a short chop and thoughts of snorkelling, dingy safari’s or finally breaking out the new kayak were put aside. I did try swimming my six laps around the boat but with each breath came a wave and a mouthful of water.

With the forecast set for it to stay on the windy side, after two nights we sailed over to Vuda. As we motored into the circular Marina we were shocked when they directed us to the smallest of spaces, about to protest, we looked around to see every boat squashed in cheek by jowl. Rick did a brilliant job squeezing us in while I repeatedly ran from bow to stern passing lines to the dock boys. Just occasionally it would be good to have some crew!

Squashed in Fender to Fender

There is a two metre tide here and the dock is a concrete wall with a short, rickety wooden pier  built out to each berthing spot. Most boats are using the narrow marina planks to disembark, luckily we have our slightly wider passerelle but at very low tide that becomes too steep so we are using the dingy as a stepping stone to a ladder. 

Getting off the boat is a bit of a challenge

In fact being attached to a fixed dock with the rising and falling of the tide makes everything more complicated. It took a while to work out all the lines but we got there in the end and having rid ourselves of two weeks worth of rubbish and washed down the decks, things began to feel better. Next job is to figure out how to restock our supplies, then we will spend a couple of days getting a few maintanence jobs done.

But for now, it’s time for a cold beer, we are are off to investigate the bar.

2 thoughts on “Fender to Fender

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