Thursday, March 10, 2011

Hanging out at the Barra

No dogs in restaurant

Chihuahuas are also dogs.

sign in local restaurant 

Just so you aren’t too concerned about the tough life we are living. Here’s a picture of the French baker (oui, oui!) delivering fresh croissants to our boat while we are anchored in the Barra de Navidad lagoon (in beautiful Bahia de Navidad).

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This Frenchman has been here for the last ten years. You hear him on the radio in the morning, “Deez is de French Bakerr. Vee have fresh baguettes and croissants todaay”.  He has a 10-acre Palm plantation where he bakes breads and pies each morning.

The lagoon has 18 or 19 boats in it now. A smaller contingent than at the peak of the season. Barra de Navidad is a pretty cool little town that attracts a fair number of ex-pats. There’s one high end hotel, Grand Bay, that is on the far side of the lagoon, away from town. It’s easy to get around on the cheap and fast water taxis.

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25 pesos round trip from your boat to the town, or the island or the hotel.

barraIMG_6874There’s a dinghy tie-up at the Hotel Sands if you want to bring in your own dink instead of taking the water taxi. Classic 1960’s hotel, with kidney shaped tile pool and outside bar. Plenty cruiser friendly. Chris did a yoga class there today.

barraIMG_6868Street signs in Barra- the bougainvillea is blooming everywhere!

barraIMG_6883Bahia de Navidad has a wicked shore break along its miles of sand beach that local kids take good advantage of. There’s also a surf beak off the breakwater here, but not breaking while we were here.

As I mentioned in an earlier post, before Bahia de Navidad we stopped at Tenacatita and took our dinghy into the mangroves for a nature ride. I think we got there too late in the morning to see a ton of wildlife. Nonetheless, it was a pretty cool ride! Here’s some photos.

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The jungle tube

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Jungle guard bird

barraIMG_6856The crocs were well hidden by this time of day.

 

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Chris on her evening swim off the boat in Paraíso.

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Check this space bowl out. That is a full sized lighthouse next to it on the right. It is Copa del Sol (Cup of Sun) that someone decided to build on a point near here – pretty much in the middle of nowhere.

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We’ve seen lots of turtles swimming around offshore. This one seems to be blowing bubbles.

 

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Diving has been really poor lately. There’s some kind of algae bloom, aka red tide (or brown tide), that is making the water clarity very poor. We made water in the water maker offshore when the water clarity looked decent. The water maker filter above turned brown-red. This picture is after I had already cleaned it. Supposedly the heavy rains they had last year brought too many nutrients into the water and the extra nitrogen has led to the bloom.

We checked in and out of the Capatania de Puerto today. The standard paperwork shuffle and stamp stamping required whenever a port has a port captain. We’ll wait for the French Baker to drop bread and croissants off in the morning, then head out when the afternoon wind picks for a spot 20 miles south that is supposed to have good snorkeling – we’ll see.

Paul

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