Category Archives: Baltic

New Sunreef 74 Delivery

One more boat delivery this year – a new Sunreef 74 sailing catamaran from Poland to the UK.

Sunreef 74

I flew out a few days earlier and went to the city of Poznan – once the capital of Poland. Obviously being November the temperatures were cold and freezing most of the time. Access around the town is easy due to an extensive tram network.

Old square –

Poznan poland

Poznan poland

Poznan poland

Poznan at night –

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Poznan poland

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Found a traditional Polish restaurant that served boiled potatoes,  sausage meat wrapped in cabbage leafs and a beetroot hot drink !!

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After a few days in Poznan I moved to Gdanks by using the train, a system that seemed to be very efficient and extensive. Although Gdansk was mostly flattened during the war it was rebuilt in a similar style to how it was previously.

Gdansk old town –

Gdansk poland

Gdansk poland

Gdansk poland

Whilst in Gdansk I was shown this sight, it was originally a Post Office during the second world war. Apparantly the Nazis when entering a new city would first go to the post office. From this they could find out where all the wealthy people lived and would immediately target them and start looting. The post office workers  on hearing the nazis were coming started to burn all the records. They were found doing this and all lined up against the wall and shot. The white lines part way up the wall are where their hands would have been.

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Photo at the time –

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The Gdansk shipyards were some of the biggest in the world, some of the cranes you can see are now protected and cannot be removed. Once upon a time 20, 000 workers walked through the gates to the shipyards everyday. This of course was the birth place of solidarity movement.

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Some of the cranes are still in use today –

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Meeting the boat – a newly completed 74ft Sunreef catamaran –

Sunreef 74

Inside the main saloon area –

Sunreef 74

Galley area –

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Rear deack area –

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Flybridge –

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Instrumentaion –

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Onboard jacuzzi –

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Made to feel at home on the boat !!

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We left Gdansk and headed out into the Baltic for our trip to the Mediterranean.

Early morning Gdansk –

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The conditions soon picked up and we were soon in constant 25 – 30 knot winds with choppy seas. The wind gusted up to 42 knots at times and never dropped below 20.  When the wind changed to a northerly it was bitterly cold !!

The boat at Cuxhaven, Germany, just about to leave after it had completed the Kiel canal.

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It took four days to get to Falmouth, in fact we arrived about 20 miles outside late at night so had to kill a load of time and arrived early morning.

Arriving Falmouth where the boat would spend its winter.

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The boat stayed in Falmouth over the Christmas period as people needed to get home and opportunities to cross the Bay of Biscay were less frequent. The boat would have to wait until the beginning of the year to find its way to the med.

New Nautors Swan Boat Delivery From Finland To Chichester UK.

An opportunity arose to assist with a new boat delivery from Finland to the UK. It was a new Swan and it was going to be collected from the Nautors Swan factory in Jacobstad Finland. Destination was to the south coast of England at Chichester – fortunately just down the road from where I live !

On the way to Helsinki and then onto Jacobstad –

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At the factory with one of the many pallets of owners gear that needed to be loaded.

Boat delivety Jacobstad finland

Unfortunately the weather was mostly overcast with a lot of drizzle and lower than average temperatures. As it was only a couple of weeks after mid summers day it should have been better than this !!

It was my first new boat delivery I was soon protecting the boat with blue and orange tape. Every corner and edge was taped up so it wasn’t scratched or damaged during the delivery. Table tops were covered with bubble wrap and mirrors were stuck down. Floors were covered with protective material to prevent anything dropping on them and causing damage.

You have to try and deliver the boat as it would have left the factory, even if it were to take you hundreds or thousands  of miles to get to your destination.

Boat being loaded up and protective tape being stuck on all corners of every surface to prevent scrapes and knocks –

Boat delivery swan

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Ready to leave –

New boat delivery swan 54ft

The rain on the deck was going to be a familiar sight –

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One day bright but chilly –

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Next day sunny and bright but didn’t last long –

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A rare days sunshine and calm waters !!

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Dusk – at about 11 o’clock at night. It never went totally dark as the sun was only just below the horizon.

Swedish archipelago

Daytime cruising in the Swedish archipelago –

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We had to stop off for fuel in Byxelkrok which is a small harbour at the top of Oland , Sweden. It was just a splash and dash, filled up with fuel and water and I found the nearest shop for bread and milk. Fortunately they accepted my Euros – I hadn’t realised they had kept their Krona currency !!  Must have spent all of 30 minutes on Sweden.

Byxelkrok sweden

After travelling between Oland and mainland Sweden we went under the impressive bridge at Kalmar, at nearly 4 miles long it is one of the longest in Europe. Even though there was still 4 meters obove the top of the mast you always seem like you’re going to hit the bridge due to the perspective of looking up from the deck !!

Oland Bridge

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After travelling past and south of Sweden we arrived at Kiel in Germany. We were going to use the Kiel canal as it saves about 250 miles of going up over the top of Denmark and doesn’t mean you come out so far north in the north sea. The canal itself is about 60 miles long and was first completed in 1895, later widened between 1907 and 1914 due to the ever increasing size of the German Navy fleet.

Approaching and waiting for the bigger boats to enter the lock at Kiel –

Kiel canal entrancePulling in behind the big cargo boats –

Kiel canal

You always have to keep a look out as around every corner can be another big ship !!

Kiel canal

Dotted along the canal are these ferries which take people and vehicles across the water. They move very quickly back and forth so you have to be prepared to give way quickly. I think they are more sympathetic to the cargo boats than the sailing boats 🙂

Kiel canal

Another cargo boat goes by –

Kiel canal

After we came out of the Kiel canal we were in the north sea. Conditions were calm but the wind of course was on the nose again with some rain and drizzle persisting. We sailed past Germany and Holland (well motored really) and the weather improved as we approached good old Blighty. Ramsgate shone in the sunshine and so did Dover as we approached for another fuel and water stop.

The white cliffs of Dover from ths sea –

white cliffs of dover

White cliffs of dover

Soon after we left Dover the winds picked up, the sun went in, we had wind over tide sea state and it started to rain. It just became miserable for the last few hours taking us a lot longer to get to Chichester. We got just inside the harbour at about 3 a.m. and set our alarms for 6.30 a.m. to make sure we could get into the marina.

Arriving into Chichester harbour early morning on the 8th day, we had to enter into the marina that morning or wait until later in the day as the marina is tide lock.

Entering chichester harbour

The whole journey took us 8 days and nearly 1400 nautical miles. Most of it was motoring as with most deliveries the wind always seemed to be on the bow !!

The new owners of the boat were waiting at the marina and had been following our progress. All we had to do now was unwrap the boat from its protecting blue tape and bubble wrap and give it a wash and polish !!

Route taken –