ende

Jul
23

Photos of Tongatapu

Jul
23

Quiet motus

Just north of Tonga’s densely populated main island Tongatapu a barrier reef with a few tiny motus on it extends about 5 nm east and another 5 nm north. Yesterday we took Pitufa up to the south-eastern corner of this reef–just 8 miles as the seagull flies, but we still took 4 hours for this stretch of careful reef navigation (about 12 nm around the… Continue reading »

Jul
20

Around Tongatapu

During the past two weeks we worked on some small projects on Pitufa, but we also explored the island of Tongatapu. Instead of renting a car we used the convenient, cheap bus system (there’s no schedule, but minibuses have their destination written on the front and you can flag them down anywhere along the road) and hitched rides (we never wait long until a friendly… Continue reading »

Jul
13

End of radio silence

We are still bewildered that the new antenna tuner we ordered just last week arrived yesterday without any further delays, complications by customs or paperwork. We ordered the new CG-3000 (EUR 200) directly from CG Antenna (Mr. Wang was very helpful), it was shipped from Shanghai by TNT (EUR 100), and the local TNT agent delivered it directly to the dock in Nuku’alofa. Great service,… Continue reading »

Jul
10

Sunday rest

Yesterday the wind turned to the west and will stay like this for a few days and we sailed 6 miles to a motu with an anchorage that gives good shelter from the west. The entrance through the reef into the lagoon off Motu Atata is a bit tricky, but we planned it with the help of SAS planet (satellite pictures) and found a nice,… Continue reading »

Jul
10

Pan bread

Another simplified recipe is pan bread a la Pitufa: 2 cups of wheat flour 1 cup of rye flour 1,5 cups warm water 1 teaspoon dried yeast 1 teaspoon salt bread spices (typical Austrian: ground coriander, ground caraway, fennel) Mix dry ingredients in a bowl, add water, stir well with a spoon (no kneading necessary). Pour the dough into an oiled pan (with a lid),… Continue reading »

Jul
09

Yoghurt

Fellow cruisers have been giving us recipes for yoghurt making, offered yoghurt starter cultures, but we always politely refused–it seemed like such a hassle involving either yoghurt making machines, or without such machines the process would take hours, while we’d have to regularly check with a thermometer to keep the temperature at exactly the right degree to keep the bacteria happy and working. We were… Continue reading »

Jul
08

Nuku Alofa

Tonga as an independent nation cannot rely on subsidies from a colonial mother and walking through the streets of its capital you notice that the country is poorer and less developed than e.g. French Polynesia. This has pleasant side effects for us cruisers: there are stands with local produce everywhere (5 paanga = 2 Euros for a bag of fruit or veg), incredibly cheap eating… Continue reading »

Jul
03

Pitufa in Tonga

We arrived in Tonga early in the season (at the beginning of July) and are planning to explore the 4 archipelagos (Tongatapu, Haapai, Vavau and the Niuas) thoroughly.

Jul
03

Photos of Niue

Jul
02

Arrived in Tonga!

Yesterday we reached Nuku Alofa (Tonga’s capital) after a pleasantly eventless passage. During the last night we had to slow down to reach the reef passage in daylight, first we put the main into the second reef, then we rolled up the genoa, then we took the main sail down completely and were still going too fast just under bare poles running in 25 knots… Continue reading »

Jul
02

The day that wasn’t there

On the last day of our passage to Tonga we crossed the date line, so one entire day is missing from our log book and our lives. It adds to the confusion we experience living in the South Pacific: Summer is winter, the South is cold and the North warm, ‘Far East Asia’ lies to the West of us, ‘the West’ (US and Europe) is… Continue reading »