Leaving the anchorage at Porrassa on Saturday afternoon we sailed south along the coast to a small cala at Portal Vells. It is only about 3 miles from Porrassa as the crow flies, but we aren’t a crow and we don’t fly. With wind from the south we had to tack out and back a few times to make our way up wind. We planned to arrive as everyone else was leaving and so set off at about 3.30 arriving at about 6 pm.
Having anchored initially we moved position slightly when the day boats began to leave to settle down for the night; but with the wind gusting up to 10 knots and continually changing direction I didn’t get a lot of sleep, waking every so often to check we were not swinging too close to other boats also staying over night.
In the morning we were swinging very close to a big powerboat and so we moved a third time and spent the rest of the day chilling in our new spot waiting for the wind to drop so we could venture ashore. Unfortunately the wind had kicked up a considerable swell which rolled into the cala while the wind had changed direction and kept us beam-on to the swell – the waves were coming from one side and rocking us quite hard at times which didn’t make for too comfortable a night.
The attraction of Portal Vells was a sheltered anchorage and some Phonecian caves. The shelter in the anchorage and it being so picturesque with four small beaches it was a magnet for tourist boats and day trippers and the bay became manically crowded. The ‘chav element’ arrived later in the afternoon on big charter yachts which decided to have a full blast disco on board for a couple of hours – nice. First thing in the morning and last thing in the evening Portals Vells is idyllic, but the bit in the middle became progressively less so .
We decided to stay until Monday afternnon, visiting the caves in the morning before it got too hot. The caves were apparently excavated by the Phoenicians and they are perhaps 80 or more meters deep. No idea what they were used for and large parts have collapsed but they are impressive none the less. There is a carved alter close to one entrance, but how original that is I am not sure.
We had lunch then shoe horned ourselves out of the cala at 4 pm bound for El Arenals, 10 miles across Palma Bay; here we have recently arranged to meet some friends who have decided to visit us on the spur of the moment and sail with us round to Porto Pollenca.