Saturday, September 16, 2017


Living on a sailboat sure sounds romantic, with sunsets, wine, and platters full of grapes and cheese on the gently rolling stern. In reality, it’s often windy and cold, with spray from waves settling in a light mist over clothes and hair. 

Sailboats also take a lot of work, and it sure is good to have someone handy on board.

I thank my lucky stars that Torsten knows how to fix everything and anything, and I’m in charge of the meals. I call myself the “support staff” for this boat, and that’s just fine with me. There are some amazing reasons to live on a sailboat, and here are a few.


Even on a Wednesday night, we can take our sailboat and go somewhere beautiful. I love sailing our way up Sicily to China Camp, as the sun sets in bright oranges and yellows over the horizon. When we get to our anchorage, it’s so peaceful. Even though we live in a big city, it’s a place to find a little quiet, and we feel like we could be a world away.


It may seem strange, but I really like the intimacy of a small space. Anywhere on the boat, we can chat with each other, and it’s always nice to have the other person close by. I also love working in the kitchen and smelling the fresh breeze through the companionway. I always feel so connected to nature!


I love living on the boat because it means I can go sailing, a lot. Sailing is something I love so much. The boat moves slow, at tops ten miles per hour, but it feels like a speeding racehorse as it heels over under the power of the wind, cutting through the waves. When I’m steering the boat, I feel like I’m at the helm of a powerful beast. I love being out in nature and really experiencing what the wind can do to the boat.


I like having options when it comes to life, and with sailboat living, I know that we could just pick up and decide to go anywhere. Malta this winter? What about Greece? Maybe Croatia next summer. It’s fun thinking about the places we could go. The only thing that stops us is hurricane season....


One big drag about traveling is the constant need to stop and search on your phone or computer for your next hotel or Airbnb. And who knows if the place will even be safe and clean? With boat living, we can take our tiny apartment anywhere, and always have our stuff, our books, our cookware, our stove.

While living on the boat is often great, it also doesn’t come without struggle. A lot of things break on a boat, so somebody on board better be handy. Repairs can be costly, and you always have to keep a very close eye on the weather! Sailing can be cold and miserable, so if you don’t like wind and spray in your face, dress warmly! But those things seem small compared with the beauty and joy of being on a boat.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Where to sail in Italy

Italy offers some of the best sailing grounds in the Mediterranean. The lack of natural harbours and the limited numbers of places in the man-made marinas can make it challenging to find a berth during the summer months.

The food is absolutely superb! However, with careful preparation, a few key words in Italian and a little patience and understanding, the rewards will be well worth it. The strength of the wind varies greatly depending on the location and time of year.

The islands of Sardinia and Sicily tend to enjoy more wind than the Bay of Naples and the Riviera!

***Where to Sail in Italy:


Sicily is an attractive cruising ground, particularly along the northern and eastern coasts. It has a number of well-established marinas although they can be very expensive in the summer months. There are anchorages at Cefalu  and either side of Palermo. At the western end, San Vito lo Capo also has a comfortable marina and anchorage, which can be very useful in a Maestrale. Off the western end of Sicily lie the Egadi Islands, which provide some spectacularly clear water and secure anchorages. The cities of Trapani and Marsala are attractive destinations, but further round to the south the facilities diminish somewhat. The eastern side of Sicily has some beautiful cities and interesting sailing destinations, in particular: Siracusa, Catania and Taormina are well worth a visit. The marina at Riposto provides ring-side seats for any firework shows that Mount Etna chooses to put on! A trip through the Straits of Messina is made more interesting by the presence of whirlpools at certain states of the tide!

The Tuscan Islands & Argentario. 

The islands of Capraia, Elba, Giglio  and Giannutri are all accessible to yachts and provide a number of attractive harbours and plenty of anchorages, some even secluded in bad weather. On the mainland south of Livorno, the harbours of Cala di Medici, Punta Ala, and on the Argentario promontory: Porto Santo Stefano, Porto Ercole and Cala Galera, are all relatively large and comfortable, and any one of them would provide a fabulous base for exploring the area.

The Bay of Naples. 

It is not hard to see the appeal of the Bay of Naples for sailors. On the northern end, the islands of Ischia and Procida are both very accommodating to yachtsmen with several well-equipped marinas and a number of beautiful anchorages suitable in settled weather. In the centre, the famous outline of mount Vesuvius dominates the skyline with a number of marinas lining the coastline around Naples, some more attractive than others! On the southern end, the Island of Capri lies serenely off the Sorrento peninsular. Its harbour is famously expensive, but there is an anchorage to the side of it and a number of spectacular bays suitable for anchoring in settled weather. To the north of the bay, yachts can visit the beautiful Pontine Islands and to the south, the Amalfi coast beckons.


The island of Sardinia offers some of the best sailing in the world and has safe harbours more or less evenly spaced around the whole coast. The east side is more protected, and offers some spectacular beaches with white sand and clear water. It is a very popular holiday destination and the ‘Costa Smerelda’, in the north-east of the island, is very much a playground for the rich and famous. Harbours like Porto Cervo will let you stay for next to nothing out of season, but come the summer, they would be charging you hundreds, if not thousands of euros per night – if they would let you in at all! The western side of Sardinia is more rugged and more open to the Maestrale (Mistral). When it blows, great care must be taken by small yachts as the seas build alarmingly and there are few safe harbours to run to. The Strait of  Bonifacio, between Sardinia and Corsica, is a scary place to be in a full Maestrale. Further down the western side, there are some delightful sailing areas between the Island of San Pietro and Capo Teulada, the southernmost point of Sardinia.

The Aeolian Islands. 

Named after the God of Wind, Aeolus, the Aeolian Islands have a reputation for enjoying a little too much of it! However, most of the time they are delightful and they provide some of the most secure anchorages available in the Tyrrhenian. There are eight in all, the last being little more than a rock, jutting out of the sea. Visitors can anchor off the island of Stromboli, who’s active volcano occasionally provides a spectacular light show. The neighbouring island of Vulcano also has an active volcano, and here visitors can enjoy hot springs in the bay and volcanic mud baths ashore. The islands of Lipari and Salina are larger and have attractive towns with well established marinas. On the mainland, the attractive harbour of Tropea makes a good stopping off point when on passage to or from the Aeolian Islands.

Check out for more information!

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

We wish summer would never end

Hello again! 
Facebook just reminded me of the moment we decided to buy a sailboat in and to sail for an uncertain amount of time. The decision was made 4 years  ago ........

"You’ll realise the Atlantic is just like doing a few smaller passages in a row. It is a seminal moment, as the world seems to shrink. I think that it is a bit like falling in love, in that when it’s time to head off for good, you will just know.” Riley Whitelum

Capo d'Orlando was my first solid introduction to "Sicilia" this summer, and it was fabulous. A week of exploring beaches, getting lost on the crumbling old side streets in the hot sun, trying local dishes and hanging out in the markets, it couldn’t have been more local and more special. 
The town itself enjoys a spectacular position, looking over the Tyrrhenian sea and facing the Aeolian Islands, with to the rear the imposing green backdrop of Nebrodi.

Dadurch, dass wir jede Seemeile zwischen der Ostsee und Sizilien eigenständig zurückgelegt haben, wird uns gerade klar, was für einen Facettenreichtum verpassen, wenn wir einfach mit dem Flieger darüber hinweg Flugzeug bekommt man eben einfach kein Gefühl für die unendliche Vielfalt und Schönheit unserer Erde.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Sicily- you stole my heart!

Without Sicily, Italy creates no image in the soul: here is the key to everything.


Make no mistake. Sicily gets under your skin. The largest island in the Mediterranean is a part of Italy but it has a unique character of its own.

Sicily is where natural beauty meets humanity in an incredible melting pot of cultures, landscapes and cuisine.

Sicily is Italy condensed into a heady mix of sun, natural beauty and ancient history but with its own flavour and rhythm. 

This soul and passion belong to its citizens. The Sicilian people we met were warm, generous, spirited and helpful. 

The Sicilian style is a stunning mix of fashion and high quality fabric made in Sicily. 

Many women wore Sicilian lace dresses for their wedding in several areas of the world. The Sicilian fabric also was the first important decoration  used in the wedding dresses by Sicilian women in the early decades of the past century. Hand made bags  are one of the many proofs of the creative Sicilian style. 

Throughout Sicily, you notice the colourful Maiolica or Majolica Italian tin-glazed pottery everywhere. On church floors, as shop signs and as colourful heads. There is quite a gory story or legend about the heads with the moral being to never slight a Sicilian girl.  

Our time in Sicily left us wanting to explore so much more. On the list: Catania, climb Etna and Trapani. And of course, a trip to Ortigia.

Check out more:

Sizilien entdecken mit MPNmarinas!

An der Nordküste Siziliens hat jetzt der neue Yachthafen Capo d'Orlando Marina eröffnet. 

Die wunderschöne Marina ist der ideale Absprunghafen für Törns auf die Liparischen Inseln, um zum Beispiel Stromboli, Lipari, Vulcano & Panarea zu besuchen !

Die Anlage hat 562 Liegeplätze und ist eine Full-Service-Marina mit diversen Bootsservices, sanitären Anlagen, Bars, Sushi-Restaurant, Spezialitäten-Restaurant, Bikes, Shops, Waschcenter und ganz bald auch einem Yachtclub. Die Wassertiefe beträgt fünf Meter. 

Für die Eröffnung gibt es Angebote des Hafenverbundes MPN-Marinas. Gerne geben wir Euch Informationen dazu! Ganz toll: Zum Netz gehört auch ein Concierge-Service, der Gästen hilft, Ausflüge zu spannenden Zielen an Land zu organisieren.

Acht Monate im Jahr, von April bis November, dauert die Saison in dem Fischerdörfchen Capo d`Orlando, das wegen seiner günstigen klimatischen Bedingungen auch über den gesamten Zeit zum Baden geeignet ist.

Die Strände um den Hafen sind wunderschön und im Hafen-Office spricht man perfekt deutsch. Klasse, hier bleiben wir! 

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Cefalù: Langer Strand an alter Stadt

Obwohl sie gerade einmal 14.000 Einwohner hat, ist Cefalu eine der bekanntesten Städte Siziliens. Die Gründe dafür sind ein langer Strand, ein großer Felsen und – genau dazwischen – eine spannende Altstadt.

Sizilien vereint Berge und Meer. Kaum irgendwo sonst wird das so deutlich wie in Cefalù. Die Altstadt ist regelrecht zwischen beiden "eingeklemmt". Der Berg heisst hier einfach Rocca – also Fels – und ist knapp 300m hoch. 

Auf diesem Fels liessen es sich seit tausenden von Jahren Menschen in der sizilianischen Sonne gut gehen: Man fand ihre Hinterlassenschaften in Höhlen auf der Ostseite des Rocca. 

Es ist 14.30 Uhr und wir haben hier 40 Grad im Schatten! 

I'm glad it's finally hot enough to complain about how hot it is!!!

Join me on Instagram:

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Wer gelassen bleibt, wird sich in Palermo verlieben

Palermo ist keine Liebe auf den ersten Blick. Laut, hektisch, unübersichtlich – so wirkt Siziliens Hauptstadt bei der Ankunft. Der Verkehr ist nervtötend. Einige Viertel haben so viel Patina angesetzt, dass sie glatt als Slum durchgehen könnten, Stadtpläne erweisen sich als vage.

Eine Annäherung an Palermo braucht Gelassenheit. Dann fallen einem zum Beispiel überall violett blühende Jacaranda-Bäume auf. Granita und Cannoli entfalten ein unglaubliches Suchtpotenzial. Beim Anblick der Mosaiken in den Kirchen glaubt man, nie schönere Sakralkunst gesehen zu haben. Vito fährt mich mit seiner Ape durch die Altstadt.

Marlene Dietrich, Paul Newman und Alain Delon waren da. Ich natürlich auch. Seit 1834 kommt in der "Antica Focacceria S. Francesco“ (Via A. Paternostro 58) herrlich solide sizilianische Küche auf den Tisch!

Natürlich lohnt sich auch ein Markt-Spaziergang. Der schönste ist auch Palermos ältester, La Vucciria, zwischen der Piazza San Domenico und dem Hafen. Wie orientalische Souks sind ganze Straßen mit Ständen durchzogen.

Just steps away from the comforts of the new Capo d'Orlando Marina and I am suddenly in old Palermo. As a city, Palermo is a bold mixture of color, heat, noise, and a certain swagger. Several locals emphasize, “We are Sicilian, not Italian.”

A Palermo ci sono talmente tante cose e così complesse .....