Z E N I T U D E
Blue Water Dreaming
Vanuatu - Start of the Port2Port Rally
Port Vila - 10 to 16 October 2010
It is such a relief to finally be safe in one of these wonderful moorings. We are expecting bad weather again but this is a safe port and we can relax.
We have signed up for the South Pacific Port2Port Yacht Rally and are in touch by email with Leslie from Bundaberg. Port Vila is one of the starting ports for the rally and it is time to get ready and make sure everything is in order to enter Australia.
Leslie has been absolutely fantastic in answering all our questions and taking care of getting the answers and reassurance we need from Australian customs. As we are an Australian flagged boat we need to know exactly what to expect when we enter Australian territory regarding the importation of Zenitude. She has been of invaluable help.
There are about 30 boats this year in the rally and the majority are here in Port Vila. Noumea and Luganville are the other departing ports.
In Port Vila, the Kaleva Yachting Club with Jess and Sam take care of our needs and organize several social events. There is a nice dinner where we met with most of the yachts in the rally. Trish and Robert from Bristol Rose are here. The first time we met Robert was in Marigot, Saint Martin when he seek our help to rescue a stranded dinghy. Also here are The Road and Tutatis, among many others.
During dinner the main discussions are weather windows, when to leave, which route to take and of course Australian customs, immigration and quarantine rules. There is a lot of contradictory information regarding boat importation and cruising permits. It is always good to listen to different stories and we need to go back to Leslie to clarify our situation.
Again she is great and finally we have all we need and we are ready to leave.
We don't have much time to explore Port Vila but the little we see does not impress well, the city has no infrastructure, roads are not well maintained, it is dirty and polluted. We go walking around town and visit the open market where it is possible to buy fresh fruits and vegetables. I found it depressing, whole families seem to live there, with people and children sleeping in the floor and under the tables.
The open market at Port Vila