No lingering in Lingeh Bay

Our trip from Riung to Labuan Bajo was uneventful but nonetheless very pleasant. We saw more pilot whales, a couple of shy dolphins and lot of flying fish.

 

Heading for Labuan Bajo
  
 
Jonathan sets the fishing line
      

We stopped first in Lingeh Bay, arriving in time for our regular afternoon swim round the boat. But before we could say “dive in” we were inundated by hordes of children in dugout canoes, some with outriggers, all hoping for school books, pens, pencils, t-shirt, caps, fishing gear, swimming goggles and of course sweets and lollipops! 
  
  

After receiving visits from about 15 boats, including some from adults, we had enough as it was extremely hot and all we wanted to do was to jump in the water to cool down.

  
  
In the end we resorted to going down below until the “hello misters” stopped and could dive in undisturbed!

 

The peace of Gili Bodo

The following day we headed for Gili Bodo, an (almost) uninhabited island which was mercifully quiet and secluded. The sand was white and the water round the reef was a glorious turquoise but we had good winds that day which made for a wonderful sail but a rather choppy anchorage, so we couldn’t go snorkelling as planned.
 
Gili Bodo
 

The weather was quite overcast when we woke up so rather than linger at Gili Bido we headed for Labuan Bajo – a busy little port and a holiday destination for backpackers and diving enthusiasts.
 

Labuan Bajo

 

The harbour was full of majestic Phinisi boats – the traditional Indonesian sailing boat – their design derived from boats built as far back as the fifteenth century.  

 

labuan Bajo harbour
 
Most of them have double ended hulls with a sharply raked stem and stern post and twin rudders, one on each aft quarter. Their gaff-ketch rig carries seven sails – a magnificent sight when sailing. Curiously, they are built by eye (even the 60 feet ones) “planks first” with the frame fitted in after the boat takes shape.

  
Nowadays they are mostly used as pleasure craft to take tourists to the beautiful Komodo Islands but in the past they were used as cargo and passenger vessels.
We anchored outside of the main town at a delightful anchorage near to the local Eco-resort.
It was a lovely anchorage but quite hazardous getting into shore due to the presence of several sand banks. 

 

The Eco Resort
 
We had to drive the dinghy away from Bali Hai parallel to the beach, line up with a point on the land, then point towards the shore until we spied a piece of bamboo about 10 metres ahead to our right whereupon we had to turn parallel to the beach the opposite way until we could line up a white post on the beach and only then could we head in! 

 

Bali Hai from the Eco Resort
 
After all that drama we were ready for a night on the town with James and Cindy Chin from the beautiful little boat You You, an Atkins Ingrid which James built himself.

 

Cindy and James
 
We had a beautiful meal at an Italian restaurant where there were candles, table cloths, napkins, silverware, proper menus and wait staff!

  
We thoroughly enjoyed our spaghetti with fresh seafood, a pleasant ambiance and lovely company and we even managed to negotiate the sandbanks without going aground on the way back to the boat!

Cindy enjoys her dessert

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Salty tales from Bali Hai

In 2015, after a break from cruising of almost 30 years, my husband and I sailed off into the sunset - this time to the wonderful Islands of Indonesia and beyond. Three years passed and we swapped sails for wheels driving through Scandinavia and Europe in a motor home. Now we are on the brink of another adventure - buying a Lagoon 420 Catamaran in Athens. This is our story.

2 thoughts on “No lingering in Lingeh Bay”

  1. It all looks wonderful, and your pics are excellent. Was there an Italian family living locally, to cook such an authentic meal? Are you meeting up with Ben and Sarah at Xmas? Where shall we send your presis? It’s Autumn here now, with lovely sun but also heavy rain. Very much love, Mumxxxx

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    1. How lovely to receive your comment via Julia’s email Mum – thanks so much for taking the time to do that! Not sure if the Italian restaurant was run by Italians but it was very nice food. There are lots of different nationalities in Labuan Bajo as it’s a holiday destination so could well be an Italian family runs it! Yes going to Brisbane for Christmas as we didn’t spend it with Ben and Sarah last year. Then will come to England for Sarah’s 70th! Will be sorry to miss Christmas in England and sorry that Father Christmas will have to send a deputy! There is an English guy who looks just like Father Christmas and has just joined a boat here – perhaps I could ask him to step forward! Lots of love xxx

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