The spell is broken

For eight weeks in French Polynesia, I was enchanted. Landscapes I’d never seen before, friendly people, unspoilt nature. When I arrived in Samoa and Tonga, the feeling of flow changed. Suddenly everything becomes difficult and tedious. Why? Is that also part of travelling? Apia harbour in Samoa. I’ve been waiting three hours for the harbour … Read more

Gale and doldrums. Sailing from Bora Bora to Samoa

Life goes differently than my planning. Actually, I wanted to sail to Penrhyn, the northernmost Cook Island. Instead, I end up in a Doldrum area, a stationary zone with no wind. New plan, new course. And instead of doldrums, now gale is predicted. Will I find shelter in the middle of the open Pacific? Or do I have to go through it? My route: from Bora Bora via Suwarrow to Samoa, in the middle of the Pacific.

Travel and discovery – in the age of tourism

Is there real encounter? Discoveries? Can I travel without being a tourist? As an occasional traveller, I feel like a fool. Strikingly different. Quirky, with endless time on my hands. Is it worth this humilation? Dominica, Caribbean. I am standing on the arterial road of the capital. At some point a minibus is supposed to … Read more

Sailing alone across the Pacific Ocean – Part 2. French Polynesia under sail.

Intact islands, stunning landscapes. In the middle of the Pacific. This is the best country I have seen – so far. I meet friendly people, search for weathered tikis, marvel at enigmatic fish and screeching birds. And learn how to navigate the atoll: strong currents in the passes, nasty coral reefs in the unmapped lagoon. My route: From Hiva Oa in the Marquesan archipelago to Tahiti, Fakrarava and Tikehau in the Tuamotu archipelago.

Oh how beautiful is Panama

Panama, that is colorful birds with garish whistling tones. Panama, that is shameless extortion by immigration officials, high canal fees, latent criminality. Gladly I left, never to come back. But for three weeks I was happy to be in Panama. “Who is your agent?” is the standard question in the marina. No normal traveler, the … Read more