our Journey

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Tuesday, June 5, 2012


We arrived at the port of Viareggio with high hopes for an amazing experience in the so-called  ‘Pearl of the Tyrrhenian’. It has, in fact been anything but. 

Our boat on the last pontoon

Our first disappointment was being given a mooring on the last pontoon nearly a kilometre from the main esplanade. Although we tried to negotiate a better spot, it seems that offices are always closed, no-one understands English and basically the port is geared towards the huge super yachts and private clubs. No wifi at all and having to pay for showers added to the initial let down.

Looking towards the canal
Opening the bridge over the canal

So we reluctantly settled in and went sightseeing. Restaurants were open for lunch, but not much else. We discovered that most shops shut between 12 and 3pm, but there are still many shops shut till 4pm. Perhaps we’re expected to have really long lunches!!

The city stretches for miles along the coast, with thousands of Italian tourists enjoying ‘sun therapy’ on the beaches. The city is like Glenelg on a very hot day, very crowded and commercial.

The fish and chip boat by the river edge

We decided to stay for a few days as we seem to be ahead of schedule and could not contemplate 4 weeks in Corsica! 
Mediterranean weather changes constantly. The second day was horrible, with rain, wind and the current belting the boat so badly that a French power boater gave us a pair of springs to soften the pull on the mooring lines and so, protect the back of the boat from hitting the pontoon. 
now nearly straight!

David trying to straighten the tower

The city of Pisa is only 40 mins away so we decided to make a visit by bus. 

This was the high spot of our time in Viareggio and gave me an opportunity to pick up some gifts for home and get away from the tired old city.

 We came back to Viareggio, Anne had a haircut and David picked up the stainless steel for the wind generator he had left at the welders (at no charge as they thought we were from one of the super yachts nearby!) 

Next stop Livorno, or Leghorn as the rest of the world calls it.

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