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Old 01-02-2008, 12:44 PM   #1
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Ahoy!

I'm the Webmaster at bahiaredonda.com. Our marina is located in Puerto la Cruz, Venezuela, but we consider it a Caribbean marina. From a sailor's point of view, Venezuela is the southern shore of the Caribbean Sea. We have more Caribbean shoreline than any Caribbean island save Cuba.

In case you are interested, I just wrote a brief description about cruising Venezuela. Where should I post it?
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Old 01-02-2008, 12:50 PM   #2
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Welcome aboard - good to have you here.

Please post your "cruising notes" here and please, ALSO on the Venezuela Wiki page at:

http://www.cruiserlog.com/wiki/index...itle=Venezuela

Great to have someone here from Venezuela!
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Old 01-02-2008, 12:52 PM   #3
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Hi and welcome Denny,

I would suggest that the best place for your description of sailing in Venezuela would be the WIKI. If you have problems in posting there then let me or "Lighthouse" know so that you can email it to either of us and we will upload it for you.

Incidentaly, I loved Venezuela when I was there (twice) in the 70:s. Sailed way up the Orrinoco as far as Puerto Ordaz (I think that was what the place was called).

Anyway, good to have you here.

Aye // Stephen
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Old 01-02-2008, 02:11 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nausikaa View Post
Incidentaly, I loved Venezuela when I was there (twice) in the 70:s. Sailed way up the Orrinoco as far as Puerto Ordaz (I think that was what the place was called).
Yes, Puerto Ordaz is our iron ore shipping port at the confluence of the Orinoco and Caroní rivers. I once sailed a Laser on the Caroní, it was quite an experience sailing in sweet water, the sails came out smooth and silky!

I sold my boat, Persuasion about 5 years ago and now I mostly just surf the web.

-----------------

Notes about cruising Venezuela

Allow me to give a brief rundown on the Venezuelan situation as it affects cruisers. But first let me say that I'm neither partner nor employee at Bahia Redonda. Bahia Redonda used to be Persuasion's home port and doing websites is more hobby than business. I retired back in 1991.

Politics: The political situation does not affect visiting cruisers and my advice is to just ignore it. Please stay clear of any protest march that may be in progress.

Security: Venezuela is "reasonably" safe, no more dangerous than most other parts of the world. Please check out our "Precautions" page, part of the Welcome Pack.

Currency: The new currency (effective January 1, 2008) is just the same old one with three zeros taken off. Any other claim made for it is bogus.

Currency exchange: The government has set a fixed exchange rate vs. the US$ at Bs.2,150.00 per dollar. You can buy US dollars from the government at this rate if you qualify. There is a parallel market based on the CANTV ADR traded on the NYSE as I explain here: CANTV ADRs. The marina has to charge at the official rate but you can sell your dollars (cash) at the parallel rate in Puerto La Cruz. You can see the current parallel rate at Venezuela fx. This is the rate in Caracas. In Puerto La Cruz you'll likely get 5% less.

Price of diesel fuel: According to Venezuelan law, diesel fuel is supposed to be sold at international rates to foreigners and at subsidized rates to locals. Until recently this law (as many others) was ignored and foreigners could get fuel at local prices. Now the law is being applied in some areas and not in others. Unfortunately for us, in Puerto La Cruz they are applying the law and diesel is expensive. I believe you can get cheap diesel in Cumaná (but don't quote me).

VAT (Sales tax): Yes, there is a VAT that is usually already included in the price but not always. When you get a quotation, remember to ask if the VAT is included or not. There are some services for foreigners that are VAT free (I don't know the details but out boatyard can explain).

Cruising grounds: For well over 30 years I have sailed up and down the Eastern Caribbean from Trinidad to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, and along the Venezuelan coast to Bonaire and Curaçao. Our cruising grounds are among the best in the world, you shouldn't miss them for fear of politics or violence. I'm an interested party but read: What are sailors saying about Venezuela?

Time zone: The Venezuelan time zone (VET) was recently changed from GMT -4:00 to GMT -4:30.

If you need specific information from the marina, please use our Contact Form. The boatyard starts working again on Monday, Jan 7. If you need some general information about the country, I'll do my best to answer your questions right here on the forum.

Note: I'll post it to the Venezuela WIKI as well.
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Old 01-02-2008, 02:55 PM   #5
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Thank you for the up-to-date Venezuela cruising information - it is appreciated by all.

We look forward to interesting contributions from you on both the forum boards and Cruising Wiki.
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Old 01-02-2008, 07:51 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by captainccs View Post
Yes, Puerto Ordaz is our iron ore shipping port at the confluence of the Orinoco and Caroní rivers.
It is a little off topic but I believe it is worth to recall my first visit to the Orinoco river anyway as it is an interesting navigational anecdote which really also is a sign of pre GPS times.

I was a very young third officer and the ink on my second mates ticket was still wet when we left Ploce in Jugoslavia bound for Puerto Ordaz on an 80,000 ton bulk carrier. The first offier was a very grumpy chap from Oz who, although competent, seemed disheartened and had lost all interest in his work. He did the minimum possible to earn his "tucker". The second officer was a very nice Dutchman who unfortunately had serious problems with his stomach and was forced to take to his bunk by the time we passed Gib. He was later operated in Ghent and made a full recovery but back to my yarn. With the second sick and the first mate totally uninterested, the navigation of the ship fell squarely on my young shoulders. After leaving the straits of Gibraltar we saw no further land before fetching the South American coast but the landfall at the mouth of the Orinoco was most interesting and dangerous with sandbanks stretching about 20 miles out to see and a low alluvial coast which could not be picked up on RADAR until very close.

Morining sights on the day I predicted we would make our landfall gave a position line right through out DR position and this was conformed by the noon latitude. Nevertheless, I was more than a little nervous as we were thundering along at 16 knots towards trecherous sandbanks. "What is our ETA at the fairway buoy?" asked the master. I replied, "15:20 sir". When the fairway buoy popped up dead ahead at six miles range arround 15:00 I was very relieved but most of all, and this I will remember to my dying day, I remember the immense, unbounded satisfaction at having navigated, at just 21 years of age, a very big ship accross an ocean to exactly the right spot with nothing but a sextant, chronometer and compass. I felt like streaking arround the boat deck like Archemedes screaming "Eureka". In reality I said to myself something like, "Damn but this navigation stuff works!

Well, I know I have diverged from the topic but I wanted to highlight the immense satisfaction to be had in navigating by one's own efforts rather than just reading the lat and long on a GPS display. To fellow crujsers I would reccomend making one ocean passage with the GPS turned off (unless neeeded in an emergency situation) just to test astro nav and, more importantly, feel the satisfaction of having done the job yourself.

Aye // Stephen
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Old 01-02-2008, 09:34 PM   #7
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Stephen:

I haven't sailed that far south but the northern end of the Boca de Dragón (Dragon's Mouth) was one of the roughest spots I have sailed across. We were sailing to Trinidad back in 1965 on an Elizabethan 34 (I think, maybe a 32) to take part in the Trinidad - Grenada race which is a feeder race for the Antigua Race Week. I'm proud to say we were first in class and second overall. It was very exiting because we were sailing against an identical boat from Martinique and we were within a few hundred yards all night. At dawn, when the racing rules were back in effect, my sailing partner drove them right up on a rocky shore. When they asked for room to tack we just walked away from them and never saw them again until they invited us for drinks! Boy, those petit punch were something!

How's that for off topic?
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