Archive | August, 2010

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Hunga island, Tonga

Another beautiful memory of our time in Tonga. From the inner bay at Hunga island, crassly referred to as “Anchorage #13”, we were visited once again by an outrigger to our anchorage spot. An invitation to come ashore, visit, trade for vegetables was too good to resist. Our first stop upon reaching the village was […]

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Placid waters

Another snapshot of Tonga… we anchored for 3 days off the eastern island of Kenutu. Niall and Bear explored by kayak; we found brackish caves, the rugged seaward coast, and an army of cowries in the seagrass.

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beautiful people

Cruisers pass referrals around on the “coconut telegraph” about ports of call- helping those to come after us, returning the favor of benefiting from those who went ahead. When we arrived in Tonga, I touched based with Philip & Leslie on s/v Carina; we have traded email with on and off (they’re from the same […]

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Another Tonga vignette

Many Tongans continue to wear the ta’ovala, a mat overskirt. They are worn by men and women, children and adults. It’s a standard part of many school uniforms. There’s quite a bit of variation in texture and pattern, from simple pandanus to the finer hibiscus fibers. Some people substitute mats made from more modern, permanent […]

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Lape island generosity

More beautiful people grace our time in Tonga. Anchored in the curve of Vataeiku island, once again a visitor came to invite boats to visit their community across the bay. The little island of Lape has five families, and invited us for church and lunch afterwards. When we arrived the next day, they greeted us […]

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the sweeter side of Tonga

We’ve had truly lovely experiences with the local people we’ve met here in Tonga. I don’t want our last post to cast a pall, so I’m going to focus on the overwhelmingly positive interactions instead! We pulled into an anchorage at Nuapapu island one evening, and were shortly greeted by a small boat. It was […]

Tropical glow tarnished

The Vava'u group in Tonga is lovely, but there's a strange vibe. The first sign was the morning VHF net. We haven't experienced one since Mexico: it's a morning radio session where people announce who is coming or going, share local weather information, and help solve questions (such as where to get a propane bottle […]

Familiar landscapes in Tonga

With 20 to 2 knot winds on the beam, we finished the ~750 mile passage from Suwarrow to Tonga in four days. The middle days of the journey were too bouncy to fish, but what a relief to be in millpond waters of the protected inner bay at our landfall of Neiafu. When we came […]

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Suwarrow’s wonders

If it’s natural beauty that made Suwarrow stunning to visit, it’s the park rangers who made it unforgettable. Nowhere were the two more intertwined than on our daily jaunts to explore the atoll. For most of these, Apii was our guide. This Cook Islander was a master forager, teaching us how to catch coconut crabs […]

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