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Alcaidesa Marina to Estepona: Nautical Routes Part 2

Antonio Valbuena

Read Antonio Valbuena’s First Instalment: Alcaidesa Marina to Ceuta: Nautical Routes Part 1

One of the most popular day passages for boat owners from Alcaidesa Marina is North East (once you’ve passed Europa Point) along the Costa del Sol to the pleasant port and city of Estepona. The journey is only 25 Nautical Miles from Alcaidesa Marina Control Tower to Estepona Control Tower.

Alcaidesa Marina
Alcaidesa Marina

This isn’t a difficult passage, but make sure you give a wide berth to Europa Point, which will help you avoid swells which can occur closer in. This is especially true if the wind is against the tide going through the Strait of Gibraltar. You may well see dolphins on this passage who will enjoy riding your bow wave, this really is a special aspect of sailing along this part of the Coast.

For yacht owners and their crews, a Westerly wind will have you enjoying a beam reach on your way up the Costa del Sol, past the marinas of Sotogrande and Puerto de la Duquesa. With a fair wind this passage should only take about 5 hours under sail and potentially a lot less via motorboat.

Europa Gibraltar

It is recommended to try to avoid the stronger Easterly winds as these can result in more choppy seas. It is always best to call ahead to ensure a visitor berth in Estepona Marina, but once settled in a berth you will find good shelter, bars, restaurants and chandleries.

A 15 minute walk along the beautiful promenade will take you through the old quarter which is a typically Andalusian “pueblo”, with its whitewashed houses and colourful plant pots hanging from attractive balconies.

You could also head in land by taxi or hire a car and head up to Gaucin, an amazing mountain village that offers spectacular views of Gibraltar and across to North Africa. You could also try lunch at Platero & Co where there is a panoramic balcony.

Estepona with its attractive whitewashed houses, balcony hung flowers and a busy Sunday Market are all part of this unique experience, it’s well worth the passage from Alcaidesa Marina.

Estepona Village

Meteorology

For yacht owners and crews, the best days to sail to Estepona are when the Westerly winds are blowing. Being shore winds, these can top 20 knots in Summer often reaching their maximum at the hottest part of the day. Fog occurs occasionally in the summer and extra care must be taken in these circumstances. A light Easterly wind can make for enjoyable motoring in calm seas.

Tips

Take the utmost care when passing Europa Point and give it a wide berth to avoid as much swell as possible. There’s also a tricky spot to the North of the fishing port of La Linea, on the East coast of the town where there are hidden mussel beds, although these are clearly marked on Nautical charts.

Alcaidesa Marina to Estepona

Close to the shore you may see fishing tackle being marked with nothing more than a plastic bottle and with a bit of luck perhaps a flag.

*Owners and crews are responsible for making their own passage planning and the above should not be used for passage planning but rather as a useful guide.

Read Antonio Valbuena’s First Instalment: Alcaidesa Marina to Ceuta: Nautical Routes Part 1

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