Making friends

A smile can do a lot of things. In Nissan island, our first PNG stop, we have a canoe full of kids paddling up to the boat on our first morning there. They are grinning, gleaming white smiles from ear to ear but they have little to no words of...

Risky business

When embarking out on cruising life you will inevitably come across a certain amount of nervous questioning about your plans. Stepping from the safety of the land and onto the wildness of the sea tends to be perceived, quite rightly, as waving...

Robinson Crusoe

Radio ga-ga

James hates talking on the VHF. Whenever we need to do so he always shakes his head vehemently and thrusts the microphone in my direction. Without regular access to a mobile phone or your own personal wifi your boat’s radio systems become your...

Ruled paper

S-l-o-w time

The nature of the experience of travel is hugely dependent on the speed at which you move. When we first told people that we had grand plans to sail around the world, those that didn’t simply blink back at us in disbelief would nod slowly, as if...

The outer islands

The country of Papua New Guinea is a place that’s always conjured up images of the exotic for me. From the treehouse-building Korowai tribe, to the unusual Vogelkop bower bird and birds of paradise native to this land, PNG is a place that most of...

Maiden voyage

One thing that I’ve learned is that sailors are suckers for ritual celebrations. Crossing the Equator, cutting over the International Date Line, transiting the Panama canal and “closing the circle” upon circumnavigation are all [...]

Like a fish to water

Living on a boat with kids means that you’re in and out of the water a lot. It’s a welcome way of cooling off from the heat of the day in the tropics or calming down if the children have got a bit wild. It’s our backyard, our swimming pool, our...

How do you know weather to go?

Our route this season takes us along some rather untouched and remote places, more so than in years before. This sometimes makes getting a good weather forecast a bit tricky. Previously we’d consult marina offices, go online where possible and...

The sun has got his hat on

“Oooh, aren’t you lovely and brown!” our families cooed in awe soon after we started our sailing adventures. Funnily enough, their admiration actually made us turn rather pink with embarrassment as, in our books, that meant that [...]

Sailing the Solomons

There is always a squeeze point in our sailing plans. Although we try to avoid sailing to deadlines there are larger forces such as cyclone season, monsoon season or the turn of the prevailing winds or currents that force our hand. That’s one of...

The perfect wind

Sailors, true sailors, know how to grab their moments. A mere ten knots of wind guarantees them swiftly casting off the lines or, for the truly skilled, stylishly sailing off the anchor, to go out and play in the light breeze. Strengthening winds...

More Vanuatu voyages

We’ve been continuing our passages northwards through the islands, sailing from Port Vila to Mele Bay and then Havannah Harbour on Efate island, then onwards to Emae, Epi, the Maskelynes and Malekula, with a little side trip to Ambrym. We're now...

The den gets a makeover

When your boat is 27 years old and you're the fourth owners it's understandable that you'd make some changes. When your time onboard has seen you transform from a carefree cruising couple to growing your crew en route and now sailing as a family it's...

V-berth vacations

The in-laws are coming to visit. Having friends or relatives coming to stay is always an interesting exercise. Visitors to a boat, however, have a completely different set of challenges to meet [...]

Turtle vid

I love turtles. One of the things that I most enjoy about our sailing travels is the ability to swim with animals in their natural environment. Snorkelling on reefs is one of my favourite things to do and it’s an added bit of magic when a turtle...

Going Bamboo

While we were in New Zealand we forged a new relationship with Go Bamboo, a company that's serious about keeping plastic out of our coastlines, oceans and landfills. Their first major product breakthrough was in designing a [...]

Missed us in New Zealand?

Didn't manage to come out to see us during all that time we spent in Aotearoa? Don't despair, our cruising in this beautiful country was bookended by [...]

Number 33

We arrived in Aneityum, the most southerly island in Vanuatu, after an 8 day passage from New Zealand. Instantly the layers of stress and worry that so acutely mark the preparation stage for leaving a country were shed as quickly as the layers of...

Going overboard

“Bagpuss is floating away!!!” Comes the fervent cry from our daughter. Every sailor has a plan for a man overboard situation. You consider how you’d manoeuvre the boat to recover someone from the water and the process for getting them safely...

Yum yum yum

When your family onboard includes a Londoner with a rare and supreme talent in the kitchen, another Londoner with a great appreciation of good food and a Californian who likes to experiment with new flavours you know that the average mealtime is not...

It takes a village

Our lovely friends at gDiapers asked us to take part in their podcast series called "It takes a village to raise a parent". They interviewed us, asking questions about [...]

What it’s all about

Expect the unexpected

The first lesson of parenting is really to expect the unexpected. Funnily enough, the exact same can be said of liveaboard sailing. One of the great challenges of sailing out from a country like New Zealand and on to remote islands like those of...

Portrait of a cruiser

Our community of boat folk has certain 'go-to' resources for sailing knowledge and advice. One of these is the website called Noonsite, the 'global site for cruising sailors'. It's a [...]

Cabin fever

I know that one of the things it’s hard to get your head around if you don’t live on a boat is how a couple or even a family could be comfortable in so little space. The living area equates to far less than a tiny studio flat and yet we all seem...

Dot dot dot…

We've had our heads down for quite some time, prepping for departure. Leaving New Zealand after so much time is a big deal for us for a number of reasons. It'll be the first sailing outside of NZ waters that we've done as a [...]

Rub-a-dub-dub

Living aboard full-time means that sometimes even the simplest of tasks isn’t straightforward. Like having a shower. Unlike many other boats, we don’t have a water-maker on board so the fresh water that we carry is a precious, finite amount...

Change is in the air

Autumn is here. For three years in the tropics we missed the changing colours that the turn of season brings. It wasn't until our camping trip all around New Zealand that we were able to re-familiarise ourselves with that shift of light, and time and...