Black Sea Logbook Entry
Distance: 13 nm
Sailed from: Constanta (Port Tomis), Romania
We didn’t make it very far when we set-out today for Mangalia and found the wind on-the-nose and too strong to make for a comfortable passage. After passing the large commercial port of Constanta, we decided to tuck into the small harbor in the Eforie Nord beach resort rather than back-track to Port Tomis. With the swell running near the harbor entrance and no answer to our radio calls, we used our cell phone (with a Romanian sim card) to call the harbormaster to confirm that the harbor was safe to enter since we had very little pilotage information. He explained how to enter the harbor and was there to greet us and help us tie-up upon arrival a few minutes later.
During our three night stay, we watched the summer season come to an abrupt end on the Black Sea. Workers packed up the beach chairs and umbrellas, vendors boarded-up their beach-front snack bars and souvenir shops, and the marina provided shelter to a few late-season cruising yachts who had just completed a transit of the Danube from Germany. We had to venture into the resort town to find more shops and restaurants open. The most popular place to eat in this town is one of the numerous buffet restaurants with live music. Lisa was not too impressed with the casual food handling practices we observed, so we opted for pizza one night and grilled chicken at the marina’s beach bar another night. We used the quiet time in this scenic beach resort, with wireless internet at the dock, to catch-up on our notes and stretch our legs with walks through town.
The wind finally dropped off and shifted in our favor — it was time to set sail for Bulgaria, the fifth country we planned to visit on the Black Sea. We stopped off briefly in the pleasant harbor of Mangalia to gather information about the new marina and procedures for clearing-out of Romania for the update to the Black Sea Cruising Guide.