Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Danga Bay Marina

Hi everyone,
Today we motorsailed from Nongsa Point Marina in Indonesia to Danga Bay Marina in Malaysia.  The 52nm passage took 9 hours with a lot of assistance from tidal current.

Into the fray
The passage didn't start well as the engine stopped several times due to air in the fuel system.  We eventually managed to properly bleed the system.  Only after it ran for an hour without problems did we cross the Traffic Separation Scheme channels which are very busy with big, fast shipping.

The shipping lanes were full of a wide variety of ships, from small coastal tankers and tugs towing barges to huge VLCCs (very large crude carriers), container ships and bulk carriers.  There were also a handful of Singaporean patrol boats out and about.  Overhead Singaporean F-5 Tiger, F-15 Eagle and F-16 Falcon jets were doing laps around the island state.  Lovely noise!

Evading yet another tug
Dodging a big Italian
Singaporean patrol vessel
Extensive anchorage
After crossing the lanes safely we navigated along the narrow strip between the shipping lane and the Singapore Port Authority limit.  We're not allowed in the former and not particularly welcome in the latter since we were bound for Malaysia.  Small coastguard launches patrol the port and they kept a close eye on us.

Once into the narrow strait between Malaysia and Singapore the big ship traffic disappeared and we only had to contend with barges and the Singapore coastguard vessels.  We passed under the Second Link (Tuas) Bridge, using the first span E of the middle span, and still finding plenty of clearance for our little 15m air-draft.

We arrived off Danga Bay marina and had to find our way past an extensive floating barrier.  There is a lot of dredging going on near the marina and it was far from clear which path to take.  We found our way in with help from the marina and from Kakadu.  Apparently several yachts have gone the wrong way and run aground so one needs to take care.

After arrival Graham and I registered our boats at the marina while the ladies took a bus to one of the local malls for initial food supplies.  In the evening we walked along the side of a 4-lane motorway where a lot of the manhole covers were absent - avoid the black holes!  It was worth it when we found an excellent Indian restaurant where we had a huge, quality feed for A$12 per person.  We found a quieter route back to the marina.

The marina jetties are in good shape here, but the marina buildings are somewhat run-down.  There is no laundry on site and the gents loos/showers are out of order for renovation.  The Danga Bay area seems very popular in the evenings but is deserted all day.  At night the buildings are nicely lit up and one barely notices the warped planks on the walkways!

Today we got our Malaysian iPhone SIMs so are online again.  We went with Maxis which has a big office near the marina.  This afternoon Graham, the skipper of Two Amigos and I were shuttled around the various offices to carry out our clearing in to Malaysia.  The ladies went shopping at another mall to check that out.  This evening we'll eat at the Italian restaurant on site, for which we got MR50 credit after paying our MR100 fee for a week in the marina.

Tomorrow we expect to do a day trip to Singapore.  It's a reconnaissance mission to see just how long it takes and how long one ends up with to do useful stuff in Singapore.  The lads will visit the electronics and marine chandlery mall while the ladies are looking into having some clothes made.  Good fun for all!  :)

1 comment:

  1. Congrats guys on completing the rally - have loved the blogs and all the useful info and look forward to the next instalments! We are in Thursday Island at the moment, lots of wind here lol!