23rd to 26th August 2017
Our next destination in the Little Belt was the island of Aeroe and the picturesque harbour of Aeroscobing. It was only a short 10 nm hop from Lyo so we left after anchoring practice in the Lyo Trille. We were keen to test the anchor. All season we had kept saying; “we really must test see if that anchor works”! So we anchored in about 2 to 3 m of water and enjoyed a peaceful lunch!
A nice anchorage for lunch!
Lunch at anchor
The wind was very light with an F2 southerly. At 1315 we weighed anchor and made slow progress past the entrance to Faborg and down past Avernnako. However the weather was nice and warm and Grace was sailing well in the light airs so we settled back for a gentle glide towards Aeroe.
Sailing in the Little Belt
Once in the channel we found the Danish Navy at play! They had their helicopter flying backwards and forwards between two ships dropping a man on one then picking another one up and putting him on the other boat. In the light wind we edged closer and closer into their play area! They kept a close eye us and eventually schussed us away! However by 1545 they all packed up and went home!
Danish Navy at play / exercise!
We realised that we would not make Aeroscobing that day and made for Soby, Aeroscbing would have to wait for tomorrow.
Windmill above Soby is a great landmark from the sea!
Soby to Aeroscobing
We were underway by 1130 for a short hop to Aeroscobing. As the town is very pretty and we had been warned that the marina would be packed full, however when we got there it was virtually empty. This was sort of a good job as we made a rather spectacular entrance into the box mooring! The wind caught our bows and we were pivoted round against the posts and got rather stuck. Fortunately as Grace’s bows swept round we did not come forward enough to graze the side of an expensive and very new Halberg Rassy 42 with our anchor! The owner was on deck and became very keen to help get our bows under control again and pull us straight in our berth.
Berthed at Aeroscobing
The old part of Aeroscobing is a charming traditional shipping and boat owners village and as there was a free bus service we spent the next day happily exploring the island. Our first destination was the Aeroscobing museum, which was an eclectic mixture of local clothing, boat bits and the stories of the local ship owners, all stuffed into an old house at random. An because of that it is throughly interesting and fascinating. At one time there were 80 schooners based in Aeroscobing, travelling all over the world, with fish to Russia, pit props to England and nitrates from South America.
The town square
Keeping an eye on the street!
The town museum
The museum garden
Our next destination was back west towards Soby and Sobygaard. Sobygaard was the site of the stronghold of the rulers of Aeroe. The bus drops you off on a deserted stretch of road next to an ancient Iron Age mound, which is marked as ‘history unknown’ . You have to go looking through the trees to find the moated Manor House and farm. As with most of these places now, it is virtually empty with the exception of a visitors book and we discovered that we were not the only British people to have visited the island that year – someone from Leeds had beaten us!
Iron Age mound
A moated manor to keep Danish Vikings safe from marauding Germans!
The frog motif
We then went back to the road and waited for the bus to appear again to take us to the opposite side of the island to Marstal, which is the industrial area and the commercial port. It is actually quite difficult to sail to it from the west due to the many reefs and shallows, taking the bus is much easier! In the harbour, there is a big floating dock but there are still plenty of spaces in the nicer end to moor up. We were not temped to move Grace despite back in Aeroscobing they were setting up for a sea shanties festival. This explained some of the interesting people we saw!
The harbour cookhouse. It was forbidden to cook onboard ships in harbour in case of fire
Riding buses clearly makes one hungry and the first stop was for lunch. We went to the first cafe we saw on the quayside and what a treat! It was fantastic! Plaice is the ‘local’ fish and a great favourite of mine. I had a starfish sandwich which as the waiter helpfully pointed out is neither a sandwich nor contains starfish! But it does have plaice cooked in lots of different ways! Perfect!
My ‘starfish’ sandwich
Strength restored it was time for the next treat, the maritime museum. This is a most wonderful experience, especially if you like boats, which of course I do! There are lots of interconnected buildings packed full of the boat, their bits and stories of their adventures from all over the world. They have a gallery of a Danish artist call Rasmussen, who spent time on the island and seemed to have given all his paintings away to local people who collected them up and put them in the museum gallery. The paintings are really very good and bring the details of sea and sky to life. The outdoor part of the museum is in amongst the ship repair yard and it all feels a bit strange dodging forklift trucks, showers of welding sparks and piles of rusting metal to view the exhibits!
The maritime museum
Outdoor exhibits in amongst the shipyard
They still build and repair engines here!
All finished by 1730 and back to Aeroscobing for the beach and a swim!
Huts on the beach
The cold Baltic Sea