Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Heading to the Ha'apai island group

Upon our arrival in Tonga we checked in with the government officials at the capital city Nukualofa.  Finally, we are clear to leave Tongatapu and sail to the more remote island group of Ha'apai.  We go to Tongatapu, the capital city, to check into the Kingdom of Tonga.  And we immediately apply for a 4 month visa extension.  With our extension in hand we sailed off on the 23rd of July.  Actually, the water was calm and no wind so we motored off.  But, we were on our way.
Glassy water on departure

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Tonga's Newest Island: The Volcano Hunga Tonga/Hunga Ha'apai

After clearing in to Tonga we immediately applied for a 4 month visa extension.  This involves handing over our passports and then checking back every few days to see if they are processed.  Last year we were told to come back in three days, but it took five.  This year we were told to come back in a week.  We were bummed becaause the best parts of Tonga are far away from the main island of Tongatapu.

For quite some time Rich had been wanting to explore a newly formed volcanic island that was 30 miles away. I was in!!!! We were so outta there! The winds were favorable to sail back in 3 days but not for the outbound trip.  We had to motor all the way . We left at 9 AM and arrived at 4:30 PM with enough light to move in close and look for a good anchoring location.

The new volcano from above