Great Loop: Hot Cocoa

Days 23-25: February 9-11, 2023


The next stop on the trip was a one-and-a-half-day layover in Melbourne (Florida). We originally planned for a day but that stretched to two to give us a bit more down time. On the arrival day we did a bit of provisioning. There was a marina close to our anchorage and only a block away from the Publix grocery store as well as a few department stores. Always good to have close access. The checkout boy at the store told us to borrow a cart so we used it for the block back to the marina.

We spent some time fishing off the boat and caught a few hardhead catfish. Not my favorite fish because they are so slimy, though the kids had fun and it occupied their time for quite a bit.

The second day in Melbourne we decided to check out the downtown area. First stop was to Jacqueline’s Bakery for some coffee and tasty treats, and hot chocolate for Tonia, of course. After a nice morning snack, we strolled the town, checked out the shops, and had a nice morning.

When the fun was had shopping, it was time for lunch. And when there is a place named Squid Lips, you have to go! It was a fun restaurant and we saw a manatee surface from our dining viewpoint.

The birds of Melbourne…

Cocoa Village

Up bright and early the next day, we headed for Cocoa. Cocoa had some damage during Hurricane Nicole in November and we knew some of their docks were destroyed. And the docks were only two years old. Luckily the big boat dock survived, though no longer with power or water. Unluckily for us, the wind was strong from the south and the stay was a bit rocky. With a few additional fenders we weathered it decently.

Cocoa Village was an amazing town. Lots of shops and local artist studios ranging from paintings to jewelry. They were setting up for a concert that night in the park as well as a “sip and stroll” through town so you could see that the town does a lot to support the community.

The bonus of Cocoa is we were able to meet up with Mike, one of my close high school friends, and his wife Danielle. The last time we saw them was 6 years ago in Seattle, so we had a lot of catching up to do. We found a nice German Biergarten and had a great time.

Day 23 Trip Details:
Vero Beach, US to Brevard County, US
Time: 4 h 28 m (08:21 to 12:49)
Distance: 33.57 nm

Day 25 Trip Details:
Brevard County, US to Merritt Island, US
Time: 2 h 4 m (07:44 to 09:49)
Distance: 14.79 nm

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