Danga Bay Marina.

October 2013.

“Got a beer?” The fisherman asks, thought you guys don’t drink, “yeah but real thirsty”. I gave them a can of 7UP each and off they go in their boat opening the cans with their teeth.


We are parked up at Pisang Island in the the Malacca Strait. 

We have just spent 2 relaxing weeks in Danga Bay marina. Believe me the place grows on you, at first we were spun out about the rubbish in the water but it just disappeared, where to who knows. There are 3 sea otters living at the marina, Jen saw one of them, I didn’t, which was a bummer or as Acok says Obama.

We made it to Nongsa Point, with engine trouble, so Clement, the boss, and Acok, the legend, let us come in and suss out the motor to at least be able to use it. In the end had to get hold of the Power Equipment in Fremantle to get any help and info, they are good value, couldn’t understand a word the mob in Singapore were saying. P1010821

Acok took us up the mangroves where we saw a bloody big tree snake and the most awesome kingfisher, on you Acok.

When we left we left the radiator cap only turned to the first knotch and made it. Once again we crossed the eastern and western shipping channels this time with 3 knots of current up the arse, doing 9 kns at 2000 RPM, kept up with a huge gas ship and in the end passed just behind after talking to the Captain, who I must say was pretty stoked to be talking to an Australian on a yacht, we had a good old yack.

We cut through the Singapore strait islands then through the anchorage full of tankers, passing so close you could yell out gidday, the last guy got the shits and took our name but haven’t heard anything since. Once you come round the corner into the Johor Strait you can see the causeway bridge and old fishing farms, houses on sticks on the Malaysian side and on the Singapore side there is dry docks, huge buildings and chimenys, we watched a continuous line of rubbish trucks going into the building with 3 huge chimenys, so no wonder why the place is clean. Poor buggers on the other side if the wind is from the south.

Going under the bridge was classic, we were going to clear it by metres but had to play the game with Jen, she was spinning out especially the last 10 metres but once under she relaxed. We were followed by the Singapore sea police all the way up the river, they were like a relay team. We passed Puteri harbour which looked pretty flash but headed on to Danga Bay, which is right in the city of Johor Bahru, and the closer we got the more fish farms and boats we encountered. We arrived on a Saturday arvo and the boys from the marina had us tied up and powered up in no time, Herman was a ripper and showed us the ropes. That night there was a MMA, mixed martial arts, competition at the marina and as we were paying customers it was free. I had to go and geez it was good, they were in a cage and beat the crap out of each other, one bloke took about 5 minutes to come too, they even had chicks going at it, what more could you ask on the first night


Around the marina is a few restaurants, pizza was good, seafood was superb but expensive, they have got fish tanks and fish tanks and fish tanks, muddies, Australian deep sea crabs, American spikey crabs, Canadian crabs, blueys, then all the lobsters from around the world, then all the fish you can think of, it is pretty cool. We had a chilli crab, clams and a couple of grouper out of the tanks during our stay, but it was expensive, for JB that is.P1010888

You can go to 7 Spices Restaurant and sit in a air conditioning and have roti channi for a couple of ringotts and that will keep you going till tea time. In the end though we were pigging out, not sure why but it might have something to do with quitting smoking, got a guts on me like a sumo, so will have to work on that. Great yumcha in JB too.

We went to Singapore for a couple of days, how’s this for arse, picked a hotel by price, not cheap arse but not cappo e
ither, we caught the bus from JB did the customs bit in JB then Singapore, I didn’t realize the Johor Strait is blocked in the middle by a causeway, no bridge, you get to Singapore, get off the bus then head for the immigration and customs then back down the stairs and onto a bus and off you go. Our bus was heading to Queen Street which turned out to be about half a k from the hotel, sim lim tower, Bugis st, the chandellery and Fatty’s Restaurant.


We ate like kings and on the first arvo i sat in Chinatown drinking tigers while Jen went shopping, I watched the world pass by, you name it they were represented and with the sun shining and the tiger girl keeping the beers going, it was hooting.

Follow that up with sweet and sour fish, tofu and fried rice for tea a Fatty’s and there is a day worth living.

We got all the stuff bought and collected and headed back over the border next day and back to the marina in a couple of hours. Got stuck in to the new water pump and had it done by tea time. More food. See what I mean.

By now we were having a bit of fun with the waiters at the seafood restaurant every time we went, they reckon,”we good customer come back lots”. When I said it was expensive it never cost more than $30 each and that included wine, beer and food. Old Lawrence, one of the marina mob reckons he could live for a month on what we spent in one night, bugger that.

Now we get to the marina mob, well this is not your average marina mob, there are comparisons with the Geographe Bay Captains, these guys are unreal.

Lizzie and Wally, a couple of yanks that they must have broken the mould to, the most friendly and helpful guys, always offering beers, the use of their motorbike and a yack anytime, there should be more of them.

Captain Bruce, been up there a while and ready to head home to Queensland in his 45 foot yacht. A great place to stop for a beer, loves twisting you arm for another, left there pissed a few times only to go back to Boomerang and find Jen ready to go and have tea.

We would take him out for yumcha, he would drive, so we didn’t need a cab, then pick up fuel, do the shopping whatever, great bloke and probably the only person I know who would go swimming at Danga Bay, besides the otters.

Gary, don’t call me Gaz, a bloody kiwi and I didn’t pick it, just whiling away the days, his wife works in Singapore and he hangs on the boat, funny that, Kiwi’s. Not a bad bloke though, I rewired his cabin lights, a job that started out with changing switches then turned into a mission.

Our neighbours rolled up from France, oldies, and also good crew.                                                                                                                                                                     Don’t know there names.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Terrence, Angie and the crew from the marina are excellent dudes, always helpful and you can see they are happy when you are, same as the Nongsa Point and Keppel mob.

On our last night they had a Potluck at the marina, oh what a night, it was for a young fellow by the name of Luke whose 30th birthday it was, everyone turned up and it went off in true yachtie style. There were Malaysians, Australians, Americans, Germans, Thai, Philpino, Dutch, Spanish, French, you get the idea I am sure. Angie was doing the karaoke with a few takers, everyone was up dancing and then the finale was pass the parcel yacht fashion, what a crack up, each layer had a question like whose got the biggest belly, I tried but came second, baldest head, I got a show at that as well but a kiwi beat me, biggest nose went to John, Luke’s dad, if they had have had biggest hand, foot or probably any part he would have won, he is a big bugger and a Tassie to boot.  His wife Kate was a ripper as well. Luke got up and danced with May, a good looker and his hand was creeping lower but he was the true gentleman. They had all types of food, my favorites were the gooey roast pumpkin and cauliflower cheese and the pasta bog, which I scoffed, 3 serves. Weighed myself on the scales at the library before, 84kg, and at the end 89kg. Need to get out on the water again I reckon. 

Met a couple of Queenslanders who were good value, I think I spun Bev out by eating so much, shit happens and it did regularly. They left without saying goodbye so probably in the bad books there, you get that.

I went to a little market on our last morning, 0600, on Waly’s motorbike, not sure if it is legal, bought some more pig from the Chinese bloke. He has a whole pig cut up in the back of his van, you just ask for the bits you want, 17 ringotts a kilo. We now have a freezer full, Jen cooked a curry the other day and it was great. The pig didnt taste piggy at all. 

We had a send off at the jetty at 0730, Herman came, Bruce, the neighbours and a Dutchie. Headed out the Johor Strait dodging nets and pots all the way. Dropped in to Puteri, checked on Steel de breeze and looked for the Sutamonsters but they were gone.

Something to look forward to catching up with them again, last time we saw them was Bawean Island in Indo.

Made it to Pisang Island and anchored up, then woke up to a north west storm, bugger, pulled anchor and shifted to the lee of a small island and anchored up again then no sooner had it calmed down that another storm hit from the south. Shifted back to our overnight possie and had a vege cook up. Okra, mushy’s and some strange beans that tasted great but left a funny taste in your mouth, sort of tastes like stink bombs smell.P1010927

On our way so it looks like net dodging tonight and with a bit of luck we should be in Port Dickson  in the morning.

It just never ends. Cheers to Acok, Clement, Bruce, Lizzie and Wally, Terrence, Angie, Herman and the rest of the Danga Bay mob and birthday boy, Luke.


The Ranga’s.


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