I first visited Ibiza arriving by boat in 2010. Walking up the beach shoes in one hand and holdall in the other was quite an adventure.
For my two visits in 2017 I travelled by aeroplane, which on landing and take-off gave me wonderful views over my favourite Mediterranean holiday isle.
Ibiza has a reputation of noisy nightclubs. While this is undoubtedly true, the likes of DC10 and Amnesia are located close to the airport and well away from Ibiza Town, or Eivissa as the locals know it.
In fact the Dalt Vila, or old town, boasts top of the range hotels overlooking a harbour filled with superyachts.
Which is all very well if you are a twenty something lager lout or a multi-millionaire, but is there anything for those of us in between?
I stayed in a £40 per night hotel at Les Figueretas, a charming little bay on the outskirts of Ibiza Town. It was quiet at night whilst having all night bars nearby.
Being an island the surrounding panorama is a seascape with vessels galore, and I wondered if it was possible to get afloat?
It turned out there are numerous commercial craft plying for trade all day long and well into the evening as well.
Near our hotel, jutting out into the clear water where fishes are easy to see, a concrete jetty makes an ideal landing stage for the water buses.
Arriving every 15 minutes, these provide a motorboat ride into town for 3 euros. Quick and efficient it’s a great way to get afloat.
Arriving in the town centre ten minutes later it was possible to get another which provided a stopping service around the harbour.
By the end of my ten day visit I was wondering if the operators did a season ticket rather like a ski resort lift pass as I was doing as average of two or three trips a day. And having had an enjoyable bump up and down on the waves my urge to go sailing was diminishing.
It reminded me of Brighton Marina. We took our sailing yacht out regularly until one year we bought a dinghy and discovered the delights of zipping around at 20 knots. Moored on the back of the yacht it was our first choice of vessel and after an hour whizzing down to the pier and back we couldn’t be bothered to take the yacht out.
The water taxis/buses give a similar feeling. One has all the fun of a planing motorboat without any of the hassle of mooring it.
However a point was reached when I would simply love to know what was around the next headland, and that would of course involve chartering a boat.
Ibiza has numerous small islands, or large uninhabited rocks if you prefer, making wonderful snorkelling and diving sites with fishes galore to observe in the clear water.
I wondered where to start looking for one. A visit to the club nautico, or yacht club provided a range of brochures offering craft for hire, but as many were in Spanish it was all a little daunting.
Next I visited Marina Botafoch, arriving by water bus, and explored the shops and offices located there.
It was here I discovered Amoyachts Brokers. Their charter manager Franziska Schreiber, originally from Munich, turned out to be a positive mine of information and effortlessly answered all my questions.
She explained Amoyachts deal with all aspects of yacht management from helping owners find moorings to arranging outside caterers for large charter parties.
Yet they were also willing to provide that personal touch and help an individual get fixed up, whether it was a sail on a yacht, or to charter a RIB for the day.
Franziska explained that they were one of the most established brokers on the island and had the necessary contacts to be able to solve visiting yachtsmen’s problems.
After my Easyjet flight was cancelled at the last minute Ms Schreiber stepped into the breach and quickly arranged an alternative British Airways flight home for me as ongoing travel and accommodation arrangements is all part of the service they offer.
Finally my flight took off into the clear blue Mediterranean sky and I suffered a tinge of parting as the Spanish mainland loomed below and the cloud cover steadily built as we headed northwards.