Life and Spirit of the Marina Deportiva – Las Palmas

Life and Spirit of the Marina Deportiva – Las Palmas

In the time I spent in the Marina Deportiva, I could meet so many impressive people and I heard so many different stories about, how the people are living and what their mission is.

Marina Deportiva1I had a really great time at the Marina Deportiva, all the three weeks I stayed here. From the first day on, I met so many people, with so many stories behind. I really enjoyed meeting them all so much. Most of them became friends. Also some strange Captains you can find there as well, but it is easy to ignore them. But on these Captains you can see that it is maybe not best for humans to stay over years alone on a boat.

After a while of, just drinking beer, sitting in the sailors bar and enjoying the great subculture of hitchhiker, sailors, workers and so many others, I had the idea to write about all the nice people an their stories. I think mostly, the hitchhiker are creating this wonderful area, because these are the people, they are running the whole day long through the Marina, speak with everyone for searching a boat. Smiling all time and connect on this way all the people together. The hitchhiker become friends with some sailors, everyone will meet each other several times a day at the Sailorsbar –

Sailorsbar– because you have to cross these bar for laundry, for toilet, for shower, for buying things and so on. People becoming friends if they stay for a longer time together and so became everyone connected with everyone. The most people there are very creative, some have really strong power in the eyes and some are just funny the whole day long. I felt in love with this magic subculture.

I have to catch this stories and this people for a project and decided to make short interviews about my short-time friends here. Cristina helped me with the photography and the design. Here are this wonderful people detailed:

The People:

Bastian, Alex, Emilian, Guillaume, Lempi, Joana, SY Tailana, Helene et Vinciane, Marelia, ReiseReise, Aurore and Mathis; SY-Namastee; Lukas; Gabriele; Paul and Ana; Arno; Javiav; Dimitri; Joshua; Cristina (my photograph) and my self…

The questions for the Interview:

Everyone got the same five questions from me, here they are:

  1. Why are you in Las Palmas, what was your motivation to come to this place?
  2. How you traveled to Las Palmas?
  3. How you spend your time in the Marina?
  4. What will you do as next, what’s your next steps?
  5. What is your personal statement and Resume of the live in the Marina Deportiva?

Interviews with the people I met:

Bastian (40 years from Marseilles – FranceBastian1

  1. I want to find a boat to get a different feeling in my live. I want to have the experience of living on the boat and on the ocean in the middle of nowhere. Also I am working on an old sailing trauma from a bad happening in my youth. I want to find a boat as Hitchhiker, but for me it is not important where the ship is going to, I just want to be outside on the ocean.
  2. I came with the car from Marseilles to Barcelona and after a few days I took a flight from Barcelona to Las Palmas. I arrived before tow month on 28.11.2014
  3. I was active searching for a boat that can take me with, nearly every day. Also I have done some local activities like going sailing for two days with new friends and also I traveled around the Island of Gran Canaria to see something different than always just in the Marina.
  4. I am bored from Las Palmas and have to quit now my mission now and go back to France to earn some money. But I will go on with this project maybe in May, but for sure on another place.
  5. First I learned that I have to move – I cannot stay always on one place and wait what will happen. It is a really nice social experience from the organization between the established subculture of hitchhiker and sailors in the Marina.

Alex (21) from Madrid – SpainAlex1

  1. I am Hitchhiker and I want to cross the Atlantic
  2. I come with a plane from Madrid to Las Palmas 13.01.2014
  3. Sometimes I was asking for a boat – but mostly I enjoyed the crowd in the Sailorsbar. I was sleeping the time in a Squat and after a while in an empty and lost boat.
  4. After finding a boat I will travel with my backpack through Latin America. A part of my family is from Brazil and for my mother is Brazil and all the people from their just the devil but I want to see and find out everything about my ancestors from Brazil. I have no money and so also no time limit.
  5. I like the marina very much and the people with their histories. It is like a family, like a brotherhood here. I don`t know anyone deeply, but I know everyone by heart – again like a family. Every day I go sad because people are leaving but on the other side I am really for them, that they can go on with their travel now.

Alejandro, 1994

English: His father is from Madrid (Spain), and his mother from Brazil. He grew up in a not understood world, which makes him feel like an Indian in the city. He is full of energy and an extreme positive mind. He was afraid of this, so he learned hiking. Because he has taken a shine to the sea, he decided to find a boat to cross the Atlantic by sailing.Alex2 His destiny is Brazil, because he will find out more about his own roots and find himself. And is always singing rap, the best way to express.


Spanish: De padre madrileño y madre brasileña, fue criado y crecido en un mundo que no entiende haciéndole sentir como un indio en la ciudad. La energía le desborda y tiene una mentalidad valiente y positiva. Tenia miedo a las alturas y decidió aprender a escalar. Tiene miedo al mar y decide buscar un velero para cruzar el Atlántico. Su destino, Brasil, en búsqueda de sus raíces y encontrarse a si mismo. Y siempre en compañía del rap, su vía para expresarse y autodescubrirse.

Emilian (28) from Canes – FranceEmillian2

  1. I have heard from people who the Marina Deportiva is a good place for tart the crossing over the Atlantic with my boat and I could meet nice people.
  2. I started to construct my boat before three and a half years and now I started in Canes in August for working. The Trip I started in December 2014 and arrived with the boat on 28.01.2015
  3. Mostly I was hanging with the people I met, working on my boat, was helping friends and drink a lot of beer.
  4. As next I will go to Tenerife and La Gomera, later to El Hero and then to Capo Verde and my final destination will be Brazil.
  5. I think the Marina is too big and the piers are too closed. It is not a good sharing place for sailors because of all the separated piers.

Guillaume (29) from Valence – France


  1. I am a Hitchhiker and I want to find a boat to Caribbean and want to go to Canada.
  2. I was starting with my bike to Morocco on 22.10.14. I took a bus in Morocco because I got stuck in the mountains in the snow. Later I was going on with my bike again till Agadir. I was hitchhiking with a boat over Lanzarote and Fuerte Ventura till Las Palmas an arrived on 25.01.2015
  3. Mostly I was working on a boat as a helper and made Party, also slacklining, climbing and just enjoying.
  4. I directly found a boat (that one I am helping on with some work) and will go with him to Capo Verde and then to Granada in the Caribbean. My final destination will be Canada.
  5. The People in the Marina are like a family – all this subculture here I really enjoy. I am really interested in all the people and their histories.

Lempi (27) from Helsinki – FinlandLempi2

  1. I will hitchhike to South America or any other destination will be ok also.
  2. I was living in Leipzig and was hitchhiking from there to Paris and London. From London I took a flight to Las Palmas. I spend my last money for this flight and came to Gran Canaria without any money. All I have is just the trusted in myself. I arrived in Las Palmas at 26.12.2014Lempi1
  3. As I arrived in the Marina I directly find a boat for sleeping and o this boat I was meeting a guy from a Squat, he invited me and I am living there in the moment.
  4. Now I started to search actively to find a boat, after I stayed four weeks mostly in the squat and be with my self.
  5. The people here are so kind and helpful with so much good energy. I really enjoy it here.

Joana (23) from Barcelona – SpainJoana2

  1. I want to hitchhike from Las Palmas to Caribbean and finally to Brazil. But the destination is not really important for me, it is just a direction. I travel without a time limit and I also want to live in another place like Barcelona or go on with traveling and have new experiences.Joana1
  2. I was flying from Barcelona to Las Palmas on 28.01. not for searching a boat, for finding a boat.
  3. I had a short time of searching and found directly a boat. I was doing advertisement, working on a boat, slacklining, entertaining and I was living in a Squat.
  4. I can go together with Emilian to Cross the Atlantic, see his Interview.
  5. The Marina is “de puta madre”! Here are so strong people and the most have a great energy.

SY Tailana

The Kids: Chloe and Xavie from North Catalonia – FranceTailana2

  1. We were visiting the Islands and now we have six month holiday and want to cross. Chloe didn`t want the crossing and the mother too, but after a family meeting the sun and father convince Chloe from Martinique and now she wants the crossing too.Tailana1
  2. We drove the boat from France to Lanzarote. We went back for work, and after going back to France they are here again and now is the time for crossing. We arrived on 29.01.2015
  3. We are working on the boat, visited Las Palmas and the Island Gran Canarias.
  4. We will go to La Gomera – test our work on the boat and if everything is OK we will go on to Capo Verde and want to cross.
  5. The Marina is not a good place for the boat, it is too much swell and wind on this place, and also it is not a good place for the Kids, no kids’ activities. Us convinced the very cheap price for the place of the boat and the good working possibilities.

Helene (22) et Vinciane (18) from the Normandy – France




  1. We are hitchhiker and we want to find a boat to cross the Atlantic
  2. We were hitchhiking from the Normandy to Cadiz, stayed there a while for searching a boat and after we went to Marina La Linea (close to Gibraltar) and we found a boat. But the Skipper robbed us, he send us away in Tarifa and didn`t gave us our money back. So we went on by ferry to Tanger. We were hitchhiking again to Agadir and found at least a boat that took us from Agadir to Las Palmas. We started end of November 2014 and arrives on 25.01.15 in Las Palmas
  3. We were working on a boat, drinking beer in the sailors bar and enjoy the people around us.
  4. We directly find a boat (we were working in it – seereportfromGuillome) and go on to Capo Verde and then to Grenada de Caribbean.



  5. Everyone who will find a boat will definitely find one when the time is ready for it. If they find no they will else find here exactly what they need in the moment. It’s a good Energy in the Marina. So many good People and Ideas. If someone will not find a boat, it is also not his mission to cross, they have to go other ways. Also there is absolutely no fight between the hitchhiker and no contribution. Everyone here together is like a family and everyone is happy if a friend finds a boat to go on.

Marelia (Marcel 42 and Conni) from Bern – SwissMarelia

  1. We are here for repairing some things and now waiting for better weather that we can leave.
  2. We came from South of France and we drove through the Mediterranean Sea and over the Baleares and Gibraltar down to the Canarias Island for the winter time. We started end of April 2014 and arrived before some weeks.
  3. We have to do some repairs, but we also did some sailing trips round the Islands and drove with a rented car through the Island. Mostly I was just searching the sun.
  4. We will go about 5000Km in the Direction of Greece were we want to spent the summer time. Till the autumn we want to be back in Las Palmas and then crossing.
  5. The Subculture in the Marina is very interesting. The world in the Marina is randomly twisted. We really enjoy this. But this is the only good thing to say about the Marina.

You can follow Marelia here on Facebook

Reise Reise

Chris (27) and Simon (27) from Stenungsund (43km north of Gothenburg) – SwedenSimon - Chris

  1. We want to cross with our own boat the Atlantic and have heard before that Las Palmas is a good Pit stop before the crossing.Simon
  2. We were sailing from Sweden to Las Palmas on the end of July 2013 till 29.03.2014 (nine month). After we are flying back for work and left the boat. Now we arrived back since 20.01.15 in Las Palmas
  3. Mostly we repaired some little things on the boat and waiting for spare parts. So, we also drink a lot and hear Rammstein.
  4. When everything is repaired and done, we will cross directly to Barbados.
  5. Simons statement to the Marina is “Tranquillo” – It is a chillax live here. We are also happy about weather, for us Swedish guys is it really good.

Aurore (24) and Mathis (22) from Bretagne – FranceAurore - Mathis

  1. We are hitchhiker and we want to find a boat for crossing the Atlantic
  2. We took a plane from Paris to Tenerife and after we took a Ferry to Gran Canarias.
  3. Mathis smokes cigarettes, drinks beer and is looking for new arrived boats every day. We speak with a lot of people and try the connections in the sailors bar. We are living in the moment at Nico`s boat.
  4. We want to go to the Caribbean and later on to Canada for traveling one year.
  5. It’s really a high point of hitchhiker. It is nice to meet so many nice people, we heard so great stories. You can learn from everyone something. It can make you also sometimes tiring to search a boat every day and speak to so much people.

SY Namastee (Monika and Carsten with the children Emma, Frieda and Hanna) from Husum – GermanySY Namaste1

  1. We are here in Las Palmas for some repairing stuff. We have project box and want to fix as much as possible from this projects till we will go on – we cannot fix all 😉 We are waiting for some spare parts and want to visit the island.
  2. We came to this place by our own keel. We sailed from Husum till Las Palmas from 20.08. and arrived on 25.01. But we had also a little break of two month in Lagos.
  3. The most time we are organizing spare parts, repair the boat and wait for other parts. Also things like cooking, going to supermarket and teach Hanna (she is the second class) we have to do every day.
  4. If we have done most important repairs we will start with the direction of Capo Verde and then to the Caribbean – down to Venezuela and when the wind is changing up to Cuba and back to Husum. But we don`t know exactly when.
  5. The Marina Deportiva is dangerous, because you go lost in the day, in a comfort zone. If you don`t take care about you, you will fall in a kind of liturgy and you will stay here forever. For children and family it is absolutely not friendly. Otherwise it is very cheap and totally save for the boat. It is an El Dorado for people who work on boats but the holiday factor is close to cero.

Lukas (28) from Valencia – SpainLukas.2jpg

  1. I am here because of my dream to cross the Ocean by boat. Sometimes I am waiting for something but nothing happens. Then I have to change something in my live and have to go on. It is also like an adventure.
  2. First I went by BlaBlaCar to Madrid from Valencia and from there I took a plain from to Las Palmas.
  3. I am searching for boats, visiting the Island and some special places, meeting nice people and mostly I just enjoy the time.
  4. I found a good Energy here in the Marina and can really enjoy this people but otherwise my next step to sail to Brazil.
  5. The life in the Marina is like with a family. That’s all this nice people. I am really surprised about the connection between the hitchhiker and sailors and the great energy from each of them. Very person is like a link to all the others.

Lucas Garcia, 1986.

English: Lukas, was born at home in a small village at the countryside in Castellón. He grew up on a farm. Far from home, he took some sand in his pocket as a symbol of his love for the earth. As a vagabond of the world, he travel to discover and learn from new experiences. He don’t has a telephone and bank account, but he live day by day with his art, doing some Malabar’s, street shows and taking some courage to begin his professional live as a clown in Latin America.Lukas1

Spanish: Lukas, nacido en casa, en un pequeño pueblo de castellón. Creció y se crió en el campo. Lejos de casa llevaría tierra en sus bolsillos como símbolo de amor al campo. Y así, vagabundo del mundo viaja para descubrir y aprender. No tiene teléfono ni cuenta de banco pero vive al día y de su arte, haciendo malabares y espectáculos callejeros y cogiendo valor para lanzarse como payaso por América Latina.

Gabriel (38) from Patagonia – ArgentinaGabriele1

  1. I came to Las Palmas to bring my boat for a refit in the winter time.
  2. I was sailing from Mallorca (where I am working) to Las Palmas from 14.10.14 till 30.11.14
  3. The most time I make breakfast and then I work the whole day on my boat.
  4. I will fly in April back to Mallorca for work and during the summer time. After I don`t know if I come back – maybe I go to the Caribbean or maybe I make a travel round the world with my boat.
  5. The Marina is totally different to the city. There are so many nationalities and so many different people here. Normally I don`t really like Marinas but here I can enjoy every

Paul (24) and Anna (25) from Göttingen – GermanyAna - Paul

  1. We are here, because we want to hitchhike to the Caribbean.
  2. We started beginning of June in Germany to hitchhike to Romania and over Serbia and Albania, Greece, Turkey to Iran. From there we took the train back to Turkey and hitchhiked to Istanbul and took a flight to Madrid. Further we hitchhiked to Andalusia and fought to Las Palmas on 17.01.
  3. The most time we searched for a boat but also we spend a lot of time together with people we met by searching. We found really great people here. We stayed in the Sailorsbar, slept in a Squad and on Nico`s boat. But we also cooed a lost and made some parties.
  4. Maybe found already a boat – if we will become no green light for it, we will stop and take a plain to Spain and further to Cuba or Dom. Rep. We are traveling in the moment without an end.
  5. The Marina is like a roller coaster drive. There are phases which are great because of the people and their energy, but other phases are horrible when is happening and moving. This can bring you down very fast. The live in the marina can destroy some people. If you become a down, it can be a very hard one. It’s dangerous here.

You can follow them also on their blogs, see the links below:



Arno (34) from Gueret – FranceArnoud

  1. I am here for searching a boat to cross the Atlantic as hitchhiker
  2. I was driving with a car from France to Casablanca and was flying from there to Las Palmas. I started on 15.12.14 and arrived on 25.12.14
  3. Every day I go swimming, body surfing and I live in a Squat. Also I am searching a boat and speak with a lot of people.
  4. I want to find a boat to cross and want to travel through the Caribbean, America or anywhere 😉
  5. If you are alone here you feel deep loneliness, really hard and sad but when you find

Javiav (26) from Las Palmas and Madrid – SpainJavaiv

  1. I am working here since one year as a waiter in a Hotel.
  2. I live in Las Palmas since 20 years and I have family here.
  3. Mostly I came here for juggling – searching nice people – see and learn from them the easy way of travel. I started as a host with Couchsurfing before three months and I really felt in love with the hitchhiker lifestyle.
  4. No plan what my next step is. I want to look now also for a boat and want to enjoy my place without work – more with the eyes from a traveler.
  5. The live in the Marina is awesome. I lived so long in Las Palmas and never thought about this special place. I never thought what crazy and awesome things can happen. This is a separate microcosmos.

Dimitri (28) from Cannes – FranceDimitri

  1. I search for boat as hitchhiker to cross the Atlantic.
  2. I sailed with the boat I was helping to build before. (Look at the interview with Emilia) I travel since 22.12.14 and arrived here on 28.01.15.
  3. Mostly I am searching for a boat – but I take my time, do it very slowly “tranquillo” – I have no pressure.
  4. I will hitchhike to the Caribbean and further to Martinique. Final destination should be Canada.
  5. I enjoy the live in the Marina Deportiva. It is so different. There is a little collectivity – I love it.

Joshua (27) from Miami – USAJosua

  1. I am here because the wind brought me to this place. I was visiting a friend in Las Palmas and made a connection to a boat where I can work. I want to make Island hopping.
  2. I am travelling since 10 years and like I said before the wind brought me to this place by flight from Madrid to Las Palmas.
  3. I am working on a boat and hang out with some new awesome friend’s with similar experiences and goals like me. I always go with the flow 😉
  4. I will continue with traveling and don`t know where and don`t know how. The world is my classroom – I am just here for learning.
  5. In the Marina I feel like. The people and I have the same wind.

Cristina (29) from Barcelona – SpainCristina

  1. I came to Las Palmas to do BarcoStop, hitchhiking by boat. After 4 years living in Africa, I wanted to change the continent, and my best motivation was to go to America, to feel how my own live is changing. I decided to cross the Atlantic by sailing boat, to have time to think about the past and the coming future.
  2. I come from Barcelona, after visiting my family for the Christmas days and came by plane from there.
  3. I spend my time here with looking for a boat to cross the Atlantic, but not only doing this. I tried to meet captains, to learn about sailing, learn about the boats, meeting with new people, learn about music and malabars. I also work as a graphic designer doing some flyers for the LED-shoop, a shop of LED`s for boats, and I start the project with Nico doing photos of different history’s in the port.
  4. I want to travel around the world and discover new places and cultures. Going to America, I also will do barcostop from Panama to New Zeeland and travel to Asia… and come back to Africa, the continent that stole my heart.
  5. The live in the Marina Deportiva was so nice… everyday meeting new people, with beautiful histories.

Nico (30) from Munich – Germany/South AfricaFamily on in the Boat1. I just crashed into the Marina, because I wanted to work as Skipper for a company, but the boat had to be repaired. Because of this I staid in the Marina and took care of the Boat.

  1. I came by airplane to Gran Canaria, sailed some days around the Islands and came finally from Teneriffe by sailing boat to the Marina.

  2. I did some maintenance on the moat, took care of the mechanics and made new friends with the hitchhiker and sailors there. I visited the Island and spend time in the city for Carnevall and party in some Squats too.

  3. I will go to another sailing trip from Croatia to Mallorca and after I want to travel from Munich to Cape Town without airplane – crossing Africa by country

  4. The Marina is an inspiring place. THe subculture of hitchhiker and sailors is amazing. You meet so many people there and can learn so much from them. The Marina by itself is an industrial place and the weather mostly bad, but the people make the special energy there. I love it.


Here you can see the whole family together:

Famaly2 Famaly1This story will be continued. I will write to everyone in January 2016 and will ask what they are doing currently. I am exited and still stay in contact with some of them.

This report is not sponsored from the Marina, it’s just about the people they are creating this nice energy and spirit at this place. The place by itself would be nothing without all the people. I learned that the importance of a place are the people, not the place. If I would go there again, it would not be the same. For sure there are new people and a new sub culture, but it will be never the same like this three magic weeks.


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