Building the Santorini Dhow | Our Journal | Santorini Mozambique

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48.1.2020

Adopt a slower pace and set sail on Santorini’s traditional dhow, a hand-crafted wooden vessel with distinctive lateen rigging. The ancient art of dhow travel has been practiced in this region for centuries, where fathers have passed on the craft of skippering dhows to their sons through generations. Still used today, it is a vital […]

Adopt a slower pace and set sail on Santorini’s traditional dhow, a hand-crafted wooden vessel with distinctive lateen rigging. The ancient art of dhow travel has been practiced in this region for centuries, where fathers have passed on the craft of skippering dhows to their sons through generations. Still used today, it is a vital part of everyday life in Kingfisher Bay. Dhow travel is relaxed, simple and unhurried – the perfect way to experience a sunset in Mozambique.

The Santorini Dhow was built just off the beach in the bush a few kilometers north of Santorini by  local fisherman and boat builder Constantino.

Using local Madiera (wood) including Simbiri, Constantino gained experience over the years from the generations of his fore fathers who used local techniques to build the shell of the 8.8 meter boat. The wood is carefully selected to fit the contours of the boat and assist with buoyancy

After building the skeleton the planks of wood are shaped using fire, oil and weights. Dhow boats used to be corked (waterproofed)  using the bark of trees but has modernized to using synthetic material available from the local market.

A bilge pump was installed to assist with any leakages. The fisherman use buckets to bail out water leaking into the boat on local boats today.

After 6 months the dhow was ready to be relocated to Santorini for its finishing touches. It took a team of 25 men to push the enormously heavy boat from the bush to the water and through the water a few kilometers to Santorinis beach. Local Carpenters from Machilla Magic built the social seating area, sandbox for cooking and rudder. The contra mast came from an Australian pine tree cassirinya for its flexibility, height and straightness.

The sail material is waterproof and UV resistant and was shaped by Machilla Magics workshop to fit perfectly with the mast and boat size.

Comfy cushions were designed by the owner.

The Santorini dhow was born and is enjoyed by our guests for unforgettable sunset cruises along the Vilanculos coastline.

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