Sailing culture for beginners
New to sailing? Please let us help you with the basics. With the sailing imagery we created, you can learn the basic sailing tips and instructions.
Choose calm, uncrowded waters
If you are about to start practicing with sailing, you need to search for ideal conditions, light winds and low traffic in the sea. So you have to choose uncrowded waters in order to start learning the sailing basics. If you are just a part of the crew, and you have no idea about the sailing culture, you can ask the skipper to explain to you and your crew how to choose a place to start your practice.
In Greece and at the most of the islands, you can find many places with calm and uncrowded waters.
Sailing tips for safety
No matter what your level of expertise, there are sailing basics for safety that you should follow. Always you should inform someone, before you go out on the water. You have to know how to swim. Your boat must bring with a floatation devicce.
Research the weather
Most of the summer times in Greece, the weather conditions are well and the temperatures may vary between 25-31 celcius degrees. Find more about the sailing weather in Greece here.
Check the weather forecast always before starting your sailing trip. Boating and sailing basics means always being prepared.
Follow a pre-departure checklist
By shaping a pre-departure list, you are sure that no boating safety or precautions have been forgotten and all of your supplies needed for your sailing trip will be there. At the same time, you do not have to overload your boat, because all the Greek islands offer a big variety of supplies and products you may need.
So, create carefully a pre-departure checklist without overestimating the needs.
Use your common sense
Common sense means you keep a safe speed at any trip time, and especially when the sea is crowded. Also common sense means you always keep an eye at large vessels and watercraft and you are going to be respectful of buoys and other navigational aids. Use your common sense at any time and any case.
Develop a float plan
A float plan include the name, address and phone numbers of the trip leader (the captain or skipper), the names, phone numbers of all the rest crew, the type of the boat and registration info, also if exists the trip itinerary and finally the types of communication are available onboard.
Do not forget that the float plan must be published to someone offboard, a family member or staff of the starting marina.
You have to save the alcohol for later. It is very probable to involve in a boating accident when alcohol is involved. You can drink and party off board at the Greek islands, but when you are on board you have to forget alcohol, which combined with the sun and the wind always concludes to negative effects.
Learn to swim
Proper boating safety and culture includes knowing how to swim. If you think of vacation with a sailing boat in Greece this summer, you have to start searching for swimming classes around your local area.
You have to carry on board at least one coast-guard approved life jacket per person of your sailing crew. Train your crew how to use life jackets in case of emergency.
Lights and shapes
Navigation lights as required for your boat. Make sure all instrument lights are working. If you intend to engage in a recreational boating activity that requires a day-shape, have the required shapes. Have aboard a flashlight and spare batteries.
Make flares, day signals, etc., accessible and ensure they are stored in a dry location. Inform the crew and passengers of their location and safety rules for proper usage.
Docking and Anchoring Tips
Have at least one anchor set up and bent-on to your anchor line. Carry two or three extra dock lines in case you encounter unusual conditions dockside. Visually inspect the lines you use for chafe or wear. Carry at least two fenders on-board for docking or towing if required.
Mediterranean style mooring
Check the depth and reefs around. Check where other boats released their anchors. Start releasing your anchor at a distance from the shore equal to 4xsize of your boat. Release a lot of chain. Secure your boat by throaing two lines at shore. All mooring suggestions gathered here.
Rules and documentation
Have the ship's papers, radio license, fishing permit, etc. on board.
Fuels and Oil
Top off your fuel tanks. If you can't, have enough fuel to provide a reasonable margin of safety for your return. Check the engine oil and coolant levels.
On any powered vessel or auxiliary powered sailboat, or vessels using LPG for cooking or heat, check that all interior spaces are well ventilated before departure.
Sound Producing Devices
Have a horn capable of producing a four-second blast audible for at least 1/2 mile on board.