Where to sail?
Many times the question where to sail to, is something that confuses people. The fact that we hear other people’s experiences (land travelers and not sailors) is not always helpful. We have all seen great photos of many islands in the news, at travel guides; commercials etc, but are they really a sailing friendly destination? What is the wind like in the area? Are there nice beaches reachable and sheltered that we can visit? Are there other islands closes by that we can visit? Those are some of the questions most of us may have.
Not all islands can support sailing bases. This is mostly because of the size of the ports, and the number of yachts that they can host. You can’t have a sailing base with 4 and 5 yachts because you can’t cover the demand of charterers but at the same time cover the expenses to support people to be working in a base. In order to have a base on an island there has to be easy and frequent access by ferry and flights, not only for people to reach but also for spare parts that are needed daily in yacht maintenance areas and sailing starting base. There have to be technicians of all kinds, sail makers, divers etc. People that the charterer may never see, but they are always standing by to support the charter base when needed.
But this is not the only thing.
There has to be space in a marina or a port for a small fleet of yachts. In Greece unfortunately most of the ports in the islands are small even for the fisherman of the island but also for all the boat owners who have a small boat, fishing boat, RIB or even a yacht for personal use. Not to mention all the daily cruise yachts, gullets, sea taxis, even ferries that have to dock in that same port. This is the first and basic reason why yachts are all gather in a few islands that have the space to host and support professional chartered sailing yachts.
But they are spread around Greece in order to cover most of the Greek waters.
Why Crete, the biggest island doesn’t offer sailing opportunities? There are a few yachts in the area, mostly available for daily charters. The island, although big and beautiful, could have host many yachts, but the landscape together with the winds, but also the distance from other islands makes it one of the most difficult sailing destinations in Greece.
We could charter a yacht there and make the round of the island. Actually this would have been a very dangerous trip even for the most experienced sailors. The southern cost is so dangerous because of the winds, that it can’t be reachable with a sailing yacht during the summer. There are sailors sailing their owned yachts around Greece, passing down to Crete from the Peloponnese and then up to Santorini and the Cyclades or further down to Kos and Rhodes. But they have the luxury of time, and usually can afford to stay there longer if the winds force them to.
Our advice: Talk to us before choosing what your final destination will be. Share your thoughts, and we can advice you. We are all sailors that have been sailing the Greek waters for many years now, we are not just people sitting behind a desk trying to offer something that we do not know. We know the islands and we know our yachts, and the most important: we are sailing them ourselves!