Greece is one of the most popular places in the world for holidays. Greek islands cover the 20% of the total surface of the country, creating a coastline of more than 15000 kilometers. Imagine yourself hopping from one island to the other, exploring virgin bays with a sailing yacht or a catamaran! Picture yourself swimming in emerald waters and pebble beaches without access from the land. Sailing holidays promise amazing experiences.
Let’s plan your next sailing vacations in Greece.
1. Choose a destination
You can choose the destination of your sailing vacations according to your personal taste and needs.
Starting from Athens base, Saronic and Argolic gulf is an easy sailing area, ideal for families with a lot of destinations in short daily distances. Local islands attract a lot of tourists and are famous for their cosmopolitan sidewalks, amenities, taverns and sites of archeological interest.
Ionian Sea, at the west party of the country, is a place with medieval sites, breathtaking nature and exotic beaches.
Cyclades islands, at the center of the Aegean Sea, combine famous destinations like Mykonos and Santorini, with unspoiled by tourism corners.
Dodecanese, a group of 12 larger islands and many smaller (26 inhabited) in south-eastern Aegean, can satisfy a great variety of interests. Kos and Rhodes, the larger and more cosmopolitan islands, with beautiful ports are full of byzantine churches and medieval castles.
Sporades islands in the northwest Aegean Sea consist of 24 islands, but only 4 of them are inhabited: Skopelos, Alonnisos, Skiathos and Skyros. The green landscape of the islands is in balance with the sandy and pebbly beaches. They become famous worldwide when the movie Mamma Mia was filmed there. A special surprise is the National Marine Park of Alonissos, created mainly for the protection of the Mediterranean Monk Seal (Monachus Monachus), but also for other species like whales, dolphins, turtles (Caretta Caretta).
2. Selecting the period
The yacht charter season in Greece starts early April and ends in November.
- July and August is the pick of sailing season. Sunny weather, warm waters for swimming and more choices of charter flights. All taverns, night clubs, museums and archeological places will be open. Although you have to berth in crowded ports, leave together with a lot of non-sailing tourists on popular islands and survive the meltemi, the strong NE wind of Aegean Sea. September is also an alternative as you can enjoy all positive aspects but with less people around.
- Sailing during April, May or June you will meet friendly winds, lush and green islands because of the spring. Worthy to mention the Greek Easter, traditionally celebrated with sumptuous amounts of wine and the roasting of a quite a lot of lambs. Keep in mind that the water temperature will be comfortable in May (19-21 °C) but in April the sea temperature is usually a bit cold (16-18 °C).
- During October and early November the amount of tourists will drop dramatically. The winds will be steady in the Ionian and there is no meltemi anymore in the Aegean. You will find cheaper yacht charters and the sea water will be ideal for swimming and diving.
3. Making a decision: bareboat charter, flotilla or a skippered charter?
Bareboat charter is the most common option for sailing vacations. You charter a yacht and her equipment, make your own crew, skipper the boat and sail away! A sailing license or certificate (like an International Certificate of Competence) is required by local regulations. During a bareboat charter you will enjoy privacy and independence, although must take into considerations the increased responsibilities.
A Flotilla is a fleet of boats, usually over 5 yachts, following a prearranged itinerary and leading by an organizer charter company. Flotilla charters are popular to families due to the social aspect of the event.
Assisted bareboat charter is a choice between the previous mentioned: you charter bareboat but there is a supporting boat that assists you during the cruise. Suitable for beginners that need practice and help to berth in the ports but they do not wish to have on board an instructor.
Skippered or crewed charter: renting a boat with a skipper or a full crew, you will be able to completely relax and enjoy vacations without sailing responsibilities.
4. Select the type of the boat.
The main advantages of a Catamaran Charter in Greece are:
- They provide more room on deck and inside, compared to a mono hull.
- They offer privacy, as there is a better separation in between the main living space and the cabins, making it easier for the kids to fall asleep at a reasonable hour.
- Catamarans offer greater stability, necessary for young children and anyone that may be prone to seasickness
- The greatest part of living space is above the waterline; as a result you get much better flow through ventilation making the need for air conditioning less important during the day
- Another advantage of catamarans is that can anchor in shallower water which means you can be closer to the beach than with most mono hulls.
The main advantages of a Monohull Charter in Greece are:
- Mono hulls are easier to moor to the crowded ports of Greece
- They can sail upwind, where a catamaran needs a bigger angle to sail. They respond faster to the helm than a catamaran.
- Mono hulls of equal sleeping capacity and equipment are generally less expensive to charter than a catamaran.
5. Find a reliable company to:
- Plan the itinerary according to your chosen destination.
- Answer your questions.
- Address all your special requirements.
Paralos Yachts is a company totally capable to guarantee amazing sailing holidays, as:
- Provides friendly and efficient service
- Its team is made up of experienced sailors who can see things from your point of view
- Safety is top priority
- Provides boats specially prepared for babies
- If you consider sailing as a sport, offers you a racing package, including a training period and taking part in a regatta!
- If you want to improve your sailing abilities, Paralos Yachts provides you with an experienced instructor as a skipper to help you practice everything on board!
- Offers a unique opportunity of diving with full equipment and a certified dive master-instructor
- Offers the possibility to explore marine life with a catamaran equipped with underwater stereophonic hydrophone, PC sound processing systems, plankton nets and microscope, as well as experienced marine scientist- environmentalists