We have been sailing on Dutch waters for about 3 years now, but we this year we decided to go on a bigger sailing adventure by chartering a boat in Greece and sail around the Cyclades Islands. The Cyclades Islands are a group of islands in the Aegean Sea, southeast of mainland Greece going all the way further southeast to Santorini and Anafi.
We had in mind that we would start the journey going southeast to reach Santorini as fastest and earliest possible, and then to make a round trip back slowly, one island at the time, against the prevailing northern wind. We have 2 weeks to do this, and it should’ve been a feasible route which will allow us to have adequate time to enjoy not only the sailing, but also the islands themselves.
We chartered our 33-feet boat, Arethusa, from a marina in Lavrio, a small port town an hour away from Athens. She’s slightly bigger than our own boat, but still a manageable size for a 2.5-person crew to handle and a comfortable size to live in for the next 2 weeks.
As always, you can never plan a sailing trip in details. To sail is to learn to live the moment and to go along with nature, however fickle she can be. During our trip, the wind we expected actually came from the opposite direction. Sometimes it disappeared altogether (which made the sails useless), sometimes it’s blowing in gale force (which promises exciting sailing, albeit bumpy and potentially dangerous one). In the middle of our trip, we had to abandon our intention to go to Santorini and instead, we opted to go the more sensible route of going to the northern islands. We could’ve sailed stubbornly upwind and reach Santorini, but we decided to go along with the wind and waves for a more pleasant journey. But we’re glad we did, as we discovered other islands, each special in their own ways, away from the crowds of the more popular southern islands.
In the end, we managed to hop through 7 islands (Kythnos, Paros, Naxos, Mykonos, Tinos, Andros and Kea), stayed in 9 harbours and clocked in 190 Nautical miles (approx. 350 km) in the log book within 14 days. One phone was lost at sea, many bruises were had, but otherwise it was a a wonderful experience for the whole family. Follow our journey and the islands in detail in separate posts:
- Part 1: Lavrio – Kythnos – Paros
- Part 2: Paros – Naxos – Mykonos
- Part 3: Mykonos – Tinos – Andros
- Part 4: Andros – Kea – Lavrio
Coincidentally, The Daily Post’s Photo Challenge theme of the week is “On the move”.