When somebody ask us about Sailing the Greek islands, we deal with a pretty difficult question to answer. There are some 6000 islands in Greece and at least 100 of them are spectacular. In this articles will take your around come of the most beautiful islands in Greece, with tips where to eat, party, swim and moor.
Greek islands are grouped in six groups, with two islands Evia and Crete which don’t belong to any of them.
Greek islands groups:
- The Cyclades (220 islands): Mykonos, Santorini, Syros, Sifnos, Serifos, Naxos, Paros, Antiparos, Delos, Amorgos, Milos, Folegandros, Sikinos, Tinos, Anafi, Andros, Ios, Kea, Kythnos, Kimolos, and smaller islands Donousa, Koufonisia, Makronisos, Schoinousa, Gyaros, Eschati and Irakelia.
- The Sporades (24 islands): there are only four inhabited islands: Skiatos, Skopelos, Alonissos, Skyros.
- The Dodecanese: Rhodes, Kos, Kalymnos, Kastellorizo, Symi
- The Argo-Saronic or Saronic Islands: Aegina, Hydra, Dokos, Poros, Spetses, Salamis (Salamina)and Agistri (Angistri)
- The Ionian Islands Group: Corfu, Zakynthos, Kefalonia, Lefkada, Paxi, Kythira
- The North Aegean Islands: Thassos, Levsos, Samos, Limnos, Chios, Samothrace, Ikaria
Here we’ll focus on the biggest island group – Cyclades– and on five most famous islands belonging to the group: Santorini, mykonos, Paros, Antiparos and Ios. Lets take you sailing the Greek islands:
Some people say Santorini is the most beautiful island in Greece. Some would describe it as dramatic because of its caldera and cliffs, some would call it simply romantic because of those gorgeous white towns on top of volcanic caldera that enjoy one of the most spectacular sunsets in the world.
Sailing the Greek islands without visiting Santorini would be a missed opportunity to sea one of the bluest skies in the world and one of the most beautiful „ugly“ island. „Ugly“ because there are no trees.
You’ll recognize Santorini by cliff-top blue-domed churches standing out amid clean white architecture that looks dazzling against the blue skies and seas.
Santorini (Greek: Σαντορίνη, pronounced [sandoˈrini]) is a lifetime dream holiday destination for millions of tourists. So yes, it’s usually crowded. With all that in mind, sailing to Santorini is a wise choice since you can choose when to visit and you have amazing sleeping arrangements . Stop for a day or two to explore Oia and, although Santorini is not a beachy destination, some unusual beaches around the islands (like red and black one!).
One local produce you must try when you visit Santorini is wine. If you’re up for a day on the island, explore the interior with a rented scooter or a car and enjoy some wine at Volcanic Slopes Vineyards winery or Canava Roussos winery. Take home a bottle of Vinsanto, sweet white wine from sun-dried grapes, as a souvenir.
SANTORINI WHERE TO MOOR:
Vlikhada Marina is a small harbour located in the city of Vlychada.
Skala Thíra or Skala Fira (Σκάλα Φηρά) is the main harbour. It is too deep here to anchor so, yachts tie to one of two buoys and go stern-to.
You already heard it being called „Ibiza of Greece“. Mykonos is a vibrant party island, where celebrities and other attraction seekers come every year to be seen.
Named after its first ruler, Mykons, as per Greek mythology, the son or grandson of the god Apollo and a local hero, the island boasts several amazing beaches on the southern side: Super Paradise, Paradise, Platis Gialos and Lia – all with the delicate sand and turquoise water.
It is nice to know why all doorws and windows are painted blue, green or red. This policys back to times when sailors used to paint their doors blue, farmers painted them green and everyone else used red. The houses, on the other hand, are all painted in white – a colour that helps keep homes cool during the hot summer months.
One of the spots not to be missed are famous Mykonos windmills. Known as the ‘island of the winds’, it’s no surprise that you’ll find many windmills around the island. Mykonos. Five of them are located very close to Mykonos Town at Kato Myloi. They have become one of Mykonos’ most famous landmark
This is a fun island. Find nightclubs on the most famous beach, Paradise Beach.
For shopping head to Mykonos’ main town Hóra, and when you’re hungry but want to east great food with a views, check these restaurants: Apaggio Restaurant,Kuzina Mykonos, Pasaji, Kostantis and Baos Fine Dining
MYKONOS WHERE TO MOOR:
Mikonos Marina (or Port of Mykonos) is a large harbour located in the city of Mykonos.
Tourlos Marina is is the perfect berth booking choice for a relaxing vacation.
The Santa Marina Resort features a private helipad, two infinity pools, a private beach and yacht berthing facilities for those who will arrive on their private yacht.
Paros is just one of the fabulous Greek islands in the Aegean Sea. It’s a boating hub in the Cyclades region – ferries come here. Parikia is the island’s main town and port, but not so trendy.
Naousa, a chic village and harbour, located in the northeastern corner of Paros, is the most popular place on the island. The harbour is especially picturesque at sunset. There are lots of restaurants in Naoussa. We can recommend Taverna Glafkos with tables on the sand.
For a little culture visit the blue-domed Byzantine Museum.
When some restaurants close for a couple of months towards the end of the year, Ephessus Restaurant, with its wide variety of dishes, is open the entire year. It serves a blend of Greek and Anatolian dishes in a wonderful setting.
PAROS WHERE TO MOOR:
Piso Livadhi Marina is a medium size harbour located in the city with the same name.
Paroikia Marina is a small port in the city of Paros.
Naoussa Marina is a small quiet port located in Naoussa.
Sailing the Greek islands is on your list? BOOK A YACHT OR CATAMARAN WITH US!
Famous for the tranquil atmosphere and remote beaches, Antiparos island is also the place where you will enjoy amazing Greek food.
There are plenty of restaurants and taverns that will make you sing. Fresh, dried or grilled octopus and a variety of fish dishes, spaghetti with shrimps are must-east. Pair it with some local wine, add even local cheese called mytzithra.
In the little harbor town of Agios Giorgos you will find several charming fish taverns like Captain Pipinos right by the water.
And what about sightseeing and swimming?
Sitting above a 200 metre hill and at 13 kilometers from the main town, the Cave of Antiparos is one of the most impressive landmarks of the island you should not skip when visiting.
For beaches head to Glyfa and Livaida, located near the village of Kambos.
ANTIPAROS WHERE TO MOOR:
Antíparos Marina is a small tranquil harbour where you can safely moor.
There is another party island in the Cyclades group – Ios!
Maybe if you come here during thw winter ans see 365 churches on the island, you wouldn’t think that, but Ios is made for young people, offering fantastic nightlife and beach parties on Mylopotas. This very long beach is dotted with bars and restaurants and a myriad of water sports but if you’re into something quieter, head to Valmas beach or Kolitsani beach.
Manganari beach is a true peaceful spot within the secluded bay where you can dip and snorkel. If you watched the movie “Le Grand Bleu”, you’ll recognize the place.
While visiting Ios, you can’t miss the main and the only real village – Ios Chora or Ios Town – built amphitheatrically.
IOS WHERE TO MOOR
Port Ios Marina or Karavostasi Marina is a medium-size port in the city of Ios. For tank truck diesel call Shell at +30 2286091300
This year, choose a sailing holiday in Greece.
WHEN TO VISIT GREEK ISLANDS?
Sailing the Greek islands is best from may until late October; the seas of Greece are usually calm and you can enjoy your sailing holiday. It gets really crowded during the high season in July and August (and the temperatures rise really high!) so note that before planning your trip.
If you’re into partying and vibrant nightlife – choose July and August
If you’re into more relaxing sailing– choose May, June, September and October