It should not be forgotten though that these Yacht havens
are not Greece’s only ports to start a voyage, and that Athens is also, at
least for the first timer one of and probably the most chaotic city in Europe. -And
unless you are a graduate of Matt Barrett’s Athens Guide, it is not the easiest
thing to find your way, especially if you picture yourself carrying your
baggage for a weeks sailing cruise and try to make out the location of your
Lately many departures of Sailing Yachts are diverted to the
conveniently located port of Lavrion, which is very easily accessed from the
airport. But due to the fact that also this area is ‘Attiki’, or wider Athens
area, it is almost certain that until you finally leave the port on your boat, you
may be exposed to a hectic and often an uncomfortable environment as
Finally leaving the marina you will often be met by the
infamous ‘Meltemi’ with sometimes 7-8Bft strength of wind, swells from passing
Highspeed ferries and quickly you realize that you certainly need one
additional day to find your deserved relaxation, dreading already the day of
return to this area that has the potential to spoil your sailing vacation.
Following a different concept we noticed that there are
possibilities that make the cruising vacation pleasurable from the arrival at
the airport on, which in most cases still will be Athens’ El. Venizelos.
Our favorite departure port is near the beautiful town of Nafplion.
(See an example of our sailing cruise)
To begin with, the taxi drive there is a true pleasure, passing
along the coast road with view to the island of Salamina, finally crossing the
world famous Canal of Corinth, of course not without stopping for a coffee
break and a glance onto this magnificent piece of architectural art, and from
there driving through impressive countryside and passing more very famous
historical places until arriving in Nafplion.
All this does not take any longer then a drive through Athens
if it happens that your arrival time is near rush-hour, -which is in Athens
very often about 20hours of the day.
Nafplion, as you certainly know from your study of Matt
Barrett’s site, was in fact the first capital of Greece, and is a treasure in
itself. From here we start absolutely relaxed to our sailing cruise. Depending upon
the time of your arrival and your preferences we have a multitude of choices as
our destination. There is no place that can’t be reached from Nafplion, but we
have much more flexibility and at least at the beginning of the cruise we have
a guarantee of no exaggerated winds.
The prime destinations from Nafplion are the Argo-Saronic
islands and the Peloponnese coast, but also the Cyclades can easily be cruised
after visiting the stunning islands of Spetses and Hydra.
We generally advise for cruises of less then 10 days
duration to consider a one-way voyage. This option dramatically increases your range
of experiences. We can easily avoid adverse weather, may reach destinations
otherwise impossible for the period of time or can indeed spent some time
exploring a place without worry about the return and finally we avoid traveling
over areas already sailed.
Like this it becomes possible to reach e.g. Santorini within
an 8 day cruise without having to travel extended daily distances or leaving
out many pleasurable places on the way.
This option offers also further convenient possibilities,
like extending a vacation after our cruise without the necessity to travel back
and forth through Athens. We can virtually offer any location in Greece for a
holiday extension. Fantasy travel as our partner will be delighted to arrange
for all your necessary travel and accommodation arrangements anywhere you go.
Also it becomes feasible to pick you up anywhere after you
already spent some time in Greece and to depart for our voyage.
In our experience, and due to the fact that Greece has so
many beautiful destinations, it should be thought over twice if your cruising
itinerary shall be altered in order to reach Athens.
Certainly Attiki is worth a visit, and not just one, but the
impressions are usually so overwhelmingly different that it deserves a visit
dedicated to its own and not by the way mixed with a cruise through the
islands, which represent an entirely different culture.