Sailing in the Sporades

The first boating holiday Karen and I did together was a week’s sailing in the Greek Islands.
We chartered a 37 ft Sun Oddysey yacht at Skiathos in the Sporades.
I have done quite a bit of boating before, as well as a few sailing holidays in the Mediterranean,
but this was Karen’s first ever venture onto a boat!
Before the holiday, she took a ‘competent crew’ course here in Cape Town, to learn the basics, which she did very well.

Moored in Skopelos

We only had a week, and one does not get very far in that time.

We left from Skiathos, took in Skopelos, and sailed only as far as the delightful little fishing village of Steni Vala on Alonnisos Island.

By the time we returned to Skiathos we had clocked up a massive 59 nautical miles (just over a 100 kms).

It was a most pleasant and relaxing week. Really fantastic to anchor overnight in a secluded bay, and sleep with the water lapping against the hull.

Almost as good as moored up on the French canals!

WW and Karen – moored in Steni Vala

I think we were fortunate with the weather – generally light winds, and so we were able to sail 4 out of the 5 days. On one day it was too
windy and we had to motor.
My experiences of sailing holidays in the Med is that one actually motors a lot more than one sails!
The weather patterns were generally flat calm in the early morning, with one or two hours of light, sailable winds from about 10 am to noon.

After which it usually blew up to a gale which only subsided in the late afternoon.
Which to my mind, and fully agreed with by Karen, defeats the object of having a sailing boat.

Thus was born the notion to change to motor boats.

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