Saronic Gulf or Cyclades Islands or... both!
Best Times: April - October
The eastern coast of the Peloponnese and the islands of the Saronic Gulfs are popular among the sailors. There are five major islands in the Saronic Gulf. Aegina, Agistri, Hydra, Poros, Spetses.
Island hopping around the Saronic gulf is one of the best ways visitors choose to spend a week in Greece, as the tour can cover every taste:
Aegina for its laid-back atmosphere, Agistri for the camping, Hydra island for its night-life, Poros for the delicious seafood, Spetses for the history & culture, and a dozen more islets to explore and to swim among, under the Mediterranean sun!
Dhokos lies 5 miles to the West of Hydra harbour. Apart from the goats, this deserted and barren island has little to offer. But don’t let this put you off. It has a large, attractive bay on the North side which is a popular spot for yachts to anchor safely for lunch and swimming or an overnight stay. This place can be very peaceful but we’ve also enjoyed some fun evenings here with neighbouring yachts. Swim ashore and visit the goats.
Beautiful cove NW corner of the inlet on Dhokos, there is an old chain on the bottom near the south side of the bay. Drop your anchor near the north side and tie with two lines on the south side.
Palaia (old) Epidavros
The charming harbour of Palaia Epidavros the gateway to the world-renowned amphitheatre, Sanctuary of Apollo Maleatas and Sanctuary of Asclepius 20 min. by taxi further inland.
Shelter in all but east winds, but these are very rare (except for mid-spring); sea levels can vary by over a meter; shallow bay, but the channel/approach is straightforward; good holding, ask the Harbour office for a berth. The former anchorage at the north-west is now a designated swimming area, marked with buoys.
Best Times: May - October
Cyclades is the most popular island complex in Greece. The Cyclades islands are world famous for the charming white houses, amazing sunny beaches, ancient ruins, white churches with blue domes, small taverns, and relaxing atmosphere.
In terms of landscape, the main characteristic is the dry land of Cyclades. The rocks and the endless beaches compose a unique natural spectacle, which people have really fallen in love with. The houses of villages in Cyclades islands have the white color as main characteristic, unique combination of the bright sun and sky and the deep blue of the Aegean Sea. Traditionally they are built on stiff hills and cliffs, as a natural protection from pirates of previous eras. In some cases, you need to enter the bay in order for the main village (called “chora” in Greek) to become visible.
Antiparos is the small neighboring island next to Paros. It’s not well known on the Greek island radar, but is well worth a day trip from Paros! Once here you can explore the cute town of Chora, venture to the many beaches, or check out the Antiparos cave.
Also, this island is where Tom Hanks has a holiday home. Maybe you’ll spot him and his wife, Rita Wilson, if you’re there at the right time. Although he is well loved and protected by locals so don’t think you’ll find out where he lives.
Paros won to be named the best island in Europe, in Travel + Leisure's World's Best Awards 2020. The island is also known for its nightlife, boasting many clubs and bars, especially along the promenades of Parikia and Naoussa.
Paros island that has to offer a little bit of everything.. It has charming villages, fishing harbors, rich nightlife, great sandy beaches and it is less crowded and expensive than Mykonos. If you are into the more active holiday that you shouldn't miss beaches in the southeastern side which are famous windsurfing spots.
The charming and welcoming Ermioni is located in the south part of the Argolis region in the Mythical Peloponnese, Ermioni is a wonderful village by the sea (giving the impression of being on an island) with a traditional side and a modern one, offering everyone whatever fits them best!
If your idea of relaxation is staying above the water, rest assured that the beaches of Ermioni are simply perfect for soaking up the sun’s rays.
As night falls, Ermioni really comes to life with plenty of choice amongst the waterside bars, cafes and tavernas – all of which offer a real taste of Greek warmth and hospitality. With lots to see and do both by day and night, it’s no wonder that Ermioni is considered such a perfect place to stop when visiting Greece.
Hydra has one of the most beautiful port of Greece, with an architectural character going back to a different era. An era of pirates, classic yachts, poets, wars and revelations. Stone mansions are everywhere, conducting to a picturesque atmosphere you will fall in love with.The houses are built amphitheatrically around the port and compose a dominating picture, as the ones you see in the post cards.Hydra is really unique, there are no cars allowed, you can go anywhere you wish either on foot or with a donkey!
Hydra Harbor at the little town of Hydra.
Early Spring is the best time to visit the Harbor of Hydra, because after that period and for the whole summer the port is packed with sailing boats and day trip yachts. In peak season, it is not unusual for boats to be moored three deep on the quay.
No water or electricity provided by the port.
Mandraki is really close to The port of Hydra, but it is a little bit exposed at the N. There is available water with taxi service to the harbor.
We suggest you to anchor in front of the village. Also exposed to N and available water taxi service here.
Molos a few miles west away from the Port of Hydra, is a good alternative to anchorage because it is isolated.
Poros is a cosmopolitan island and very popular with the sailing crowd with many choices for good eating and drinking in the main town’s promenade and side roads. A short climb up to the main clock tower is well worth it for the lovely views of the port and the opposite mainland. For those who love ancient sites the Temple of Poseidon in the north of the island is in a lovely spot with some nice views, although there are no standing structures anymore. The Archaeological Museum of Poros has a display of relevant finds from the site.
Where to moor
In most areas there are shallows near the channel of Poros. That is the reason you have to be careful and stay close to the island and keep a safe distance from the mainland in order not to collide. The priority goes to the ferries when entering the canal even when under sail. You are more flexible inside the canal and it is much easier for you to maneuver.
If you moor in the north-west part of the harbour, you have to use as much chain as possible because the wakes of the ferries that passing by, can lure your boat. If you decide to moor on the south-east dock, be aware that some of the berths are private, so be careful. Ask politely if you can moor there in order not to create trouble or be overcharged.
Spetses, is situated off the Peloponnese coast and has a long and illustrious shipping history dating back thousands of years. Although the island's fortunes have waxed and waned, it has long been the playground of the rich and famous. In the 1960s and 70s, it was the premier destination of wealthy Athenians who built second villas and moored their yachts there. There are no private cars allowed in the town so walking, cycling and horse-drawn transport is popular.Spetses island is one of the popular Greek islands not only for the Greeks who crave a weekend getaway but also for international travelers! Spetses has an arguably elegant atmosphere, mainly thanks to the Venetian mansions of its Town, which emit a vintage aura.
Spetses Town, the picturesque capital of the island is perfect for endless strolls, while there’s luscious swimming to be had at the secluded Spetses beaches. A selection of yacht marinas and sophisticated restaurants complete the unique atmosphere of Spetses.
Berthing and Anchorages
Old Harbor or Baltiza
The Old Harbor or Báltiza is the only organised port for small yachts in the island. At the high seasons it is always crowded and has been used for a long time.
No water or electricity provided by the port
Dapia or The New Harbor is mainly used by commercial vessels and is not recommended for small yachts.
There are no organised Yachts Clubs in the island.
Zoyeryiá or Zogergiá is a lovely deep cove with clear waters and it is enclosed by a pine forest. Of course there is a chance to find somewhere to place your yacht, unless it is crowded during the weekends. You can anchor in 5-8 m because the bottom is sand and weed and it holds ok.
The wonderful fishing port of Vathi, on the west coast of the peninsula, is ideal to escape most of the sailing community. Good protection against prevailing gusts from NNE – E; untenable in strong south-westerlies (rare during holiday season); mostly good holding in mud and weeds; it is possible to take a line ashore on the northwest side;
The craters are best reached from this port, walk either towards Kameni Chora “burned village” or take the shortcut uphill. There are dozens lava domes of various sizes, the highest peak being 740 m. The last volcanic eruptions occurred in 230 BCE destroying Kameni and in 1700 (a submarine eruption). In the near future another eruption is expected.
South of Vathi is the archaeological site of Paleokastro, with amazing views, where you can visit an acropolis built between 1500 and 1300 BCE, a golden age in the Mycenaean period. During the Peloponnesian War (431 – 404 BCE) the Athenians built a long wall to cut the peninsula off from the mainland, according to Thucydides. In Hellenistic times – after the reign of Alexander the Great – Methana fell under the rule of the Ptolemies, the kings of Egypt.