Yacht Charter-It’s Summertime and the Living is Easy! June 2020

By |2024-01-30T10:38:53-05:00September 15th, 2020||

It’s Summertime and the Living is Easy!

June 2020 E-News

Family & Friend on Luxury yacht Charter

Yacht Charter Is Alive and Well! New England, the Bahamas, Florida, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Greece, and Croatia are all great 2020 summer-time destinations.

It’s hoppin’ in these charter locations this summer and there are plenty of yachts available for “The Great Escape”-a private crewed yacht charter.  And as always, with every private yacht charter, you create the itinerary, and decide whether you want to go ashore and mingle, or just stay on board, enjoying the waters, great remote anchorages, and long expanses of deserted sandy beaches.  With your own onboard Chef, it is easy to be away from it all with everything you need right on board, along with a full service crew.

New England

Board your charter yacht in Newport, Rhode Island to visit Block Island and the Massachusetts islands of Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket. This is the location of Colonial American history, beautiful blue waters full of fish, shellfish, and of course, the Maine Lobster.  Have fun in the water, perhaps with jet skis, or swimming to a sandy beach.  Ashore bicycle around the islands filled with beach roses and blooming wild flowers.

Bahamas-Florida

With long strings of beautiful cays, many of which are deserted, except perhaps for a few swimming pigs, or rare black iguanas, the Exuma Islands await for the most relaxing time of your life.  Charter yachts in the Bahamas are filled with water toys as charter life in the Bahamas is centered on enjoying your family or friends while anchored off a long beautiful deserted beach, where yours are the only footprints in the sand while you gather sea shells as a souvenir. Float on clear shallow waters, over beautiful coral gardens, just beckoning for snorkelers, while your crew lays out all of the water toys for fun in the sun.  A charter in the Florida Keys is similar with more to do ashore, especially in quaint unique Key West the “Conch Republic”. Head out to the Dry Tortugas and again and the world is your oyster!

U.S. Virgin Islands

This great group of islands, the main islands being St. Thomas, St. John and St. Croix, along with a number of little named islets, is open for charter this summer for a quick get away by flying into St. Thomas.  The charter yachts mainly available are crewed sailing catamarans in a variety of price ranges for a lovely one week charter exploring the Virgin Islands, that offer all that any Caribbean group of islands offers, including beautiful clear water, coral gardens, beautiful beaches, hiking ashore, and fun in the sun.

Greece

Who can resist the Greek Islands, over 6000, including over 200 inhabited islands, with great tavernas, and local traditional Greek island life.  The islands are surrounded by gorgeous water, in clear shades of blue and green reflecting off the marble cliffs under bright sun rays and clear blue skies. Perhaps visit Santorini and Mykonos along with the 15 other Cycladic Islands, or cruise through the Saronic Islands where Hydra, Spetses and Poros are located for a charter close to Athens.  With a delivery fee, and a additional domestic flight, cruise the Ionian Islands from Zakythos to Corfu.  Or cruise the Dodecanese Islands which include Patmos and Rhodes, and mix in the exotic with a stop in Bodrum, Turkey.  Get your dancing shoes ready to join the villagers at the local taverna.

Croatia

Cruise between Split and Dubrovnik, through the many pine covered lush green islands outlined by the clear blue sky, surrounded by clear water in extraordinary shades of blue and green.  This is a land reflecting the many cultures of civilizations that lived on these islands and coasts centuries before, which all left their stamp that is now melded into the history, culture and cuisine of Croatia.  Explore the walled villages of Trogir and Korcula, have fun on the chic island of Hvar, the “San Tropez” of Croatia, visit boutique wineries, eat fresh oysters plucked right from the sea, and enjoy Croatian black truffles on board in dishes prepared by your private Chef, mixed with wild herbs that grow all over the islands and in the country side.  And if fresh seafood is your thing, Croatian waters are filled with fish, shellfish and lobsters.

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Santorini, Greece

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The Greek Cycladic Islands

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Diocletians Palace in Split, Croatia

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Diocletian’s Palace

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Private Luxury Yachts Available in Antigua

Coronavirus Requirements:

We are up to date and staying current on all Coronavirus requirements in every charter location, and will advise about any special requirements for each charter location that might be in place at the time of your charter. Coronavirus addendums to allow delays of your charter dates are available if needed.

Lower USD to EUR Exchange Rates may be Available for your EUR Priced Charter Booked with Us

With the growing number of charters being priced in Euros, we have contracted with Money Corp U.S. a large foreign exchange company for our clients to be offered a reduced corporate exchange rate by Money Corp U.S. for EUR payments for any charter booked with us priced in EUR. By our contracting with Money Corp., any of our clients interested will receive the reduced corporate bulk exchange rate, which is usually lower than that which a private individual might be offered for a one time exchange from their bank.

Not sure if the Money Corp corporate rate for which we have contracted is lower than a rate you might be provided elsewhere? Money Corp is happy to provide an exchange rate for an EUR payment you might need to make which you can take to your bank or financial institution to see if the rate offered by your bank is lower than the rate offered by Money Corp. We are not a bank or financial institution. This is a pass through service only, in which we do not participate or have a financial interest. Our interest is in helping you find the best exchange.

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Bodrum Turkey: A Luxurious Up-and-Coming Yacht Charter Destination

By |2023-12-04T10:37:35-05:00June 12th, 2020|Turkey|

Written by Missy Johnston

Bodrum Castle from Hillsides

Bodrum Castle from Hillside

There’s an up-and-coming yacht charter destination that rivals the likes of Bali or Mykonos. Bodrum, Turkey is becoming a top yacht charter destination for yachting fanatics, billionaires, and even royalty. Dubbed the “St. Tropez of Turkey” and one of 2020’s top travel destinations, Bodrum is located on the Bodrum Peninsula on Turkey’s southwest corner, on the gorgeous shores of the Aegean Sea.

During the summer months, the marinas are filled with luxurious yachts—yet there is a sense of seclusion and privacy as many have not yet discovered this hidden gem. Though it has been overlooked by Americans, many Europeans have been visiting this port for years, enjoying its luxury hotels, beach clubs, and the abundance of yachts floating in the crystal blue waters. Not only is Bodrum known for being a port filled with luxury yachts, it is also known for its early 15th-century castle built by the Crusading Knights. Within this virtually fully intact fortress is an outstanding underwater archaeology museum. See exhibits of artifacts and remains of ancient ships that have been excavated off the coast of Bodrum in the waters along the Ancient Trading Route.

View from Bodrum Castle (6)

View from Bodrum Castle-Photo Credit Missy Johnston

Bodrum is also known for its quaint side streets, its bountiful markets where fresh fish, dried fruits, herbs, vegetables, local cheeses, olives, and olive oils are sold by local vendors, and its very colorful bazaar, where shopping reigns by day and night club fun reigns by night.

Bodrum is becoming a top “under-the-radar” luxury travel destination and is the perfect port for a private yacht charter vacation. After visiting Bodrum, cruise around the end of the peninsula to anchor in the bay in front of the village of Turk Buku—a much smaller village filled with floating bars and restaurants, chic shops, and boutiques, all lining the one and only street. This is the more relaxed version of Bodrum, and is just an anchorage or two away. Skip the overcrowded beaches of Mykonos or Bali and plan a visit to Bodrum, Turkey.

Turk Buku Seaside Cafe and Bay

Turk Buku Seaside Cafe and Bay-Photo Credit Missy Johnston

Choose The Right Greek Islands for Your Luxury Yacht Charter

By |2023-12-04T10:37:41-05:00April 8th, 2020|Greece|

Written by Missy Johnston

Cycladic islands, Greece

Cycladic islands, Greece

The islands of Greece form the birthplace of one of the world’s most ancient and storied civilizations. An estimated 160-220 Greek islands are inhabited, with thousands more dotting the azure waters of the Aegean and Adriatic Seas. Your upcoming island-hopping sojourn is a chance to wander the centuries, learning about the special history and culture of the various Greek Islands, and bearing witness to the changes and advancements of philosophy, government, culture, and much more.

Greek island yacht charters are a brilliant way to take in the flavors and cultural traditions unique to each island. Aided by an ideal climate, the private yacht charterer has many itinerary choices within the five major island chains (the Saronic, the Cycladic, the Dodecanese, the Sporadic, and the Ionian Islands).

There is no “best” choice of islands in which to cruise on your yacht charter in Greece. Often, islands from several island chains might be combined in one charter itinerary, so instead, we are highlighting below some of our favorite islands in each island chain, and what to do and see on each. The high season for Greece is summer, although you can travel comfortably in late spring and early fall. It’s always wise to inquire early about yacht charter in the Greek Islands, as this is a terrific yacht charter destination—so it’s very popular.

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Yacht Charter Itinerary Cycladic and Saronic Islands, Athens to Athens

By |2023-12-07T20:58:44-05:00April 6th, 2020|

Yacht Charter Itinerary Cycladic and Saronic Islands, Athens to Athens

Written by Missy Johnston

Kea Island, Temple of Athena

Kea Temple of Athena

Join your yacht in Athens, unpack and relax as you begin your cruise to Kea, a 40-mile steam. The exceptionally picturesque island of Kea lies 15 miles from the southeast coast of Attica. The mountain masses, which are encountered in most of the Cyclades, are broken up by small valleys sparsely planted with vines and fruit-trees and run right down to the sea, opening out into pretty little bays.

Visit one of the island’s peaceful beaches at Pisses, Korissia, and Koundouros. Cruise to the western side of the island into Agios Nikolaos Bay and deep within it to the port of Korissia, which is considered to be one of the safest natural harbors in the Mediterranean

Kithnos Cyclades Greece

Kithnos

Kithnos inherited its name from Kithno, king of its first settlers, the Dryopians. Thermia is its second name, which has to do with the thermal springs of Loutra, and is used mostly of the locals. The small island of Kithnos is mainly mountainous but full of pretty little bays. Chora or Messaria is the island’s capital noted for the beautiful churches with their fine wood-carved, sanctuary screens and icons. At the south of the island lies the island’s former capital Driopida and in the northeastern lies Loutra, a resort with warm sulphurous spa-waters with its curative qualities.

Sightseeing on Kithnos includes the Church of Panagia Flambouriani, which stands in the village of Flambouria, southwest of the town of Kithnos. According to tradition, there are traces from the steps of the Virgin all the way from the beach to the church. In summer, lilies blooming in the area give off their sweet smell. In the souvenir shops, one can find beautiful folk art objects, shells, leather products, ceramics and wood-carved objects, as well as woven fabrics with beautiful designs, in vivid color

Serifos Cyclades Greece yacht charter

Serifos

As your vessel glides into the port of Livadi you’ll catch your first glimpse of the towering hills of Serifos flecked with the white, sugar-cube houses of Chora. The curious rock formations resemble human figures, which call to mind the myth of Danae, Perseus and Medusa, as if these prehistoric inhabitants of the island had been turned to stone. Perseus, the mythological hero that killed the medusa, the terrible monster with a woman’s face and hair as serpents was born on this island. The fortress-like monastery Moni Taxiarchon near the village of Galani, which houses some fine wall paintings and important books and manuscripts, is of special interest. The village of Panagia commands a panoramic view of the whole island.

The greatest attraction of Serifos is its magnificent beaches. The beach of Psilli Ammos, which lies about 2 km to the east of Livadi, beckons with the softest and whitest sand. Close to the monastery of Moni Taxiarchon, there is a small village on the north coast named Platis Gialos with Platis Gialos bay, which consists of about three rather small beaches. Koutalas is a nice village with a beautiful bay and lovely beach, secluded from the winds. It is also the site of the old mine delivery cranes, rusted remnants of which are found on the left side.

Paros Island, Greece, Naousa

Naussa Harbor on Paros Island

Cruise to the east to the large island of Paros to Naussa. Paros Island is basically a sloping, 2500 foot mountain, famed for its beautiful beaches. Naussa is a lovely little vary traditional Cycladic village with a square on the harbor filled with Tavernas. This is a very relaxing and scenic location for a meal or simply to sit for a drink and enjoy the ambiance. In Naussa, it is easy to see what Mykonos main town once was like before tourism.

While there, visit the abandoned monastery of Agios Antonios, located on the hilltop of the village of Kephalos on the eastern side of the island. Around are the ruins of a medieval castle which was raided by the Turkish admiral Barbarossa in 1537.

The chief source of wealth of Paros was Parian marble, which was exported from the 6th century BCE onwards. The great Greek sculptor Praxiteles used this marble to create his masterpieces. Several of the marble tunnels left from the quarrying of marble can still be seen and at the entrance to one of them is a bas-relief dedicated to Pan and the Nymphs.

For the evening perhaps cruise one mile to a lovely quiet anchorage on Antiparos, just next door to Paros.

milos, yacht charter, luxury yachts

White Cliffs and Caves of Milos

The Cycladic Greek Island of Milos is fast becoming one of the most “trendy” islands to visit during the long warm Greek summer months. With a relaxed attitude towards having fun, Milos is gaining a reputation for a fun and active nightlife. Modern times on the island of Milos today may reflect ancient times; as the very famous statue, Venus de Milo, now in the Louvre, was found in ancient ruins on Milos. Perhaps, like today, Milos, one of the five largest Islands in Greece, was an ancient island of happiness and love.

A volcanic island, Milos was well known in ancient times before the Bronze Age, and possibly as far back as the 6th century BC. Milos had a large geological cache of obsidian, a glass like volcanic sharp stone with which islanders formed weapons and implements for household and farming use to sell abroad. A much sought after export, Milos was an active and wealthy trading island. The natural main harbor on the island was once the volcano crater, and hot volcanic sulfur springs can still be found ashore. The island’s somewhat lunar landscape was created by volcanic rocks and minerals, some of which are mined today for export.

Archaeological Museum of Milos: Housed in a Neoclassic Building in Plaka, the capital city of Milos; within, all found on Milos, are a prehistoric collection from Fylakopi, a collection of sculptures and bas-reliefs, an obsidian collection, and a collection of inscriptions. While the actual sculpture of Venus de Milo is currently housed in the Louvre Museum in Paris, the Louvre Museum created an exact replica of the statue, for the people of Milos, which is in the entry way of this museum. Also, within the museum are artifacts from as early as 4200 BC, including items from an early Cycladic civilization.

luxury charter, luxury yachts, luxury yacht charter

Spetses Old Port

Spetses is an old fishing village, situated on the picturesque Bay of Argolis, spread out along a lovely beach. Fighters from Crete, who were being persecuted by the Turks, came as refugees to the land of Argolis and settled it in 1831. In its sparkling sea you’ll be able to enjoy swimming, fishing and every kind of water sport. Unforgettable scenes of natural beauty are created by the combination of crystal clear waters and ageing pine trees. Countless picturesque coves around the island of Spetses, offer visitors moments of peace and tranquility. Either by land or sea, various forms of transportation make every part of the island fully accessible.

One should not miss visiting the Museum of Spetses, situated in the mansion of Hadziyiannis Mexis, the mansion of heroine Laskarina Bouboulina, now a private museum, and the historical monastery of St. Nicholas, where, on April 3, 1821, the locals took the oath “Freedom or Death” and joined the revolution. Visit ‘Patrali’ near the waterfront in Kounoupitsa for fish dishes. ‘Exedra Taverna’ on the old harbor front is great for fresh fish and Greek specialties.

hydra, greece, luxury charter, luxury yachts, luxury yacht charter

Hydra Donkeys

Hydra is perhaps the most beautiful port village in all of Greece. A tiny harbor, ringed with cafes, restaurants and gold shops, it is surrounded by a village of stone houses and villas that rise up the hills like an amphitheatre. But one of the best things about Hydra is that there are no cars. Everything is transferred and moved by donkey, including groceries, building supplies, people and their luggage. Little shops, boutiques and tavernas ring the main harbor. Explore the little winding alleyways and foot paths through the village. The Monastery of the Panagia is right in the port, with its entrance by the clock tower. And one of the most famous Maritime Academies in Greece is right by the harbor.

Greece Poros Island Moon

Poros

Located right next to the mainland, Poros is a lovely little island with one main village clustered next to the quay. Little ferry boats run back and forth from the main village to the mainland just across the straits. In ancient times it was two islands, Spheria and Kalavria, which gradually joined by an isthmus of sand. Kalavria, the larger island, was wooded and had lots of water. Spheria, which is now the town of Poros, was a volcano. The approach by sea is probably one of the most beautiful in Greece. You could start your day by visiting the Archaeological Museum in the port of Poros as well as by taking a walk as far as the clock-tower, the town’s highest point and the island’s “trademark”.

Cruise back to Athens from Poros to disembark.

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Yacht Charter Itinerary Cycladic Islands, Lavrion to Lavrion

By |2023-12-07T20:58:51-05:00April 6th, 2020|

Yacht Charter Itinerary Cycladic Islands, Lavrion to Lavrion

Written by Missy Johnston

Kea, Island , Temple of Athena

Kea Temple of Athena Ruins

Day 1: Join your yacht in Lavrion, which is 35 minutes by car from the Athens Airport and 45 minutes by car from Athens, unpack and relax as you begin your cruise to Kea, a 15-mile cruise. The exceptionally picturesque island of Kea lies 15 miles from the southeast coast of Attica. The mountain masses that are encountered in most of the Cyclades are broken up by small valleys sparsely planted with vines and fruit-trees that run right down to the sea, opening out into pretty little bays. Overnight.

Visit one of the island’s peaceful beaches at Pisses, Korissia, and Koundouros. Cruise to the western side of the island into Agios Nikolaos Bay and deep within it to the port of Korissia, which is considered to be one of the safest natural harbors in the Mediterranean.

Tinos Island, Greek Islands

Tinos Island Village

Day 2: Cruise to Tinos, the “Holy Island of the Cyclades.” The island is the site of the Church of Evangelistria, which houses an icon of the Annunciation that draws thousands of Orthodox Christians on the feast day of August 15th.

There are plenty of good beaches, too, notably at Agios Fokas near the town, Kionia, Porto, Panormos Bay, Kolimbithra, Agios Sostis and Pahia Amos.

The lunar-type landscape at the spot known as ‘Volax’, with its peculiar boulders, is extremely unique and well worth a visit.

No one should leave the island without having purchased, or at least tasted, high-grade cheeses like “Kopanisti” and “Mitzithra”, which are made locally. In the late afternoon cruise to Mykonos to overnight.

Mykonos Petros the Pelican

Mykonos Petros the Pelican

Day 3: One of the most cosmopolitan of all the Greek islands, Mykonos, has an international reputation and quite justifiably attracts many tourists from all over the world. The capital Chora, with its colorful harbor in which little fishing boats nest happily side by side with luxury yachts, presents quite a different picture from that of the majority of Aegean island towns.

One of the most charming districts of Chora is Little Venice with the picturesque houses of the island’s sea captains, built right on the rocks lashed on by the sea. The mascot of the Island is a Pelican, called Petros, which can be seen trying to bite tourists at the port.

Mykonos nightlife is very busy, with bars and nightclubs staying open until dawn. Explore the shops in the Chora, perhaps enjoy one of the many beaches, and hit the town at night, even if just to enjoy a drink in a café to people watch.

Delos Greece, Lion Statuary

DELOS Ruins

Day 4: Leave early for Delos to arrive and tour before the heat of high noon. This is an excellent location to have a private guide, as the site is not well marked. Delos was the religious capital of the Ionians in 1,000 BC. Greek mythology recounts how Leto, one of Zeus’s lovers, gave birth to Apollo on Delos, god of physical beauty and the fine arts. By 454 BC the Athenians had overtaken the Ionians, forcing Delos to pay taxes and provide ships to Athens. Delos’ greatest period was in the third to fourth century BC, when the tiny island had a population of 20,000 and was the chief financial center and slave market in the Mediterranean. Foreigners from Rome, Syria and Egypt built homes and coexisted tolerantly, despite the variety of religious beliefs.

Visit the excavated ruins, such as the Avenue of the Lions, the theater, and many one and two-story houses with mosaic floors, like the House of the Trident. A flight of steps ascends the island’s summit, Mt. Kynthos, the birthplace of Apollo. As a visitor you can admire most of these finds wandering around Delos sanctum and visiting the island’s archaeological museum.

Head to the nearby uninhabited island of Rineia for a beach barbecue for lunch in a deserted anchorage. Enjoy swimming and water sports while your Chef creates a lovely lunch right on the beach. After lunch cruise to Paros to the village of Noussa, which rightly so can claim to be a very traditional Cycladic village, without the changes tourism might have made to neighboring islands. Be sure to explore Naoussa, and have a drink on the harbor side at a taverna in the secret little enclave of the harbor behind the main harbor.

Paros Harbor Cyclades Greece

Paros Harbor

Paros is the third largest of the Cyclades after Naxos and Andros and has developed into an important center of tourism in recent years. Gently rolling hills surround the center and southeast of the island, which is occupied by endless vineyards.

The Monastery of Katapyliani is located in a wooded park just up the road from the harbor. Its name means “Church of a Hundred Gates” and is one of the most important Christian monuments in Greece.

Paroikia (or Paros), the island’s capital and port, stands on the site of an ancient city. There is a picturesque and ruinous Venetian castle and the courtyards of the houses of the town – all of them painted white – are full of hanging pots of basil, jasmine and honeysuckle.

Among the beaches near Naoussa, special attention should be made of Kolibithres where huge rocks eroded into strange shapes reminding the visitor of sculptures embedded in the sand.

Ios or Nios cyclades island greece

Ios

Day 5: Cruise to Ios, which is locally called Nios, is an island whose history goes back to prehistoric times. According to Herodotus, the “poet of poet’s”, the ‘godlike’ Homer was buried at Plakotos, in the north of the island and Pausanias tells us that there was an inscription at Delphi confirming the poet’s interment on Ios.

The sites of Ios include a Hellenistic tower and the remains of an ancient aqueduct at Agia Theodoti, traces of an ancient temple at Psathi, a ruinous Venetian castle at the spot known as Paleokastro, and the Hellenistic tower of Plakotos.

Exploring Chora means, first of all, walking. Set off from your yacht in the cool of morning, wear your most comfortable shoes and get ready to set off. One hour is enough for the ones who just want to have a look at this whitewashed village, perched on the slope of the hill between the port and Mylopotas. The more demanding ones will need the whole morning to discover the hidden beauty of Chora.

This island has superb beaches. Anchor off the long sandy beach of Kalamos, a natural reserve on the eastern coast of the island. It is usually very quiet and very often one has the chance to enjoy it alone. South of Kalamos lays the beach of Papa. Only a short way lays Manganari. These are four of the most beautiful beaches in the Aegean. In the afternoon, cruise to Santorini to overnight.

Sunrise in Santorini

SANTORINI Sunrise

As you approach Santorini, it’s easy to imagine the cataclysm that gave birth to this astonishing Greek Island that has become such a popular tourist destination. Your yacht edges between bare islands of volcanic rock and the crescent shaped remains of the volcano. Santorini, with its sheer black cliffs rising 200 meters out of the sea, actually consists of three islands: Thira, Thirasia and Aspronisi.

Between Skala (the main port), at the base of the cliff, and Thera (the main town), a narrow path has been etched into the cliff-face in a series of zigzags. To the left of the path there are the prosaic lines of a cable car, the first hint of the island’s connection with the twentieth century and tourism. There are three ways to get from Skala to Thera – mule, foot or cable car. The most popular, is by mule.

Day 6: Explore Santorini, visiting Thira and Oia and be sure to visit the archeological site of Akrotiri. Besides the interesting architecture of the houses in Thera, it is worth visiting the two cathedrals (the Orthodox and the Catholic) and the Monastery of the Dominican nuns. The Catholic monastery of Panagia of Rodari, which was built in the area of Skaros where the medieval capital of the island used to lie surrounded by a strong fortress on the edge of a steep hill, and the Venetian building Gizi are worth a visit.

From the gulf of Thera boats can take you to Nea Kammeni. There you can see the volcano’s crater where hot air and sulphuric steam still rises. The land is warm and you should wear athletic shoes and have plenty of water. Hot springs exist at the nearby Palia Kammeni where the sea is bright blue.

Sifnos, Greece

Sifnos

Day 7: Cruise to Sifnos, a mountainous island with fertile valleys, beautiful beaches and several towns. It has a long history and has been inhabited since 3000 BC. Apollonia is the capital of Sifnos and is actually a collection of villages of which Apollonia is one.

The first inhabitants of Sifnos were the Kareans and the Phoenicians. The island was famous in ancient times for the wealth, which came from its gold and silver mines and the quarries of Sifnos stone. It enjoyed great prosperity in Classical times, as can be seen from its Treasury, dedicated to Apollo at Delphi. Kastro, (3 Km from Apollonia), Sifnos’ capital from the 14th to the 19th century, retains some of its medieval character. It is built on a rocky outcrop with an almost sheer drop to the sea on three sides. There are Venetian coats of arms and ancient wall fragments in some of the older dwellings. There is also a small Archaeological Museum, which exhibits a collection of Archaic and Hellenistic sculpture of ceramics to the Byzantine era. There are clean and attractive beaches all over the island. Platygialos is a large sheltered beach, Vathi is one of the most beautiful beaches in Greece with fine sand and Apokofto is a sandy beach with a rocky shelf near Chrysopigi.

Herronissos is another traditional fish village situated on the north part of the island. Herronissos is well known for the handmade ceramics, which are produced there.

Serifos Island, Greece

Serifos

As your vessel glides into the port of Livadi you’ll catch your first glimpse of the towering hills of Serifos flecked with the white, sugar-cube houses of Chora!

The curious rock formations resemble human figures, which call to mind the myth of Danae, Perseus and Medusa, as if these prehistoric inhabitants of the island had been turned to stone. Perseus, the mythological hero that killed the medusa, the terrible monster with a woman’s face and hair as serpents was born on this island.

The fortress-like monastery Moni Taxiarchon near the village of Galani, which houses some fine wall paintings and important books and manuscripts, is of special interest. Close to the monastery of Moni Taxiarchon, there is a small village on the north coast named Platis Gialos with Platis Gialos bay, which consists of about three rather small beaches. The village of Panagia commands a panoramic view of the whole island.

The greatest attraction of Serifos is its magnificent beaches. The beach of Psilli Ammos, which lies about 2 km to the east of Livadi, beckons with the softest and whitest sand.

Koutalas is a nice village with a beautiful bay and lovely beach, secluded from the winds. It is also the site of the old mine delivery cranes, rusted remnants of which are found on the left side.

Day 8: Leave early for the 25 mile cruise back to Lavrion from Serifos where you will disembark.

Cyclades Islands Greece

Cyclades Islands, Greece

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Yacht Charter Itinerary Sporades – Dodecanese – Cycladic Islands Kusadasi, Turkey to Santorini, Greece

By |2023-12-07T20:59:06-05:00April 6th, 2020|

Yacht Charter Itinerary Sporades – Dodecanese – Cycladic Islands
Kusadasi, Turkey to Santorini, Greece

Written by Missy Johnston

Samos Northern Cycladic Island Greece

Samos Local Boat Building

Join your yacht in Kusadasi, Turkey, after flying into the Izmir airport. Cruise to Samos, Greece, just off of the Turkish Coast. Once the birthplace and home of Pythagoras, Samos is known today as an up market, cosmopolitan island with several port towns, including the lovely Pythagorion. The Greek Goddess Hera is said to have been born on this island in the village of Heraion, where today lie remnants of the Temple to Hera. Visit the Tunnel built by Eupalinus, a famous Hellenistic Engineer. This tunnel, which was once part of an ancient aqueduct system and in use for conveyance of water for over 1000 years, was considered one of the Eight Wonders of the Ancient World and was constructed with fascinating precision. On the western side of the island is the Cave of Pythagoras, where the famous mathematician once hid from his political detractors.

Ikaria Greece

Balconies on Ikaria

Cruise to the island of Ikaria, where the mythological Ikaros fell and was buried after flying too close to the sun. On the way, stop at the small island of Samiopoula, meaning “small Samos” for lunch and a swim. The island of Ikaria is truly off of the beaten path with breathtaking panoramas, clean mountain air, and therapeutic hot springs. Archeological sites on Ikaria hail from the Classical, Hellenistic, Roman and Byzantine periods, and include remnants from the Temple of Artemis at Nas, Drakano Fortress, a Hellenistic watchtower, Roman baths at ancient Therma, Roman/Byzantine small theatre in Kampos, and the Byzantine Castle of Koskina. Be sure to try the local Ikarian wines which have been produced and praised since antiquity.

Typical Village Taverna

Sail for the tiny island of Fourni. Fourni is truly a hidden gem, rarely visited, and offers a view of the traditional Greek fishing village of yesteryear, barely touch by time. This is where you will want to sample fresh fish in one of the local Tavernas of traditional Greek food, at an outdoor table under the plane trees in the village square. For the athletic, try a hike up along the ridge of the island for great views of Turkey and the surrounding islands. Overnight in a quiet anchorage off of an isolated beach.

Mykonos seaside at sunset

Mykonos Town

Cruise to Mykonos, one of the most cosmopolitan of all the Greek islands, Mykonos has an international reputation and quite justifiably attracts a large number of tourists from all over the world. The capital Chora, with its colorful harbor in which little fishing boats nest happily side by side with luxury yachts, presents quite a different picture from that of the majority of Aegean island towns.

One of the most charming districts of Chora is Little Venice with the picturesque houses of the island’s sea captains, built right on the rocks lashed on by the sea. The mascot of the Island is a Pelican, called Petros, which can be seen trying to bite tourists at the port. Cocktails and dinner on board.

Delos Greece, Lion Statuary

Delos: The Avenue of the Lions
Photo Credit Missy Johnston

It’s a short morning cruise to Delos, which was the religious capital of the Ionians in 1,000 BC. Greek mythology recounts how Leto, one of Zeus’s lovers, gave birth to Apollo on Delos, god of physical beauty and the fine arts. By 454 BC the Athenians had overtaken the Ionians, forcing Delos to pay taxes and provide ships to Athens. Delos’ greatest period was in the third to fourth century BC, when the tiny island had a population of 20,000 and was the chief financial center and slave market in the Mediterranean. Foreigners from Rome, Syria and Egypt built homes and coexisted tolerantly, despite the variety of religious beliefs.

Visit the excavated ruins, such as the Avenue of the Lions, the theater, and many one and two-story houses with mosaic floors, like the House of the Trident. A flight of steps ascends the island’s summit, Mt. Kynthos, the birthplace of Apollo. As a visitor you can admire most of these finds wandering around Delos sanctum and visiting the island’s archaeological museum.

Paros Harbor Cyclades Greece

Paros Harbor

Relax with lunch on board before cruising to Paros, the third largest of the Cyclades after Naxos and Andros. Gently rolling hills surround the center and southeast of the island, which is occupied by endless vineyards. Paroikia (or Paros), the island’s capital and port, stands on the site of an ancient city. There is a picturesque and ruinous Venetian castle and the courtyards of the houses of the town – all of them painted white – are full of hanging pots of basil, jasmine and honeysuckle. Walk around the village before cruising to Langeri, a secluded sandy beach, or Drios beach, which happens to have a fabulous fish taverna where you may want to have dinner. Anchor overnight.

Ios, Greece, yacht charter

Ios

Enjoy breakfast before cruising to Ios, a 33-mile cruise. Ios, which is locally called Nios, is an island whose history goes back to prehistoric times. According to Herodotus, the “poet of poet’s”, the ‘godlike’ Homer was buried at Plakotos, in the north of the island and Pausanias tells us that there was an inscription at Delphi confirming the poet’s interment on Ios

The sites of Ios include a Hellenistic tower and the remains of an ancient aqueduct at Agia Theodoti, traces of an ancient temple at Psathi, a ruinous Venetian castle at the spot known as Paleokastro, and the Hellenistic tower of Plakotos.

Santorini Greece

Santorini

In the morning, enjoy a relaxing breakfast during the 22-mile cruise to Santorini. As you approach Santorini, it’s easy to imagine the cataclysm that gave birth to this astonishing Greek Island that has become such a popular tourist destination. Your yacht edges between bare islands of volcanic rock and the crescent shaped remains of the volcano. Santorini, with its sheer black cliffs rising 200 meters out of the sea, actually consists of three islands: Thira, Thirasia and Aspronisi.

Between Skala (the main port), at the base of the cliff, and Thera (the main town), a narrow path has been etched into the cliff-face in a series of zigzags. To the left of the path there are the prosaic lines of a cable car, the first hint of the island’s connection with the twentieth century and tourism. There are three ways to get from Skala to Thera – mule, foot or cable car. The most popular, is by mule.

Besides the interesting architecture of the houses in Thera, it is worth visiting the two cathedrals (the Orthodox and the Catholic) and the Monastery of the Dominican nuns. The Catholic monastery of Panagia of Rodari, which was built in the area of Skaros where the medieval capital of the island used to lie surrounded by a strong fortress on the edge of a steep hill, and the Venetian building Gizi are worth a visit.

From the gulf of Thera boats can take you to Nea Kammeni. There you can see the volcano’s crater where hot air and sulphuric steam still rises. The land is warm and you should wear athletic shoes and have plenty of water. Hot springs exist at the nearby Palia Kammeni where the sea is sulphur-blue.

Santorini Island

Santorini

Disembark in Santorini

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Yacht Charter Itinerary The Cycladic Islands

By |2023-12-07T20:39:54-05:00April 3rd, 2020|

Yacht Charter Itinerary The Cycladic Islands

Written by Missy Johnston

acropolis-building-ruins

Athens

Join your yacht in Athens, unpack and relax as you begin your cruise to Kea, a 40-mile steam. The exceptionally picturesque island of Kea lies 15 miles from the southeast coast of Attica. The mountain masses that are encountered in most of the Cyclades are broken up by small valleys sparsely planted with vines and fruit-trees and run right down to the sea, opening out into pretty little bays. Visit one of the island’s peaceful beaches at Pisses, Korissia, and Koundouros. Cruise to the western side of the island into Agios Nikolaos Bay and deep within it to the port of Korissia, which is considered to be one of the safest natural harbors in the Mediterranean.

Tinos Island, Greek Islands

Tinos Island

Cruise to Tinos, the “Holy Island of the Cyclades.” The island is the site of the Church of Evangelistria, which houses an icon of the Annunciation that draws thousands of Orthodox Christians on the feast day of August 15th. There are plenty of good beaches, too, notably at Agios Fokas near the town, Kionia, Porto, Panormos Bay, Kolimbithra, Agios Sostis and Pahia Amos. The lunar-type landscape at the spot known as ‘Volax’, with its peculiar boulders, is extremely unique and well worth a visit. No one should leave the island without having purchased, or at least tasted, high-grade cheeses like “Kopanisti” and “Mitzithra”, which are made locally.

Mykonos, greece

Mykonos

One of the most cosmopolitan of all the Greek islands, Mykonos, has an international reputation and quite justifiably attracts a large number of tourists from all over the world. The capital Chora, with its colorful harbor in which little fishing boats nest happily side by side with luxury yachts, presents quite a different picture from that of the majority of Aegean island towns. One of the most charming districts of Chora is Little Venice with the picturesque houses of the island’s sea captains, built right on the rocks lashed on by the sea. The mascot of the Island is a Pelican, called Petros, which can be seen trying to bite tourists at the port.

Lion statues, Delos, Cyclades, Greece

Delos

Delos was the religious capital of the Ionians in 1,000 BC. Greek mythology recounts how Leto, one of Zeus’s lovers, gave birth to Apollo on Delos, god of physical beauty and the fine arts. By 454 BC the Athenians had overtaken the Ionians, forcing Delos to pay taxes and provide ships to Athens. Delos’ greatest period was in the third to fourth century BC, when the tiny island had a population of 20,000 and was the chief financial center and slave market in the Mediterranean. Foreigners from Rome, Syria and Egypt built homes and coexisted tolerantly, despite the variety of religious beliefs.

Visit the excavated ruins, such as the Avenue of the Lions, the theater, and many one and two-story houses with mosaic floors, like the House of the Trident. A flight of steps ascends the island’s summit, Mt. Kynthos, the birthplace of Apollo. As a visitor you can admire most of these finds wandering around Delos sanctum and visiting the island’s archaeological museum.

Paros Island, Greece, Naousa

Paros

Paros is the third largest of the Cyclades after Naxos and Andros and has developed into an important center of tourism in recent years. Gently rolling hills surround the center and southeast of the island, which is occupied by endless vineyards. The Monastery of Katapyliani is located in a wooded park just up the road from the harbor. Paros is the third largest of the Cyclades up the road from the harbor. Its name means “Church of a Hundred Gates” and is one of the most important Christian monument in Greece. Paroikia (or Paros), the island’s capital and port, stands on the site of an ancient city. There is a picturesque and ruinous Venetian castle and the courtyards of the houses of the town – all of them painted white – are full of hanging pots of basil, jasmine and honeysuckle. Among the beaches near Naoussa, take special note of Kolibithres where huge rocks are eroded into strange shapes that appear to be sculptures embedded in the sand. Anchor off Langeri, a secluded sandy beach, or Drios beach.

Ios, Greece, yacht charter

Ios

Ios, which is locally called Nios, is an island whose history goes back to prehistoric times. According to Herodotus, the “poet of poet’s”, the ‘godlike’ Homer was buried at Plakotos, on the northern end of the island. Pausanias tells us that there was an inscription at Delphi confirming the poet’s internment on Ios. The sites of Ios include a Hellenistic tower, the remains of an ancient aqueduct at Agia Theodoti, traces of an ancient temple at Psathi, the ruins of a Venetian castle at the spot known as Paleokastro, and the Hellenistic tower of Plakotos. Exploring Chora means, first of all, walking. Set off from your yacht in the cool of morning, wear your most comfortable shoes and get ready to set off. One hour is enough for the ones who just want to have a look at this whitewashed village, perched on the slope of the hill between the port and Mylopotas. The more demanding ones will need the whole morning to discover the hidden beauty of Chora.

This island has superb beaches. Anchor off the long sandy beach of Kalamos, a natural reserve on the eastern coast of the island. It is usually very quiet and very often one has the chance to enjoy it alone. is Papa Beach, and only a short distance away is Manganari Beach. These are four of the most beautiful beaches in the Aegean.

Santorini, Greece, luxury yacht charter

Santorini

As you approach Santorini, it’s easy to imagine the cataclysm that gave birth to this astonishing Greek Island that has become such a popular tourist destination as your yacht edges between bare islands of volcanic rock and the crescent shaped remains of the volcano. Santorini, with its sheer black cliffs rising 200 meters out of the sea, actually consists of three islands: Thira, Thirasia and Aspronisi. Between Skala (the main port), at the base of the cliff, and Thera (the main town), a narrow path has been etched into the cliff-face in a series of zigzags. To the left of the path there are the prosaic lines of a cable car, the first hint of the island’s connection with the twentieth century and tourism. There are three ways to get from Skala to Thera – mule, foot or cable car. The most popular, is by mule. Besides the interesting architecture of the houses in Thera, it is worth visiting the two cathedrals (the Orthodox and the Catholic) and the Monastery of the Dominican nuns. The Catholic monastery of Panagia of Rodari, which was built in the area of Skaros where the medieval capital of the island used to lie surrounded by a strong fortress on the edge of a steep hill, and the Venetian building Gizi are worth a visit. From the gulf of Thera boats can take you to Nea Kammeni. There you can see the volcano’s crater where hot air and sulphuric steam still rise. Very little ashore is shaded, and you will want sturdy walking shoes, sun screen, and plenty of water. Hot springs exist at the nearby Palia Kammeni where the sea is bright blue.

Sifnos, Greece

Sifnos

Sifnos is a mountainous island with fertile valleys, beautiful beaches and several towns. It has a long history and has been inhabited since 3000 BC. Apollonia is the capital of Sifnos and is actually a collection of villages of which Apollonia is one. The inhabitants of this island were considered wealthy in ancient times, due to the gold and silver mines, and Sifnos stone quarries, with great prosperity enjoyed in Classical Times, as can be seen from the Treasury, dedicated to Apollo, built at Delphi. Kasto, (3 km from Apollonia), the capital of Sifnos from the 14th to the 19th centuries, retains a medieval character. Built on a rocky outcrop with an almost sheer drop to the sea on three sides, there are Venetian coats of arms and ancient wall fragments in some of the older dwellings. There is also a small archaeological museum, with exhibits of a collection of ceramics from the Archaic and Hellenistic time periods to the Byzantine era. The beaches around the island are clean and attractive including Platygialos, a large sheltered beach, Vathi, one of the most beautiful beaches in Greece with fine sand, and Apolkofto, a sandy beach with a rocky shelf near Chrysopigi. Heronissos, a traditional fishing village situation on the north side of the island, is well known for the production of handmade ceramics.

Serifos, Greece, Windmills

Serifos

Cruise to Serifos, where the white, sugar-cube houses of the main town ringing the port reflect the typical architecture of the Cycladic Islands. Consider visiting the fortress-like monastery Moni Taxiarchon, which is near the village of Galani, housing wall paintings and important manuscripts. Legend states that Perseus, the mythological hero that killed the Medusa, with a woman’s face and live serpents for hair, was born on this island. Serifos is mainly known for having terrific beaches such as the beach of Psilli Ammos, which has the softest whitest sand. Other small villages around the island also have fine beaches to visit, such as the villages of Platis Gialos and Koutalas.

In the afternoon cruise to Kithnos, named after the king of the first known settlers of this island, the Dryopians. On the northeastern side of the island is Loutra, an area of thermal springs said to have curative properties. Messaria is the main village on the island and is noted for the beautiful churches with fine wood carved sanctuary screens and icons. In little island shops you can find textiles woven with vivid colors into beautiful designs, shells, leather goods, and hand carved wooden souvenirs.

In the morning, it is a 50 nm steam back to Athens to disembark.

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Yacht Charter Itinerary Samos Island, Cycladic Islands, Dodecanese Islands, Rhodes Island

By |2023-12-07T20:40:07-05:00April 3rd, 2020|

Yacht Charter Itinerary Samos Island, Cycladic Islands, Dodecanese Islands, Rhodes Island

Written by Missy Johnston

Samos Northern Cycladic Island Greece

Samos

Join your yacht in Samos, Greece, considered a Northern Cycladic Island. Once the birthplace and home of Pythagoras, Samos is known today as an up market, cosmopolitan island with several port towns, including the lovely Pythagorion. The Greek Goddess Hera is said to have been born on this island in the village of Heraion, where today lie remnants of the Temple to Hera. Visit the Tunnel built by Eupalinus, a famous Hellenistic Engineer. This tunnel, which was once part of an ancient aqueduct system and in use for conveyance of water for over 1000 years, was considered one of the Eight Wonders of the Ancient World and was constructed with fascinating precision. On the western side of the island is the Cave of Pythagoras, where the famous mathematician once hid from his political detractors. Cruise to the nearby island of Arki, where if the fishermen went out that morning, very fresh fish is served in the island Taverna. Overnight.

Patmos Bells of the Monastery of St. John

Bell Towers of the Monastery of St. John

Cruise to the island of Patmos, a significant island in Christian Religious History. The island of Patmos is claimed to have been the home of John the Apostle while writing the “Book of Revelations”. The Monastery of Saint John the Theologian and the Cave of the Apocalypse have now been named as a UNESCO World Heritage Sites. In 1983 the island was proclaimed a Holy Island by the Greek Government. Patmos has remained an island of pilgrimage for those of various religious beliefs.

Skala is the main harbor and main town on the island, and the best location if arriving by sea to visit this island. It is hard to pass up a visit to the Monastery of Saint John the Theologian and the Cave of the Apocalypse, no matter what your religious beliefs might be, as an important part of world history. Perched on the very top of the island, the Monastery of Saint John the Theologian can be seen from any vantage point on the island. Originally built with fortress walls to protect the monks from marauding pirates, the monastery looks much like a castle complete with battlements with an opening from whence to pour boiling oil down on invaders. The Cave of the Apocalypse, where John the Apostle is said to have written the Book of Revelations, is now surrounded by the Monastery of the Revelations, with the sacred grotto on a lower level. A Monk is stationed inside the monastery to guide visitors to see this sacred grotto. Overnight.

Mykonos Petros the Pelican

Petros the Pelican Mykonos

One of the most cosmopolitan of all the Greek islands, Mykonos has an international reputation and quite justifiably attracts many tourists from all over the world. The capital Chora, with its colorful harbor in which little fishing boats nest happily side by side with luxury yachts, presents quite a different picture from that of the majority of Aegean island towns.

One of the most charming districts of Chora is Little Venice with the picturesque houses of the island’s sea captains, built right on the rocks lashed on by the sea. The mascot of the Island is a Pelican, called Petros, which can be seen trying to bite tourists at the port. Cocktails and dinner on board. After dinner perhaps enjoy some of the very active nightlife in Mykonos. Overnight.

yacht charter, super yacht, luxury yacht

Delos Mosaic Villa Floor
Photo Credit Missy Johnston

In the morning cruise to Delos, which was the religious capital of the Ionians in 1,000 BC. Greek mythology recounts how Leto, one of Zeus’s lovers, gave birth to Apollo on Delos, god of physical beauty and the fine arts. By 454 BC the Athenians had overtaken the Ionians, forcing Delos to pay taxes and provide ships to Athens. Delos’ greatest period was in the third to fourth century BC, when the tiny island had a population of 20,000 and was the chief financial center and slave market in the Mediterranean. Foreigners from Rome, Syria and Egypt built homes and coexisted tolerantly, despite the variety of religious beliefs.

Visit the excavated ruins, such as the Avenue of the Lions, the theater, and many one and two-story houses with mosaic floors, like the House of the Trident. A flight of steps ascends the island’s summit, Mt. Kynthos, the birthplace of Apollo. As a visitor, you can admire most of these finds wandering around Delos sanctum and visiting the island’s archaeological museum.

paros, yacht charter, luxury yachts, vip yacht charter

Paros Harbor

Relax with lunch on board and perhaps a refreshing swim before cruising to Paros, the third largest of the Cycladic Islands after Naxos and Andros. Gently rolling hills surround the center and southeast of the island, which is occupied by endless vineyards. Paroikia (or Paros), the island’s capital and port, stands on the site of an ancient city. There is a picturesque and ruinous Venetian castle and the courtyards of the houses of the town – all of them painted white – are full of hanging pots of basil, jasmine and honeysuckle. Walk around the village before cruising to Langeri, a secluded sandy beach, or Drios beach, which happens to have a fabulous fish taverna where you may want to have dinner. Anchor overnight.

Santorini, Greece, luxury yacht charter

Santorini

Leave early with breakfast underway, for the 55 mile cruise to Santorini. As you approach Santorini, it’s easy to imagine the cataclysm that gave birth to this astonishing Greek Island that has become such a popular tourist destination. Your yacht edges between bare islands of volcanic rock and the crescent shaped remains of the volcano. Santorini, with its sheer black cliffs rising 200 meters out of the sea, consists of three islands: Thira, Thirasia and Aspronisi.

Worth visiting on Santorini are the villages of Oia, Thera and the archeological site of Akrotiri, believed to have been a Minoan City buried by the volcanic eruption that so changed the shape of this island. The excavation of Akrotiri is poorly marked however across from the ticket booth is a Guide Kiosk where Guides that speak English can be hired, which is well worth the expense, to understand this unique site. In Thera is a museum that houses important archeological finds from the excavation.

Astipalea Church Cycladic Island Greece

Astipalea Church

Cruise to the island of Astipalea, so called due to the butterfly shape of the island. With the picturesque white Cycladic Island architecture, overlooked by a Venetian Fortress, with traditional windmills, Astipalea is a charming island, where visitors are rare. The water is beautiful here so enjoy swimming and water toys. Later in the day, explore the little walking streets of the Chora, where all streets eventually lead to the Venetian Fortress, also called the Castro, which provided shelter for the islanders in the days of pirate raids in the 15th century. Stop at a Taverna for the typical ouzo and octopus at 5:00pm, or enjoy having a drink in a café at an outside table. Overnight.

Nisyros Active Volcano Crater

Cruise to Nisyros Island with its strange volcanic moonscape look. Perhaps visit the little town of Emporios originally built hidden up in the sides of the volcano as protection from pirates, this village is truly beautiful, and a nice spot for lunch. From Emporios, it is an easy walk to the volcano craters, some of which are still hissing and bubbling. Located in Emporios is the famous Monastery of Panagia Kyra which is built at a height of 450 meters above the sea. The view from the monastery is terrific as you can see the entire island and especially the remains of the Venetian fortress. Have a refreshing swim.

Symi Harbor Greek Island

Symi Harbor
Photo Credit Missy Johnston

In the afternoon cruise to Symi, with its beautiful harbor surrounded by Italianate buildings. Symi is a tiny island with wild herbs growing in the countryside, making hiking on this island a fragrant event. Many feel that Symi is one of the nicest of the Greek Islands. Dock stern to in the main harbor, and explore the town around you. At night, this quay comes alive with shops and little cafes, as the harbor is the center of life on this island. Overnight.

Old Town Gates in Rhodes, Greece

Rhodes Walled Old Town Knights Hospitalier
Photo Credit Missy Johnston

Cruise to Mandraki Harbor in Rhodes right next to the medieval walled Old Town built by the Knight Hospitalier, and Templar, to disembark.

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Where Those “In the Know” Go on a Mediterranean Private Yacht Charter

By |2023-12-04T10:38:11-05:00February 26th, 2020|Yacht Charter Tips|

Written by Missy Johnston

Cannes Harbor France

Cannes Harbor, France

A luxury private yacht charter is the best way to see the cultures and histories of the Mediterranean—and to travel virtually incognito as you explore the hottest, most chic spots of this region. We’ve got your VIP table reserved for pure fantasy!

There are so many exclusive destinations across the Eastern and Western Mediterranean; we want you to see all of them on your own private getaway. Many of these spots can be visited by the ship’s tender without fanfare! After all, you deserve to vacation just as you imagined it; privately, with access to all of the more luxurious places on the planet. We want to stress that, as always, client confidentiality is key and privacy is strictly protected.

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Highlights of the 5 sparkling Greek Island chains best visited by yacht charter

By |2023-12-05T16:11:38-05:00December 26th, 2019||

By Missy Johnston on Dec 24, 2019 — With over 6,000 Greek islands sprinkled over the azure Aegean and Adriatic Seas, one is spoiled to choose exactly which islands to visit and in which island chain; either the Cycladic, Saronic, Ionian, Sporadic or Dodecanese Islands. Without a yacht, one is restricted to only the islands with airports, and then only one island, unless one hires a private jet; as the domestic airlines in Greece all fly from Athens to an island and back to Athens, without commercial domestic flight service between islands. There are ferries and hydrofoils between some of the islands; however, this is not a luxury mode of travel, and in some instances may not even qualify as a moderate mode of travel. Best to discover and enjoy the five different island chains in Greece by private yacht charter, an unsurpassed manner to see, explore and enjoy the Greek Islands the way you want to and on your own schedule.

Skopelos Island view

Cycladic Islands
Santorini and Mykonos, islands that resonate with almost everyone, anchor the Cycladic Island chain. However, there are so many other special islands in the Cyclades that do not have airports, but do have lovely harbors that any yacht can slip into. It is the location of the islands, sitting in the center of the Aegean Sea, and being semi-arid that influenced the development of the distinctive Cycladic architecture of white cubist buildings outlined in cobalt blue, and lovely whitewashed churches with cobalt blue domes. Using whitewash on the outside of buildings was a necessity to reflect the bright summer sun to help keep building interiors cool. Clumping the buildings altogether, sometimes one on top of the other with little walking streets, protected the islanders from the winter winds, and the summer Meltemi Winds. Here are several of our favorite lesser known Cycladic Islands.

Folegandros Island- Greek Greece

Folegandros Island only has around 700 inhabitants and at 8 miles long is one of the smallest of the Cycladic Islands and steeped in the traditions of yesteryear. Cruise into sleepy Karavostasi, the main harbor, where whitewashed houses with blue doors covered in rambling bougainvillea line the harbor front, and colorfully painted fishing boats bob on the blue green harbor water. Up in the cliffsides, built into a medieval castle is the main town of Chora, built to be hidden away from marauding pirates in the 1500’s. The three little main squares surrounded by tavernas, bars and shops form the center of Chora where every day traditional Greek island life is alive and well.

Iraklia Island, tucked between the much busier islands of Naxos and Ios, is a haven for peace and quiet, relaxing and just enjoying Greece. Hiking and swimming are the main activities and daily life centers around the very local tavernas. With few cars, traveling around the island can be by donkey or mule, however, is best on your own two feet. Panagia, the main village is tucked up high in the mountains, again due to pirate attacks in the 16th century. Near Panagia, reached by an hour hike on a marked hiking trail is the Cave of St. John, the largest cave in the Cycladic Islands which is filled with stalactites, stalagmites and columns. St. John’s icon is said to have been found in the cave by a shepherd, hence the name. Visiting this cave is spelunking in the rough, as the entrance to the cave is very small requiring one to wiggle through, and flashlights are a must as there is no interior lighting.

Saronic Islands
This is the closest island group to Athens with islands running along the Peloponnesian Peninsula where there are also lovely ports. With architecture of a more Venetian and Baroque feel, these Greek Islands reflect shades of Tuscany in the colored stucco exterior of the buildings. Here are several of our favorite Saronic islands.

Dokos Island, sitting between Hydra and Spetses, is a great yachting destination given the bays with perfect protection from any winds, and beautiful clear very clean water. Only around 18 people live on this island year around, most of whom are sheepherders, so peace and quiet prevail aside from the occasional bleating sheep. Dokos and the waters surrounding the island have been designated as an archeological park as sitting on the bottom of the water along the edge of the island is said to be the oldest discovered shipwreck in the world.

Greece Agistri Island Charter Greece

Angistri Island is just off of the coast of Aegina, and very close to Athens. Agistri is tiny, and it takes just ten minutes to drive from the northern village of Megalochori to Limenaria in the far south. In between is unpopulated terrain where wild oregano, figs and lemons grow amongst the pine forests. Agistri’s coast is rocky and filled with cliffs and a dense woodland that marches right down to the coast. There are lovely anchorages that are secluded which is terrific as this island is so close to metropolitan Athens.

Ionian Islands
It’s on the smaller Greek Ionian Islands where Greek traditional life still flourishes. Where older women are dressed all in black, Greek Orthodox Priests scurry along with robes flapping to minister to their flock as everyone on the island is Greek Orthodox religion, and children play in the town piazzas under the watchful eyes of grandparents sitting knitting, mending, playing backgammon or bocce, or enjoying octopus and ouzo in front of the Taverna. Behind walls, citrus and pomegranate trees flourish, while bougainvillea grows wildly with bright hued flowers. In the small harbors, colorfully painted little fishing boats bob, while the fishermen mend their nets on the quay. As an added bonus, the Ionian Islands are said to have the best beaches in Greece. Following are two favorite Ionian Islands.

Meganisi Island was once a center of Mycenaean life, with excavations happening today on archeological sites across the island. Maganisi is a unique destination for those who want to relax and blend into traditional local Greek Island life, and mingle with the locals who love and keep their traditions alive. Here the women are still making handcrafted embroideries using the traditional Lefkada hand-stitching technique.

Anti Paxos Islet next to Paxos Island Greece

Antipaxos Island is a tiny island just off of Paxos Island, with just a few houses and tavernas, however the island has lovely beaches and beautiful chalk-white cliff stretches of coastline in to which are carved caves and grottos that are fabulous to explore by the yacht’s tender. Within the caves and grottos, the water reflects in beautiful shades of blue depending on the amount of sunlight within. Ashore there are no roads, and the island is very green covered with pine trees, olive groves and a large vineyard.

Dodecanese Islands
Situated along the west coast of Turkey, these islands have shared a history with their close neighbors on the Turkish mainland, albeit not always a calm history. Dodecanese, literally meaning “twelve islands”, was a name derived from historical events, as the Dodecanese Islands are actually a group of 15 larger plus 150 smaller Greek islets of which 26 are inhabited. When cruising the length of the Dodecanese Islands, the following two islands not to be missed.

Patmos Bells of the Monastery of St. John

Patmos Island is claimed to have been the home of John the Apostle while writing the “Book of Revelations”. The Monastery of Saint John the Theologian and the Cave of the Apocalypse have now been named as UNESCO World Heritage Sites. In 1983 the island was proclaimed a Holy Island by the Greek Government and today Patmos is an island of pilgrimage for those of various religious beliefs. Once considered a Northern Cycladic Island, Patmos is one of the few non-Cycladic Islands with the Cycladic whitewashed buildings with blue cobalt trim. Sprinkled around the island are said to be at least 364 churches or chapels; one for every day of the year.

Symi Island, for many, is a favorite Greek Island, with Venetian style architecture in the villages, while the countryside is redolent with the smells of various wild herbs. Hiking trails crisscross this island from the harbor to the Monastery of the Archangel Michael Panormitis, a Greek Orthodox monastery built on the southwest coast in the early 18th century; still inhabited by monks. It is past the opening of this bay that it is claimed that all of the waters of the world pass. Within the monastery is a very small museum of bottles within which are messages found floating in these worldwide waters passing the mouth of the bay sent to the monastery from various global locations.

Sporadic Islands
The farthest north of the Greek island chains, this is a group of 24 islands, with only 4 inhabited; with many of the islands part of the National Marine Park of Alonnisos, home to the rare Monk Seal, and many playful dolphins. It is in these islands where much of the movie “Mama Mia” was filmed; with the amazing chapel perched at the end of the climbing trail where the wedding scenes took place, “Saint Ioannis Chapel” located on Skopelos Island. These islands are very green, covered with pine forests surrounded by beautiful blue green water. Following are two terrific islands in this island chain.

Skopelos Island was always known through history as an island that produced excellent wines and olive oil. The main port, known as Skopelos or Chora, is a village of white washed buildings and walking streets which ring the harbor. The village has been decreed a “Traditional Settlement”, which requires that the town maintain the traditional architectural style which will retain the old feel of the main harbor area of this island. The harbor area is full of shops tucked into the tiny alleyways, and refreshingly on this island, there is a strong showing in the shops of local crafts including wood carving and pottery.

Alonnisos Marine Park Tranquil Water

Alonnisos Island is the only inhabited island within a group of islands that form the National Marine Park of Alonnisos. Besides the island of Alonnisos, the marine park includes the islands of Peristera, Kyra Panagia, Gioura, Psathoura, Piperi, Skantzoura, along with 22 additional uninhabited islets and rocky outcrops with many beautiful anchorages. Several days could be spent in the marine park which is filled with marine life. Be on the lookout of monk seals, whales, and many different species of dolphins.

There is nothing quite like a private yacht charter to visit those Greek Islands that you want to see including those off the beaten track, without an airport and some without a ferry service, where getting there is only possible on board a private boat.

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