Top 5 Travel Tips for Greek Islands Sailing

Amylee Silva January 29, 2014 5

It feels like it was just yesterday when I discovered the Sailing Greece program. I was a bright-eyed, optimistic, energetic, newbie travel agent at my first travel expo. Four years later, I finally got the chance to experience it first-hand ­(with my best friend in tow). What follows is a tongue-in-cheek advice guide for your first sailing adventure from a marine-loving wannabe pirate.

Relax and take it all in. On deck in the Greek Isles.

Relax and take it all in. On deck in the Greek Isles. Photo Credit: Jessica Gable.

1. Easy, sailor

If you’ve never been on a yacht before, you will soon find out if you have sea legs or not. Take the time to acclimatize to your new surroundings by resting and relaxing. By all means, enjoy yourself on the first night (you are on vacation, after all) but maybe lay off the ouzo on the eve of your first day at sea.

2. Roll with the tide, not your luggage

With limited cabin space and storage on a sailing yacht, rolling luggage is not your friend. Backpacks, duffel bags or anything collapsible is best and a more considerate option when sharing a cabin.

A Greek flag in front of an old church in Naxos.

A Greek flag waits for the wind in front of an old church in Naxos. Photo Credit: Jessica Gable.

3. The ultimate dilemma

What to bring? A wise friend once said, “Unpack half of your clothes and bring double the money.” This friend also advised that a budget for libations should be kept separate from your overall travel budget – another golden nugget of advice.

Apply this logic to a sailing trip:

  • Saltwater will get everywhere.
  • Don’t forget to protect your camera(s).
  • You will practically wear the same thing everyday; swimsuit, t-shirt, shorts, and shoes. (If you’re on the clumsy side, consider wearing closed-toe shoes.)
  • Hats are a necessity.
  • It can get cold at night and while out on the water, so pack a jumper/sweater/hoodie/whatever-you-call-it to keep you warm. Note: this is not a generic recommendation but a legitimate suggestion.
The landscape of Ios.

The landscape of Ios.

4. Sun hoarders beware

Contrary to popular belief, this is not the same sun you may be used to at home. The Greek Islands boast what’s known as the “holiday sun,” and it is out to get you. You may never feel it, what with the breeze constantly cooling you down and the cool waters of the Aegean Sea feeling down right refreshing. But I can assure you that, at some point, you will feel it – most likely in the form of a sunburn that stings so much that dressing yourself is excruciatingly painful. Worse, you may wind up dehydrated. Drink plenty of water and sit in the shade every once in awhile.

5. Look! It’s a fish!

There is a time and place to use the facilities on board. When your yacht is moored or otherwise stopped is neither the time nor the place. That is all.

Sails Up!

Sails Up! Photo Credit: Jessica Gable.


Getting There

Is sailing in the Greek Islands on your bucket list? It should be. G Adventures offers many itineraries on our fleet of lovely yachts. Quit the daydreaming and start really planning today!

5 Comments »

  1. Brenda January 31, 2014 at 4:59 pm - Reply

    Lovely photos.

    Re: #5 – Don’t g adventures sailboats use their holding tanks?!? Direct discharge is not only ecologically unsound, but most likely illegal.

    • Daniel Sendecki February 1, 2014 at 12:04 am - Reply

      Hey Brenda — good question. We’ll ask our operations team what proper protocol is.

  2. Diana Osberg February 11, 2014 at 1:57 pm - Reply

    They most likely have holding tanks and then pump blackwater three miles off shore. That’s the usual practice. However, holding tanks have limited capacity. When a ship is moored/docked and there are shore heads available, it’s best to use the shore heads.

  3. Sacha Mlynek March 4, 2014 at 1:45 pm - Reply

    Hi All!

    We have heard back from our Operations team.

    Our sail boats have holding tanks but we ask passengers to go ashore to use facilities where available.

    In Greece, the regulations relating to discharges and pollution make a holding tank a practical necessity and we are always considerate of the most ecological way to handle this. Hope this helps!

  4. Per March 29, 2014 at 12:22 pm - Reply

    You have to be a little bit practical in order to live on a sailboat. This is not only a vacation to the sun. This is an adventure trip. Talk to people that have experience and read on boat charters websites so you get to know what you need to know and to aspect.

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