ITINERARY 1: THE SARONIC AND ARGOLIC GULF – Athens Greece
EMBARKATION : ATHENS
DISEMBARKATION : ATHENS
DAY 1 Athens – Poros (31 miles)
DAY 2 Poros – Hydra (14 miles)
DAY 3 Hydra – Spetses (17 miles)
DAY 4 Spetses – lob – Nafplion (27 miles)
DAY 5 Nafplion – Porto Heli (26 miles)
DAY 6 Porto Heli – Hermioni (15 miles)
DAY 7 Hermioni – Moni- Aegina (25 miles)
DAY 8 Aegina – Athens (18 miles)
POROS lies very close or the Peloponnese separated from it by a narrow channel. The island is extensively wooded with pine trees reaching to the shore. In ancient times Poseidon was the patron and a few remains of a temple to Poseidon can be found on a picturesque side on the east coast. Poros town, built on rocky slopes, is attractive and the approach by sea one of the most beautiful in Greece. Perhaps the ideal first place to stop over during your sailing vacation and yacht charter holidays in Greece.
HYDRA is mountainous, arid and devoid of vegetation. In 1821 it was the first island to pledge its sizable fleet to the Greek cause. It has been said that but for the Hydriot fleet and sailors, the War of Independence against the Turks would not have been won. Hydra is a fashionable resort for the rich and famous and a stop over island for the jet set. The town remains architecturally very much of the 18th and 19th centuries with large stately houses built around the natural amphitheatre above the harbor. The total lack of vehicles adds to the atmosphere. Hydra will be the island you will remember from your sailing vacation and yacht charter holidays in Greece.
SPETSES is mostly covered by pine trees. The attractive town is popular with tourists and Athenians alike as well as for yacht charter and sailing vacation sailors. The old harbour and environs with many grand old houses is a wonderful place to wander around. The local yards build the Spetses caique which is considered to be among the best in Greece. John Fowles’ novel “The Magus” is set on the island. In September a small caique rigged out as an old trader is set on fire to commemorate the revolt against the Turks. This is accompanied by a noisy fireworks display and much merriment.
TOLON was a small fishing village that has developed into a tourist resort on the strength of its sandy beach.
NAFPLION, a large town of mostly 18th and 19th century buildings, is a gem. The stone houses seem to be engulfed in vegetation and the narrow cobbled streets wind in and out of modest mansions many of them built in golden sandstone that seem to absorb colour from the sun. Shops and taverns are tucked away in streets everywhere. The Venetian citadel, Palamidi is the most finely preserved piece of Venetian military architecture in existence. The interesting exhibits of the local museum include a suit of Mycenaean armour, a reminder that this whole area was the heartland of the Mycenaeans.
PORTO HELI is a natural land-locked bay where many yachts choose to spend the winter. Many villas adorn the numerous coves on either side of the entrance channel into Porto Heli. Heli means eel in Greek, probably referring to the numbers of eels which once lived here. The area was once zoned as a NATO base but the plan was eventually shelved. Over the years trees have been planted and a number of hotels have been built. The serene waters of the bay offer ideal conditions for water sports, sailing and charter stop over.
HERMIONI has been relatively untouched by tourism, yacht charter and is the secret place to stop over during your sailing vacation. The village saddles the headland the end of which is wooded and proves idyllic for afternoon walks. On the south side of the headland where things are peaceful you can sit in a bar on the waterfront with wonderful views over the water. According to Pausanias, a festival in honour of Poseidon was held here and it is possible that Hermioni was the site of the first small boat regatta in recorded history.
MONI is a small uninhabited island that is partially wooded. It is a sanctuary for wild life and the sight of peacocks along the beach in the mornings is quite common. A small tavern operates in summer.
AEGINA, the town is a busy little place but very pleasant and homely. It has the distinction of being the first place in Greece where the Greek flag was raised at the end of the War of Independence. The single Dorca column on Cape Kolona nearby is all that remains of the Temple of Aphrodite that formerly stood there.