Would you like to charter a yacht in Greece? Here´s why this paradise of islands and archipelagoes is great for a sailing holiday and what to bear in mind.
There are so many advantages that speak for a sailing holiday in Greece. The unique landscape, the low cost, thousands of beautiful islands and the authentic people and culture are just a few of them. Let us tell you a bit more about chartering in this wonderful part of the world in detail.
What are the appealing aspects of a yacht charter vacation in Greece?
With 13,676 km Greece has the longest coastline in the Mediterranean
. It is easy to reach from all major European cities, as there are many international airports distributed throughout the islands. You can fly to Crete, Corfu
, Kefalonia, Kos
, Lemnos, Lesbos, Rhodes
, Zakynthos, Kos, Prereza and Kalamata on the Peloponnese
. Many more islands can be accessed via national flights. 80 % of all charterers will fly to Athens
, though, and rent a sailboat in the popular ports of Kalamaki
Wonderfully clear and safe waters, no tides and manageable sailing distances make yacht charter in Greece so enormously popular. There is much more to it, though. The people are friendly and welcoming, the ports and taverns are authentic and charming and the cuisine is simple, light as well as varied. The archaic geology - many islands are of volcanic origin - makes for a stunning and dramatic landscape. Even today, there are some active craters you can visit, like on the island of Nisiros for example. The stark appearance of the nature is interspersed by bright white-washed houses with joyous blue window shutters that you can spot from miles off. Although the water in Greece is quite low in nutrients, there are endless opportunities to watch sea turtles hatch, as there are so many of them.
The authentic atmosphere and the vast multitude of charming small islands and ports is marvellous. Yet, off course, historic sites are a huge attraction throughout Greece as well. This means you can easily combine going on a sailing yacht charter with taking the opportunity to travel in time and visit some amazing ancient cities and temples.
Last not least prices for bareboat charter there are generally very competitive, so go ahead and rent a yacht in Greece!
Which charter regions are there in Greece?
The Greek Tourism Board reports a figure of 6,000 Greek islands with 227 of them inhabited. They account for about 17% of the country´s total territory and most of them are situated in the Aegean, the rest of them in the Ionian Sea
. The most important archipelagoes are the Ionian, the Sporades
, the Cyclades
, the Dodecanese
and the Aegean Islands. These cruising grounds would constitute a classic yacht week in Greece, for example. For something more special or if you like to go off the beaten track, head to the peninsula Chalkidiki south of Thessaloniki. Here you can sail in complete peace and enjoy the unspoilt, natural beauty of the place.
All those islands have many ports with marinas of all sizes and different services for every taste and budget. The most frequented sailing yacht charter bases are Athens, Kalamaki, Lavrion, Lefkas
, Kos and Corfu, for instance.
What are the prevailing wind systems relevant for your bareboat charter in Greece?
The main charter season in Greece runs from May till the end of October. From June to September the ´Meltemi` - a northerly sea breeze - is possibly, not necessarily prevalent mostly in the Central Aegean. The summers are hot and dry with temperatures in July often exceeding 30°. July and August are the hottest months and even at night temperatures will rarely drop below 20°. This is when the Meltemi winds are strongest and can reach gale force at times. The safest areas and most recommendable for family sailing holidays are the Ionian, the Sporades or Chalkidiki, for example.
How much does a yacht charter in Greece cost and what types of charter are there?
The good news is, yacht charters in Greece are not very expensive. Greek charter companies do not have to pay tax for the profits gained from boat rental, which results in highly competitive charter prices. With an average of about 2,035 € per week Greece is the second cheapest country after Croatia
. And if you can plan spontaneously, there are some great last minute charter offers. Customers often vote Greece to be their most favourite yacht charter destination in Europe.
Whether you opt for bareboat, skippered or crewed charter, prefer motor boat rental to sailing yacht or catamaran charter, there are many options to choose from. Another possibility would be a day or fishing charter from the islands, which has become increasingly popular. You can also share a yacht and off course there is luxury yacht charter, in form of either sailing or motor yacht hire.
What other highlights are there in Greece apart from sailing yacht charter?
There are never-ending possibilities for sightseeing here. Head to Athens and climb the Acropolis or go to the mystic ancient city of Delphi. Visit the huge crater and sheer cliffs of stunning Santorini
or meander through the amazing old streets and admire the ancient fortifications of Rhodes. Then off course, there is the UNESCO world heritage site on the island of Delos and many historic sites on the Peloponnese like Olympia, Mycenae, Corinth, Epidaurus etc.
Sampling the delicious local cuisine never gets boring either - it consists of simple and healthy natural produce. The lovely home-cooked style meals are generally not expensive at all, and the variety of Mezze (starters/tapas) and main dishes has something to offer for everyone´s taste.
Don´t miss out on the booming nightlife in the hotspots like Mykonos, Santorini, Paros
, Ios or Kos. Here you can party in the most beautiful locations with the international sun bronzed crowd until the early hours of the morning.
What are the possibilities to charter or rent a sailboat or power boat in Greece?
For a bareboat yacht charter in Greece a licence is required for one crew member or else a local skipper can accompany the charter for a fee. A co-skipper with a licence or other proof of sailing experience is needed in addition to that.
Altogether, there are about 1,700 charter yachts in Greece and over 40 yacht charter providers. Some of them are: Nomicos Yachts, Greek Isles Yachting, Kavas Yachting, Istion Yachting, MG Yachts, Olympic Yachting Shipping and many more.
As you can see, there are a lot of good reasons to pick Greece for your next sailing holiday. Choose from over 600 client reviews to compare and use our search form that finds you the best offers for your personal dream sailboat charter in Greece. We wish you a wonderful cruise!