The Sporades islands are regarded as the perfect image of the typical Greek island: quiet, laid back yet with a distinct local flavor. When you take into consideration their remote location that takes you away from the regular busy destinations full of noisy tourists, you realize that the Sporades are the perfect location for yacht charters in Greece.
Sea & Coast
In the northwest of the Aegean Sea, off the eastern coast of Greece there is a group of 24 islands called the Sporades, out of which only 5 larger ones Skiathos, Skopelos, Alonissos Peristera and Skyros are inhabited and constitute a lovely destination. The name actually derives from the word “sporadic” referring to their scattered position.
Regarded as an out-of-the-way location when compared to other busy locations in Greece, the islands are also a sanctuary for many plant and animal species. Their overall geography is that of mountains which give way to narrow beaches or limestone cliffs as they fall to the sea. Most of the terrain is uninhabited, with most towns and villages gathered around a bay. This is the perfect place to see the traditional Greek landscape untouched by the interference of man.
Most of the vegetation is made up of maquis and loose pine forests that on some islands (Skopelos and Alonissos) have been replaced by oak due to the extensive lumberjacking. There is a National Marine Park here that protects a bunch of rare species such as the Mediterranean monk seal. Also, the region is a haven for numerous bird species, which would make this location a birdwatcher’s paradise.
Summer temperatures in the yacht charter Sporades reach a lovely 28 maximum which means that the months of July and August are the busiest in terms of tourists. The cooling of the weather and the rains begin with October, peaking in April and May which are the coolest months of the year.
Culture & History
The islands came into history very early on due to their fertility and strategic position. The Greeks ruled over them for a long period after being taken over in succession by the Macedonians, the Romans, the Byzantines, the Saracens, the Crusaders, the Venetians, the Ottomans, only to fall back to the Greeks after the violent events of WWII.
Long gone are those days today when only a few historical landmarks remind the visitor of the hardships the locals had to endure for centuries. Today, the economy of these beautiful islands relies heavily on tourism, followed by agriculture. That’s why much of the landscape is dedicated to raising crops and animals and that’s why it seems so provincial.
Seamanship & Experience
Sailing in the yacht charter Sporades is fun, as any regular knows, thanks to the many anchoring points in quiet bays. Though not abundant in marinas (most are to be found in Skiathos), the islands do offer a hoard of itineraries. There is plenty of line of sight sailing to accommodate even the beginner skippers, especially around the south side of the islands. The north side which faces the open waters of the Aegean is exposed to the strong north winds (3-5 knots, rarely 7).