Saturday, June 22, 2024

Our 1-Week Greece Island Hopping Itinerary – Wild Junket Journey Journey Weblog


Final Up to date on September 14, 2023 by Nellie Huang

Dreaming of crusing in Greece? Right here’s our Greece island hopping itinerary that can assist you plan your epic summer time!

We’ve simply returned from spending all summer time in Europe — and the spotlight of our summer time was island-hopping round Greece with Yacht Getaways. It was the dreamiest journey we’ve taken in years, with an ideal stability of exercise and leisure.

Our days onboard the catamaran have been spent swimming in turquoise waters, napping underneath the sail with the wind in our face, mountain climbing as much as spectacular viewpoints, wandering round lovely little villages consuming the freshest seafood and sipping probably the most scrumptious wine. Crusing in Greece reminded us of how a lot we missed Europe and its beautiful summers!

In my earlier submit, I confirmed you what to anticipate from a Greece crusing vacation. Now I’m sharing our 1-week Greece island-hopping itinerary and the idyllic islands, cities and sights we visited every day. 

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Greece Island-Hopping Itinerary

Why Sail on a Chartered Yacht?

Definitely, crusing on a yacht is one of the simplest ways to go island-hopping round Greece. Greece has hundreds of islands, a lot of that are small and fewer frequented by vacationers. Crusing in Greece lets you attain these distant and fewer crowded locations. You get to flee the gang and have a extra genuine expertise, visiting smaller fishing villages, eating at native taverns and experiencing Greek island life up shut.

Moreover, there are numerous secret coves and seashores which are solely accessible by boat. Whenever you sail on a yacht, you possibly can anchor in secluded coves, swim in non-public bays, and luxuriate in intimate moments away from crowded seashores. And if you go on a chartered yacht, you’ll have a skipper and host caring for all the pieces and all you want to do is chill and luxuriate in lovely Greece.

About Our Greece Crusing Journey

We sailed across the Ionian Islands of Greece with Yacht Getaways onboard a Lagoon 42 catamaran. Our catamaran had 4 double cabins (with capability for 8 passengers), all with en suite showers and bathrooms, plus there have been two single cabins for the crew. It was the proper dimension; something greater can be much less private and intimate.

There was loads of house to lounge round, together with the cushioned seating space on the again, the lounger on the highest deck, and the trampoline within the entrance. The boat had two paddle boards and we have been free to make use of them at swim stops. Snorkels have been additionally supplied. We additionally had a young boat that brings us into city if we’re not docked to the marina. Click on to see photographs of the inside.

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The Ionian Explorer Route

Yacht Getaways runs a couple of routes in Greece (in addition to Montenegro, Turkey, Italy and Croatia), and we selected the Corfu Explorer route as we needed to discover Greece, off the overwhelmed path. We’ve got been to standard islands like Santorini and Mykonos, and we have been curious to see how the Ionian Islands have been like.

The Ionian Explorer route turned out to be precisely what we have been in search of — it took us away from the gang to less-visited islands like Paxos and Antipaxos. Each city we stopped at has its distinctive persona and tradition. Lakka was ridiculously cute with its white alleys and stone homes clad with bougainvillea; Longos had an enthralling fishing village really feel; Parga felt like a flamboyant, enjoyable seashore city whereas Sivota was its refined and low-key cousin.

Right here’s an in depth day-to-day breakdown of our Greece island-hopping itinerary.

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Greece Island Hopping Itinerary

Itinerary Day 1: Set off from Corfu

Our crusing journey began on the Gouvia Marina, one of many largest marinas in Greece. It was a fast 15-minute drive from Outdated City Corfu the place we’d spent the day. There have been lots of of yachts anchored there, so it wasn’t notably simple to seek out our yacht. However I dropped a fast message to our skipper, and he was fast to reply and assist us discover our manner.

At 4pm, Alberto and I boarded our Lagoon 42 catamaran, aptly named ‘Fantasea’ and have been warmly welcomed with a bottle of Prosecco. We received to satisfy our host Lauren, our skipper Levi, and different journey mates. Our group of vacationers have been from everywhere in the world; there was a younger Kiwi and Czech couple, an older Australian couple and a solo feminine traveler from the UK.  Everybody was very pleasant and excited to embark on this journey collectively.

Lauren and Levi gave us a fast briefing to tell us what to anticipate over the week after which they confirmed us to our rooms and gave us directions on how one can function the bathroom, home windows and cupboards. Our cabin was fairly snug and decent-sized. We had a double mattress with plenty of compartments on either side of the mattress and storage beneath. The lavatory was spacious and there was truly a correct bathe with a glass sliding door.

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Crusing North to Kalami Bay

Shortly after, it was time to set sail! The sail flapped within the wind as we cruised north alongside the japanese coast of Corfu in direction of Kalami Bay. With beers in hand, all of us sat out on the entrance finish of the boat to look at the view as we left the busy marina behind and head out into the indigo sea.

Inside a few hours, we arrived at Kalami Bay, a perfectly-shaped cove with a stunning seashore and hilltop homes overlooking the bay. A couple of of us plunged into the water and had a refreshing dip whereas others lay round studying a guide. That night, our host Lauren had booked a desk at her favourite restaurant on the town, Dimitri’s Restaurant.

Perched on a hilltop, the standard tavern had superb views of the bay, particularly at sundown. The menu was basic Greek, that includes recent seafood and grilled meat. Alberto and I ordered a blended grill for 2, nevertheless it was so large we might barely end it. The proprietor Dimitri even graced us along with his look and made certain we have been all proud of our meals. We clinked glasses, gulped down wonderful home made wine, and tucked into the hearty dinner with our new mates, because the final rays of the solar disappeared over the horizon.

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Itinerary Day 2: Wander round Lakka, Paxos

The subsequent morning, we rose vivid and early after being lulled to sleep by the light waves. There was no set get up time, we merely received up each time we needed and loved a cup of espresso whereas staring out to sea. There was an enormous plate of nicely-cut recent fruit laid out for us, in addition to yogurt and oats.

By 9am, Lauren had ready a selection of scorching breakfast: scrambled eggs, toasts, and bacon. Quickly sufficient, it was time to start out crusing. Our group of vacationers unfold out, some lounged on the higher deck to get a tan, some napped on the trampoline, and others learn within the shade.

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Crusing to Paxos Island

It was fairly a protracted crusing day as we needed to cowl various distance right this moment, crossing the size of Corfu down south to Paxos island. After 2 hours of crusing, we had our first swim cease in Skala Potamou, a quiet cove with crystal clear, spearmint waters. A couple of of us took the paddle-board out whereas the remainder of us plunged in and simply had enjoyable leaping into the large out of doors “pool”.

By 2pm, we reached our vacation spot for the day, Lakka, and dropped anchor on the far finish of the bay. Lunch was served onboard — we had recent oven-baked sea bass with grilled potatoes and pita bread, together with white wine. This was simply the primary of many wonderful meals we’d have on the boat, due to our wonderful prepare dinner, Lauren.

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Exploring Lakka’s Secret Seaside

It was manner too scorching within the day to go off and discover, so we took a nap (as you’d on a Greece crusing vacation!) earlier than heading out. Levi took us out on the tender and dropped us off on the “Secret Seaside” the place we went on a brief hike to a quiet, empty seashore. Then we walked over to the lighthouse and wandered into Lakka city. Lakka is a small, however extremely charming fishing village with stoned walkways and little homes lined in vines and bougainvilleas.

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A Conventional Greek Dinner

That evening, we met up with our group for dinner at Nio Nio’s Taverna, a family-run tavern identified for his or her healthful environment and luxury meals. The proprietor and chef, Nio Nio, even invited us in what the kitchen had for the day and it was an enormous and welcoming unfold. We ended up selecting the beef pastisada (a wealthy beef stew) and shrimps cooked in ouzo (a Greek liquor). It was such an genuine expertise eating on this conventional tavern in just a little village!


Itinerary Day 3: A Sluggish Day in Longos, Paxos

It was a lazy morning on the catamaran, as we’d all gotten into the sluggish rhythm and tempo of life out at sea. We had a hearty breakfast of French toasts with maple syrup, earlier than setting sail solely round 10+am. It was going to be a really quick crusing day, so we have been in no rush.

At our first cease, Alberto and I swam over to Orkos seashore, strewn with white pebbles and the occasional sea urchins (that’s why you want water footwear!). The seashore was empty, so we just about had all of it to ourselves. We walked to the far finish of the seashore and climbed a couple of steps to achieve a viewpoint. It was the proper approach to begin our morning.

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Wandering round Longos

Our vacation spot for the day, Longos, was only a 30-minute sail away. By 12pm, we’d dropped our anchor on the small harbor, simply steps from the waterfront eating places and cafes. All of us headed off for a wander on the town and stocked up on snacks and wine (we had completed the six bottles of wine that have been on the boat!).

Longos is much like Lakka, a tiny fishing village with small boutiques, cute cafes, taverns and slender stoned alleys. As with different cities, it solely will get vigorous within the night when the solar units and temperatures drop.

Embracing the Greek Expertise

By the point we received again to the boat, Lauren had whipped up a colourful and welcoming meal of baked peppers full of orzo together with freshly-baked olive bread and salad. We love the Mediterranean delicacies (we lived in Spain for over 7 years!) and the meals on this crusing journey was good for our tastebuds.

After lunch, a couple of of us walked over to the seashore simply subsequent to the harbor, Paralia Levrechio, for a swim. There was a bar proper subsequent to the seashore, and we ended up having a good time there chatting and ingesting beers with our journey mates.

A Pretty Night with Seafood and Cocktails

Within the night, we had an impressive dinner at Restaurant Kohili proper by the water. The grilled octopus, steamed mussels and squid ink risotto have been a number of the greatest I’ve had on this journey. Like most cities, Longos solely actually comes alive at evening. Tables are laid out by the harbor, locals are ingesting wine and having seafood outside, and waterfront bars are lit up in candlelight.

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Itinerary Day 4: A Day of Journey at Gaios, Paxos

This was the busiest day on this Greece island-hopping itinerary! We began the day with breakfast and a swim cease at Paralia Kipadi or James Bond Bay, aptly named for the few million-dollar beachfront villas that dot the shoreline. The water in fact was glowing and a elegant shade of turquoise.

It didn’t take lengthy to sail to Gaios, the capital and largest city on Paxos island. Lauren and Levi had shared some suggestions on what to do and we have been pumped to go out and discover! After a fast and yummy lunch of grilled sausages and shakshuka (Center japanese poached eggs in tomato sauce), Alberto and I dashed off for our day of journey on Paxos.

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Exploring the Island on a Scooter

Our first cease was the automobile rental store. We employed a scooter from Fougaros Journey for €35/day, with the plan of driving an entire loop across the loop in someday. Alberto used to personal a scooter so he had no issues driving across the island. Heading south, we first made a cease at Mongonissi Seaside and did a brief hike to see the view of Antipaxos within the distance. The stone ridges within the space resembled basalt columns, jutting out like stone fingers.

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Mountaineering to Tripito Arch

Then we rounded the southern reaches of the island and continued onto Tripito Arch, the icon of Paxos. It wasn’t simple to seek out the beginning of the mountain climbing path amidst the maze of farmlands, however we did ultimately discover ourselves on the cliff’s edge, with ferocious azure waters tumbling in opposition to the rocky shore beneath us.

Whereas I hung onto the security of the cliff, Alberto traipsed ahead,  onto the pure stone arch that hung precariously onto the cliff. It appeared scary from my finish, however Alberto got here again reporting that it wasn’t fairly as hair-raising because it seemed.

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Discovering the Greatest Seaside on Paxos

Hopping again onto our scooter, we continued cruising alongside the western coast of Paxos searching for what we’d heard was the perfect seashore on the island. Navigating the winding highway that zigzagged its manner down the steep slopes, we might see Erimitis Seaside from the gap: chalky child blue water lapping up in opposition to sheer white cliffs that appeared to simply plunge vertiginously all the way down to the water edge.

It was as superb as I’d imagined. And there was only a handful of individuals on the seashore! We spent the subsequent few hours frolicking within the seashore right here, absorbing paradise.

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A Enjoyable Night in Vigorous Gaios

After doing a loop across the island, we returned the scooter and headed again to the yacht for a enjoyable night with the group. Lauren and Levi had ready a scrumptious spherical of Aperol Spritz for us together with some dips and breadsticks. We then headed to the upscale Taka Taka restaurant for dinner; as soon as once more the seafood right here was to-die-for — the shrimp saganaki was drenched in an insanely wealthy sauce and the seafood linguine was dripping with flavors. We ended the evening taking part in pool and sipping cocktails on the vigorous Faros Cafe/Bar, only a few steps from our floating residence.

 


Itinerary Day 5: Exploring Antipaxos and Parga

The subsequent day, I woke as much as discover we’d already began crusing. After a fast breakfast, I took a dip at Blue Lagoon and frolicked across the indigo waters, wishing this was one thing I might do each morning!

With our sails up, we made our manner south to Antipaxos, Paxos’ sister island. Measuring simply 5 sq. kilometers, Antipaxos is a wild and pristine island largely lined in vineyards. The tiny, unspoiled island has no scarcity of secret seashores and tiny coves to discover.

We cruised towards the western bay of Antipaxos, the place we dropped anchor and spent a couple of hours paddling into the tiny caves and lagoons. It was insanely cool to swim via the caves and snorkel within the water — this was positively one in every of my favourite spots on this crusing journey. We felt so privileged to have the ability to discover an space so pristine and unvisited that solely those that sail right here will get to see.

Crusing throughout to Mainland Greece

Lunch was served proper at this beautiful spot, surrounded by the turquoise waters and limestone cliffs. We tucked right into a wholesome meal of hen souvlaki (skewers), caesar salad and my favourite tzatziki (yogurt dip) earlier than getting ready to set sail. It took shut to three hours to cross the Ionian Sea and attain the mainland the place we’d drop anchor for the evening.

Within the late afternoon, we arrived on the picturesque seashore city of Parga the place a big fleet of sailboats had docked. It was clear we have been on mainland Greece — highways weaved throughout the shoreline, colourful homes stacked up on hilltops and tall mountains loomed behind them.

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Sundown Views in Parga

As our yacht couldn’t park within the marina, we caught a water taxi into city and boy have been we stunned by how busy it was within the night! We jostled the gang to go up the steep slender walkway that weave its manner via the city. The walkway was flanked by memento retailers, gelato stalls and cafes —  it was much more touristy than the islands we’d docked at on our earlier nights. However the minute we veered away from the principle walkway, we discovered quiet little cafes, cute pink homes lined in bougainvillea and charming little blue-and-white taverns that serve surprisingly low cost meals.

Finally, we made it to the Avocado Cocktail Bar to catch sundown views. Unfold over three ranges, the bar missed the Parga Bay and past. Drinks have been fairly expensive right here however the view was value it! Dinner was a easy affair of streetside filo pastry and gyros (wrap) and we ended the evening with some beers on the Antico Rock Bar.

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Itinerary Day 6: Crusing to Sivota

That morning, I lastly rose early sufficient to catch dawn. Sitting out on the highest deck, I watched the solar slowly poke its head above the clouds earlier than splashing its rays throughout the horizon, washing all the pieces in a blinding shade of gold. It was actually spectacular and positively value setting an alarm for!

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Mountaineering to Parga Fortress

As we had the morning to discover extra of Parga, Alberto and I took off after breakfast to hike as much as Parga Fortress. Perched on prime of a hill overlooking the city, the Venetian fort has been an essential landmark of Parga because the fifteenth century. It varieties a part of the robust fortifications used to guard the city from invasions from land and sea. The stroll up there was  steep, nevertheless it solely took round quarter-hour to achieve the fort and drink within the panorama from there.

On our manner all the way down to the seashore, we stopped by Mike’s Bar for a juice and drank within the views. From right here, you can see the brand new city of Parga in its full glory.

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Crusing to Sivota

Round midday, we set sail northwards alongside the coast of mainland Greece. We made a couple of swim stops alongside the way in which. All of us took turns taking the SUP (stand-up paddleboard) out and we had nice enjoyable leaping off the deck and snorkeling within the clear sea. There have been numerous fish at this spot.

Our lunch that day was notably spectacular — Lauren ready a wonderful charcuterie board with all types of cheese, ham, fruit, dips and pita bread. It seemed so photogenic I didn’t bear to eat something. It positively felt like we have been having a classy lunch get together!

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Sundowners and Fireworks

It was nearly night time after we dropped anchor in Sivota. We headed out for a wander and located the stunning marina city to be a lot calmer than Parga. As I came upon from Lauren, Sivota is generally standard with Greeks somewhat than European vacationers. Regardless of being much less touristy, Sivota is extra fashionable with out a lot of a historic middle to it.

Because the solar set, we went for a leisure stroll alongside the pedestrianized buying road, popping into indie boutiques with gelato in hand. We then met up with the group for jumbo cocktails at Acanthus Cocktail Bar and watched the final ebb of the solar disappear past the horizon. The get together continued at Mama Mia, the place we tucked into large pizzas with wine, as fireworks exploded within the evening skies.

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Itinerary Day 7: Again to Corfu

Our final day on the sailboat got here too quickly! We spent the morning crusing in direction of Corfu and making a number of swim stops alongside the way in which. By midday we have been cruising close to Outdated City Corfu — the outdated fortress seemed much more regal from the water. That afternoon, we docked at Gouvia Marina and had our final dinner collectively as a bunch earlier than leaving the yacht the subsequent morning.

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Greece Island Hopping Information

Whether or not you’re island hopping in Greece for per week or a yr, I at all times advocate vacationers to purchase journey insurance coverage. Having journey insurance coverage has helped me via the occasions after we misplaced our baggage, our flights received canceled/delayed, and after we had our valuables stolen. You by no means know what’s going to occur, so it’s at all times clever to have insurance coverage. Learn my information to getting journey insurance coverage

Security Wing is the most well-liked journey insurance coverage firm for COVID19-coverage. I exploit their Nomad Insurance coverage plan, which covers COVID-19 as every other sickness so long as it was not contracted earlier than your protection begin date.

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Greatest Time for Island Hopping in Greece

The crusing season in Greece usually spans from April to October. July and August are the busiest months, providing heat climate however crowded ports. Could, June, September, and October are perfect for quieter seas and nice climate. We sailed within the first week of August and the climate was good! Our route took us to less-visited locations that weren’t crowded even within the top of summer time.

In case you are crusing within the Aegean, verify the wind circumstances earlier than your journey. The meltemi is a robust, dry wind that may have an effect on crusing circumstances, particularly within the Aegean Sea.

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How Lengthy for a Greece Island Hopping Journey?

Greece has hundreds of islands, it should take a lifetime (or extra!) to see all of them. Most chartered Greece crusing holidays final for per week and do a round-trip loop beginning/ending on the similar island. One week is an effective quantity to spend on a yacht. On this journey we spent 5 days in Corfu earlier than crusing for per week with Yacht Getaways.

If it’s your first time in Greece, I’d advocate setting apart no less than 2 weeks so you possibly can mix per week on land and per week island-hopping round Greece.

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What to Pack for this Greece Island Hopping Itinerary

Packing gentle is essential for those who’re planning on crusing in Greece, as yachts don’t often have numerous space for storing. You’ll be spending most of your time within the water, so positively get plenty of sun-proof gear. Additionally pack leisure like a guide or iPad as you’ll have numerous downtime whereas crusing.

I like to recommend bringing sun-proof rashguards that may shield your pores and skin whereas snorkeling. KEEN footwear or regular sandals are actually helpful for water actions. Snorkel masks and fins are often supplied by the yacht.

Packing Checklist for a Greece Crusing Journey


Greece Island-Hopping Suggestions 

  • Learn my crusing in Greece information for extra detailed ideas and sensible info.
  • The Ionian Sea may be very calm and barely windy, however the Aegean Sea can get tough typically. In case you do endure from sea illness, be sure you deliver sea-sickness bracelets or drugs. Keep above deck and hold your eye on the horizon line.

  • You don’t want any crusing expertise to go on a chartered crusing journey. The skipper and host care for all the pieces. However you possibly can assist with getting the fenders overboard, holding the ropes or decreasing the anchor. Usually, you possibly can participate within the crusing of the yacht as a lot or as little as you want.

  • There was no WiFi on our boat (it will depend on which vessel you’re crusing with), so we purchased eSIMs from Airalo beforehand. I like to recommend shopping for an eSIM so you possibly can have 5G web in your telephone.

  • Attempt to pack gentle (carry-on provided that you possibly can) as a result of a huge suitcase gained’t slot in a yacht cabin.

  • Use solely biodegradable sunscreen (or reef-friendly sunscreen) when crusing in Greece.

Our 1-Week Greece Island Hopping ItineraryOur 1-Week Greece Island Hopping Itinerary


Total View of the Crusing Journey

Alberto and I had a blast and actually beloved each minute of our Greece crusing vacation with Yacht Getaways. We notably preferred this Greece island-hopping itinerary; It confirmed us a aspect of Greece we didn’t know existed — secret coves, empty seashores and ridiculously charming fishing villages that solely Greeks go to. [Read my full review.]

It was additionally the correct amount of exercise and leisure — I hadn’t felt this relaxed in years! I’m not somebody who can sit by the pool or lie on the seashore all day, however I simply spent hours gazing out to the ocean whereas we have been crusing. It was completely hypnotizing. I additionally beloved our itinerary, taking us away from the crowded spots and into the less-visited areas.

The catamaran was very snug, our crew was unbelievable and meals have been wonderful. This journey made me wish to do extra crusing holidays; possibly even be taught to sail and constitution our personal boat subsequent time! Maybe to Montenegro or Croatia subsequent yr? Who is aware of!

Disclaimer: Our journey was hosted by Yacht Getaways, however as at all times, all opinions expressed above are our personal. 

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