Drew and Des' Greek Island Adventure

Follow Drew and Despina on latest our sailing adventure in the Ionian.

23 June 2016 | Corfu
05 July 2015 | Vathi, Kalimnos Greece
01 July 2015
29 June 2015 | Kaliminos
29 June 2015 | Pserimos Greece
28 June 2015 | Kos
26 June 2015 | Gouvia Corfu Greece
25 June 2015 | Paxos Greece
25 June 2015
22 June 2015
22 June 2015 | Gaios Harbor , Paxi
14 June 2015 | Nicosia, Cyprus

1st Day in Corfu

23 June 2016 | Corfu
Welcome to Drew and Des' blog where we'll chronicle our (mis)adventures this summer in the Ionian aboard our charter yacht Traveller.

As I write this we are getting ready to head out to Old Town Corfu and export the beautiful Liston square and environs.

More later...

Our last day in the islands

05 July 2015 | Vathi, Kalimnos Greece
I am writing this from Athens, having returned to Kos from our week-long adventure on Friday afternoon. It was an incredible week to be sure, full of interesting sights, people, and, of course, sailing on the Aegean.
Thursday afternoon we pulled into a wonderful fjiord-like harbor, abutting a village called Valhi. It's about midway down the west coast of Kalimnos, an island we are getting to know well by now. Looking for a place to dock or anchor is always a bit of a struggle that we'd come to terms with - the constant parade of tripper boats streaming in and out of places narrow to begin with. But with patience (mostly on the part of the experienced harbormaster) we made it into our berth for the night, although this required us to reset our anchor all of the way across the channel to ensure it was set with enough scope to secure us from the F7 winds predicted for the last night.
Although quite small (about 500 full-time residents) Valhi is charming, it's waterfront dotted by small, colorful and quaint fishing boats tied neatly to the quay. Up a bit further into the canal, there are the usual complement of tavernas and cafes, but these somehow feel more authentic and locally owned than the larger, more commercially oriented places in the bigger harbors.
Although still a day and a half away from the end of the charter, we decided to leave Vathi early Friday morning, mainly to avoid the predicted F7 winds which would be blowing on our beam most of the way back to Kos. But in a sign that perhaps we should not be too hasty to leave, we had a bit of "anchor tango" with the 45' Cat upwind from us. He came in a couple of hours after us and naturally (these things happen in crowded anchorages) snagged our anchor with the chain he let out. 30 stressful minutes later we had things sorted and were soon on our way back to Kos.
A final thing to mention that touched us a bit...just as we turned for Kos Straits and the wind speed was climbing to about 30 kn on the beam, a pair of dolphins appeared - one on each side - as a kind of an escort, sent by Poseidon perhaps, to ensure our safe passage back to Kos. They swam with us for perhaps 30 seconds, looked us over, assessed that we were OK, then sped off into the Aegean. Somehow the final miles in those windy seas didn't seem quite so tough after all.

Leros, the island of Artemis

01 July 2015
We're now in the village of Lakki on the island of Leros. Leroy was quite famous in ancient times as the home of Artemis, the goddess of the hunt.

Kalimnos II

01 July 2015
Another great morning in Kalimnos! We decided to go hiking today, up toward the monastery above the town, and then down to the sea. The walk up the hill from town was lovely indeed, with lots of alleyways and white-with-blue-trim houses dotting the roadsides. The trail was hot and dusty to say the least, and indistinct as well, with goat tracks all we had to follow. We made it several miles before losing the track and then heading down toward a house on the coast. Picking up the trail from there, we scrambled over stone walls and abondoned piers to finally stumble upon a dive center. Couple of cold Cokes later we were on our way back down to the village.


29 June 2015 | Kaliminos
Departing Pserimos and leaving the commotion of tripper boats behind, we set our course for perhaps the "most Greek" of the islands- Kalymnos. A mere 7.1 miles to the North, this beautiful island known worldwide for its sponges ( and Ouzo!) was out next destination. As we approached the breakwater that protects the main harbor, it dawned on me that although I had read extensively about the infamous "Med mooring", I had never actually done one! Well, it was time to just go and do one, as the best and only place to moor was at the town quay where all of the boats had done so. Approaching from the south, we turned upwind and then backed down to about where we needed to dock. I turned the wheel to position us and then gave the order to drop anchor. At the same moment I sloooowwwwly began to back in toward the quay, while my able crew Despina set the anchor (she's really getting good at this) let out chain. Somehow we made it in, gave the lines to the dock person, cinched up on the anchor -- and we were in! Our first med moor and we nailed it! Man were we ready for a cold Mythos!!

Sailing to Pserimos and Kalymnos

29 June 2015 | Pserimos Greece
Wow, what a great feeling to finally (!) get the sails up and actually sail! We left our berth at Kos Marina around 0830 this morning and headed up the Kos channel toward Pserimos, a small and mostly barren island in the Dodecanese. After we had cleared Ammoglossa, the long and very shallow cape that has entrapped many a first-timer, we unfurled the main (furling sails are the best!) and set the jib to catch the 14 knot NW wind that's a constant in these waters. Almost instantly we were heeled and doing 7 knots over the bottom, very respectable for the lightish ( in these waters) breeze and course over to Pserimos harbor.
As we closed on Pserimos we caught sight of what looked like an armada of day "trippers"' full to the gunwales with tourists and those looking for a quick swim in the warm East Aegean. Finding a spot to anchor without encroaching on the trippers was challenging, but we did manage to squeeze in with depth just ok at 5.4 meters (it's shallow in these waters folks). Des and I had just enough time to enjoy a brunch of fresh bread, hallumi cheese, local salami, and of course fresh tomatoes and feta, before we had to pull out to escape the now departing trippers who slow for no one. Ok, on to Kalimnos!
Vessel Name: Blue Swan
Vessel Make/Model: Jeanneau Sea Odyssey 43
Hailing Port: Corfu
Crew: Drew, Despina, Roy, Dimitra
About: This blog is the story of Drew and Despina's Greek Islands adventure, where we'll sail from Corfu in the Ionian, and then from Kos in the Dodecanese.
Extra: We're sailing with another nice couple, Roy and Dimitra, who live the good life in Athens.
Blue Swan's Photos - Main
9 Photos
Created 5 July 2015
The island of Artemis
2 Photos
Created 1 July 2015
10 Photos
Created 29 June 2015
3 Photos
Created 22 June 2015
3 Photos
Created 6 June 2015
The first leg of our adventure
No Photos
Created 6 June 2015
Our "warm up" week in Cyprus
7 Photos
Created 6 June 2015