Sailing Region: Cyclades
“On a quest to find the Greek islands of your dreams? Start, here, in the Cyclades (Κυκλάδες; kih-klah-dez). Rugged, sun-drenched outcrops of rock, anchored in azure seas and liberally peppered with snow-white villages and blue-domed churches, this is Greece straight from central casting, with a stellar atmospheric archaeological sites and dozens of postcard-worthy beaches. Throw in a blossoming food scene, some renowned party destinations and a good dose of sophistication that seems to have bounced its way down from Athens, and you really do have the best of Greece’s ample charms.
The biggest surprise may be the variety found within this island group. You can indulge in any favourite holiday pursuit: chase hedonism on Ios, history on Delos, hiking trails on Andros or Amorgos. Want to woo your beloved? Try Santorini. To escape reality? Pick Donousa. We can hop to our heart’s content, enjoy long lazy lunches at waterside tavernas, or simply lay claim on the yacht`s deck by a spectacular beach. We’re living the dream.”
- The Cyclades are a group of islands in the southern Aegean situated between Greece and Turkey. The name was coined in the Archaic period as the islands form an approximate circle (kyklos) around the central and most sacred island (at that time) of Delos.
- The main factor that defines wind force in summer months is the ‘meltemi’, the northern wind that blows from early July to mid August usually around 5 Beauforts, although gusts can reach up to 8. The wind blows stronger during midday, so sailors usually travel early morning to avoid the strong wind. Wind direction is purely north, or North West.
- Big waves can also be caused by the meltemi. The waves cover hundreds miles’ distance from the North Aegean coast to Cyclades, so they can become pretty tall in these islands, 3-4 meters. Nevertheless, it can be interesting and fun to steer the wheel trying to avoid these waves and to feel the water spray they cause.
- In the months outside the high touristic season: May-June and September-October the wind is not that strong with average force of 3-4 Beauforts. Therefore it is the best time to visit the Cyclades on a sailing adventure.
- According to Greek mythology Apollo was born on one of the Cyclades island: Delos.
- The Cyclades is an archipelago of 23 large islands and some 200 smaller ones.
- The archipelago is based on a submarine plateau which extends in an arc from the most easterly point of Attica and Evia towards the coast of Asia Minor.
- Characteristic features of the landscape are the cubed whitewashed Cycladic houses and the thatch-roofed windmills, very romantic and ideal for a sailing holiday.
- Traditionally these houses are built on stiff hills and cliffs, as a natural protection from pirates of previous eras.
- Santorini islands (Thira, Thirasia, Aspro) are part of a volcanic crater, which has been engulfed by the sea. In the centre islands (Kameni) hot springs and emissions of gas bear witness to continuing volcanic activity.
- Fertile volcanic soil delivers a faint smoky bouquet to the famous local Santorini wines. The grapevines are pruned in a distinctive way to encourage them to twine around within a basket.