Sailing in the E. Sporades
Generally ignored by crusing sailors, and bypassed by the charter companies, this is one of our absolutely favourite cruising grounds. Chios, Psara, Eftratios, Lesbos, and Limnos offer magnificent scenery, safe sailing and an atmosphere that we found nowhere else in Greece. Chios was definitely our "island of the year" in 2018, and we long to return. Because it is less known, we are devoting more space than usual to a sailing description.
This is not an area to be rushed round in a week! Although technically part of the E. Sporades, Samos is covered in our Dodecanese section, but is likely to be the starting point for a visit further north.
Chios is light on infrastructure for sailing - the main harbour is dodgy, and access to the unfinished marina is very dangerous, and once there it is a long trot into town. You need to figure on at least two and better three days here. The "Masticha" villages are amazing; the north is a wooded paradise, and the centre has some great tourist sites.
On Lesbos, Mytlini is useful for its facilities. You can stay in the marina or in town which can be oppressive because of the refugees issue. However we thoroughly enjoyed our too brief stay at Ploumari (the home of Ouzo). There are the two inland seas to explore, particularly Kalloni. Despite the petrified forest, we didn't rate Sigri, but Methymna is simply gorgeous (beware of crossed anchors and RATS!
The really way out islands of Psara and Evstratios have an unworldly charm that we found nowhere else, and they need your custom - particularly the latter. Please go if you can!
Limnos - over-renowned for its white wines in our view - is also an attractive place to visit. For those of a historical turn of mind, the bay of Moudros (departure point for the disastrous 1916 Gallipolli invasion) is evocative.
Charter yachts verge on the non-existent - there are a few based at Mytlini on Lesbos.
Quick trips to Turkey are currently impossible - a great sadness and a loss to all of us.
The information published at this site has been compiled from publicly available information sources or personal experience. Please feel free to submit additional information or corrections to that already published.
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