Trip on Bavaria 55 starting 2018-06-06 in BSAJuly18
Greece Sailing June 6th/16th – report by Bob Buchanan
Yacht berth. Alimos marina Athens
Yacht. Bavaria 55 cruiser
With about a week before our sailing holiday, the charter company phoned and said that our brand new 44ft yacht was not finished being built, so offered us a choice of an older, smaller yacht with a £500 discount, or a Bavaria 55 for the same price, we chose the 55.
We arrived at the marina on Wednesday 6th June, did the handover and had all the supplies delivered and stored on board by late afternoon. We decided to leave and sail down the coast south east to a bay for night. Out of the marina ( 16.00 hrs) with a light breeze, we pulled out the main and Genoa. It was a lovely sail with a SS/E F3. We were doing 6/7 kts. We dropped anchor in a bay (still on mainland Greece) called Ormos Anavisso. It was just after 19.00 hrs and we had done 20miles. After a day of travel and next to no sleep, we had a few beers, bottles of wine and a meal on board, then it was an early night as we were all shattered.
We got up to 30 degrees plus of sunshine. First things first was to jump in the water for a swim, it was warm and a good way to start the day. My job, as I do on all my med trips, is to snorkel under the yacht and check her bottom, any bad bits I photo or video, all looked ok.
After breakfast of fruit, yogurt, and honey (we had this every morning) we upped anchor and motored over to the island of Kea. There was not a puff of wind all day, so we motored about 25 miles then dropped anchor in a bay called Ormos Nikolaou. Another meal on board (chicken salad etc.)
Another dip before breakfast. We upped anchor at 10.00hrs, pulled up full main and Genoa and headed south to the Island of Tinos. We had a NN/W F3/4 and had a very good sail all the way down covering the 45 miles in 8hours. We berthed stern-to in Tinos town Quay at 18.00hrs (the exact berth Bex and me berthed at in May 2007). That evening was our first meal ashore.
After a sightseeing tour of the town, we left at 13.00hrs for Mykonos. We had to go there because Becca, Hugh Haywards daughter, was flying in and we had to pick her up. At 15.30hrs we dropped anchor in a small bay for a swim and a beer. Then it was the short sail to Mykonos. The wind was S F4 so we put a reef in the main and genoa and had a good sail down to Mykonos. We got into Mykonos marina and were told it was full, so we sailed south for two miles to a bay called Ormos Korfos. Hugh and I took the dinghy ashore and picked up Becca, then back to the yacht for a meal etc. on board.
With Becca on board, we had to move me out of the double aft cabin, and into the twin cabin, so that Becca had her own cabin. The twin cabin was fine for me, (bunks) but the only problem was that if I opened the door to keep it cool, it went back onto the aft cabin and shut the air supply to it. The only solution was to remove the door and put it on the top bunk bed; problem solved.
After the usual breakfast etc. it was up anchor and off to the Island of Siros, about 20 miles away, the wind today was N F5 so we put two reefs in the main and Genoa, with 20 plus knots of wind we were doing 7/8 knots with Kevin on the wheel we hit 9.4 knts. We berthed in Ermoupolis, stern-to. The harbour fee for mooring, electric and water was €17-10 euros. It was another lovely little Greek town where we had a very enjoyable evening ashore.
Slipped moorings at 11.30 hrs and headed over to the Island of Serifos. With the wind N F5-6 we just pulled out the Genoa. We covered the 40 miles in 7 hours ,with a top speed of 11.4 knts. On our way we were escorted by a pod of about six porpoises for about half an hour. On Serifos, we tried to anchor in a bay called Livaiou, but it was full, so we gave it a miss. The next bay (Koutala) we dropped anchor and also put out the kedge as it was still very windy and the boat was rocking and rolling, another excellent meal on board.
Up anchor at 10.30hrs full main and Genoa for a bit, then wind increases to N F5 so we put in a couple of reefs. We sailed over to the Island of Kithnos just over 30 miles away in 6hrs. We berthed stern-to in the harbour. (Merikha)
That evening, we walked along the harbour looking for a place to eat. Not far from our yacht, was a little fish restaurant, with the owner outside. He said, that is my boat, and these are my fish that I have caught today. Have a meal with the fish that you pick out, all the beer and wine you have will be included in the meal, and if any one of you complain that you do not like your meal, you can all walk away without paying. We looked at the fish, and one was a huge red snapper. I asked the owner if I could have my photo taken with the fish before we accepted his offer. We stayed in his restaurant and it was the best meal that we had ashore.
We slipped our moorings and motored around the coast to a bay called Colona Beach. We dropped anchor and had a swim, then brunch. Then it was a short sail back to the island of Kea .We dropped anchor in a bay called Ormos Kavia.
After breakfast etc., we upped anchor at 11.30hrs, motored for a few hours as there was no wind, then when the wind finally picked up, we pulled up the main and genoa, and headed for Lagonisi, on mainland Greece .We covered the 30 miles in 8 hrs. We dropped anchor in a lovely little bay. It had a small Island in the middle, so we dropped anchor between the Island and the beach, perfect. To the left of us was a restaurant with its veranda over the water, and to the right of us was a hotel, with a public harbour for small fishing boats and dinghies.
We got the dinghy out and did two trips over to the harbour, tied the dinghy up and started to walk up the road to the restaurant. After about 20 yards, we were stopped by the hotel security. He said that we could not go any farther, and would have to go back. We said that we only wanted to go up to the main road, walk around to the restaurant, have a meal and come back. He said it was not possible, and got on his phone. One minute later, a police man in an electric vehicle, came hurtling down the road, and stopped in front of us. He asked who is the captain? I replied, me. Jump in the car he said, so I did. Off we went to the harbour, 20 yards away, get out he said. So I did. He asked me which one is our tender, pointing directly beneath our feet, I said, that one. Then he said, which is your yacht, without moving or pointing, all I said it’s that one, it was the only yacht in the bay. Ok he said, jump back in the police car, then we drove the 20 yards back to the rest of the crew. Out he said, I will be back in two minutes. Two minutes later, he came back and said, we have a problem. I said, no, you have a problem. He said yes, we have some V.I.P and cannot let you go up to the gate. If you do get to the gate you will be stopped by the police, and if you do get to the gate and let through, you will not be allowed back in. I asked who are these V.I.P people. And was told it was the Greek prime minister.
We said ok, we will take the dinghy over to the taverna across the bay .But the yacht is staying in the bay tonight, to this he agreed, if he had said no, you must move it, my next move was to say to him, here are the keys, you will have to move it. Luckily it didn’t come to that. Two trips to the the taverna and we had a very good meal. The dinghy was parked right underneath us as we sat on the veranda.
After the usual breakfast, the first job was to put the door back on to the twin cabin. We upped anchor and headed back up to Athens, the wind was SSW F5 so we put a reef in both the main and genoa and had a very lively sail up the coast. It was only a short sail of 15miles.
As we got to the marina the entrance was like Hurst point on round the island race day. We were all within touching distance of one another. The berth we had to go in, as we backed down into it was about half the width of the boat, we had no chance of getting in. The owner of the boat and his crew were ready to help, and he jumped aboard and took over. He gave up trying to berth where she should have berthed and went farther down to a wider berth, all this was still in about a F4. With our boat berthed, it was mayhem watching a lot of the other boats. One or two caused quite a bit of damage.
We berthed at 16.00hrs and later did the hand back. We were lucky enough to be able to do the hand back and not have to leave by 09.00hrs in the morning. We were able to keep our bags on the boat until we left for the airport Saturday evening.
We decided to do a bit of sightseeing, so we jumped on a tram up to the acropolis. When we were up there, it started to rain, but all around Athens below us, the thunder, and lightning. And rain was a hell of a lot worse. After a day of siteseeing it was back to the boat, pick our bags up and head home.
We sailed 261 NM with 34hours on engine