Sailing Greece 2017, Part 4

After a great sleep and breakfast of cereal and watermelon on deck we slipped off to the island famous for turtle breeding – Nisos Metopi. No turtles as now was the wrong season, but the water was so clear that you could see 5 meters to the bottom. We tried feeding the fish watermelon to watch them gather. There were some fish that looked like mini sword fish, long and thin with big noses (I am sure that someone can tell me the name of them!). Swimming sunbathing and snorkling done and we were heading to see our friend Dimitris in Epidavros Bay. Dimitris and his wife own and run their own organic farm called Athina Ecofarm. We dropped anchor in Kalymnos beech which is south of the main town Palaia Epidavros. Danny swam ashore to check the details for dinner, then we all bailed in to the dinghy and the fit ones swam to the sunken city. The sunken city is only 2 meters below water so on a clear day it is easy to see the remains with the help of a mask. Water shoes or flippers are advisable because of the sea urchins.

Dinner was booked for 5pm in Dimitris restaurant, a simple menu and brilliantly done. We had the special Greek salad which was enormous for around 6 euros, It was enough for a main course for 2 people! Then we had fried calamari which was great and the others had grilled cheese, fresh fish and pork chops. Between courses Dimitris allowed us to sample his ecofarm products. He is quite the showman and very proud of his products – ladling spoon after a spoon of honey, jams and quince into our mouths. He gave us Greek yoghurt with apricot jam for desert, which was very good. Then there was homemade lemon liquor which tasted like lemonchello and grapa. Oh, and of course ouzo to finish the party! We rowed back to the boat under an almost full moon and set off for Epidavros port just a short 20 minutes away. It has quite a narrow entrance into the marina and fairy shallow waters around 2.5 meters. All the spaces were taken so we came alongside a rafted Bavaria and asked to join them. After circling and perfect landing, some nifty line tying we were home for the night. We were the 5th rafted yacht which made getting to the harbour wall interesting – and that was before the ouzo!

We got up early for sunrise. Perfect morning for looking over the calm waters of the Agean sea. Fortunately sunrise is not until 7.25 ish at this time of the year, so not too much of a struggle to get out of my bunk! Sunrise seen, breakfast had, we went to explore the town of Epidavros. It is quite a sleepy village with most of the activity around the harbour. There is one main street and then cafés and bars around the harbour. Epidavros also has one of the best preserved amphitheatres in Greece – which we saved for the next visit.

We had a top tip to visit a deserted island just a short crossing away – the island was called Kira. Lunch of watermelon and feta salad was eaten on the way. The island was inhabitable, it looked like it was mainly made of boulders and was covered in thousands of trees, the only inhabitants seemed to be two wild goats! We decided to move on to Agistri which is part of the Saronic Islands group. If you are coming here stern to, be careful as part of the harbour wall has collapsed under the water level so the apparent wall is not the first thing that you could hit. There are a few restaurants next to the harbour and the main town is up the hill. It is a beautiful place that looks fairly unaffected by tourism. The village is made up of a few winding streets. There seems to be two restaurants – one that sells pizza, pasta and salads and the other that is predominately pita gyros and souvlaki. As it was our last night we opted for pita and souvlaki, and local wine!

Saturday we started early whilst everyone was sleeping and set off just after sunrise for the 2 hour hop to Korfos, breakfast on the way. Our final stop Korfos.

We did around 250 NM, saw dolphins, parthenon’s, churches, rode mopeds, saw turtles, stopped at 8 different places, did night sails, sunbathed, snorkeled, ate great food – but the best thing was the crew; the people made the trip perfect. So Adam, Ruth, Honza, Simona, David and Alan, I raise a glass and say thank you!

Posted in Mediterranean, Sailing Stories.

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