Poros is comprised of two small Greek islands, Sphairia and Kalavria, in the southern part of the Saronic Gulf with a surface area of 31 square kilometres and only 3,780 inhabitants. Sphairia is a volcanic rock and Kalavria is covered with pine trees.
We set sail from Hydra in the early morning with the sun beating down on us. Halfway to Poros the wind picked up which meant one thing – yacht race! The skippers lined us up at the starting line and the race was on. Skippers were only allowed to assist us verbally, otherwise all the hard manual labour was left to us. We were in first place with 5 minutes till the finishing line when we made a huge mistake and slacked our ropes loosing all the momentum we had built up. There was oohing and aahing but luckily we had built up a big enough lead that we still came in second. I was so proud of our team.
Once we docked our yacht at the Poros ports we heading down to the beach for an afternoon of water-sports. We tried everything from banana boats to parasailing. My all time favourite is still being dragged behind a speedboat on a big rubber tube holding on for dear life. Anyone tried it before?
Sun kissed and exhausted we walked back to town with a big bag of cherries and a couple of beers. (Mediterranean lifestyle is true bliss I tell you.) We watched the sunset from our yacht before heading to a small local spot near the docks for dinner.
The next morning Justin and I were the first to rise so we headed out to explore the small town of Poros. Ice coffee and baklava in hand. We missioned up to the famous clock tower which was built in 1927 and had the most breathtaking views of the town and the harbour.
We didn’t spend that much time on Poros as our sail to Agistra was a bit longer then our usual sailing times. So we headed back to the port to set sail for our next stop…
The clearest blue waters you ever did see!
Tie dye dress – Zara
Brown slides – H&M
Olive sunglasses – Persol
Sarong – Poetry
Black sunglasses – Ray Ban
White shirt – Mango
Red trousers – Mango
Basket bag – Bohemia
All photos taken by myself and Justin Polkey.
It’s pretty difficult to choose a favourite Greek island on our sailing trip but if I had to commit to just one I would have to say that Spetses takes first place.
The mix of pine and salt water in the air, your hair and on your skin while cruising around on a scooter is pretty hard to beat. There’s an absence of private vehicles on Spetses which leaves the roads free for walking, horse-draw carts and scooters.
Just to fill you in on all the details (as I’ve yet to do so) we booked our Greek sailing cruise through a company called MedSailors and is by far the best holiday I’ve ever been on, so much so I booked sailing cruise in Croatia this year with MedSailors too.
The yachts are pretty simple, nothing overly fancy, but meets all your basic needs. We upgraded our trip to the premier plus yachts which was totally worth the extra payment. They premier yachts are slightly more spacious and more modern with a sleek design. We booked our trip early and got a discounted early bird special. I’ve also heard (but I can not say for sure) that if you with certain medical aid groups you can receive an additional discount too.
Each morning we would set sail for the next island on our week long journey around 8am, our skipper Sam would then sail for an hour or two till he found a decent spot to anchor off for breakfast. Sam was an amazing skipper and I cannot praise him enough. He cooked and served us delicious meals throughout the trip, put up with our silly games (Capture The Flag…) and always ensured a calm energy on the boat.
Breakfast consisted of real greek yogurt, muesli, fruit and freshly baked bread and spreads. One thing’s for sure, you have not had proper yogurt till you’ve tried real Greek yogurt, It’s so creamy and thick, I became obsessed! After breakfast we would stop for a swim, some paddle boarding or maybe a little scuba diving (though sadly, there’s hardly any fish in the Greek ocean’s anymore). I usually spent my mornings between diving into the ocean and reading my book. Lunch was a similar vibe, we would anchor off somewhere and Sam would cook us some light tapas before docking our yacht at the island harbour.
You then had a choice of either sticking with the group or venturing out by yourself to explore the island. Spetses was incredible! Sailing into the harbour and seeing such clear blue water still feels so dreamy.
We hitched a lift on the back on a quad into town to rent some scooters for ourselves. There’s very few things in this world that beat the feeling of cruising around on a scooter with the sun beating down on your back and the strong smell of pine and cedar in the air while exploring totally unknown territory.
Every now and then we would spot a sign for a beach bar and would veer off the road and order back to back Aperol Spritz’s before getting back on the scooter.
One of our stops was the ‘famous’ Bekiri Cave. It’s a short hike from the beach club and suddenly you in complete darkness trying to figure out which way is up and which way is down all while the waves are crushing against you.
We spent the rest of our day cruising around the entire island of Spetses before stumbling upon Patralis Psarotaverna for the best mussels I’ve ever eaten alongside some grilled octopus. I mean seriously, who can resist dripping freshly baked bread into a creamy white wine and garlic sauce?
We returned our scooters and slowly made our way back to the yacht while watching the sun go down and stopping every 30min or so for a glass of vino or Aperol Spritz at a nearby restaurant.
Summer nights in June/July are incredibly warm and most nights I fell asleep on the deck in the hammock whilst star gazing. I always wondered what a pirates life was like, now I think I kind of know…
Next stop… Hydra.
Rent a scooter and just keep cruising.
We rented our scooters from a place called Nautilus. They were so friendly and helpful and sorted out all the paperwork in about 5 minutes flat.
Visit Bekiri Cave if you not afraid of small dark spaces.
Drink all the Aperol Spritz you can manage!
Try the creamy mussels at Patralis Psarotaverna
Walk through the town square.
Spetses has a couple museums too but I preferred to just spend my time outdoors near the sea and cruising along the hilltops.
All photo’s taken by myself & Justin Polkey
… and so the story continues. Where I left off last time I was boarding the boat in the bay of Perdika to sail to Ermioni to meet up with Justin and Ross who had previously been left behind at the BA terminal in London.
(Incase you missed it, see part one of my Greek adventure here.)
We docked our yacht around lunch time in the Ermioni harbour and as I looked up there was Justin and Ross sitting in the shade outside a little greek cafe. They both looked like they’d been in the wars. (Sorry boys!)
Turned out after queueing for hours and being put on standby for the past three flights with no success they managed (thanks to EU law) to be reimbursed for their flight and booked a new flight to Greece via one of the only airlines that had availability – Air Serbia.
So they flew to Serbia, Serbia to Athens and then caught “The Flying Dolphin” (a supposedly fast ferry) to Ermioni while surviving on a hour’s sleep in 72 hours!
We decided a swim in the ocean and some delicious greek food would cure any woes. So we grabbed our towels, downed a beer and went to explore the island of Ermioni.
Ermioni is a small island town constructed on the hill slopes around a beautiful port with a population of 3062 people. In the past the town used to be know for their shipbuilding and the production of a red dye called porphyra. An uncomplicated holiday destination with the friendliest people you’ll ever come across. It only took us an hour or two to walk around the whole island.
We joined everyone for dinner at a local restaurant right on the waters edge for grilled octopus and fresh sardines called Tzieris. Like most spots in greece Tzieris is a family owned and run business. I was so impressed with my meal that I went in to thank the chef only to walk out with the whole family hugging and kissing me while bestowing me with bottles of homemade olive oil. (Which happens to be the best olive oil I’ve ever tried!)
We ended off our evening at Millennium Sailing Club which is run by a crazy Greek man who loves to party. We received more free drinks then drinks that we paid for and by the end of the night he had everyone dancing on tables and throwing hundreds of napkins in the air.
The next morning I was up early again and Justin and I headed out to explore the island one more time before setting sail. We ended up on the other side of the island and stumbled on a bakery that had just bought out fresh baklava. Only on holiday would I wake up with caffeine and sugar.
With everyone abroad the yacht and no one stuck in London we set sail for us next destination, and one of my favourites… Spetses!
… to be continued…
All photos taken by myself and Justin Polkey.