Greece Crewed Yacht Charter – Dodecanese Islands Itinerary

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Far to the east of the Aegean Sea are the Dodecanese Islands. The word Dodecanese is derived from the Greek word for “twelve is”, as there are 12 main islands in the Dodecanese island chain. The Dodecanese Islands run right off the coast of Turkey and are in some cases closer to mainland Turkey than their neighboring Greek islands, but they all remain truly Greek in nature.

Great starting points for a charter of the Dodecanese Islands are Kusadasi, Turkey, after a tour of Ephesus, and a short cruise to the northernmost of the main Twelve Islands of Samos, or a start in the southernmost of the Dodecanese Islands in Rhodes or Marmaris, Turkey. Several itineraries are available, but for a cruise that visits all 12 of the main islands of the Dodecanese Islands, consider the following itinerary:

Day 1

Board your yacht in Rhodes, with an east coast of endless sandy beaches and 300 days of sunshine a year, Rhodes is the most popular of the Dodecanese. The incredibly well-preserved Old Town of Rhodes is the largest inhabited medieval city in Europe. Behind imposing walls, it forms the fortified core of the city of Rhodes. The quiet, winding alleys of the old town weave a web of Byzantine, Turkish and Latin architecture. Faliraki Beach is the main resort on the island; Kalithea Thermi beach is the site of an abandoned Italian spa. If you are looking for a quiet anchorage, sail to Stegna Beach or the sandy bay of Agathi.

Day 2

Symi, a beautiful mountainous island, was known as the birthplace of the Three Graces. While the interior is punctuated by small valleys, the coastline alternates between steep and rocky or sandy and indented with small coves. One of the most famous sights on the island is the Monastery of the Archangel Michael Panormitis on the southwest coast. It was built in the 18th century and contains beautiful frescoes and a carved iconostasis. This Ministry claims that all the waters of the world pass through their bay at some point. If you want to reach them, just put a message in a bottle and at some point it will arrive. Whether this is true or not, make sure to visit their museum of bottle messages they’ve received over the centuries. If you ask, perhaps one of the priests will give you a vile blessed water for your journey. There is no shortage of beautiful beaches on Symi. You can swim well in Yialos, Pedio, Emborios, Marathounda, Nanou and also on the nearby islands of Agia Marina and Nimos.

Day 3

Cruise to the small remote island of Kastellorizo. This island has no beaches, but it does have several protected rocky coves, where you can swim and snorkel in the crystal clear sea. With the Knights of St. John’s Castle above the quay, it is one of the most picturesque ports in the Dodecanese. On the southeast coast of the island is a beautiful blue cave. Enjoy lunch before heading to Tilos, with beautiful uncrowded beaches, vistas of high cliffs, rocky coves and valleys of almond and walnut trees. There are only two settlements, the peaceful whitewashed village of Magalo Horio and the waterfront town of Livadia. The quiet beaches of Eristos, Agios Antonis and Plaka are a real treat.

Day 4

After breakfast, you will sail to Nisyros, said to be one of the most beautiful of all the Greek islands. It’s a strange combination of lush vegetation and stark moonscapes. In the center of the island is a dormant volcano. The charming harbor town of Mandraki is made up of winding alleys and brightly colored houses. It is located below the monastery on the cliff, Moni Panagias Spilianis. Near the harbor you will find the black stone beach of Koklaki. On the rim of the volcano are the villages of Emboreios and Nikea, both of which have spectacular views of the caldera. The best beaches on the island are at Pali and Lies. After lunch cruise to Kos.

Day 5

Located just 5 km from the Turkish peninsula of Bodrum, Kos is one of the most fertile islands in the Dodecanese. Like Rhodes, it is rich in ancient remains and beautiful beaches. The landscape of modern Kos town, the island’s capital and main port, is picturesque. The Castle of the Knights predominates over the harbour, while Hellenistic and Roman ruins are dotted all over. There are plenty of archaeological sites to visit. The Asklepion is the most important ancient site on Kos. It is located on a pine-covered hill 4 km southwest of Kos town. Among the many sandy beaches, Agios Stefanos, located next to the ruins of two 5th-century basilicas, is a must. At Masthari you will find a number of secluded spots on the sandy shores to rest and relax. Later that afternoon cruise to Leros.

Day 6

The rolling, rolling countryside of Leros is dotted with small businesses and huge, impressive, almost landlocked coves, resembling lakes rather than open seas. Platanos, the capital of Leros, is located 3 km north of Lakki, the main port. This small picturesque village runs over the narrow hill to the port of Agios Marina. On the east side of Platanos, a huge castle crowns the mountain homes. On the wide Alinda Bay are the adjacent resorts of Krithoni and Alinda, which have a beautiful, long, shady sandy beach. At Belfoutis Bay you will find a shady sand and pebble beach and a good taverna. A good place for snorkeling, Xirokambos Bay is a quiet resort with a sandy beach. Depart for Patmos after lunch.

Day 7

For both Orthodox and Western Christians, Patmos has long been a place of pilgrimage, for it is here that John is said to have written his divinely inspired revelation, the Apocalypse. Once a favorite destination for devout believers, Patmos is now equally popular with sun and sea worshippers. All boats dock in glitzy Skala, which stretches around a large curving bay. Surrounding the immense monastery of St. John the Theologian is the beautiful hilltop village of Hora. With its immaculate whitewashed houses and maze-like alleys, it is absolutely enchanting. There are a number of sandy, shady beaches around the island. Psili Ammos is the best beach and can only be reached by boat. Late afternoon depart for Samos.

Day 8

Samos, the birthplace and home of Pythagoreus, is quite a chic, cosmopolitan island. The small harbor of Pythagorion is lined with dozens of tavernas along the waterfront. Disembark here and spend more time on the island, or take the ferry to the Turkish city of Kusidasi, or a flight to Athens.

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Why is cruising good for you?

Travelling relieves stress and boosts happy hormone

Travel has the ability to take you out of stressant and into new enviroment and experiences and this can reset your body and calm your mind. Even planning a adventure can have an amazing effect on the body & mind – it boosts happiness and feels rewarding.

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