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Old 30-08-2017, 09:45   #1
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Need some help crossing the med

Hi there!

New in the forum, new in sailing!

I'm buying a 2003 Bavaria 44' in Turkey and must bring her to Portugal.

I'm planning the trip, but I know nothing (i mean really nothing) about the med and I have no experience in planning.

Do you know where can I find info?

Thanks
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Old 30-08-2017, 14:18   #2
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Re: Need some help crossing the med

Things a bit quiet over on SA?
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Old 30-08-2017, 15:00   #3
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Re: Need some help crossing the med

head SW from turkey,turn right at cape kithera bash 1800 miles to windward,look for 2 big rocks ,pass between,carry on a further 170 miles to lagos or carry on a bit further then turn right again at cape st vincent then bash a few more hundred miles north to lisbon........... do this all before the end of october.........what could possibly go wrong.

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Old 30-08-2017, 15:10   #4
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Re: Need some help crossing the med

Hi zaco
Congratulations with your new boat! As you are new to sailing, I recommend you to take your time and donít rush. If you do it right, you will have some of your best experiences in life in this boat. But if you do it wrong, you may also have your worst nightmares.

Stay close to a good chandlery and a boatyard at least the first week while you get to know the boat and start to fix stuff which doesnít work. Get help to do service on the engine, sails and rigging before you leave. Focus on the most important and donít worry if unimportant stuff breaks, it is part of the sailing experience. Write back to the forum if you get stuck, there will always be somebody ready to help you.
There are many good sources of info on the web, but you should at least know about these:
JimB Sail | A Cruising Guide for European Coastlines
https://sea-seek.com/
Noonsite.com ‚ÄĒ

Let us know how it goes, and remember the best is sometimes just to sit down and have a beer and not get overwhelmed if the problem seems too big to fix.

Good luck!
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Old 31-08-2017, 05:34   #5
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Re: Need some help crossing the med

Hi Zaco,

Congratulations indeed with your boat purchase!

Do make sure the essentials work properly before you set off: rigging and sails, engine, head, galley, and electricity to navigation equipment and autopilot.

Stock up with lots of bottled drinking water, do not drink from the boat's tanks. (You may consider doing that later when you know the boat better but usually it's not recommended.) Buy plenty of food that doesn't need refrigeration in case the fridge breaks down. You may not end up eating it all but have it just in case. You'll have little time for provisioning on the way because let's face it, you're in a little bit of a rush, so do as much as you can before leaving Turkey.

Try to do daysails from island to island as you start and always know on forehand which anchorage or marina you're trying to reach for the night. Always have alternative destinations ready if you need to change your plans. Marinas can get prohibitively expensive in the Med so look for anchorages. Greece is cheap enough but beyond that they may charge you over 100Ä a night, especially in Sardinia and Sicily.

When you feel you know the boat well enough you can start sailing through the night once in a while and eventually you'll need to do it anyway to sail the shortest distance out of the Med.

I very highly recommend the Imray Pilot Guides. These books easily cost 45Ä a pop and you'll need several to cover the distance but for a beginner, they'll be worth every cent. You'll find all the anchorages and marinas in there with lots of information on the prevailing weather and dangers of all the areas you need to sail through.

You'll start by sailing the Aegean Sea between Turkey and Greece. Usually this time of year the wind blows extremely strongly from the north but it weakens the further south you go. I don't know where you're starting from in Turkey but you'll probably want to sail to the southwest on a broad reach and go around the Peloponnesos. (If you can stop over in Santorini, I highly recommend it, it's one of the most spectacular places I've sailed to and I've been around.).

After that it's touch and go. The wind west of Greece, all the way to Gibraltar is extremely fickle and usually it's all or nothing and you'll probably end up motoring a lot so make sure you're fuel planning is up to snuff and carry a couple of extra fuel tanks. Fuel in Sardinia and other places can be ridiculously expensive so that too is part of your planning. Always have enough fuel left to be able to go to the next fuel dock if the one you planned on has insane prices.

Another tip is to go around Sicily in a counter-clockwise direction which usually works out best in terms of currents and winds. This means you'd go through the Strait of Messina which has extremely strong currents and even whirlpools so you have plan to go through it at slack and when the current will be with you.

You'll probably skirt by the southern tip of Sardinia and then jump to Mallorca, Ibiza, and mainland Spain. To get through the Strait of Gibraltar plan for the currents as well and stay close to shore to avoid them.

You may have gotten lazy in the Med but once you're in the Atlantic remember that there is a tidal range again of up to 4 meters so don't forget about it when anchoring!

I don't know where you need to be in Portugal. If you're going further north than the Algarve then you have to take into account that along the west coast the prevailing winds and currents will be against you and that thick fog is a regular occurrence in this season. This whole coast is mostly rocky cliff with some sandy beaches with little shelter and fully exposed to the prevailing North Atlantic swell. The beaches there are top surf spots, needless to say more. So my tip is to wait for really settled weather and just motor up, or to sail light winds if you are lucky.

So all in all it's not too difficult, but it is rather tiring and you'll probably experience much of it as a slog and not as a relaxing sail given you're somewhat under time pressure. Make sure you get some rest whenever you can and keep religiously checking your boat for potential problems so you can prevent them from occurring. In any case, make sure you calculate about 10 days into your planning where you'll be stuck for repairs. It often is really hard to get replacement parts. Hopefully you won't have any problems though and will be able to use those 10 days for extra visiting and resting.

Have a great adventure!

Marc
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Old 31-08-2017, 06:34   #6
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Re: Need some help crossing the med

Quote:
Originally Posted by atoll View Post
...head SW from turkey,turn right at cape kithera bash 1800 miles to windward,look for 2 big rocks ,pass between,carry on a further 170 miles to lagos or carry on a bit further then turn right again at cape st vincent then bash a few more hundred miles north to lisbon........... do this all before the end of october...
This'll work, but first: Fill the diesel tank to its limit, then take note of the advice to check all the boat's systems, next put some additional full diesel cans on board. Finally, just before heading out, re-check the engine & fuel systems, don't worry about the sails too much, once you're past Kithera, they're unlikely to see much use and squeeze on a few more cans of diesel along with some earplugs so you can sleep through the engine noise.

Been there, done that, you're welcome to it.
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Old 31-08-2017, 07:00   #7
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Re: Need some help crossing the med

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Zaco.
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Old 31-08-2017, 07:51   #8
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Re: Need some help crossing the med

Quote:
Originally Posted by SoundOfSilence View Post
Hi zaco
Congratulations with your new boat! As you are new to sailing, I recommend you to take your time and donít rush. If you do it right, you will have some of your best experiences in life in this boat. But if you do it wrong, you may also have your worst nightmares.

Stay close to a good chandlery and a boatyard at least the first week while you get to know the boat and start to fix stuff which doesnít work. Get help to do service on the engine, sails and rigging before you leave. Focus on the most important and donít worry if unimportant stuff breaks, it is part of the sailing experience. Write back to the forum if you get stuck, there will always be somebody ready to help you.
There are many good sources of info on the web, but you should at least know about these:
JimB Sail | A Cruising Guide for European Coastlines
https://sea-seek.com/
Noonsite.com ‚ÄĒ

Let us know how it goes, and remember the best is sometimes just to sit down and have a beer and not get overwhelmed if the problem seems too big to fix.

Good luck!
thank you for your words, SoundOfSilence.

I'm checking the links.

My worry is about the chandlery and boatyards where the boat is, but if needed I'll move to a place near by with good conditions.

Cheers,
zaco
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Old 31-08-2017, 08:05   #9
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Re: Need some help crossing the med

Quote:
Originally Posted by zaco View Post
thank you for your words, SoundOfSilence.

I'm checking the links.

My worry is about the chandlery and boatyards where the boat is, but if needed I'll move to a place near by with good conditions.

Cheers,
zaco
where is it currently,turkey has some pretty good marine supply shops,and cheap anti-fouling.
the boat yards in most of the marina's are well run with good fabrication facilities etc
perhaps you should contact CF member" yeloya" who runs a marina nr marmaris for local knowledge/advice

http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/...loya-7613.html
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Old 31-08-2017, 08:59   #10
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Re: Need some help crossing the med

Mediterranean Cruising Handbook by Rod Heikell would be your best bet. Heading to Mallorca would not be a very good idea as you want to go west and soon there will be more westerly winds. Going through the straits of Gibraltar, study the tides as there are several currents and they can be used to help speed you through. Good luck.
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Old 31-08-2017, 09:12   #11
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Re: Need some help crossing the med

Hello Zaco,

Share with us more details about your plan: where are you starting from, do you want a pleasant journey or a delivery, how much money you want to spend, how much you know about your boat...

I have a boat in Thassos and I think the most pleasant way to do the trip is to allocate 3-4 years for it... wandering around from island to island, especially in Greece, where the harbors are very cheap or free, the views are wonderful and the lifestyle is relaxed (do not forget to go to the port police and ask for DEKPA when you arrive in Greece - it's a kind of permit to sail in Greek waters and costs 50 euro).
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Old 31-08-2017, 09:16   #12
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Re: Need some help crossing the med

Try "Crewseekers", free to yacht owners
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Old 31-08-2017, 09:18   #13
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Re: Need some help crossing the med

With bringing it from Turkey you may have issues with VAT
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Old 31-08-2017, 09:30   #14
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Re: Need some help crossing the med

Don't buy in Turkey if resident in Europe or you will have to pay VAT. Have them sail it to an island in Greece and buy it there.
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Old 31-08-2017, 09:32   #15
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Re: Need some help crossing the med

Thanks for all the details, Marc. Valuable stuff there!

I'll be heading to Lisbon. I guess the west coast of Portugal will be the most tiring.

I'm planning to leave turkey (I'll be in Bodrum) in late September/early October.

I guess I'll spend 5 days crossing the cyclades until the south of the Peloponnese peninsula (@ Elafonisos).
I hope this is slow as it's meant to be slow in order to get to know the boat. I'm stopping in Kos, Amorgos, Milos and finally Elafonisos. Maybe I'll diverge from the original plan in order to visit other islands like Santorini, as you kindly mentioned.

From Elafonisos we'll sail to Pylos, Killini, Lefkas and Korfu.

From Korfu we'll cross the Ionian to Le Castella.

Any thoughts?
Cheers,
Zaco
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