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Old 20-01-2017, 03:00   #1
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Greece - Second Home & Learning to Sail Area.

Hi,

Planning to buy a boat abt 40 foot in the first qtr of this year, I am looking for somewhere in Greece to moor the boat for the first year and learn and take the Day Skipper Course etc, could you recommend an area that is good to learn, once I have passed my Day Skipper?

Reason for Greece is I live in Germany and flights to Greece are regular and quite cheap.

I was thinking of Kavala?

Thanks

Dave
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Old 20-01-2017, 08:58   #2
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Re: Greece - Second Home & Learning to Sail Area.

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Hi,

Planning to buy a boat abt 40 foot in the first qtr of this year, I am looking for somewhere in Greece to moor the boat for the first year and learn and take the Day Skipper Course etc, could you recommend an area that is good to learn, once I have passed my Day Skipper?

Reason for Greece is I live in Germany and flights to Greece are regular and quite cheap.

I was thinking of Kavala?

Thanks

Dave
I don't know if in Kavala you have RYA courses even if I know a full qualified skipper that can teach you. He does that for a living. Maybe you have heard about him and that's why you want to sail there? If so I can only agree even if for the winter, to left the boat on the hard and for works on the boat, Kavala is not the best place but there are two nearby shipyards that will be suitable for that.

On kavala you will have more strong wind and a more sustained one than on the Ionian, for instance Preveza, that would be a good location too, even if the winds are far lesser stronger than on the Cyclades (on Kavala).

Edit, I saw that you have RYA courses in Kavala on the local charter boats. Kavala is a very nice city and cheaper than the towns on South of Greece. I will try to find the facebook page of that skipper I was talking about and has his boat permanently there.
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Old 20-01-2017, 10:58   #3
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Re: Greece - Second Home & Learning to Sail Area.

If you can find the FB page of the skipper there it would be much appreciated, thank you.
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Old 20-01-2017, 16:30   #4
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Re: Greece - Second Home & Learning to Sail Area.

You owe me a beer when we meet on some Greek Island It took some work to find him between some hundreds of facebook friends.

He is a Romanian, a very nice and helpful guy and speaks good English:

Cristi TIVIG, here you have is club page:
Echipa

I think he now lives on his boat in Kavala. Here is his facebook page:
https://www.facebook.com/Tivig.Cristian
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Old 20-01-2017, 19:00   #5
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Re: Greece - Second Home & Learning to Sail Area.

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...... Kavala is a very nice city and cheaper than the towns on South of Greece..
Hi Polux, sounds like you know Greece quite well

.....Last time I cruised there was in 1996., before that in the 70's, teaching watersports in Porto Heli.

I have been contemplating taking Stargazer to Greece next year, but have no real idea of changes in cruising costs, regulations and practicality for a non Eu boat in these last 5 tumultuous years.

The attraction is that I have quite a bit of land on Andros Island inherited from my Greek mother.
Also a wonderful group of Greek cousins that are encouraging me to retire in Greece.

I carry a UK passport and if South China Sea gets politically hot, making that move to Greece is a residential possibility, as I was born in Greece.

Bringing the boat allows me to tour and assess living in Greece, without committing

How busy and expensive are the marinas now?

The alternative is to fly to Greece for half a year but I am keen to be living back on Stargazer and assess choices from there.
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Old 20-01-2017, 19:11   #6
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Re: Greece - Second Home & Learning to Sail Area.

I also would recommend the ionion over the aegean for the first year. Gentle and predictable winds in mostly flat water vs the dreaded meltemi in the aegean. Leave that till you are more experienced and you will enjoy it far more.

Preveza airport is about 1.5km to the marina and yards with direct german flights. no brainer IMHO.
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Old 20-01-2017, 19:19   #7
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Re: Greece - Second Home & Learning to Sail Area.

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Hi Polux, sounds like you know Greece quite well

.....Last time I cruised there was in 1996., before that in the 70's, teaching watersports in Porto Heli.

I have been contemplating taking Stargazer to Greece next year, but have no real idea of cruising costs, regulations and practicality for a non Eu boat.

The attraction is that I have quite a bit of land on Andros Island inherited from my Greek mother.
Also a wonderful group of Greek cousins that are encouraging me to retire in Greece.

I carry a UK passport and if South China Sea gets politically hot, making that move to Greece is a residential possibility, as I was born in Greece.

Bringing the boat allows me to tour and assess living in Greece, without committing

How busy and expensive are the marinas now?

The alternative is to fly to Greece for half a year but I am keen to be living back on Stargazer and assess choices from there.
Greece is one of the easier countries for a non eu boat to deal with in my experience. Though there does remain some uncertainty over the cruising tax implementation. Gone are the days of having to check in with port police regularly and one transit log with the odd stamp in it is all you need for up to 18 months.

Marinas are cheaper than most of the med and if you include the town quays thay are the cheapest in the med by far.

the fly in the ointment for non eu is the schengen but with uk passport for now at least you dont have to worry about the STUPID 90 in 180 days fiasco
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Old 20-01-2017, 19:36   #8
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Re: Greece - Second Home & Learning to Sail Area.

Thanks Bara... I am assuming that means tourist visa 90 days maximum 180 days....I can deal with that while deciding and I can always shift to Turkey if required.

With a Greek mother (father Scottish) I should be able to get a resident or retirement visa fairly easy, but that is a different research.

My boat is registered in Langkawi, so under present rules, how long can she remain in Greece?
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Old 20-01-2017, 19:46   #9
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Re: Greece - Second Home & Learning to Sail Area.

Ill link this before Jim does -

Greece | JimB Sail

Hes as up to date as anyone on the uncertainty around the cruising tax vs transit log for non EU.

Better research some VAT issues if you plan to become a resident although it seems plenty of greeks own non greek flagged boats and dont pay the VAT somehow
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Old 21-01-2017, 05:20   #10
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Re: Greece - Second Home & Learning to Sail Area.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pelagic View Post
Hi Polux, sounds like you know Greece quite well

.....Last time I cruised there was in 1996., before that in the 70's, teaching watersports in Porto Heli.

I have been contemplating taking Stargazer to Greece next year, but have no real idea of changes in cruising costs, regulations and practicality for a non Eu boat in these last 5 tumultuous years.

The attraction is that I have quite a bit of land on Andros Island inherited from my Greek mother.
Also a wonderful group of Greek cousins that are encouraging me to retire in Greece.

I carry a UK passport and if South China Sea gets politically hot, making that move to Greece is a residential possibility, as I was born in Greece.

Bringing the boat allows me to tour and assess living in Greece, without committing

How busy and expensive are the marinas now?

The alternative is to fly to Greece for half a year but I am keen to be living back on Stargazer and assess choices from there.
I am European so there are others on this forum that can help you much better than in what regards to stay there for a long time, but with a Greek mother I think you are probably entitled to a double nationality and that would solve your problem.

Yes I know well the med I mean the non African or Islamic part of it and even if there are many other beautiful locations none is as inexpensive as the Aegean, particularly Greece. The Ionian is just a bit more expensive but it is more crowded. Both have an incredible number of good anchorages. Only Croatia offers something similar, but more crowded and more expensive, being most of the anchorages full of buoy camps that you have to pay and to stay in a buoy there you will pay 3 times more than to stay on a town's port in Greece.

Many, inclusive more and more Greeks think that the only alternative to Greece is to go out of the Euro and if that happens life will be even cheaper.

In Greece, compared with the rest of the med marinas are a bit less expensive (sometimes) but there are not many marinas and you don't need them because there are lots of town ports and those are truly inexpensive with some charging 7 or 8 euros for a 41ft boat and was I said there are anchorages os sheltered from all winds that you can stay there for a long time.

On the Aegean there is many times in the summer too much wind to sail anywhere except downwind and last year was particularly bad but that hits particularly the central part and that means the Islands. Near the continental Greece there is less wind as well as on the North, that is where the OP wants to learn to sail.

In fact I would say that there is better to learn than the Ionian where during the day many times there is not wind at all and in the afternoon there is strong winds.

On the Kavala region the wind varies hugely due to the mountains but it is never has strong as in the Islands and most of all there is almost always some wind.

With a wife that hates to do long several days passage on the boat and that refuses to stand at watch at night, even if she likes to cruise, I found out the med is what suits us most. Kind of sailing for 6 to 9 hours almost every day and be at the afternoon at a nice new anchorage enjoying life. Sometimes those anchorages have a small restaurant or bar and that makes it even better

Porto Heli is the same thing as Porto Cheli?
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Old 21-01-2017, 09:37   #11
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Re: Greece - Second Home & Learning to Sail Area.

Hi Dave,

I learned to sail, self taught, in the Ambracian Gulf before venturing around the Ionion and then the Aegean in the first season, then set off across the med and down to cape town South Africa the second season. The Ionion is very calm and pretty predictable, usually a little wind. The Aegean can blow for a month on end at a time and has short steep seas which refract and reflect around the islands making sailing a lot harder than I would like as a novice sailor. In fact I would say it was as demanding as sailing in the South Atlantic back to Cape Town!!!

Levkas and Preveza is reached by flights from both Germany and the UK making it easy to get to in the summer. There is a good community spirit in the Ionion of generally an older crowd. I have a few videos on YouTube which gives a good idea of what you can expect in a circular route from the Ionion round the Peloponnese up the Aegean (bad move as you are beating the entire way up).

IONIAN
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...cTW3XEPiHdIAzR

CYCLADES
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...oKjfKJ3omNQjKI

SARONIC GULF
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...6seG0gFwkRiM2z

GULF OF CORINTH
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...lOVl20xjR-3kaX

Hope this helps!
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Old 21-01-2017, 09:45   #12
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Re: Greece - Second Home & Learning to Sail Area.

I sailed a 48' ketch out of Piraeus and found it very reasonable at the time,
I sold her in 1986,one of lifes regrets.A taxi from the airport was quik and easy.
Have no idea what costs are now ,but just loved the people and the country.
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Old 21-01-2017, 10:18   #13
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Re: Greece - Second Home & Learning to Sail Area.

I'd also endorse the Ionian - particularly the so-called 'inland sea' between the islands of Lefkada and Kefalonia and the mainland. It's popular with charter fleets precisely because weather conditions are usually benign. It's therefore an ideal area to start cruising (whereas there's every chance the Aegean will put you off for life!).

There's an RYA-accredited sailing school in the Gulf of Vlikho where you can learn in very sheltered waters (https://www.sailionian.com/) before basing your boat somewhere like Preveza, where there are three yards capable of lifting out around 2,000 - 2,500 yachts.

GORDON KNIGHT
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Old 21-01-2017, 13:32   #14
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Re: Greece - Second Home & Learning to Sail Area.

We're hoping to spend this summer in Greece.
We had a look at a few places to base ourselves and Kalamata seems a useful option.
It's only 15 mins from the airport and a fairly short sail around around the last western finger of "the hand of Greece" in the Pelopenese into the Ionian.
It's off the flotilla routes and Marina fees seem less.
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Old 21-01-2017, 18:25   #15
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Re: Greece - Second Home & Learning to Sail Area.

Thanks all for a quick overview of basing a boat out of Greece and Smourt for the terrific videos

Typo on my part Polux.. Porto Cheli is where I spent 2 summers during University years that changed my life.

Yes I can get a dual nationality but not sure if I wish to for tax purposes..
I will investigate Greek Retirement-Investment visa for non nationals.

If it offers the tax free import of household goods that included cars and boats, it might be a better investment.

I am not sure where I would land base myself in Greece as I have close Family spread from Andros, some with main homes in Athens and Farms in Gulf of Corinth.

Probably a home around Athens for winter and keep the boat logistically based for maintenance and well positioned for my exploration trips.

My sailing interest in Greece is Archeological based to study and follow the ancient sailing/ trading routes and to visit the ancient sites in context.

I would probably make those trips during the tourist shoulder periods and when the heat is less.

So a review of sailing support and prevailing seasonal weather is part of my needed research

It appears the Marinas in Ionia are far more developed than the Agean side and I well know the tough sailing of the Cyclades so that would not be a base, but a destination when conditions are enjoyable.

From the above, which Marina and locations would be on your short list?
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