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Old 01-10-2015, 16:51   #1
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Ionian Sea

Did anyone sailed the ionian sea?
I have experience in Aegean and croatian adriatic but I have the intention to sail the Ionian sea.
Witch are the best ports to start and regions to sail. How did you find the weather an typical seasonal winds?

Thank you

HMora
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Old 01-10-2015, 22:22   #2
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Re: Ionian Sea

We just got back from a week-long cruise on the inland Ionian in early September. It is a wonderful cruising ground. Our favorite islands were Cefalonia and Ithaka. Get Heikell's cruising guide. Fiscardo is a pretty little town and Nikolas's Taverna has good food and is entertaining. The short hike to the Venetian lighthouse is worth it. Sami is a pleasant town if there is no swell from the northwest. Otherwise, the harbor is rolly. We stayed there one night when a cold front and low pressure system moved in from the southwest and the prevailing winds reversed direction (weather was otherwise excellent). The Roman and Byzantine ruins are a nice hike. Agia Effimia is pleasant also (and is a good alternate when conditions aren't good at Sami). Ormos Andisamos is a beautiful stop. We didn't make it to the south. The guide book doesn't mention how beautiful the approaches to Vathy, Ithaka are. This was one of our favorite ports. Ormos Rouda, on Lefkada, is a very nice stop. Sivota is nice, but nothing special, compared to the other ports I've mentioned, although we did have our best fish dinner there. Ormos Kapali and Abelike, on Meganisi, have quiet, pretty coves. Spartochori is another pleasant port. We never made it up the hill to the town. Nidri was the most touristy (though we never saw Vasisliki), just stopped there for ice cream. The home base of our charter company at Lefkada was a very nice town to explore. We'd love to return to the Ionian!


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Old 02-10-2015, 10:04   #3
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Re: Ionian Sea

I have just come back from a 3 month cruise on the Ionian and I have sailed there in other years. I have also experience on the Aegean and in Croatia.

What part of the Aegean are you talking about? The Aegean is pretty different on the Cyclades, Dodecanese, Crete comparing with the coast of mainland Greece, I mean the wind average strength and also the sea conditions that go with it.

Croatia is also different in what regards North Croatia and center/south Croatia, being the North a lot more windy.

On the Ionian the normal is having almost no wind in the night kind and weaker wind on the beginning of afternoon that starts to increase and can blow at F5/6 on the afternoon. But even on the Ionian there is a strong difference between the North Ionian and the South Ionian, having more wind the South.

If you don't mind to sail on crowded waters, like central Croatia, the North Ionian is for you. It is beautiful. If you hate crowded waters, like less touristic places, like to sail more time between anchorages or ports, the South is a lot better. Charters are almost all on the North Ionian.

If you are talking about chartering a boat on the North Ionian the places with more charter boats are Gouvia marina (Corfu) and Lefkas marina. They are not far away and it will be indifferent to charter on one place or another. Maybe Lefkas is more central.

If you want to sail on the South Ionian it will be more complicated to find a charter boat. Maybe in Kalamata marina.
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Old 02-10-2015, 10:33   #4
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Re: Ionian Sea

Thank you both.
Polux, in the Aegean I sailed Cyclades for 2 times, starting in Paros. Croatia I sailed the Central north dalmatia starting in Sibenik, around kornati and central and south dalmatia.
In cyclades we have experienced sometimes strong meltemi with force 6/7 with gusts of 40 knots with rough sea. I the 2nd time I sailed cyclades that kind of weather last for more than a week and was terrible for who wants a relaxing holidays with family and friends and not want to race in wind. I stayed retained by the weather in a port and when finally the predictions got better and I sailed out, I had to return as the crew with less experience started to get scared. So, as I am going with the same friends, I'm searching for a nice place to relax and not expect so strong north seasonal winds as the meltemi in cyclades. Maestral (the croatian equivalente one) is much more steady (with the exceptional surprises of NE Bura). Should I expect in Ionian (Lefkas) a seasonal weather more similar to dalmatia or to cyclades?
Thank you.
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Old 02-10-2015, 11:59   #5
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Re: Ionian Sea

Dalmatia in what regards Croatia weather is not the North that I was referring. The weather is more like Dalmatia with the difference that on the afternoon it gets a bit stronger but not going normally over f6 (and not always, most of the days it goes to f4/f5) and as it is just for a short period the sea does not get nasty. As I said on the South Ionian there is more wind but far away from what you would find on the Cyclades. At night the wind normally dies out and become from land side. More easygoing is hard to find, particularly Lefkas that is surrounded by Islands and the continent.
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Old 02-10-2015, 12:04   #6
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Re: Ionian Sea

Obrigado!
No pude deixar de reparar no seu perfil que um compatriota portugus!

Obrigado pelos conselhos e bons ventos!
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Old 02-10-2015, 13:35   #7
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Re: Ionian Sea

Quote:
Originally Posted by hmora View Post
Obrigado!
No pude deixar de reparar no seu perfil que um compatriota portugus!

Obrigado pelos conselhos e bons ventos!
Ora bem, e ns a falarmos em Ingls

Have a look at my blog, soon I will post information about the Ionian, regarding this year's cruise.

Bons ventos!
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Old 02-10-2015, 14:34   #8
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Re: Ionian Sea

As Polux has suggested, the typical weather is flat seas, gentle winds in the morning, and Beaufort 4-5 in the afternoon. However, this will vary over a one week trip. If the wind and waves persist from the west, a swell will squirt through the channels between Lefkada and Kefalonia, and Kefalonia and Zakinthos. On our trip, a mid-week storm brought winds from the south. There were squalls overnight while we were in Sami. The next day the swell was from the south and there were rough seas in the main inland channel. We moved from Sami to Vathy and the crossing south of Ithaka with a cross sea was a little rough (my wife gets sea sick easily). You just have to watch the wind and wave forecasts. There are many suitable ports to choose from in different conditions. A good website for wind and wave forecasts is poseidon.hcmr.gr - click on "sailing forecast" and you can select Ionian.


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Old 02-10-2015, 16:55   #9
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Re: Ionian Sea

Totally agree with all previous comments. Every place you pull into is another excellent spot. This year there have been several unforecast storms. Watch out for occasional grey, ill-defined clouds coming off the mainland. These storms seem to recur for 3 or so days in the afternoon and then it all settles down.
https://m.facebook.com/giorgis.melid...3Du_0_2g&mdf=1

BUT this is a great place to sail. You will run up against the dilemma that the best time of the day to sail is also the best time to tie up at a quay. It can get busy. However, there are plenty of places to anchor off and they are equally nice. The inland sea off Lefkada is very popular, offers some excellent daytrips, can be windless at times but gives you a great blend of sailing and relaxing.
There are really only 2 well developed marinas, Gouvia and Lefkas. Preveza is an old and underdeveloped marina and the big marinas such as Cleopatra are really only for boat storage. The rest are town quays and anchorages. Med mooring is the fashion, mostly using your anchor. Some place such as NAOK have laylines. Visit Corfu, Agni, Syvota, Paxos,Lakka, Parga up North and Preveza,Lefkas all places on Meganisi, Nidri, Sivota, Fiskardo down south but there are many more great places.
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Old 03-10-2015, 06:32   #10
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Re: Ionian Sea

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Originally Posted by Q. Helm View Post
As Polux has suggested, the typical weather is flat seas, gentle winds in the morning, and Beaufort 4-5 in the afternoon. .... A good website for wind and wave forecasts is poseidon.hcmr.gr - click on "sailing forecast" and you can select Ionian.

...
Hi!
Poseidon is great because you can very quickly download all the forecasts for several days and if you don't have internet for some time it is very helpful, but if you have internet at the moment I believe that there are more detailed ones. Have you tried these ones?

For a general picture:
https://www.windyty.com/?43.835,-40.430,3
For a more detailed local forecast:
meteo.gr: Χάρτης ιστιοπλοϊκών προγνώσεων καιρού
The last one is almost impossible to find on an internet search but it is probably the more detailed.
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Old 03-10-2015, 19:00   #11
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Re: Ionian Sea

That's a great tip for the download. I didn't realize one click would download all the PDF's for the forecast period. It works great on my computer, but not on my iPad, which is what I had on the trip. It's OK, though, because my iPad has mobile phone service and there is good coverage in the Ionian.

I don't speak Portuguese, but I know what this means:

Bons ventos!
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Old 04-10-2015, 06:04   #12
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Re: Ionian Sea

In my iPad I use predict wind. It's very good and reliable.
You have always a basic service, but for a few euros you can have a full 3 months service.
Bons ventos!!!
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Old 04-10-2015, 10:00   #13
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Re: Ionian Sea

Correction: I used my iPhone when there was no WiFi, not my iPad. My mobile company did not have an iPad option for Greece.


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Old 04-10-2015, 10:48   #14
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Re: Ionian Sea

You have the predict wind app for iPhone too.
Check the free version and then if you like it do the upgrade before the period you will be sailing!
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Old 13-11-2015, 03:19   #15
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Re: Ionian Sea

Poseidon weather is excellent.
We use a vodaphone dongle to connect a lap top There are vodaphone shops in most places.

If you come through the Levkas canal fo the first time from the North, proceed with caution it can be quite shallow. The bridge opens on the hour. My advice if it is not to windy is to hang around outside and start to enter at about 10 to, and follow somebody in.
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