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Old 16-03-2011, 17:33   #1
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Western Med Itinerary

Our boat arrives in Gibraltar late April and our intention is to spend our 90 days in the W Med before going to Croatia to get out of the Schengen area.

Can anyone suggest some "must see" places in; Spain/Balearics, France/Corsica, Italy/Sardinia/Sicilly so that we can make the most of the time?

Generally, we tend to prefer local anchorages/harbours rather than large marinas and don't mind longer overnight passages.

Thanks in advance .........
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Old 16-03-2011, 19:05   #2
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Jeepers all of it is good. France,s vote d'azure is a favourite but some find it too flash. I find the Spanish " costas" a bit false and touristy , Corsica is beautiful. Bonefacio is a gem, sardina and scily nice too. All are expensive in high season. Anchoring is getting harder with swim zones and environmental concerns and few western med anchorages are safe in a blow. Western Italian coast has good abd bad points the major port areas can be a bit of a dump but little towns and ports abound. But finding space can be tricky.

Food is generally cheap in supermarkets and make sure to visit the local town markets usually held early in the day. If you like food or fresh ingredients you will be stunned at the quality and range of both Italian and French local ingredients. Spain less so. ( but still good ).

Best of luck. Remember that time at sea can be discounted from the 90 day schengen limit. ( equally many ports will not even check,).

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Old 16-03-2011, 19:24   #3
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pirate Re: Western Med Itinerary

I only really like the Balearic's and parts of Greece... for anchoring...
the rest is tolerable...
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Old 16-03-2011, 20:34   #4
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Re: Western Med Itinerary

I don't know if you have Google Earth installed on your computer but if so, I'd use that to check out the places you want to go. It really is incredible what you can find using that program.

Your doing my second year trip in reverse. I've attached my route and if you open the .kmz file it will map it for you with distances. I haven't finished it completely but it gives you an idea of how you can check out the areas.

My top destinations are noted but in order with incorrect spelling: Cinque Terre, Corsica, Monaco, Amlifi Coast, Costa Salmernia, Cote d'azure, Balearics, Coasta del Sol.

Sorry Boatman, maybe after I visit the Balearics they will move to the top.
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Old 17-03-2011, 12:41   #5
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Re: Western Med Itinerary

Should you have time to visit the Cote d'Azur a MUST are the Calanques a few miles east of Marseilles - deep "fjords", absolutely great! The island of Porquerolles further east is also quaint and worth a visit.
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Old 17-03-2011, 13:32   #6
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Re: Western Med Itinerary

I'd back the Balearics to go top of the list. You could easily loose a month lazing around Ibiza, Formentera, Mallorca and Menorca with lots of anchorages around the bigger islands. Then I'd rate majority of the Greek islands ahead of Sardinia (but its nice also especially the smaller islands off the SW coast), plus of course Sicily and especially Volcano.
Frankly - you'll be spoilt for choice - 3 months will zoom by.
Enjoy
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Old 17-03-2011, 16:00   #7
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Re: Western Med Itinerary

Thanks for the suggestions ..... all good .... keep 'em coming. Most of the places were on our initial list but there are some new ones too. I like the Google Earth idea, I do have it but don't use it much, I will get acquainted.

Cheers Brownie
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Old 17-03-2011, 18:54   #8
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Re: Western Med Itinerary

Roger, Nice suggestion!! That area looks B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L
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Old 18-03-2011, 18:15   #9
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Re: Western Med Itinerary

Slightly off topic, but can someone advise us whether you need to do customs clearance between Corsica and Sardinia (we are a non EU registered boat), or whether once in a Schengen country you need to clear customs at all when moving to another Schengen country?

We had in mind going to Corsica from say Nice, cruising Corsica and northern Sardinia before going back to Corsica and then to Le Grazie on the north west coast of Italy. Basically, we want to try and minimise the clearances back and forth between France & Italy.
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Old 19-03-2011, 04:57   #10
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Once inside the schengen area there isn't a requirement to repeatedly check in. Some countries do have slightly rules like Greece, also since you are arriving from the sea the officials can't tell where you've come from.

It is also useful in order to get the best out of schengen time to possibly consider checking out. As you can deduct the time at sea.

The caveat to all this is that in many med countries you just check in at a Marina and there's no immigration nearby. I'd simply play it dumb and let the Marina tell you what to do. Otherwise it can be a pain travelling around to find the officials.

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Old 20-03-2011, 11:50   #11
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Re: Western Med Itinerary

I think you'll have great trouble finding anyone to look at your papers between Corsica and Sardinia, but be aware that the French police (particularly) do come round anchorages and check papers from time to time, visiting every foreign boat. The Italians do it too, but are more likely to pick on other Italian boats. (Depends on how fines are levied! )

The calanques are great but these days you usually have to pay (exorbitantly) for a mooring ball and can't anchor. They are deep. The Iles d'Hyeres (Porquerolles) are fab and free, especially Port Man which is a great mistral hidey hole. All of that coast we've found very cheap, especially if you provision somewhere rational (ie not a Sy Tropez street market) and watch the weather for mistrals. However, it does mean you need to get north of teh Cote de Lyons and that's a challenge sometimes,a nd you may not want to waste your 90 days waiting for a weather window.

In that time therefore, I'd say maybe the Balearics (we didn't bothre!), then Corsica and Sardinia, northern Sicily and then round to teh Adriatic. That's plenty in 90 days.
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Old 20-03-2011, 14:47   #12
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Quote:
but be aware that the French police (particularly) do come round anchorages and check papers from time to time, visiting every foreign boat. The Italians do it too,
My experience is they target Brit boats ( then with 300 of history that's fully understandable).

Corsica is nearly all mooring buoys. Porquelles is lovely , don't miss the cote d, azure good free anchoring in the rade de villefranche near nice.

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Old 20-03-2011, 14:57   #13
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pirate Re: Western Med Itinerary

Quote:
Originally Posted by goboatingnow View Post
My experience is they target Brit boats ( then with 300 of history that's fully understandable).

Corsica is nearly all mooring buoys. Porquelles is lovely , don't miss the cote d, azure good free anchoring in the rade de villefranche near nice.

Dave
And he asked me why I don't like Med France....
Bad enough them getting uppity in Cherbourg coz I have no liferaft and navigated the channel with just a chart and compass...
they'd have a ball with me in the Med
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Old 20-03-2011, 15:17   #14
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Ah well boatman , it's to be expected , all part of the penance to be paid as an ex colonial power, empire and all that old boy.

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Old 22-03-2011, 17:00   #15
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Re: Western Med Itinerary

Corsica (which we spent several weeks cruising just last summer) is not all mooring bouys by any means, but you have to pick and choose a bit especially in high season. And soem places (eg Clavi) require you to anchor beyond the mooring field which is then a loooong ride into town. Many others (Ajaccio, St Florent, Macinaggio, Roccapina just for starters) no mooring and no charges at all.

The Rade at Villefranche is brilliant unless there's a sudden southerly, in which case move round the corner.

In our experience, the douanes do not specifically target a nationality (except to decide whether to pick on their own, in the case of the Italians, which is explained by the complex regulation allegedly covering italian flagged boats, which can make it very easy to find something for which to fine the owner.) They pick an anchorage and then visit every foreign flagged boat in that anchorage. We've seen that over and over again in Med France, and I can't blame them given the huge number of visitors and the issues around smuggling and boat theft.

Not sure what happened to you, boatman61. We've never been asked to provide proof around our kit - we do have a liferaft on the stern, but we've never been asked to show our navigation equipment or, come to that, ICC or any other documentation.

I wish they'd police black water disposal though!
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