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Home Magazine Itinerary for a one-week cruise in Greece from Athens

Itinerary for a one-week cruise in Greece from Athens

photo Ombeline Benoit  From Ombeline Benoit  LinkedIn Ombeline Benoit

Editor for Filovent magazine. "As a passionate sailor and lover of catamaran cruises on the Breton coast, I have joined Filovent to explore the most beautiful landscapes with you and invite you to take a trip on the sea!"
"The nice thing about our skipper Filippos was that we made up the programme from day to day, depending on our mood. When we felt like nature, we preferred intimate and secluded places, and sometimes we liked to find a bit of civilisation in busy ports, that was good for the young people." 
At the beginning of July, Laurent and his children rented a Sailing Boat in Greece for a week from Athens on board a Lagoon 42.

In this article you will learn more about their itinerary and the highlights of their sailing trip. The proposed route covers a total of about 140 nautical miles, which is equivalent to a trip for a skilled crew or with a skipper. 

  1. A cruise through Greece aboard a Lagoon 42
  2. One-week sailing route through the Saronic Gulf
  3. Highlights and memories of the sailing in Greece

A cruise through Greece aboard a Lagoon 42

Laurent had been to Greece a long time ago. For his first cruise with the family, he chose a group of islands that was relatively sheltered from the wind. "We were very well advised by Filovent, who suggested Croatia, the Ionian Sea and the Saronic Gulf. The latter destination perfectly met our expectations". With his children, Laurent finally chose Athens because of its easy accessibility from Paris (about 3 hours by plane). 

Explore the Greek archipelagos on a sailing trip

On board the Catamaran there were seven of them: Laurent, four young people and a skipper and hostess who took care of the navigation, the boat and the meals. Laurent says: "The skipper and hostess were first class: The former adapted the route according to our wishes and the latter cooked breakfast and lunch for us, paid attention to the cleanliness of the ship and helped with manoeuvring in the ports.". 

The Lagoon 42

For these Sailing Cruise from Athens, Laurent has opted for a spacious and comfortable catamaran, the Lagoon 42. It dates from 2019 and has 12 berths. It is highly appreciated for its space, comfort and performance. Laurent specifies: "This catamaran was perfect: it was big, had four cabins for us with four bathrooms and plenty of space. There is nothing to say, it was top".

katamaran lagoon 42
The Lagoon 42 as seen from a drone (Source: Filippos Lagos)

One-week sailing route through the Saronic Gulf

Embarkation in Athens

Day 1: Athens → Aegina (13 nautical miles, 2 hours and 35 minutes)    
Day 2: Aegina → Hydra (16 nautical miles, 3 hours)    
Day 3: Hydra → Hermione (11 nautical miles, 2 hours)                              
Day 4: Hermione → Spetses → Leonidio (30 nautical miles, 7 hours)                              
Day 5: Leonidio → Spetses → Dokos (20 nautical miles, 4 hours)                              
Day 6: Dokos → Poros (17 nautical miles, 3 hours)                              
Day 7: Poros → Moni → Athens (32 nautical miles, 7 hours and 30 minutes)

Disembarkation in Athens

Map tracing the route of the cruise in Greece
7-day sailing itinerary from Athens (clickable map)

In this article and on this map, there are some anchorages and the exact places where Laurent and his crew moored their boat, others are personal recommendations, depending on the wind protection, the opinions of the users and the calmness of the place.

Day 1: Athens → Aegina (13 nautical miles, 2 hours and 35 minutes)

After a day in Athens, Laurent's family went to the Marina Agios Kosmas south of Athens to board the catamaran at around 5pm. They were excited to meet the rest of the crew and explore the Lagoon 42, their home for the next six days. Soon after, they left the harbour and began their journey to Aegine, the first island of the Saronic Gulf opposite Athens. At the anchorage on the north coast of Aegina, they spent their first night.

For a night in Aegina I recommend the Anchorage Nisida Nisida on the north coast, with turquoise water and a sandy bottom. It offers great protection from the south winds and the surf. The contrast between the colours of the land and the sea makes for beautiful panoramas.

Aerial view of the north coast of Aegina, in the area of Nisida Nisida (Source: Filippos Lagos)

Day 2: Aegina → Hydra (16 nautical miles, 3 hours)

After a first night on board, the crew sailed along the east coast of Aegina until they came across a beautiful bay, where they stopped in the late morning. There, the children could paddle and Filippos, the skipper of the boat, unpacked his drone to take some nice photos.

Paddling session of Lorenzo's children on the east coast of Aegina (Source: Filippos Lagos)

In the late afternoon, Laurent and his family sailed back to the island Hydra, for a boat trip of about three hours. After mooring the boat in the harbour of Mandraki, they walked for about 20 minutes to the town of Hydra. It did them good to have solid ground under their feet again for a few hours. At the port of Hydra, the main means of transport are donkeys with colourful decorations. On the way there, there is a pretty windmill to see by the water. The streets are paved and well lit at night, so it's worth a stroll.

Donkey at the port of Hydra
Donkey at the port of Hydra (Source: Adobe Stock)

Then, after dinner there, they went back to Mandraki to spend the night at the anchorage, which was in the heart of a bay with small boats. This place had an ideal depth of water to anchor close to the shore. 

Day 3: Hydra → Hermione (11 nautical miles, 2 hours)

On the third day, Laurent and Filippos agreed to spend a day together in Hermione, a charming harbour town in the Peloponnes. The direct navigation takes about 2 hours from Mandraki, but as they had the whole day ahead of them, they decided to leisurely walk along the coast of Dokos where they passed by again later, and to stop spontaneously when they liked a bay. 

catamaran lies at anchor off dokos
Anchorage on the day off Dokos (Source: Filippos Lagos)

When they arrived in Hermione, they really liked the harbour, especially because it is not so busy with tourists. This place offers a breathtaking view of Hydra. It is sheltered from all winds except the east wind and there are many places where you can swim in clear water. There are several well rated local tavernas at the harbour with the catch of the day on the menu. I particularly recommend the Marias Taverne for its cuisine and conviviality.

Day 4: Hermione → Spetses → Leonidio (30 nautical miles, 7 hours)

In the morning, they sailed south for about three hours and circumnavigated the island of Spetses to its southeast coast. For the lunch break, they had a very specific destination in mind: Bekiri’s Cave. In this unusual bay, the crew was pleasantly surprised to find a beach in a cave to which you can swim to walk past the stalactites. This is an excellent place for snorkelling. This stop at Bekiri's Cave was a highlight of the trip.                  

In the evening they reached the port of Plaka Leonidio to sail in the Peloponnese. There was not enough wind to sail them, so they sailed with the engine. Laurent tells of his arrival in this unspoilt place : "We liked it very much, it was a very small harbour with three boats, a taverna and a beach: it was perfect. A good anchorage for people who love nature and simplicity."

This small, authentic harbour is equipped with showers, toilets, a petrol station and a supermarket. It is an ideal point to refuel. Laurent adds that it is all the more worthwhile because they were the only ones anchored, which added to the quality.

Day 5: Leonidio → Spetses → Dokos (20 nautical miles, 4 hours)

On that day, Laurent and his family decided to go back to Spetses to sail for lunch, and to moor the boat in a new bay. Paddling, swimming and beautiful landscapes were the order of the day. 

Paddle session and biagnade near Spetses (Source: Filippos Lagos)

On the west coast, I recommend the large Zogiormia Bay, for the beauty of the nature by which it is surrounded. According to passing sailors, it is best when the yachts and many jet skis leave again to enjoy the tranquillity and swimming near the shore.

After enjoying lunch prepared by the hostess and exploring the island's shores extensively, the crew of Lagoon 42 set sail again towards Dokos.

The evening and night they spent in the lonely bay of Dokos, at anchorage Ormos Skindos , epresent one of Laurent's best memories. "Sleeping as the only boat in a bay, in turquoise blue water, surrounded by nature on an uninhabited island, was quite extraordinary."There were turtles and fish swimming near the shore. It is a beautiful and relaxing place. There is a tiny church on the north-eastern shore that gives the coast its charm.

In reality, there were two boats anchored that evening, but the bay was so big that they felt as if they were alone in the world. "For this reason it was my best anchorage" Laurent assures. Because even though there are sometimes sailors around, there is no shortage of space and privacy in this bay.

Day 6: Dokos → Poros (17 nautical miles, 3 hours)

On their fifth wake-up on board, Laurent and his family have decided to savour the moment in Dokos,to enjoy the tranquillity of the place and the surrounding nature. In the afternoon they sailed to Poros, a rather touristy destination. In the harbour where they had moored the boat, the atmosphere changed: animations, bars and restaurants of all kinds. 

harbour seen from the sea on the island of poros
View of Poros harbour from the sea (Source: Adobe Stock)

Laurent reports: "My older children really enjoyed Poros, they could go for a drink and dance. After several days in quiet and peaceful places, they were glad to be back in civilisation."

For those who prefer to visit Poros and stay calm, I recommend the anchorage of Ormos Porou, quiet and equipped with cosy restaurants. The Kanali Beach Bar is in particular known for its great Greek cuisine and its fantastic location.

Day 7: Poros → Moni → Athens (32 nautical miles, 7 hours and 30 minutes)

On this last day, the crew made their way to Athens, and stayed for a day on the island Moni. It is an unspoilt island where you can see deer and peacocks that are not afraid of people on the beach.

But Laurent was a little disappointed by the afternoon there: "It was too touristy for us, I moderately liked it."

However, there are beautiful anchorages in the northwest of the island where you can swim in clean water like in a swimming pool and use a good internet connection. In the evening, the sunset is a magnificent sight.

Beach east of Moni, opposite Aegina
Popular beach on the east coast of Moni, opposite Aegina (Source: Adobe Stock)

They then returned to the port of Athens at 6pm, as they had agreed with the local landlord. They could have left the ship at that time, but decided to sleep there one last night. In this context, Laurent reports from his point of view : "Of the whole cruise, the only negative point was that we had to go back to Athens on Friday evening, although we returned the ship on Saturday morning. That's a pity because it shortened the trip".

Highlights and memories of sailing in Greece

In addition to the best anchorages of the week, which include the deserted Bay of Dokos and the port of Plaka Leonidio,Laurent remembers a very comprehensive cruise from this week: "What we liked," he says, "was the variety: you could easily go from almost deserted bays or very small harbours with three boats to busy, touristy harbours. You had the completely natural side of intimate harbours with a very simple village and livelier towns that my older children liked. This variety was what we were looking for".

As far as sailing was concerned, the pace was fast, averaging 5 hours a day, spread over the morning and late afternoon. This allowed for long breaks at midday. They sailed mainly with the engine as there was not enough wind to do everything with the sail.

"The good thing was that it wasn't too windy, so the sea was pleasant" Laurent said to me. "Personally, I would have liked to sail a bit more. But if we had had more wind, we would have sailed eight hours every day to reach our goals. If you do everything under sail, you go less far and sail longer." So it depends on everyone's weeks and preferences.

As for their favourite activities, Laurent and his family enjoyed sailing at sea, taking time out and relaxing. They also remembered the evening meals: for Laurent, "Going to a local taverna for dinner was very important."

Family photo in a Greek taverna
Laurent's family shares a meal at a Greek taverna (Source: Laurent)

To do this, they moored near a village or in a harbour. The only exception to this ritual was the evening they spent in the lonely bay in Dokos, where there was no tavern.


I thank Laurent very much for his feedback! To all the crew: thank you for sending us the photos that allow us to share some memories of your navigation!

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