West Coast of Corsica Part 2:

A short cruise around from Ajaccio you will arrive in Propriano, a beautiful fishing harbor in the narrowest part of the Valinco Golf in Corsica.

Propriano

The majority of the buildings date from the early 19th century, prior to this the area was occupied by Romans and Greeks, but having been frequently attacked by pirates in the late 18th century, little remains of early Propriano.

Propriano is mainly one long cobbled street with luxury shops, cafes and bars in the traditional old houses, it’s a lovely place to explore. Propriano has become quite a popular area in Corsica thanks to her numerous close by beaches including Plage du Lido, a stunning white sandy beach with views over the gulf of Propriano.

Roccapina?

Further south after a leisurely cruise you will find the beautiful Plage de Roccapina, a 2km stretch of white sand adorned with magnificent rock formations including the Roccapina Lion. 

A little inland from Roccapina beach is the stunning Domaine de Murtoli, a natural and peaceful resort with the stunning beach restaurant La Table de la Plage, inspired by an ancient fisherman’s hut, furniture made of driftwood and shaded by olive and mastik trees.

The restaurant offers gastronomic food including locally grown meat, freshly caught fish or seafood seasoned to enhance their flavour. Chef Renard Laurence has created a selection of their most popular ‘ecorces’ to enjoy in the lounges or on the sunbeds where relaxation is paramount.

Bonifacio

On the southernmost point of Corsica when you cruise the straights of Bonifacio, it is truly magnificent, with dramatic limestone cliffs on either side, you cruise for around an hour and a half before arriving at the pretty town consisting of brasseries, bars, and cafes, the perfect place to enjoy an evening ashore.

Porto Vecchio around to the east of Bonifacio is known as the ‘Pearl of the south’, with winding narrow streets inside the ramparts offering many restaurants, shops and cafes. Porto Vecchio has an Italian chic which gives a great energy to the town.

Porto Vecchio is home to the exquisite white sandy beach Santa Giulia and the stunning Palombaggia with perfect sand and a red rock backdrop. 

Contact Cordy at Boatbookings to plan your 2020 Corsica yacht charter.

West Coast of Corsica Part 1.

Broker Cordy gives an insight into her time working onboard Megayachts

One of my favorite places to cruise when I worked onboard mega yachts (Giga yachts weren’t around then!) was the stunning West coastline of Corsica. I was fortunate to work for a wonderful English family who adored this area, so it is where we spent the majority of the summer. On a displacement yacht cruising at around 12knots, the journey from Cannes to St Florent is around 10 hours which can normally be achieved overnight. So, if you are on the French Riviera and fancy something a little different, why not enjoy a wonderful dinner on board anchored at the Iles des Lerins, Cannes, and then start your journey after this. Be sure to ask the crew to wake you up at dawn to dolphin watch! One of the most amazing experiences at sea.

Arriving in St Florent is stunning, this pretty little fishing port has a host of local restaurants and bars huddled around the marina. Restaurant de l’Europe and Le Grill are perfect places to sit in the sun and watch the world go by!

Having relaxed in the sun, head one street back to the old town full of independent shops selling local charcuterie and souvenirs. Keep heading up and you will reach the citadel, steps from the citadel car park lead down to a small beach. The stunning cathedral de Nebbio is found on the other side of the town on the Chemin de la Cathedrale and is most definitely worth a visit.

For the more energetic persons amongst your group, Le Roya Beach can be found to the southeast of the town offering water sports including windsurfing, sailing, kayaking, jet skis and scuba diving! There really is something for everyone!

Heading west from St Florent is the beautiful town of Calvi. Coming into port you have an incredible view of the citadel, once docked, it is definitely worth climbing up the cobbled streets for breathtaking panoramic views of your surroundings. There are some great restaurants up here as well as the voguish Chez Tao bar!

Once you have soaked up the incredible views, wander around the shops through the old cobbled streets of the town. The marché de l’Orée des Pins is full of local charcuterie, grapes, cheeses, and amazing pastries!

Around the corner, further West from Calvi is possibly the most beautiful spot in the Med! Girolata is a fortified bay at the south of the Scandola Nature Reserve. The setting is spectacular, with the village perched on the peninsula and surrounded by the sea and the famous red rock mountains of this area.  This bay is a wonderful place to anchor and swim ashore to the beautiful beach.

Further south in the Scandola National Park is the bay of Porto where you can find a pretty little village and see more of the stunning Calanques de Piana rock formations.

Having enjoyed the National Park, further south again you will find Ajaccio, famous for being the birthplace of Napoleon Bonaparte! You can visit the Maison Bonaparte, now a national museum, the ancestral home of the Bonaparte family, to discover more about his life. Ajaccio’s charming old town is a great place to amble and enjoy the beautiful architectural features and stunning landmarks such as the Cathedrale Notre-Dame-de-l’Assomption.

The pretty port of Ajaccio is adorned with bars and restaurants serving seafood and pizzas. The perfect place to soak up the atmosphere and admire the view!

Contact Cordy at Boatbookings to plan your Corsican adventure and please keep reading the blog for part 2 of the West Coast of Corsica!

Harmonious Hanse

Hanse was founded in 1993, when it launched its first boat, the Hanse 291, which caused a stir because of its racing prowess. It is now one of the top 5 worldwide manufactures of sailing yachts and is based in Griefswold, Germany.

Hanse Yachts are built with quality materials and furnished beautifully. No expense is spared when creating a Hanse. Their epoxy hulls are built with vacuum-composite technology which produces significantly greater stiffness with 20% less weight. Making her a durable, but light performance cruising yacht.

Hanse Sailing Yachts are known for their quality, comfort, speed, easy sailing, and family-friendly design. They feature self-tacking jibs, fully battened mainsails, and a single-line reefing system that help make sailing a stress-free experience.

Once you have experienced the quality of a Hanse Yacht, you will not want to sail anything else! Why not do a Hanse Yacht Charter in some of the most popular sailing destinations in the world? Check out the range of Hanse’s in Croatia or Greece!

One of Boatbookings most favourite Hanse Yachts has just became available in Croatia! The Hanse 575 is an innovative yacht which is not only aesthetically beautiful to look at but also easy to handle. Hanse has designed the Easy Sailing Concept, a thoughtful design dedicated to the importance of stress-free sailing.


Perfectly picturesque Poros.

Broker Lambros explains his favourite area in the Saronic and why.


Poros.

I have sailed the Greek islands all my life and they are all beautiful – each in its own special way!


Santorini.

The Cyclades are rough and have a special sparkle under the sun – particularly their whitewashed square houses and the blue church domes.


Kefalonia, Melissani Cave.

The Ionian Islands are tranquil and remind me of the South Italian Coast – I especially like the trees which hug the coastline.


Greece, Sporades islands – Skopelos

The Sporades Islands have a unique and untouched sea life.


Rhodes, Lindos.

The Dodecanese Islands are a gateway to Asia Minor and combine many of the characteristics of the rest of the islands – most of all, summer never seems to end in the Dodecanese.


Sunset over Poros.

I currently have a very busy working life and time is of the essence, so whenever I find some time to take my boat to sea, I head to Poros island. In just 2 hours cruising from Athens, Poros offers a protected port, excellent anchorages and a selection of wonderful restaurants.


FRESH FISH

My absolute favorite fish restaurant is MAISTRALI, on the very edge of the Poros canal. This is actually an “ouzeri” serving a plethora of traditional “mezes”, Greek delicacies which are meant to go with ouzo:  grilled octopus, fresh fried calamari, sea-urchin salad, small fried fish and many more surprises that Antonis, the joyful owner prepares on a daily basis. But of course, this is always depending on the fresh catches of the local fishermen that day! If you contact Antonis in advance, he can source big fresh fish (caught the same day) and grill it for you.


MEAT LOVERS

For meat, I always go to Dimitris Family Bucher Shop Taverna. It is a bit hard to find, as it is situated within the maze of small narrow roads on the upper neighborhood of Poros – it takes a brisk 5 minutes’ walk to get there. The food, however, will reward every meat-lovers’ appetite. Excellent, fresh and aged cuts from locally grazed beef, pork, and lamb, grilled by one of the owners’ sons! They also have a decent selection of Greek wines.


SWEET TOOTH

For dessert, I recommend going to Bessalas – right next to Maistrali, at the Eastern edge of the Poros Port. This is where all the locals get their sweets and this is always a great guarantee for high quality.


Contact now our expert broker team and start planning your Greek motor yacht , sailing yacht or catamaran charter.

Summer is here and the Greek islands are sunnier than ever!

#ItsbetterintheBahamas

Great Exuma Island

As the saying goes, life really is better in the Bahamas. After spending January sailing around the Bahamas, broker Alice provides an insight into why a yacht charter in the Bahamas is the only place to be to avoid the winter.


The Exumas

Exumas

Well-known for being the most exclusive island collection in the world, the sapphire-blue waters surrounding the Exuma islands make them a tropical paradise. These islands are home to Pablo Escabar’s sunken plane, the Bond famous Thunderball grotto, wild iguanas, Staniel Cay yacht club, swimming pigs, nurse sharks, and a national park!


The Abacos

Abacos

The word I would use to describe the Abacos is underrated. If you love sailing, sunset bars island hopping and world-class fishing conditions the Abacos is, without doubt, the best place in the Bahamas. The 120-mile long chain of islands are full of beautiful towns, golf courses and sunset bars to explore! Book your flights to Marsh Harbour to charter from this sailors paradise! Send us a message to find out how you can experience the Abacos!


Wildlife

Swimming pigs – don’t forget to bring some food!

From swimming with pigs, feeding grapes to wild iguanas on deserted beaches, snorkeling with tropical fish to spearfishing, the Bahamas has an abundance of wildlife. Don’t forget that the iconic swimming pigs are both habitats of the Exumas and Abacos so don’t write off the Abacos as a sailing destination as the pigs are there too! Contrary to popular opinion the swimming pigs are not native to the uninhabited islands, rumor has it that they were left by sailors others say that they swam from a nearby shipwreck! Whatever did happen, there are now between 20-30 very famous pigs in both the Exumas and the Abacos! Email Alice to find out what food they like best!


Sunset catching

Each island in the Bahamas has its own culture and feel, which also means that there are typically different bars on each island. The best sunset bars in the Bahamas include Grabbers and Mr P’s, there is even a full moon party once a month at Mr P’s. Be sure to order a rum cocktail whilst you watch the sunset over the Bahamas!


Get in touch with us today to make your dreams a reality! With a range of day charters, bareboat sailing, and fully crewed yachts we are able to find something for everyone!

Southern Ionian Bareboat Sailing Itinerary.

An in depth sailing itinerary by someone who lived the route.

Day 1 – Lefkas

lefkas, greece yacht charter, Lefkada town

Arrive at Lefkas marina for 5 pm ready to board your own private yacht! The first evening will be spent in the marina where you will receive a handover of the yacht and some local information. Preavasia airport is a convenient 40-minute journey to the Marina which is roughly 25-30 euros.

Once you arrive at Lefkas Marina, you will then be taken to your yacht and the handover will start. There is a supermarket located in the marina where you can find basic necessities – look out for their figs, the owner of the supermarket grows them! The supermarket will also deliver the provisions to your yacht for free if you wish.

There’s also a Lidl located about a 20-minute walk (or 5-minute car journey) from the marina which offers a broader range of provisions which inevitably is cheaper. Collect a token from the harbor office (10 euro cash deposit) to enjoy onshore showers – really good, clean facilities. One shower costs around 80 cents, even for ladies!

Lefkas is a vibrant, busy town located a five-minute walk from Lefkas Marina. Here you are engulfed by various restaurants, bars and don’t forget the incredible ice cream shops! The ice cream parlous even have sugar free options along with a range of vegan options. In the square, central to the town is home to some of the best Pizza you can get!


Day 2 – Lefkas to Kalamos

greece, greece yacht charter, boat rental ionian

Start early and get out of the Marina! The first day of your holiday! Head south, bear in mind it takes about 40 minutes to get out of the channel. Keep a look out for the larger yachts, they have a tendency to motor up in the middle of the channel, don’t let them bully you! Stay within the buoyage areas as the channel is dredged and it shelves off to under a meter in some places. Once you are out of the channel it’s time to get some sails up! It’s a wide-open span of water so perfect to get the feel of your yacht. The winds normally around force 1-2 in the morning and reaching F3-4 in the afternoons. This makes for relaxing mornings to your first lunch spot.

Over your port side as you head SW you will go past Greek mainland, various sheltered anchorages with good holding. As you travel down to the stunning Island of Kalamos get ready to anchor stern to or raft bow to stern. George, the unofficial harbormaster will come out and greet you on his white motorboat! He’s a really great chap who owns George’s Restaurant at the back of the town quay, great fresh food, locally caught fish. Can get fairly busy in high season, so best to call ahead or get in early and make a reservation.

This town quay does get fairly busy, flotillas come into the quay as well. It’s also possible to free swing near the entrance, which provides good holding. However, best to check the winds as the wind can funnel down through the bay. Limited provisioning here in this small town. You have a small bakery which is on top of the hill with the most incredible bread! Send someone fit and healthy as it’s a 15-minute walk with a very steep incline! Great views over the Ionian and across to Kastos (Kalamos’ sister island).

GREECE YACHT CHARTER GUIDE


Day 3 – Kalamos to Meganisi

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Wake up fresh and rejuvenated! Grab some fresh bread from the bakery and set the yacht for another incredible Ionian sailing day. Travelling NW, you will come across a beautiful little anchorage called Port Leoni, there are no tavernas only a small church in the hill which locals look after. Port Leoni was hit by an earthquake in ’53 and was deserted. As a result, it has left a quiet, stunning lunch spot with some of the clearest water. Really great holding here, very sheltered and can even be used as an overnight stop.

Come the afternoon the wind picks up so time to shake out the sails and get going! Head up to Meganisi, to the town of Vathi, nicknamed Little Vathi, as not to be confused with Big Vathi on the island of Ithica. Great provisioning in the town, with some of the best Gyros in Greece, only 2 euros! Restaurants and bars line the harbor wall with a great vegan restaurant. On the port side as you enter Vathi a sunken airplane is just below the water level which is great to snorkel around. Water and electric available on the town quay.


Day 4 – Meganisi to Kioni 

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Slip the lines and head SW to the most beautiful island in the whole Ionian! Ithica, a beautiful lush green island that sits next to the famous Kefalonia. Head straight onto the town quay, or long line to the port side of the bay for a quieter evening. Kioni is a tiny little village littered with fishing boats and stunning restaurants. Kioni provides great holding, there can be some deeper patches on the sea bed, so our advice is to motor in and find a good depth to anchor.

Kioni does have the tendency to get windy from 6 pm but dies off towards 8 pm. Do make sure that if you’re long lining that you have both port and starboard tied off and anchor are set properly. The wind is caused by the NW prevailing wind that funnels between the hills around the village. The water around Kioni is some of the best around this island for several reasons.

It’s really clean and clear, so great for snorkeling and discovering shoals of fish, come the evening you can expect to see phosphorescences! As you disturb the water on your midnight swim underneath the stars you will notice sparkles, this is the Algae, they emit a glow whenever they are jostled!

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Day 5 – Kioni to Vassaliki

Porto Katsiki yacht charter, vassaliki, lefkada, sailing in greece, yacht charter from lefkada

As you leave the stunning bay of Kioni, why not pop round to the island of Kefalonia. The famous Fiskhardo town filled with high-end shops and upmarket restaurants. There’s a bay just south of the town called Foki bay. A stunning inlet where tall green ferns grew, we named it Little Canada when we visited! Once you’ve moored up you can either go to the small beach or explore the disused limestone mine which is home to a labyrinth of tunnels. Takes shoes and a torch, no flipflops as your feet will slide everywhere! You can access the caves by dinghy, or you can swim. Foki Bay can be used as an overnight stop but is exposed to easterlies.

Head North to Vassiliki, a popular destination for windsurfers due to the anabatic winds. It is our advice that you get onto the quay before 2 pm or after 3:30 pm. The prevailing winds travel from west to east and can affect your mooring on the quay. It has been known to reach F6. within 10 minutes. If you are wanting to explore the land, we can recommend going to Porto Katsiki by car, or day charter from the harbor.

Poto katsiki provides blue warm waters with bright white cliffs offering dramatic landscapes for miles. This side of the island is very exposed to the prevailing winds, so our advice is to not sail around there but to go by car or ferry instead.


Day 6 – Vassiliki to Sivota 

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Why not start the day off with a walk along the sandy beach of Vassiliki? Don’t forget your swimming costume! The water is so warm on this coastline due to a large sandbank that retains its heat. Stop off on the way through town and pick up a freddo cappuccino at one of the many town quay coffee shops.

Crossing anchors in this harbor can sometimes happen, keep a look out on any unusual vibrations or strain on the windlass. Head out and travel NW. There are some lovely anchorages on the east side of Lefkada island, all providing great shelter and supremum swimming opportunities, head past Sivota to the next bay around – Poros for a swim and a spot of lunch. Head back around to Sivota, a hidden town up in the hills. Sivota is a small town with a row of restaurants, be sure to pop into the Pirates and 12 Gods, one of our favorite restaurants with great service. They also have a quay which has water and electric for free if you eat there. They also have onshore showers for free! Phone beforehand because they do get busy! There’s also the opportunity to free swing in the bay, but it does get busy.

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Day 7 – Sivota to Lefkas 

Nydri waterfalls yachtcharter, sailing yacht charter, greece sailing, greek sail, sailing in greece,

Leave Sivota and head across back to the western side of Meganisi to explore the incredible Papanikolis Cave! It’s too deep to anchor here, so someone will have to say on the yacht. Go in by paddleboard or dingy, watch out for the bats! Do not sail into the cave, although it looks big enough it isn’t! 

As you come further north you will come across the island of Skorpios, keep well away from this island! It is privately owned, and there are armed guards that patrol the grounds and the surrounding waters. The channel between Skoripos and Sparti is blocked off and is also out of bounds. Up along the coast, you have various points of anchoring, one of which is the town of Nydri.

Nydri is prone to being busy during the high season which can affect anchoring space. Inland Nydri is host to a collection of natural waterfalls that can be accessed by car or tour bus. Surprisingly Nydri has a brilliant Chinese restaurant that is well priced on the quay wall! This town is great for trinkets and gifts for those at home.

Keep traveling North up the channel and you are back where you are started! The channel can get busy with Sunsail yachts, as their base is in Lefkas harbour. The flotillas and bareboats are normally filled up with diesel at Lefkas fuel quay by 5 pm. Once you are in the harbor, head over to Portos Cafe for a refreshing drink and talk about the holiday! Lefkas also has a fantastic laundry department which iron, clean and fold 1 load for 15 euros. Head into town for the last dinner and enjoy the last moments of your Ionian holiday!

Check out our Lefkas bareboats if you would like to experience all of the above!

Captivating Catana Catamarans – BALI LINE

Bali cats, how what where and when?

(Artist: John Webber, artist aboard Cook’s ship. Source: Scanned from page 20 of the following book. Grant, Glenn (2004) Hawai`i Looking Back: An illustrated History of the Islands, Mutual Publishing, pp. 454pp)

The 1600s marks the birth of the new multihull ideology which would later become one of the most recognized yacht models across the sailing community. It was first believed to have been two logs bound together and later developed into two cannons being held together to give that famous multi-style. Catamarans have moved on from this once prehistoric engineering into some of the most celebrated yachts in the world. This was not without skepticism, the first recorded Catamaran designed by William Petty was not a commercial success. The multihull design was virtually unused for around 160 years following its initial introduction.

Come the mid-1900’s century catamarans started to come into a league of their own. The cat designs traveled worldwide, with England and the Americas jumping on the bandwagon to start producing the multihull sailing yachts. Famed for stability, these yachts started to beat Monohulls in regattas all over the world. Nowadays catamarans exude luxury and racing excellence.

They’ve become so popular in the sailing-holiday-cruising-style due to their space, catamarans are not only novice sailors favorites but are fast becoming the Luxury crewed alternatives to monohulls. This versatile yacht can be utilized in many different ways, not only been built for cruising but have also developed into hydrofoiling racing cats and power cats .

We have Bali catamarans based in some of the most elite sailing destinations in the world. If you are after luxury, space, and easy sailing then this yacht is for you! Space is hard to find on monohull yachts that are under 40ft, but even with 32 ft cat space will never become an issue. Built for speed and cruising, these yachts are perfect for exploring shallow waters around the Caribbean, or island hopping in the Greek or Croatian islands.

With large Balis accommodating up to 12 guests, these yachts provide ample space for a stunning charter with family and friends. Bali has furnished their yachts to a high specification creating a dynamic, comfortable sail. Bali catamarans are pioneers in the way that they develop their yachts. They are always searching for rules to break, and putting sailors comfort and ease of sailing at the forefront of everything they create. Check out our catamaran yacht charter guide for more information on chartering a catamaran.

Cannes Film Festival Fashion 2017

Boatbookings took to the streets today to scout out the most captivating fashion garments and accessories that are gracing the windows of Cannes’ most elite designers for the 70th annual Cannes Film Festival. Every year all eyes are on the VIPs and celebrities that come from far and wide to shore-up their luxury super-yachts next to the Palais des Festivals, and dress to the nines in the most fabulous gowns that are at the very height of fashion.

Sylvie Embroidered Leather Top Handle Bag, Boatbookings Luxury Yacht Charter

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