Cruising in the Ionian
Our base in Gouvia Marina, Corfu, is the perfect location to start and finish your holiday and - unlike some charter companies who operate from quaysides with no reserved spaces or facilities - you are welcome to use our berths at any time during your holiday free of charge. Gouvia Marina is a large, modern marina which boasts excellent toilet/shower facilities, cafes, restaurants, supermarket, swimming pool and laundry. The adjacent village of Kontokali offers a variety of shops, tavernas and restaurants, and provisioning of your yacht is simple with a large supermarket nearby. You can add provisions from local mini-markets during your holiday.
The cruising area is broadly from the north east tip of Corfu, down to the Southern Ionian islands of Ithaca and Kephalonia. Bareboat charter allows you to choose your own itinerary and destinations, allowing you to do as much or as little sailing as you like. The pace of life whilst aboard is entirely up to you. We will give you a thorough area briefing to help you plan your route, and can point out particular places which may be of interest to you. Below are just a few places you may visit.
To see a map of our cruising area click here.
To see a collection of videos shot aboard our yachts as they sail the Ionian click here.
For charters of one week, the following are all within comfortable cruising distance. Corfu itself has a number of bays, anchorages and harbours worth exploring, after which you could cruise across to the mainland coast to Sayiadha or Plataria, small fishing villages with a few tavernas offering great prawns and fish. Heading south is Mourtos, which is surrounded by the rugged Sivota Islands and crystal clear water, perfect for snorkelling. Parga is lively and atmospheric with the ruins of a Venetian Fort set on the hill above.
The idyllic islands of Paxos and Anti-Paxos have numerous secluded "Emerald Bays", so called as the water here is a beautiful blue/green. Gaios, the principal village of Paxos, is an enchanting spot. The marble paved square on the waterfront has a number of tavernas offering a lovely setting for dining out. If you prefer somewhere quieter, the beautiful bays of Lakka and Mongonisi are only a couple of miles away. Although Anti-Paxos is not suitable for staying overnight, there are a selection of fantastic lunchtime / swimming stops.
Charters of two weeks allow time for either a very relaxed north Ionian cruise, staying in favourite places a little longer, or time to explore further afield. The Gulf of Amvraki is an area little visited by charter boats and many of our clients have seen dolphins and giant turtles here. Moving further south you can visit the islands of Lefkas, Kephalonia and Ithaca, and the many smaller islands dotted around this area.
Passing through the Lefkas Canal and the new marina,you enter the "Inland Sea", an area of water almost enclosed on three sides offering protection from the open sea. Worth a walk is the village of Spartahori on the island of Meganisi. The village sits high above the port but is well worth the effort for the wonderful views out over Nidri, the island of Skorpios (owned by the Onassis family) and the mountains of the mainland to the east.
Take a step back in time and visit the peaceful and unspoilt islands of Kalamos and Kastos, perhaps including a visit to the deserted village of Port Leone. Cosmopolitan Fiskardo on the north east tip of Kephalonia is a playgroud of the rich and famous. The beautiful harbour and village of Kioni on the island of Ithaca is a personal favourite of ours, or you could visit the world renowned windsurfing location of Vassiliki bay on Lefkas island.
The choice is such in the Ionian that you will never be far from a small port with facilities and amenities, or a secluded cove for swimming and relaxing in peace. We're sure that everyone will find their special place in this wonderful cruising area.