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Sailing itineraries Ionian Sea

The fertile islands of the Ionian sea - covered in pine, cypress and colourful fields of flowers - are in direct contrast with the adjacent barren mountainous mainland of Greece. Likewise the architecture of the picturesque ports is different, featuring red-tiled houses in eclectic Italian and French styles.
Zakynthos Lefkas Erosion of the Ionian coastline - Rock formations
These scenic surroundings - together with favourable winds - proof an ideal sailing ground with two charter bases, Corfu and Lefkas. Especially Lefkas port is ideally located amidst a plethora of beautiful ports and bays, and a 1-week itinerary can be very short in overall distance. A 2-weeks cruise, however, is much more interesting: Ambracian or Amvrakikos Gulf Therefore itineraries G, H, I, J and of course a one way itinerary Corfu to Lefkas are recommended.

The Ionian Islands

The following table gives the characteristics of the Ionian Sea and you might also want to compare the other Greek sailing areas with the Ionian Sea. More dark blue stars the better.
 
Characteristics   Ionian Islands
Easy access by plane or ferry  
Unspoiled by tourism  
Beautiful ports  
Amenities and tavernas  
Ancient Greek sites  
Mediaeval sites  
Secluded anchorages  
Spectacular scenery  
Easy sailing conditions  
Fertile and lush vegetation  
Wildlife  

The sailing itineraries

The following itineraries are based on both the experiences of my visitors as well as my own experiences as a captain. These routes are biased towards tranquil and unspoiled ports rather than touristy hubs like Nidri or perhaps Argostoli. Please toggle between the itineraries with the A through L buttons in the clickable map below or by simply clicking a view button in a table. The Winds button, also in the clickable map, will give you the prevailing wind directions of the typical Ionian summer wind, the Maistro.
 
Itinerary A   1 week   Lefkas-Lefkas Itinerary B   1 week   Lefkas-Lefkas
 Day Port NM  Day Port NM
 1 Lefkas port    1 Lefkas port  
 2 Palairos 11  2 Kalamos 21
 3 Kalamos 16  3 Kastos 5
 4 Kastos 5  4 Astakos 11
 5 Sivota 13  5 Frikes 25
 6 Meganisi 8  6 Meganisi 16
 7 Lefkas port 11  7 Lefkas port 11
    64     89
 
Itinerary C   1 week   Lefkas-Lefkas Itinerary D   1 week   Lefkas-Lefkas
 Day Port NM  Day Port NM
 1 Lefkas port    1 Lefkas port  
 2 Sivota 16  2 Sivota 16
 3 Vassiliki 9  3 Eufimia 24
 4 Paxos 51  4 Poros 12
 5 Mourtos 11  5 Kastos 24
 6 Parga 11  6 Meganisi 12
 7 Lefkas port 32  7 Lefkas port 11
    130     99
 
Itinerary E   1 week   Corfu-Corfu Itinerary F   1 week   Corfu-Corfu
 Day Port NM  Day Port NM
 1 Corfu/Gouvia    1 Corfu/Gouvia  
 2 Mourtos 22  2 Sagiada 10
 3 Parga 11  3 Erikoussa 31
 4 Paxos 13  4 Paxos 53
 5 Petriti 19  5 Parga 13
 6 Sagiada 14  6 Mourtos 11
 7 Corfu/Gouvia 10  7 Corfu/Gouvia 22
    89     140
 
Itinerary G   2 weeks   Lefkas-Lefkas Itinerary H   2 weeks   Lefkas-Lefkas
 Day Port NM  Day Port NM
 1 Lefkas port    1 Lefkas port  
 2 Kalamos 21  2 Meganisi 11
 3 Kastos 5  3 Kastos 12
 4 Astakos 11  4 Frikes 16
 5 Poros 27  5 Fiskardo 16
 6 Eufimia 12  6 Paxos 51
 7 Fiskardo 14  7 Petriti 19
 8 Frikes 16  8 Corfu 12
 9 Kioni 2  9     '' --
 10 Sivota 11  10 Sagiada 8
 11 Meganisi 8  11 Plantaria 11
 12     '' --  12 Mourtos 6
 13 Palairos 8  13 Parga 13
 14 Lefkas port 11  14 Lefkas port 24
    146     199


 

Itinerary I   2 weeks   Lefkas-Lefkas Itinerary J   2 weeks   Corfu-Corfu
 Day Port NM  Day Port NM
 1 Lefkas port    1 Corfu/Gouvia  
 2 Palairos 11  2 Petriti 15
 3 Kalamos 16  3 Mourtos 12
 4 Kastos 5  4 Parga 11
 5 Poros 24  5 Lefkas 32
 6 Nikolaos 18  6 Meganisi 11
 7 Keri 22  7 Kalamos 13
 8 Vromi 19  8 Sivota 14
 9 Argostoli 26  9 Paxos 49
 10 Assos 23  10 Paleokastrita 40
 11 Fiskardo 9  11 Erikoussa 19
 12 Sivota 13  12 Sagiada 36
 13 Meganisi 8  13 Corfu town 8
 14 Lefkas port 11  14 Corfu/Gouvia 3
    205     263
 
Itinerary K   3 weeks   Lefkas-Lefkas Itinerary L   3 weeks   Corfu-Corfu
 Day Port NM  Day Port NM
 1 Lefkas port    1 Corfu/Gouvia  
 2 Parga 24  2 Petriti 15
 3 Mourtos 13  3 Mourtos 13
 4 Petriti 13  4 Parga 13
 5 Corfu 14  5 Lefkas 24
 6     '' --  6 Palairos 11
 7 Sagiada 11  7 Meganisi 8
 8 Paxos 29  8     '' --
 9 Antipaxos 3  9 Kalamos 13
 10 Vasiliki 43  10 Kastos 5
 11 Assos 15  11 Poros 24
 12 Argostoli 23  12 Eufimia 12
 13 Vromi 26  13 frikes 20
 14 Nikolaos 13  14     '' --
 15 Astakos 43  15 Vassiliki 9
 16 Kastos 11  16 Antipaxos 43
 17 Kalamos 5  17 Paxos 3
 18 Meganisi 13  18 Paleokastrita 37
 19     '' --  19 Erikoussa 17
 20 Vlikho 5  20 Sagiada 36
 21 Lefkas port 10  21 Corfu/Gouvia 8
    314     311

Ionian winds and weather

Dalmation Pelicans Zante wreck bay - Zakynthos Sidari Corfu

Unsorted tips

Greek Waters Pilot Greek Waters Pilot

Edition 11th (August 2011) - Rod Heikell

A yachtsman's guide to the entire area from the Ionian Islands to the Aegean, Rhodes and Crete and includes details of over 450 harbours in a single volume.

Greek Waters Pilot - Amazon.co.uk


Greek Waters Pilot - Amazon.com
Ionian Pilot Ionian Pilot

Corfu, Levkas, Cephalonia, Zakinthos and the coast to Finakounda

2011 Rod Heikell

This pilot guide contains detailed information on many of the smaller harbours and anchorages which cannot be covered as comprehensively in Rod Heikell's major guide, Greek Waters Pilot.


“Ionian” from Amazon.com
Northern Ionian Greece, Imray chart G11 Imray Chart G11:
Northern Ionian




→ All nautical charts for the Greek Islands and Turkish Coasts.
Southern Ionian Greece, Imray chart G12 Imray Chart G12:
Southern Ionian




→ All nautical charts for the Greek Islands and Turkish Coasts.

I have also uploaded a list of handy GPS waypoints for the Ionian for you. For everything else: feel free to contact me ...

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4 May 2013
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