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Dodecanese Islands -- a fine way to spend the summer!

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
My passion for skiing has led me to ignore my passion for sailing for the past few years and I am happy to report that I put a stop to *that* nonsense and got back onto a boat.

I spent two and half weeks sailing through the Dodecanese Islands (Greek Islands right off the coast of Turkey).

Our itinerary ...

1. Leros -- met boats in port of Lakki
2. Kalymnos -- stayed in the port of Vathi
3. Leros -- (one boat needed a repair) so we went back but stayed in the FUN port of Pantelli (home of the Savana Bar and the "Flaming Lambroghinis"
4. Lipsi -- a one port town with the best bakery this side of Paris
5. Patmos -- the quieter, nicer port of Grikos
6. Arki -- TEENY island, smaller port
7. Samos -- a very large, touristy island (we stayed for two nights) ... we stayed in the large port of Pythagoria (all you math fans!)
8. Agathonissi -- another tiny little island
9. Lipsi -- we returned for two things: the lovely croissants and the Festival of the Immaculate (which we dubbed the "virgin festival")
10. Marathi -- another "one port town"
11. Kalymnos -- this time we stayed in the port Paleonissos ... no amenities, no electricity, nada ... best view of the night sky ever in my life
12. Patmos -- we returned to the port of Grikos to celebrate a birthday and we wanted to dance at the Kazbah!
13. Leros -- back to Lakki for a last night and to say goodbye

Interesting facts ...
- There is no rain between the months of May and November
- Lipsi was once owned by the church and when they sold off parcels they required a small church be built on each plot of land ... the island has hundreds of churches
- The mosquitos are the gnarliest I have ever encountered
- Fresh fish/seafood is hard to get on many islands
- Bags of ice can also be hard to come by and sell for 3 euros per bag (about 5 pounds)
- Nudity is not ok in most of Greece ... a few islands have "naturalist" beaches especially set up in remote places
- All beaches are rocky -- there are no sandy beaches to speak of

The waters of the Aegean are superbly clean, clear and very salty. In deep places the color is a sparkling blue which turns a turquiose to green as the depths become more shallow. Each day at sea we'd go explore teeny island outcroppings with wonderful places to swim ... most noteable the rocks that we climbed and jumped 30 feet into the water from ... these rocks also had a hidden lagoon that you could access after a short underwater swim and another tunnel that you could swim through above water.

Here's some amazing pictures!

Our boat: Vassilis (55 feet, five cabins, four heads)

The three boats (we were a total of 22 people on three boats)

Several views of the "diving rocks"

And, the other wonderful swim spot, the "white beach"

In Marathi, we climbed a hillside early one evening with jugs of punch to visit the ruins of a church and watch a spectacular sunset

Some ports of call ...

Samos/Pythagoria: sunset ... there's Turkey, and by day

For the Math Nerds ... (Samos)

Patmos Aerial

Leros/Pantelli -- the famous windmills

Gorgeous harbor of Lipsi

Leros/Pantelli -- the old castle

Kalymnos -- famous island of sponge divers, two harbors: Vathi and Paleonissis

Tiny, but lovely Agathonissi

And, of course, the Octopi
post #2 of 9
Very nice

But a sailing TR with out a wind report?:

A picture of you at the helm?
post #3 of 9
A picture of klk at the wheel of a bulldozer?
post #4 of 9
My wifes the smart one, she keeps me around to move stuff.
post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Sorry guys ... I kept to the scenic stuff ... frankly the problem it's really hard to take pictures of MYSELF ...

I have lots of funny pictures of drinking, silly-ness and all of the other stuff you'd expect.

This was my first ever chilled-out cruising trip -- normally I race. I got used to it pretty fast.

Ok, so wind ... the Dodec/Aegean is known for crazy winds in August (the hottest month is also the windiest, which is really unusual) ... our first week the winds were very light and we spent a lot of time motoring along (which was very good for the fridge full of beer!) and occaisionally throwing up the genny to catch the downwind. Week two was a whole new game and we saw some seasickness! hahaha Not only was it blowing stink most days, but the seas were fairly confused as the wind funnelled around islands. One day we had 15-20' seas and we alternated from beam reach to DDW ... death rolls followed by some crazy surfing. At one point it came right over the swim platform and doused the driver. YAHOO. That's my idea of a rodeo!

Fortunately we always found sheltered swim spots ... although one day in my swim fins had me taking a lot of spray in the face as I made my way from the boat to the beach.

Anything else I forgot to tell you about?
post #6 of 9
How were the jellyfish?
post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
hey comprex

funny you should mention jellyfish ... we didn't see any week one, but once the wind and seas kicked up we started seeing tons of them. two people on our trip got stung.

you like jellyfish? good eating?

post #8 of 9
Originally Posted by klkaye View Post
you like jellyfish? good eating?
Heh. No.

Last time I was in the general area, I got hit across the thigh by one of the almost-invisible ones with the 40cm pink-tinged tentacles. Never have I done a more furious eggbeater kick; I leaped out of the water onto the boat and almost passed out on deck. Wore the scars for two years.

There may have been a butterfly net revenge rampage after that. Or two. If I go back I'm taking a cue from the Ozzy lifeguards and bringing pantyhose.
post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
yeah those jellyfish aren't like what I am used to seeing in the states ... instead of tentacles that sting when they touch you, they seemed to have suction tentacles ... they touch you and then attach. not nice!

never heard of the pantyhose, but I'd pay $$ to see you in some.
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