See the beautiful Greek Islands by boat
Jane Haslan: December 2012
See the beautiful Greek Islands by boat.
Ancient churches and peaceful fishing villages, lively party resorts, rich local culture and the delicious flavours of the Mediterranean are all appealing. The Greek islands have something to offer every type of traveller. What better way to see this beautiful part of the world than by boat?
The most relaxing way to see the Greek Islands
The Greek Islands are awash with beautiful beaches and historic buildings, sleepy fishing villages and lively party resorts, rustic tavernas selling delicious Mezze and party-all-night clubs serving cocktails to a wide-awake crowd. Essentially, whatever you look for in a holiday, you are likely to find it on the Greek Islands.
Popular with everybody from hard partying groups of young people to families, honeymooning couples and retirees making the most of their newly won free time, the islands offer a wealth of different experiences and a break here is very much what you want to make it.
Should you wish to try bungee jumping, climbing, caving or diving, there is ample opportunity to do so here. Should you be more inclined to spend your days lazing on a soft sand beach washed by the warm, clear blue waters of the Mediterranean Sea, the Greek Islands will not disappoint.
The islands themselves range from tiny rocky formations with a few spits of sand to vast swathes of land dotted with fishing villages and resorts and a chartered boat is a perfect way to cherry pick the best of them all.
Greek Island boat adventures for every type of traveller
Whilst boat charters may sound like the sole preserve of super-rich travellers, it can, in fact, be within the financial reach of those without millionaire lifestyles. Boats for hire range from luxury yachts to more simple sailing boats.
Groups of friends travelling together can spend at least a couple of days enjoying the freedom and luxury of a worry-free trip on the open seas on a boat, plus a skipper. You can hire one by the day, week or fortnight.
With literally thousands of islands of all shapes and sizes to be found in this most beautiful part of the Mediterranean, the dramatic scenery and fascinating marine life all help to make a boat trip among the Greek Islands a truly memorable experience. You can lounge by the pool on the deck of a large-scale luxury cruiser or just enjoy the sea breeze on board a simpler vessel.
Highlights of a boat trip around the Greek Islands
There is certainly no shortage of impressive sights and interesting things to do on a trip around the Greek Islands. With such an abundance of islands, those with limited time frames will need to pick the spots they most want to see.
For many travellers, the Ionian Islands have the greatest allure. This group of seven islands is most famous for the most tourist friendly, Corfu, but the Southern Ionian is home to countless picturesque little spots that offer a much quieter way of life than lively Corfu itself.
Paxos, Antipaxos, Mongonisi and Sivota are all highlights, with the verdant green islands dotted with lovely beaches and home to countless rustic tavernas selling delicious traditional Greek dishes.
The Mezze (similar to Spanish tapas) is a good way to try several different foods in one sitting. Many little beaches and bays are accessible only by boat, making charters the ideal way to get off the beaten track and discover those real hidden Greek treasures.
Jane Haslan is a freelance travel writer who regularly contributes to boating websites and blogs. A seasoned sailor, she is a big fan of canal boat hire and taking to the waterways of Europe.