Ionian Islands Travel Guide

July 8, 2019

After Crete and Cyclades, the Ionian Islands are the most popular islands in Greece. Located in the western part of the country, the islands have a rich cultural and historical past that is deeply connected to Italy. The architecture and beauty of the towns including Agostoli, Corfu, and Zakynthos are beyond imagination. Other than this, you can also enjoy the beautiful beaches of Ionian Greece, while being surrounded by nature. In this travel guide, you can find all the important information you need about traveling to the Ionian Islands:

Winding and Sailing conditions

The wind and sailing conditions in the waters of Ionian is very predictable. In fact, this is one of the most ideal sailing spots for people. From May to September, winds are a bit strong. Whereas, during the spring and autumn season, the winds are less strong. It blows from the south-west and mainly arrives at noon. The winds die down by the time of sunset. Thus, you can say that there is no danger involved in sailing in the Ionian Sea.

If you are to start sailing, it is advised that you start your journey from Gouvia Marina which is just 15 minutes away from Corfu International Airport. It is also close to the main ferry port. This is considered to be the ideal spot to start your sailing journey.

Sailing In The Ionian Sea

If you are looking for an ideal sailing destination, Ionian Sea could be the best option for you. As you move out of the Gulf of Patras, you are exposed to a whole new world. These islands that you see has a completely different flavour about them. It is often referred to as the Seven Islands, however, there are more hidden gems to be explored.

Sailing in the Ionian Sea means grabbing the opportunity to explore the unique islands floating in the water. So hop on a private Ionian yacht charter and get started with your journey.

  • From Attica to Corinth

While moving from Attica you will sail behind Salamis and move towards Isthumus of Corinth. After sailing for 24 miles, you will arrive at the canal where you will join other smaller and larger boats. For people who love to sail, this is undoubtedly one of the best experiences to have.

  • Poseidonia and Trizona

The feeling of sailing through a canal is by far the best of experiences you can have. After reaching Poseidonia you will witness the high rising mountains which sometimes causes choppy seas and sudden gusts of wind. From here you move towards the northwest coast to reach Trizonia, which happens to be the ideal place to pull an overnighter. This is basically a large marina where you can find a supermarket, a few tavernas and a lot of local color.

  • Rio-Antirrio

It is only 17 miles away from there and a pretty awesome place to be. However, before crossing the Rio-Antirrio Bridge you need to decide whether you want to head towards Kefalonia or Zakynthos.

  • Kefalonia: The distance is only 10 miles between Zakynthos and Kefalonia. Located in the gulf, this is one of the safest places in the Med. One of the places that catch the attention of most visitors is Fiskardo which is actually a fishing village turned into a modern yacht centre. Another attractive spot is Agio Efimia located in the east.
  • Zakynthos: This is one of those islands that are perfect for sailing. It even has a marina where you can get all the needed services. You will also find many beaches around the island. Other than that, the Blue caves is also an interesting spot that can be easily accessed by boat.
  • Ithaca: Ithaca happens to be the kingdom of Odysseus. Located on the opposite northern shores of Kefalonia, Ithaca is one of the most popular islands. The beauty of the place is so mesmerising that you just cannot get enough of it. The island is very much popular among the tourists. Blue waters and the lush green surrounding waits to welcome you on the island. While staying in the area, you can also explore the wooded islands Meganisi, Kastos and Kalamos. All these places can be easily accessed by boats.
  • Lefkada: The east-coast is very much popular among the sailors because of various reasons. While traveling towards the north, you will pass through the canal that is known to separate Lafkas from the mainland. Before you move out from this place you should definitely check out the island’s marina which happens to be one of the largest in Greece.
  • Paxi & Antipaxi: The distance between Lefkas canal and Antipaxi is a bit more than 30 miles. The place is mainly known for its amazing beaches, which is often crowded by yachts and boats. One of the unique ports in Ionian is Paxi which stays invisible unless you reach the end of the fjord.
  • Corfu: This is the first port of Lefkimmi and is only 24 miles from Paxi. Corfu is considered as a lovely town with stunning places to visit.  If you continue to move towards the north, you will pass through Benitses where you can moor. From here you will head towards the Old Fort.
  • Old Fort

The sight from the fort is truly magical. In order to reach the main port, you will change course and pass through the headquarters of the Corfu Yacht Club. For the ones who have no idea, but Corfu happens to be one of the most beautiful towns in Greece. The town has an Italian air about it. Not just that, but you will also find myriad choices of drinks and meal. Gouves, which is the first private marina in the whole of Greece, is only a short distance away.

  • Othoni

This is the largest Diapontian islands which lie very close to the north coast of Corfu. This westernmost destination in Greece is one of the best attraction spots. It is often referred to as the mini paradise. You can witness a few villages where you can rent rooms. Other than that you can also witness the ruins of the Venetian castles.

So, these are the main destinations you can explore while sailing in the Ionian Sea. Sailing is anyway always fun but when you are in the Ionian Sea, you are sure to have a hell of an experience.

Now that you have an idea about the places to sail and also the sailing conditions, you should prepare yourself to set out on the epic journey that you have planned for so long. This is an experience which is worth remembering.

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Andi Perullo de Ledesma

I am Andi Perullo de Ledesma, a Chinese Medicine Doctor and Travel Photojournalist in Charlotte, NC. I am also wife to Lucas and mother to Joaquín. Follow us as we explore life and the world one beautiful adventure at a time.

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