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When to sail Greece

The yacht charter season in Greece starts early April and ends in November. The graph below deals with all tourists, not just the sailing tourists. Yet a graph for just yacht charters will no doubt spike even more in the sailing high season, which runs from the last week of July till the first week of September.
Yacht charter tourist statistics for Greece.
Arrivals at international airports in Greece in 2017, and all months together equals 12.644.117

Sailing Greece in the high season

When sailing in the high season you should take into account the following:

Reasons to sail Greece in April, May and June

Sunrise, Sunset and Daylight for Athens, Greece

Only one downside to the early season:
The water temperature will reach “pleasant swimmable” levels in May (19-21 °C) but in April the sea temperature is usually just 16-18 °C, in my view a bit chilly. Fortunately, this rapidly improves to a very pleasant 23 °C (74 °F) in the beginning of June. See all seawater temperatures maps per month.

All this considered, I have found the optimum to sail Greece to be around the last two weeks of May and the first two weeks of June. If snorkelling and swimming at beaches and anchorages is important, the whole month of June is ideal.

Reasons to sail Greece in September and October

Again only one downside:
Typically the Cyclades can suffer from shortages of fresh water: except for Naxos none of the cycladic and dodecanese islands have perennial rivers and are therefore already rather barren, dry and rugged in the yacht charter high season. Also, for (charter) yachts it will be more difficult and expensive here to fill the water tanks. Yet, the northern Sporades and the Ionian islands stay green and fertile all year round, but are even more beautiful in springtime when covered in colourful flowers.

If sailing in June is not possible, the next best period is in the first weeks of September, especially in the Cyclades or Dodecanese, since the temperatures are more than a few degrees higher than Corfu (north Ionian) or Athens (Saronic). More on sea surface temperatures

Climate change After two extraordinary warm winters, likewise this winter was rather mild. This has four major influences on the yacht charter season: Also see the IPCC 4th Assessment Report on Greece.

Sailing resources
 Charter guide :

 Assisted bareboats
 Bareboat requirements
 Choosing a charter yacht
 Catamarans & monohulls
 Prevent seasickness
 Greek sailing areas
 When to sail in Greece
 Yacht charter provisioning
 Itineraries Ionian
 Itineraries Argo-Saronic
 Itineraries Cyclades
 Itineraries Dodecanese
 One-way itineraries
 Flights & ferries
 Last minutes & budget
 Sailing between Greece & Turkey
 Greek chart terms
 Greek fishing techniques
 Climate graphs Athens
 Climate graphs Bodrum
 Distances sailing Greece
 Itineraries Ionian + Aegean
Greece :

Ionian Islands
Dodecanese Islands
Cyclades Islands
Northern Sporades
Peloponnese – Athens
Top 10 islands

Yacht charter companies
Tower of winds
Turkey :

Izmir – Bodrum
Bodrum – Marmaris
Marmaris – Fethiye
Fethiye – Antalya
2 April 2019
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