Sailing in the Mediterranean is like sailing through the beautiful scene of a postcard. You’ll have to continuously remind yourself that this is real life and that you’re actually swimming in this crystal clear water and are actually moored right next to the most beautiful beach on the most beautiful island you’ve ever seen. The picturesque backdrop you’ll wake up to every morning is real, and you’ll finally understand why a sailing holiday in the Mediterranean is the best holiday experience you’ll ever have.
This dream Mediterranean sailing vacation is actually much easier (and cheaper!) than you think. So, we’ve put together our top 5 Mediterranean destinations for a Spring sailing holiday, making it even easier for you to plan and book your ideal sailing trip.
5. The Cote d’Azur
France is one of the most diverse countries in the Mediterranean, and when sailing the Cote d’Azur, you’ll experience some of the world’s dreamiest beaches; their long, sun-soaked sandbanks stretch between shallow turquoise waters, indulgent French restaurants and classic village harbours. We all know the south of France has a reputation as the summer playground for the rich and famous, but that doesn’t mean this top sailing destination is out of your reach.
The millionaires’ playground of St Tropez – where a stroll along the harbour front is every celebrity spotter’s dream – is incredibly busy during the summer months, and its glamorous atmosphere set against a backdrop of beaches full of bikini-clad guests is a sight not to be missed. However, the Cote d’Azur is no longer just a dream sailing destination reserved for celebrities and Europe’s elite. Its combination of old-world glamour, a beautiful climate and fantastic beaches makes the Cote d’Azur an irresistible sailing destination to anyone, especially in Spring, and soon you too could be sailing here!
4. The Amalfi Coast
You may think you know Italy, but a sailing holiday on the Amalfi Coast offers a whole new – and, we believe, more authentic – way of experiencing this fantastic and vibrant country. The Amalfi Coast, much like the Cote d’Azur, attracts luxury yachting visitors from all over the world who all know that Italy’s dramatic and lively coastline is best seen from the sea.
The natural scenery is stunning, the marinas are stylish and the Italian food and wine is (always) delicious. The Amalfi Coasts’ sandy beaches and small villages draw tourists from all over the world, but chartering your own yacht gives you the chance to escape the crowds and relax in quiet anchorages and smaller authentic harbours. The mountains and villages of the Amalfi Coast and many nearby islands are renowned for their picturesque charm, and there is no better vantage point than the deck of your sailing boat as you cruise along the coast.
3. The Greek Islands
The Greek Islands were made to sail. Greece is known as the Mediterranean home of sailing, and has long been a favourite of travellers, island-hoppers and sailing enthusiasts from all over the world. For those who want to explore its beautiful beaches, coves and the many timeless ancient archaeological sites this country has to offer, the Greek Islands are full of picturesque destinations to visit on your next Spring sailing holiday. Imagine cruising past classic whitewashed houses with cobalt-blue doors and rows of red geranium-covered terraces, all overlooking the aquamarine rainbow of the sea below.
There are so many versatile islands—each with their own unique personality, but all sitting conveniently close to each other—that every stop in a new port feels different and fresh. The five main island regions for a sailing holiday in Greece include the Ionian Islands, the Cyclades Islands, the Saronic Islands and Argolic Gulf, the Sporades Islands and the Dodecanese Islands. The Ionian, Cyclades and Saronic, however, are the most popular. Imagine picturesque fishing harbours, idyllic anchorages, history and culture – the Greek Islands are the perfect destination for your next Mediterranean sailing holiday.
2. The Turquoise Coast
Once you experience a sailing holiday along Turkey’s southwest coast – appropriately nicknamed the ‘Turquoise Coast’ – you’ll develop a lifelong passion for this top sailing destination. Along this stretch of coastline you’ll see flying fish, majestic dolphins, breathtaking sunsets and night skies bursting with stars. You’ll experience the incomparable beauty of the Mediterranean and Aegean Seas, sailing from Kusadasi to Bodrum, Marmaris to Gocek and Fethiye. Sounds beautiful, right? Well, it is. Sailing the coast of Turkey is an unforgettable experience of discovery and adventure.
From the magnificent coastal city of Marmaris, you can embark on your dream sailing trip, passing through scenic blue coves and beaches nestled between mountains. We recommend visiting some of these untouched treasures, such as Turunc Cove and Icmeler Beach. From Bodrum, you can easily sail to the ruins of the ancient city of Knidos, an ancient Greek settlement sitting at the tip of a peninsula on Turkey’s eastern side. Chartering your own boat will allow you the freedom to explore the intimate beaches in small ocean coves and the dense forests and streams that lace the Turquoise Coast, all in your own time.
1. Croatia’s Islands
Croatia, the land of 1,000 islands, is an absolute paradise for sailing. Taking a sailboat along the Croatian coast is a truly unique experience, which includes typical Venetian villages with ancient baths, bell towers, medieval fortresses, quaint taverns and some of the clearest waters and pristine beaches in the Mediterranean. Although the islands stretch from Istria to Dubrovnik, most are clustered in central and southern Dalmatia. Dropping anchor in one (or ten) of these spectacular islands during your sailing trip around Croatia is definitely a highlight of the coastline. You’ll discover secluded coves inaccessible from land, bathe at sunset in spectacular waterfalls and savour delicious local food and wine in the taverns of some of the most beautiful hidden islands.
There are more than one thousand Croatian islands in the Adriatic Sea, all varying in size; from small, tree-covered rocks to some of the larger islands in the Mediterranean. Sailing Croatia’s islands offers everything from stunning national parks, nudist beaches and 24-hour party pontoons, and each island has its own unique personality, attractions and sights. From islands like Hvar, Vis, Mljet, Korcula, Brac and the stunning Kornati Islands, the Adriatic Coast really does have it all.
Chartering your own sailboat is undeniably the best way to visit the picturesque coastline and many beautiful islands of the Mediterranean Sea. So, what are you waiting for? Head over to zizoo.com right now, pack your gear and get ready for an unforgettable Spring sailing holiday in one of the best sailing destinations in the Mediterranean.
Thanks to Craig Stanfill for the excellent image from Flickr. Please note all images were under Creative Commons Licence at the time of publishing.