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You can charter a yacht in Greece and explore all of the surroundings and the copious amounts of islands. Whether you want to charter a boat from Athens or from one of the famous islands, hire a motorboat, sailboat or catamaran as a bareboat or with skipper. When renting a sailboat in Greece, you’ll have the choice to see the Aegean Sea on the eastern part, the Ionian Sea on the western shore, and the Sea of Crete and Mediterranean directly to the south.
Greece, located on the southern tip of the Balkan peninsula, has common borders with Albania on the northwest, Republic of Macedonia and Bulgaria directly to the north, and Turkey on the furthest eastern point. The geographical diversity of where Greece stands is not just by land, but also by sea. Greece has always been considered a sailors paradise due to the perfect weather and the island hopping that is available. With several departure points, Greece has endless possibilities when it comes to exploring the sea, so the best way to see everything is to book a boat! Hire a boat in Skiathos and sail Athens or rent a boat in Lefkada and make your way to Corfu. It's up to you!
In Greece, the long stretches of coast give you several dimensions of sailing allowing you to have more options when it comes to where you'd like to rent. Greece has always been well known as having several popular ports spread widely around the country. The sailing season in Greece is normally really standard starting in April and running into October. With tourist season, you will have to keep in mind that July and August will be the busiest months of the year.
Due to the difference in sailing areas, the price can vary depending on your project. In general, the highest prices for rentals start at the end of June and go into the end of August. During this high period, the pricing may be higher due to the demand and favourable weather conditions. On average, you can expect to pay on average 500€ a day for a catamaran charter in Greece and 400€ for a sailboat. For lower price points, boat rentals drop dramatically at the end of September. For motorboats, it is best to sort by the type of project you are interested in. Since Greece offers plenty of activities on motorboats, you will be able to find a boat on every budget. Usually, you can find motorboats starting at 150€ per day.
For sailors globally, Greece has always been one of the top destinations for yacht charters and boat rentals. If you're looking for a weekly yacht charter in the Cyclades or one of the other popular ports like Athens, Lefkas, you will have to book the boat well in advance. On average, more than 50% of the charters for Greece are already booked by March and more than 75% by the beginning of May. At SamBoat, we advise that you define your project and book a boat as early as possible. In some instances, you can book closer to the date of departure depending on the port, but the inventory decreases.
For day boats, the functioning is a bit different. Usually, for motorboats rented for one day, the recommended time period to book is 2 to 3 months to ensure availability.
Depending on what type of boat you would like to rent, there are different pieces of legislation for each. If you are looking to hire a motorboat, a license is required if the boat has more than 30hp, if less, no license is needed. If would like to charter a yacht, you will need a valid license as well as a nautical CV detailing the previous boats you captained as well as the different waters you navigated.
If you are new to sailing or do not hold a license, you don't have to rent a bareboat. Most of the boats in Greece are available with skipper so this would be a perfect option for you.
Yacht charter in Greece is popular with both experienced and novice sailors. Greece has areas with specific sailing and sightseeing characteristics, here are the areas where you can go sailing in this beautiful and popular country.
The Ionian Islands are located in the western part of Greece and extend into the Peloponnese. There are seven main islands: Corfu, Zakynthos, Paxos, Kefalonia, Ithaca, Kythira and Lefkada. The climate is mild most of the year and during spring there can be light rainfall. These islands are ideal for all types of sailors, especially for beginners. The best bases for yacht charter are Corfu and Zakynthos.
The Sporades islands are located almost in the middle of the Aegean Sea. Each of the islands has characteristics and a nature that will amaze you. Skiathos is the most popular island and the most visited by young travellers thanks to its party atmosphere. The best time to charter a boat and sail is during spring and summer because of the warm weather. During the winter it can rain and caution is advised when sailing.
The Cyclades group have 23 large islands spread out in a circle. They are the most popular group of islands in Greece, including Santorini and Mykonos. You can charter a boat near Fira and admire the cliffs from the sea. During July and August is Meltemi season, which means you'll encounter rain and light winds that will make your sailing more interesting and a little tricky. Even so, each island is worth a visit to admire its beauty.
The Dodecanese islands lie between the Cyclades island and Turkey, southeast of Greece. Kos and Rhodes are the most popular islands of the group, famous for their medieval architecture. Charter a catamaran in Greece and enjoy the quiet beaches of the area. From April to September, the weather is pleasant, whereas the coldest and rainy month is January. The Dodecanese islands are ideal for all types of sailors.
Saronic Gulf and Hydra Gulf
The Gulf of Hydra lies between the Saronic Gulf and the Argolic Gulf. In these gulfs, you will find islands that are the most popular yacht charter areas in Greece, such as the island of Hydra. During spring and summer, the climate is dry and hot. In winter, temperatures drop, and there are strong winds and waves. It is advisable to have previous experience if you want to sail in these gulfs during the winter.
With turquoise, crystal clear water and the Mediterranean sun, nautical tourism is highly present all over Greece. Among the most prominent spots for nautical sports are Athens, Lefkada, Naxos, Kos, Skiathos and Rhodes just to name a few. If you're looking to explore as much as Greece as possible, we recommend renting a boat in Corfu and exploring the Ionian Sea. The islands in Greece are filled with rich history and beauty and would provide an ideal escape. Sail to any of the islands and experience the unspoiled beauty that awaits.
A longstanding tradition of the country is its dedication to the culinary arts. Be sure to taste a wide variety of the Mediterranean cuisine including moussaka, pastitsio, a traditional greek salad with feta, or the most popular street food, souvlaki. The best way to sample the local cuisine is by going out for a mezethes, which are a local tradition of combining a social outing with a taste of the local culture. You’ll pair the food perfectly with a retsina, an ouzo or a metaxa. There is no better way to end the outing than dropping anchor and watching a stunning Greek sunset. One of the best places to admire a perfect sunset and admire historic sites is dropping anchor on a boat rental in Rhodes.
Some of the most popular destinations in Greece are among the islands. A popular departure point for a boat rental is Zakynthos, a Greek island in the Ionian Sea. Zakynthos has some of the most beautiful beaches alongside the classic whitewashed buildings and historic sites.
If you want some incredible sailing tips and insights about Greece, we invite you to visit our blog where you can find sailing itineraries in Greece. They are perfect if you want some inspiration before heading to your boating holidays in the Aegean sea.
Greece was made for island hopping and it’s definitely an unmissable adventure. With over 200 islands to choose from, it’s not easy planning an itinerary to go from island to island. The choice of islands will depend on what port you arrive at and this will help you begin the planning. The islands are divided into larger groups: Ionian, Argo-Saronic, Cyclades, Crete, Dodecanese, Sporades and the Aegean. All of these island groups are extremely popular and you can’t go wrong with any of them! Rent a boat in Crete and go exploring the Cyclades, mix and match any itinerary, the sea is your limit!