Skip to content

Corfu round or not?

After celebrating Walter's birthday on Rabitts wildly romantic pontoon, we set off on 5 May. Northwards through the channel from Lefkada to Preveza. Here we were able to experience the Greek Orthodox Easter. Until now, we thought this was always a week after our Easter. But that's not true. The date for Easter in Greece is calculated according to the Julian calendar and always takes place on the weekend after the first full moon after the beginning of spring. Our friend Claudia came on board for 10 days on Easter Monday. On the Tuesday after Easter we wanted to buy groceries for the next few days and set off. We were very surprised that all the shops were still closed. A local explained the situation to us: As 1 May (also a public holiday in Greece) had fallen on Good Friday this year, it was made up for on the Tuesday after Easter. Very pragmatic, the Greeks.

Between the Greek mainland and Corfu, we then zigzagged northwards, first for a night anchoring in the South of the island at Mongonisi, then to Sivota. Always beautiful. The next day there was no favourable wind for our course north. So we took a look at the beautiful bays and exclusive apartment complexes by foot.

Next stop: Petriti on Corfu. The nice little fishing harbour that we already knew from last year. While looking for a rubbish bin, we found out that the harbour is not yet open for sailors. No problem for us with our full water tanks and solar panels.

Then back to the mainland, to Sagiada, which is only four kilometres from the Albanian border. The harbour guide says that the entrance to the small harbour is only six metres wide. That's right. You have to aim well to get through the centre with our four-metre-wide boat. With only three other sailing boats, it was quite nice there. And there are good fish restaurants. A nature reserve with lagoons and an estuary begins south of the harbour. Maybe we'll come back again and do some hiking there.

We spent the next night anchoring almost in the far north on the east side of Corfu in Agios Stefanos bay. In the dark, we saw the big ferries passing by on their way from Igoumenitsa to Italy. Walter had set the anchor alarm on his mobile phone for the first time. We wanted to know if it really worked. As he had set the Schwojenkreis very tightly, the alarm woke us up at half past five in the morning. Very reassuring in this case. Our anchor didn't slip, but we now know that the alarm works.

The next day there was only a short trip around the corner to the north coast to Kassiopi. We already knew this harbour and also the fit, energetic and very nice harbour master woman. Here we wanted to decide whether to sail all the way round Corfu. However, the wind had already shifted to the south two days earlier and was getting stronger every day, especially on the west side of Corfu. We didn't want to force it, so we cancelled our plans. The wind was too strong to cross against the wind and motoring is no fun. Staying in Kassiopi, we took a look at the Kastro and looked for a nice bay for a swim. The water was still quite cold, but crystal clear.

The next day, the harbour master urged us to leave the harbour as soon as possible, as strong winds of up to seven Beaufort were forecast. So we left the harbour and headed south again into the narrows between the mainland and the island. The wind wasn't quite as strong. With a boom jib and mizzen we were able to cross nicely.

And then we ended up behind the fish farms. With the cows. Coming from Kassiopi in the north, we needed a berth for the night on the mainland. The harbour guide says that Panagia Bay is not only well protected from the wind from all directions, but is definitely unlike any other place in the Ionian Islands. Of course we wanted to check it out. 10 miles opposite Corfu Town, you sail past endless fish farms, circular nets with a diameter of 10 to 20 metres. The land is barren, uninhabited, scrubland, bushes. Albania is just a few hundred metres behind.

You curve around the farms and are suddenly alone (with only one other boat) in a mirror-smooth bay, surrounded by bushes, windless, you hear nothing - except the cows grazing here. Complete silence and solitude - marvellous.

From this quiet idyll, we put our bow out into the sea between the mainland and Corfu the next day. We set a westerly course with winds of up to 32 knots and plenty of swell from the south-east. The mizzen and half the genoa were all we needed to get across to Kerkyra (Corfu Town) quickly. We are now moored in Mandraki Marina below the fortress, just like last year. Today, on 18 May, Claudia disembarked again to fly home. It was a lovely time for the three of us. We are staying until Tuesday in the hope that we can collect our postal voting documents for the European and local elections from the German Consulate General on Monday.   

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *