Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Spinalonga To Agios Nikolaos 15 August - 9 September 2016


     SITIA 19 August 2017          We sailed into Aghios Nikolaos (Ag Nik) Marina on 17 August to meet up with Louise and fill up with water.  Louise joined us on 18 August after an overnight stay in  Heraklion and then we sailed further east on Friday 19th August to Sitia. There was not much wind so motored round for 2 hours along the coastline until the usual mid-day wind was turned on to enjoy a pleasant  F3 sail. We anchored off the main Sitia beach at 1415 to enjoy a late lunch and a swim. We later entered the harbour to tie up against the wall which offered us the opportunity to explore the town of Sitia until we found a suitable Taverna to enjoy a good Greek meal and plenty of beers.

Kisti Two Tied Up On Sitia Harbour Wall.
Guy & Louise About To Explore Sitia.

 SPINALONGA 20 -29 AUGUST 2016.    More strong winds were forecast so we decided to head back west to the security of Spinalonga Bay after just one night in Sitia. We set off at 0930hrs and put in a reef in expectation of F4/5 winds which did not take long to materialise. We were sailing along beautifully into the wind tacking our way along the coast ( something we rarely do these days! ) when the wind suddenly dropped off after 5 hours of exhilarating sailing. As we approached Spinalonga entrance, Guy spotted a mass of white horses heading our way so without hesitation, we headed under the lee of a cliff and just dropped and tied up our Genoa and Main sails before we were smacked by 45kn winds and large swell. Guy switched on the engine and we raced into the bay along with several tourist boats all seeking shelter.  It was not a pleasant experience and we were all mightily relieved to be anchored up again off Elounda at 1600 hours. This was to be the only sailing that Louise did all week, such was the wind over the next 9 days that we did not venture out again until 29 August.

Kisti Two Anchored Off Elounda In Spinalonga Bay Again.

 Elounda Causeway.   The evening wind would generally die down at sunset allowing us to go end explore ashore. Our first venture was along the causeway from Elounda to the island that connects to Elounda, the site of an old city called Olous now just submerged beside a fish taverna.  

Mosaic Of An Ancient Roman Villa At Olous.

Causeway Channel

Old Windmill With Elounda In The Background.
Louise Enjoying A Walk Off Kisti Two!
Fish Taverna In The Background.

Visit To Spinalonga.    We were unable to anchor off Spinalonga so the two girls decided to do the tourist visit on a small Greek boat armed with Victoria Hislop's 'The Island', a story of the leper colony on the island. It is well worth a visit. It started life as a Venetian Fort and then became a leper colony in 1903 and only stopped when a cure was found for leprosy in 1957. 

Spinalonga Island.
Louise Enjoying A Blustery Trip Across The Bay.
Approaching The Jetty.

View Through An Old Window From Spinalonga To The Mainland.
Spinalonga Bell.

Spinalonga Church.
Louise At Spinalonga Water Gate Entrance.
Louise Walking Round The Spinalonga Village Ruins.

Looking Towards Plaka From A Venetian Castle Tower.
The Entrance To Spinalonga Bay.

Ginny In New Sunhat.

The Windmill Restaurant ( Taverna Anenomylos?).      The Windmill Taverna at Elounda became a particular favourite of ours over the period we spent in Elounda. The chef just put in that extra effort to make his meals a little more special than most and Mika, a charming Serbian girl looked after us wonderfully during our frequent visits. Louise left us on 23 August from Elounda to fly back to UK. 

Guy & Louise Outside The Taverna Windmill.

Its A Hard Life?

Guy & Mika.

John & Lorraine Visit 28 August 2016.   Our friends John & Lorraine from Malta decided to join us for a few days hoping for a sail. The wind however was far too strong so again we just stayed anchored off Elounda. There was no wind on the 28th so we lifted the anchor and had motored a 100 metres when suddenly from nowhere, we were again smacked by 40 knot gusts of wind. We were well healed over even without sails. We then drove across to Plaka from where we all went across to Spinalonga for another interesting visit. 

John & Lorraine Relaxing Before The Wind Gusts.
White Sea Horses Off Spinalonga.
The Instruments Showing 35 Knot Wind Gust, F8.

Aghios Nikolaos.     We eventually departed Spinalonga on 30 August to go into Aghios Nikolaos  (Ag Nik ) Marina. We went in nice and early before the wind picked up and were soon safely tied up in the marina on pontoon C, berth 38 close to the wall. This was to be our home for the winter. we had a busy week winterising Kisti Two changing the oil and filter, the fuel filters and the coolant as well as filling up the diesel tanks. We also took the opportunity to paint on more teak dressing using Teak Wonder and clean the hull. After Kisti Two passed the Admirals inspection, we took the time to explore the Tavernas and tourist spots of Ag Nik before flying back to England on 9 September in preparation for our daughter Kate's wedding.

Aghios Nikolaos Marina From The Sea Looking North.

Ag Nik Marina Looking South.
Beach Outside The Marina.
Ag Nik Harbour.

Ag Nik Lake And Restaurants.
Ginny Walking Round To Our Favourite Beach And Tavernas.
Ginny And The Minator Statue.
Ag Nik Harbour And Lake In Background.
Ginny Shopping In Ag Nik.

Kisti Two At Winter Berth, C Pontoon, 38.

Summer 2016.     The summer 2016 has been a very successful trip. We have sailed from Licata, Sicily to Malta and then back to Sicily. We returned to Malta and then back to Sicily again but to Syracusa for a short stop. We then sailed across to Greece, Corfu and then slowly down south along the Ionian Coast round to the 3 fingers and bays of the Peloponnese. After a lot of time and fun in the Peloponnese, we sailed south across to Crete and then along the north coast of the island to Ag Nik. We sailed a total of 1875nm this summer. It has been great fun and Kisti Two has looked after us superbly. She is a dream to sail and live on and we look forward to sailing the Aegean in 2017.