The perfect weather window

Matt's idea of diving

Matt's idea of diving

Sunday the 13th of September.

Checking the weather (my new found obsession) on my laptop from the boat (one hour passwords for Internet Wi-Fi access were available at the marina cafe at no charge), I was pleased to see that several calm days were forecast for the Cyclades. Good weather appears to have been a rarity this summer, so we made haste to depart and make the most of it.

Our destination? Ios via Thira (approximately 100NM distant).

With a few hours to kill (so as to arrive at Thira / Santorini by daybreak), we motored to the small island off Iraklion called Nissos Dhia. It has a splendid little anchorage ideal for swimming, or if you are so inclined, doing back-flips off the boat (BTW that’s Matt in the photo). At dusk we continued north at 4.5kts on a gentle sea.

Busy port of Herakleion

Herakeion Port

Herakeion Port

Two days in Herakleion (11th to the 13th of September)

Arriving in the busy port of Herakleion (Gr: Iraklion or ancient Candia [the real land of Candy]), I made my way past several super cruise ships and a crumbling Venetian fort, to the small boat marina.

Herakleion is busy, bustling, noisy, and architecturally uninspiring but it is civilization. I’d had my fill of quiet and goats on Astipalaia. But with local beer costing 5 Euro a glass, an antipodean beer swilling visitor would find himself penniless in no time…

I found my newly designated teetotaling (unless he buys the beer) crew surveying the many slumbering canines at the airport entrance. His first comment… “What is this… the third world?”

Hmmm wait ’till he sees his accommodation…