AEGEAN AND EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN
The Crossroads of History
March Through November 2013
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A crewed charter sailing holiday aboard one of our sailing yachts cruising among Dodecanese and Sporades Islands of Greece and along the Carian and Ionian coasts of Turkey. This itinerary can run south among Greek islands from Samos or even Lesbos to Kos, up the Turkish coast from Bodrum to Kusadasi or beyond, a combination of both, or vice versa.
Vathi, Samos, Greece. Samos is one of Greece's Eastern Sporades an hour by air from Athens, while Vathi is one of its Ports of Entry fifteen nautical miles west of Kusadasi, Turkey. Founded in the 19th century as Stephanoupolis, so named in honor of the Greek prince ruling the island for the Ottomans between 1834 and 1859, Vathi is today a bustling commercial center featuring an archaeological museum housing treasures from the Temple of Hera at Pythagorion, and also featuring numerous isolated swimming coves to the west of Vathi Bay.
Karlovasi, Samos, Greece. Karlovasi lies on the north coast of Samos fifteen miles west of Vathi where it is the commercial center for the island's many vineyards. Karlovasi is notable for a relative absence of tourists, for magnificent beaches, for a river canyon behind the town replete with water falls and swimming pools, and for excursions to wineries at Manolates, Stavrinides, and Vourliotes. Seafood dining at Chimondidis on Potami beach.
Fourni, Fournoi, Greece. Seventeen miles off the wind from Karlovasi and not at all a part of the beaten tourist path. Substantial Hellenistic and Roman ruins in the town. As many caiques as male residents. Seafood unlimited, especially red mullet (barbounia) and lobster. Beaches and coves to the north and to the south and on the other side of the island.
Port Augusta, Arki, Greece. Seventeen miles off the wind from Fourni, frequently in the company of dolphins, Arki is notable for its colorful caiques, taverna dining on fresh seafood (Nikos Taverna), and a one-mile hike to fortress foundations said to date from the fourth century BC now supporting a place of worship. Ancient building remains reported underwater off the northeast coast. An island on which to forget the unreal world.
Nisis Marathi, Greece. One-quarter mile distant from Port Augusta, Marathi is an islet with secure moorings, two tavernas, and a medieval or earlier structure which may once have been, well, who knows what it may once have been; come help us speculate.
Skala, Patmos, Greece. A ten-mile sail to the west of Marathi into a stimulating breeze and among dramatic surroundings, Patmos is the sacred island on which St. John the Divine received The Revelation to be transmitted to the seven churches of Asia, including Ephesus, Smyrna, and Pergamon. From the monastery 500' up surrounded by the old town there are striking views of the island and its many beaches. Ostria Ouzeri in the port serves a mean grilled octopus better enjoyed with an ouzo.
Lipsi, Greece. A ten-mile downwind run from Patmos, Lipsi is presumed by some to be the island of Ogygia on which Odysseus was shipwrecked returning from Troy and where he was seduced by the siren Calypso. One or the other, the island or Calypso, charmed him for seven years. Today Lipsi's beaches are the principal attraction, though local wine and fresh seafood are also sirens. Discriminating diners have migrated to Taverna Manolis set in the town's back alleys.
Leros, Greece. Eight miles off the wind from Lipsi, this is an island preferred by Athenian holiday-home buyers for its natural beauty and indented coast. It is also an island where real property passes from mother to daughter and where Athenian males might better proceed cautiously. A nice change of venue with a Knights castle which in 1506 was successfully defended by a single Knight Hospitaller, 18 year-old Paolo Simeoni, against an assault by Camali, Lord High Admiral of the Ottoman Navy, at the head of more than a dozen vessels with 500 marines. History aside, Leros is notable for charming by-ways, high-profile windmills, and fine dining at Taverna Psarapoula in Pandeli.
Kos, Greece. A twenty-five mile run from Leros, Kos is one of the green Dodecanese islands, its beaches and inland treks popular with Egyptian pharaohs, Ottoman sultans, and modern Europeans. It is also the birthplace of Hippocrates. The Asclepion hospital and school of medicine founded in his memory is a must-see , while the Hospitaller fortress and ancient agora are also well worth visits. Port of Entry seasonally bounded by hibiscus and rose laurel. A superb Italian cuisine may be enjoyed at Theo's Mezzaluna Restaurant opposite Kos Island Marina. Try the shrimp and artichoke heart.
Bodrum, Turkey. Eleven miles from Kos and birthplace of Herodotus, this town is striking from the sea and interesting once ashore. The Hospitaller castle is well preserved and encloses fascinating museums including one of treasures from the Nefertiti bronze age underwater recovery off Kas, the bazaar has considerable variety, and there is a broad selection of restaurants, some good. Site of Seven Wonders tomb (ca353 BC) of Mausolus of Caria, Bodrum also has miles of beaches and parts of the walls providing the only real resistance to Alexander's march through the Near East.
Gumusluk, Turkey. Fifteen miles from Bodrum, Gumusluk is within walking distance of "new" Myndos, a Carian town founded by Mausolus in the 4th century BC. The harbor here sheltered an Egyptian fleet throughout the following century and, in 44 BC, proved a brief haven for the ships of Gaius Cassius Longinus, one of Julius Caesar's assassins. "Old" Myndos, a Lelegian** town, is two miles to the SE. Gumusluk itself is whitewash and bougainvillea and rustic dining; the Aquarium Restaurant is long established and highly recommended. Cagey rug merchants abound.
Bargylia Creek, Turkey. Twenty-two miles northeast of Gumusluk, mostly off the wind, this boot-shaped anchorage was the port for ancient Bargylia the ruins of which may be explored about 1500 yards south of the landing, including remains of a theater, odeon, aqueduct, and temple perhaps that of Artemis Cindyas.
Kurin, Turkey. Four miles north of Bargylia Creek and the port of ancient Iasus. Memorialized in Iasus coinage is the association of boy and dolphin, and the dolphins still abound, playing in the white water of the Gulf of Gulluk. As for the boy, he was summoned to Babylon by Alexander and made head priest of the cult of Poseidon. Extensive ruins (as below at right) under continuous excavation off the beaten path. Fine seafood (the fresh seafood, not the farmed seafood).
Altinkum, Turkey. Eighteen miles from Kurin just east of Point Poseidon. More than a mile of broad beach. Three miles by road from ancient Didyma and its remarkable Temple of Apollo, fifteen miles from ancient Miletus and its 15,000-seat Greco-Roman theater. And at Miletus a Byzantine castle on the hill above.
Pharmakonisi, Greece. Ten miles from Altinkum, this is the island on which Julius Caesar was detained by pirates while a student en route to Rhodes where he studied rhetoric. Perhaps because of Caesar's subsequent crucifixion of each and every resident, the inhabitants of Pharmakonisi today are limited to Greek Army conscripts and wild goats, the latter inhabiting arched structures dating from Caesar's visit.
Agathonisi, Greece. A 12-mile sailing beat north of Pharmakonisi and a 411 BC base for Alcibiades'* Athenian fleet besieging Spartan Miletus during the Peloponnesian War. Dine at George's Taverna and the Seagull Taverna in Agios Yiorgos, both excellent and both on the waterfront. Hike hundreds of feet up to the Greek blue and whitewash of Megalo Horio. Ruins, probably pirate ruins, from the Byzantine centuries. Idyllic. One of our favorite islands.
Port St. Paul, Turkey. Ancient Trogyllium fourteen miles north of Agathonisi. Once a refuge (Acts:20-15) for Saint Paul's oarsmen en route from Samos to Miletus, this anchorage is also five fair-weather miles west of the finest seafood restaurant on the Gulf of Latmos. Gray mullet abounds. Six miles of back road take the curious to Priene, a Hellenistic city situated on a hillside within marble walls and featuring the theater depicted below and to the right.
Pythagorion, Samos, Greece. Polycrates' ancient capital of Samos four miles north of Port St. Paul. Motor-bike up into pine-covered hills to tavernas without tourists. Buy at artist-factories producing ceramics recommended by Pliny the Elder two thousand years ago. See the Temple of Hera just outside of town. Explore Pythagorion's Eupalinus Tunnel built in the 6th century before Christ to bring drinking and bathing water to its inhabitants. Pythagoras, by the way, was born here when this was both the island's capital and maritime center. Greek cuisine on the beach at Trata Taverna, 50 yards beyond the last caique. Port of Entry.
Poseidonion, Samos, Greece. An idyllic anchorage four miles up the Samos Strait from Pythagorion. Crystal-clear seawater in which Poseidon is wont to cavort when the wind is blowing. Excellent tavernas in a pretty village lining the shore.
Guzelcamli, Turkey. An open roadstead eight miles due west of Poseidonion from which to visit the Panionium religious and administrative center of the twelve ancient cities of Ionia. Dedicated to the same Poseidon wont to cavort on the other side of the Samos Strait, ruins include the sacred enclosure, within which are foundations of the sacrificial altar, as well as an odeon or outdoor council chamber in which delegates hammered out league policies. Meanwhile, the swimming off Guzelcamli's beaches and in neighboring coves does not get much better.
Kusadasi, Turkey. Byzantine Anaea nine sea miles north of Guzelcamli, this port city 12 road miles southeast of ancient Ephesus gradually succeeded Ephesus as the latter's harbor silted during the early centuries of the Christian era. Today Kusadasi is a convenient entrepot from which to visit Ephesus (photo at left), perhaps the most interesting Greco-Roman city extant. Its theater still hosts performing arts two millennia after construction. While old Ephesus and the Temple of Artemis date from the eleventh century BC, there is also a rare Seljuk fortress nearby dating from the eleventh century AD. Kusadasi itself has an extensive bazaar, fine seafood restaurants, and unprincipled rug merchants. Port of Entry within one hour of Izmir's Adnan Menderes International Airport.
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Dear Homo Sapiens, There is no need to continue reading this page. What follows is intended for search engine robots and spiders and not necessarily for human beings. Further information concerning Greek island hopping may be obtained by clicking on the teal links immediately above. Thank You. Greek Island Hopping In The Dodecanese is an unforgettable charter sailing holiday in Greece and along the coast of Asia Minor. A crewed charter sailing holiday or honeymoon cruising among Aegean islands of Greece and along the Carian and Ionian coasts of Turkey. One of the Seven Wonders, the Temple of Artemis at Ephesus, was sponsored by and constructed of marble and timbers during the mid-sixth century reign of King Croesus of Lydia. Perhaps the earliest temple in the Ionian order, it had 127 columns each 60' high, 36 of them sculptured. One stop on a sailing holiday cruising ancient Ionia. A yacht cruise along the Turkish coast and among Greek islands. A Dodecanese sailing holiday. A sailboat-rental honeymoon or holiday also including a second of the Seven Wonders, the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus. Charter a crewed sailing yacht in Greece to cruise the Greek islands of the Aegean Sea. Dodecanese sailing. Sporades sailing. Or try a Blue Cruise. Charter a crewed sailing yacht to cruise the west coast of Turkey. The Seljuk fortress at Ephesus is a rebuild of an ancient acropolis itself rebuilt by Byzantines from Roman ruins said to have originally been purloined from a Mycenaean Age (14th to 11th centuries BC) necropolis. Plan to honeymoon or holiday in Greece or Turkey. Enjoy a charter sailing holiday in Greece or Turkey or both. Honeymoon or holiday aboard a sailing yacht chartered in Greece or Turkey. Charter a sailing yacht to cruise the Aegean from Samos. Trace Saint Paul's third mission return from Corinth and Philippi through Samos, Trogyllium, Miletus, Kos, Rhodes, and Patara. Charter a sailing yacht to cruise the Aegean coast of Turkey. Visit Kusadasi in Turkey. Or Bodrum in Turkey. Bodrum's Herodotus wrote the first world history, entitled History. In it he described the known world as consisting of Europe, Asia, and Libya. After Bodrum fell to Ottoman Turks in 1523 it became a resort popular with Istanbul nobility, the nobility holidaying there rather continuously until Bodrum fell to the French during World War I. Today Bodrum Peninsula is termed the Turkish Riviera, and it again swarms with Istanbul's moneyed class. So, too, did Kos swarm with Istanbul society until lost to Italy in 1912. Patmos (Patmo), Lipsi (Lisso), Leros (Lero), Kalymnos (Calino), Kos (Coo), Nisiros (Nisiro), Tilos (Piscopi), Khalki (Calchi), Karpathos (Scarpanto), Kasos (Caso), and Astypalia (Stampalia). All lost to Italy in 1912. Thus we can put you aboard a crewed sailing yacht for a holiday or honeymoon with an Italian flavor. We can put you aboard a charter yacht with an experienced crew able to show you the Aegean islands of Greece, the Dodecanese and the Sporades, or we can put you aboard a crewed yacht to cruise Cleopatra's route from Cedrae and Kos up the Turkish coast to Ionian Miletus. *Alcibiades, handsome, athletic, oratorical, a leader of men, is a favorite of novelists. But decadent, immoral, duplicitous, and constantly seeking personal glory, he is among historians also symbolic of Athens' decline. An Athenian first serving with Athens in the war against Sparta and then with Sparta against Athens, he was forced in 411 BC by his seduction of the Spartan king's wife to rejoin Athens. **Lelegians, according to Herodotus, were no more nor less than early Carians. Find out for yourself. Contact us today at firstname.lastname@example.org