On 1st September we left Hydra and motored 5 miles across the bay off Cape Skyli (south). This quiet anchorage was beautiful with warm clear blue water. We spent the day with four other boats but at sundown there were only two of us left. A relaxing day paddle boarding and swimming. There was no telephone signal and Judith had received a message from home to ‘ring’ so she went off on the paddle board to find a signal, at the same time exploring the small island that we were anchored behind (see photo of Money Penny taken from the island) and a small bay just around the point! We will definitely use this anchorage again if we are in the area. We do doubt whether it will be as quiet post Covid!
The following day we headed off to the Island of Poros, only a short ‘hop’ of 7 miles. Poros is also in the southern part of the Saronic Gulf and lies about 36 miles and a 1 hr ferry trip from Athens. It is separated from the Peloponnese by a 200m wide sea channel opposite the town of Galatas on the mainland. We approached Poros Town via the channel where the quay is lined with shops, cafes and restaurants. There were a number of areas to choose from but we eventually decided to anchor off the Russian Dockyard. This is an historical site, the place where the first Russian ships docked in order to help Greek people during the Greek Revolution against the Turks. We were able to take the tender into the shore and then walk around the perimeter of dockyard into Poros Town. Covid had closed Poros down 2 weeks prior to our arrival, it was extremely quiet.
Approaching the channel between Poros and Galatas on the mainland.
The town itself was full of life and we enjoyed walking around the streets and along the quayside looking at the numerous boats moored alongside. We visited the local chandlery which was well stocked and had made great use of an couple of old toilets using them as plant pots! We had broken our spinnaker pole on our crossing from Sicily to Kefalonia and had been trying to arrange delivery of a new one for a while. The Chandlery were extremely helpful and ordered from Athens for us with 48 hr delivery. Perfect!
We spent the night on anchor in Navy Bay off the Dockyard where we had a great view of the town lit up during the evening. The following morning we left and headed 5 miles along the coast to Russian Bay where we anchored overnight after spending a relaxing day swimming, paddle boarding and ‘fending off’ the superyachts.
Our anchorage in Navy BayRussian Bay joined by a superyacht
Poros By Night
The following day we headed for the other side of the Island, anchoring in Bistlou Bay, a long narrow bay which we shared for a while with a small speedboat and its ‘captain’ who spent a couple of hours harpoon fishing. It was idyllic so we decided to remain there for the night.
Just as darkness fell, the wind picked up and was funnelling into the narrow anchorage! Should we return to Poros town or not? We knew our main anchor was well set and we had set a stern anchor to keep us away from the sides of the bay during the day, however if the weather deteriorated, the narrow bay would provide us with no leeway. Lifting both anchors would take time and if the wind picked up or changed direction causing the stern anchor to pull out we could be pushed closer to the shallow water or small beach with very little time to react. We decided to leave and make our way back to Poros. The trip back to was windy with rough seas but soon enough we were anchored in the shelter of the now familiar Russian Bay.
Waking up in our sheltered anchorage of Russian Bay
In the morning we left the anchorage and moved to the Town Quay to attempt to complete a few ‘boat jobs’ and collect the spinnaker pole. It’s not always play time!! We had had replacement graphics printed before we left Milford Haven and they were still sitting in the cabin lockers. Perhaps it was time to ‘balance’ the look of the boat. One side had a blue stripe and one did not!!! I think we may have been better waiting until later in the day as the mid day heat didn’t help, but we finally finished and she looked fabulous!! The spinnaker pole had also arrived. We had asked for 4.2 m but on arriving at the shop the pole was an ‘uncut’ 5m length!!! There were certainly a few ‘looks’ as Alistair carried it back to the boat!
Poros Quayside at sunset.
Walking from the Chandlery back to Money Penny
We departed on the morning of 6th September having had a wonderful time around Poros. We had not managed to explore the interior of the Island but would definitely return next year if possible to continue exploring.