The Ionian Islands: Corfu
Yacht Charter & Sailing Vacations

Corfu • Where to go • When to go • What you should know • How to Book

Kerkyra

Kerkyra is the Greek name for the island of Corfu (also called the Emerald Isle) and it’s often used as an affectionate or informal way to refer to this beautiful Ionian island and its surrounding region.  The Northern Ionian Islands, with Corfu as a central hub, offer stunning natural beauty, rich cultural heritage, and convenient island-hopping opportunities. From the picturesque landscapes of Corfu to the historic charm of Paxos and Antipaxos, each island provides a unique and captivating experience. With calm sailing conditions, excellent yachting infrastructure, and a variety of water activities, the Northern Ionian Islands are an ideal choice for sailors seeking a well-rounded and memorable exploration of Greece’s beautiful Ionian Sea.

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Antigua Yacht Charter and sailing vacations going ashore on a dingy

THE IONIAN ISLANDS: CORFU YACHT CHARTER SUMMARY

Bucket List

While we’ve explored the Southern Ionians, the NauticEd team has yet to enjoy the Northern Ionians.  And we can’t wait to check out this beautiful area.  Why?  Check out this laundry list: Wonderful climate, turquoise waters, scenic and gorgeous harbors;  traditional architecture, cosmopolitan places, green mountains, hospitable people, unique traditional cuisine, and  water sports.

Sailing Requirements

Corfu Bareboat charter requirements:

 Sailing Resume

Certification

 License

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Sailing Skill Level

Knowledge – Skills – Experience:

✔ Intermediate

The Northern Ionian Islands are known for their gorgeous summers and light winds. The prevailing wind during the peak summer is extremely calm mornings, building to a very manageable northwest Force 3-4, by mid-afternoon. Short sails between islands with protected bays and sheltered anchorages along with well-marked navigational aids make this area ideal for intermediate sailors. However, brush up on your Mediterranean Mooring skills prior to your visit.


Sailing Skill Levels ›

When to go?

The sailing season in the Northern Ionians is typically from late spring through early autumn.  Our recommended months include June and September. Aside from winter, you can expect favorable wind conditions, calm seas, and plenty of opportunities to explore this area’s stunning coastline, hidden coves, quaint isles, and charming ports.

Climate

The Northern Ionian islands enjoy a typical Mediterranean climate. June-August is considered peak tourist season with average daytime temperatures of 77°F to 95°F, but spring also sees low rainfall and beautiful weathers (plus everything is in bloom).    September  is also mild and tends to have warm seas without the crowds.  During the summer, water temperatures range from 73°F (23°C) to 79° (26°).

Cuisine and Provisionng

Dining in Corfu is a culinary adventure that’s totally worth it. You’ll find a blend of Greek, Italian, and Venetian influences, creating a unique flavor profile you won’t forget. They tend to add a touch of sweetness to many dishes using fruits and spices, which we certainly enjoy. From “Sofrito,” thin beef slices cooked in white wine and garlic, to “Bourdeto,” a spicy fish stew that’s a real standout, the dishes are a true reflection of the island’s history.

Must See & Do

Exploring Corfu, Paxos, Antipaxos, and other villages in the Northern Ionian Islands during a sailing vacation offers a rich array of activities

  • Explore the UNESCO-listed Corfu Town with its charming old town, historic architecture, and vibrant atmosphere. Don’t miss the Liston promenade, the Old Fortress, and Achilleion Place.
  • Stroll along the quayside in Gaios, the main town of Paxos.
  • Enjoy olive oil tasting is a must do when visiting Paxos.
  • Relax at the sandy shores of Voutoumi Beach, one of the most beautiful beaches in the Ionian Islands.
  • Discover the village of Lakka, surrounded by olive groves and featuring a serene harbor. Enjoy dining at waterfront tavernas and exploring the area’s natural beauty
  • Be amazed at the Canal D’Amour, a group of canyons with carvings in the stunning rock formations
  • Visit the natural thermal springs in Antipaxos.
  • Enjoy the shops and restaurants in Parga and take in the views from the Venetian fortress perched atop the hills.

How to get there?

If you’re starting a trip in Corfu, you’ll likely arrive at the Corfu International Airport (Ioannis Kapodistrias Airport). It’s well-connected to major cities in Greece and several European countries. It’s around a 20 minute taxi from the airport to Marina Gouvia, which is where many charter companies are based.

The Ionian Islands: Corfu Bareboat Charter Sample Itineraries

Where to go on a Corfu sailing vacation?

The Ionian Islands: Corfu Related Blog Posts

A CORFU YACHT CHARTER SOUNDS AMAZING!
I’D LIKE TO…

NauticEd are expert Greece and Corfu yacht charter agents. We don’t charge you a fee and can more than likely save you money on all your sailing vacations. We search the world’s databases for over 8,000 yachts in 55 destinations. We give expert advice on where and when to go – likely, we’ve been there. Make an inquiry and book your sailing vacations through NauticEd Sailing Vacations.

Additional Notes

Sailing Skill Levels

Local Knowledge + Education: as Sailing Vacation Experts, NauticEd’s team has chartered and sailed in almost all these locations – providing you with the “local knowledge” you need when planning a sailing vacation. And, as the leader in sailing education, NauticEd assigns different skill levels based on the knowledge-theory and practical/experience needed for chartering in different sailing locations.

Recommended Knowledge-Theory Courses for chartering: Bareboat Charter Master Bundle (six bareboat and near coastal courses), Catamaran Sailing Confidence (if chartering a Cat), Yacht Charter Crew Course (for your crew).

Skill Levels notably emphasize the overall practical experience and competency that is required to sail in certain areas. Of course, the “devil’s in the details” on specifics, and we recommend you contact us when planning a sailing vacation. We’ll save you money on your vacation – which is great – but being prepared to have safe fun experiences that will last a lifetime is priceless!

• Intermediate = Near Coastal <5nm within sight of land, some navigation hazards (always be aware), and generally mild weather conditions. Good seapersonship (i.e., “seamanship”) skills, knowledge, and experience apply.

• Intermediate +Plus = Near Coastal <15nm, within sight of land in clear atmospheric conditions, moderate navigation hazards, and/or challenging weather. Good seapersonship skills, knowledge, and experience apply.

• Advanced = Near Coastal <20nm, within sight of land in clear atmospheric conditions, many navigation hazards, and/or potentially difficult weather. Expert seapersonship skills, knowledge, and experience apply.

*Atmospheric conditions: from the deck of a sailboat, your “visible horizon” is about 12nm on a clear day (considering typical freeboard + your height). Visibility is decreased by haze, fog, rain, smoke, and similar atmospheric considerations. Navigating by line of sight is obviously greater if your destination has features such as mountains, lighthouses, tall buildings, etc…

*Navigational hazards may include features such as rocks, shoals, rough inlets or anchorages, challenging tides and currents, lee shores, commercial traffic, etc…

*Weather: examples of challenging or difficult weather include thunder/lightning storms, areas prone to high winds, or even seasonal risks such as excessive heat.

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