Lefkada is just better by boat!
Imagine sailing the alluring crystal-clear waters of the Ionian sea, swimming and sunbathing at endless sun-baked beaches, exploring picturesque villages steeped in history, discovering idyllic bays and tempting anchorages, eating fresh fish under the stars in seafront tavernas and waking up in different places each morning. Lefkada is a mecca for sailors and this summer you can make your dream come true!
The Ionian sea encompasses a wonderful chain of small and bigger islands. It’s a real pleasure to navigate through this region which is considered by experts to be one of the best and safest seas for sailing in the world. Weather conditions here are rarely extreme while one has a multitude of protected anchorages to choose from, delightful coves and stunning beaches, on a number of islands scattered around Lefkada.
Getting to Lefkada
Lefkada or Lefkas is located in the heart of the Ionian sea, in the top half of the western coastland of mainland Greece, between Corfu and Kefalonia. Lefkada enjoys all the advantages of an island without the disadvantage of accessibility; a floating bridge connects it to the mainland with traffic flowing uninterrupted. From April to October, there are various direct flights from many European countries to Aktio airport (just 17 kms from Lefkada). You can also come to Lefkada by car as it is easily reached from northwestern Greece thanks to Preveza-Aktion undersea tunnel and the Egnatia Odos motorway, while the Rio-Antirio bridge and the Ionian Odos motorway facilitate access to the island from the rest of Greece.
When is the best time to sail in the Ionian islands?
Greece has a lovely Southern Mediterranean climate which is characterized by long dry summers with cloudless blue skies and mild, wet winters. The prime sailing season in Lefkada stretches from the beginning of April to the end of October. In April Lefkada island is luscious filled with wildflowers that bloom in abundance after the spring rains of March, most of the shops and tavernas are open and the weather is ideal for sailing. Bonus fact: April is the cheapest month for yacht charters. In May, the waters are exceptionally inviting and daytime temperatures range on average between 18°C and 23°C, but the nights are usually a little bit chillier, so bring a jumper with you. During the morning, the winds blowing in the Ionian reach a force of 2-3 Beaufort, followed by a stronger 4-5 B in the afternoon.
The first month of summer, is a moderately hot month, with an average of 21°C at the start of June, slowly warming up to 27°C as the month goes on. July and August are the hottest and the busiest months of the year and temperature will rarely drop below 21°C even at night. During the summer period (especially in July and August) the wind blowing in the Ionian Sea is a northwest, gentle and pleasant wind (3-5 B), which rises in the afternoon and usually dies at sunset. Fortunately, the Ionian sea is not affected by the unpredictable, strong, dry north winds of the Aegean, known as Meltemia, which usually disrupt sailing routes.
With the end of summer, the rhythms have abated and the weather is most enjoyable. On average, September, is a magical time to sail, providing ideal winds and calm, warm sea. The average temperature is 22°C reaching a high of 25ºC in the height of the day. Expect sunny days with very little rainfall. Although cooler than the summer months, October is still a wonderful (and cheap) month to sail in the Ionian and the sea is still delightfully swimmable. Plus, as the crowds of the summer have departed, you will not have to share your anchorage with other sailboats!
Keep in mind that the high sailing season is from mid-July to mid-September
The Ionian sea & the islands
Lefkada is a beautiful place to set sail, offering a perfect blend of dramatic landscapes, vibrant culture, lovely villages, friendly people and picture-perfect beaches. One day you can anchor off a snow-white beach with crystal clear water like Kathisma and Pefkoulia, the next moor up in one of world-famous beaches of Porto Katsiki and Egkremnoi. Lefkada island provides the ideal canvas for a sailing odyssey as it is in the middle of the awe-inspiring Ionian islands.
Discover Meganissi, Kalamos, Kastos and Atokos
This jaw-dropping green-and-blue pristine island is located between Lefkada and the mainland. The Northern side is peppered with amazing beaches, wonderful bays and many anchorages while there are quite a few anchorages on the east coast as well. The west coast is usually exposed to northwest winds but you can anchor at the beaches close to Thilia island and also at the north-western end opposite Kithros islet, Beretta.
Blessed with amazing beaches with electric blue waters and lush vegetation, Kalamos is the perfect spot if you’re looking for a quiet break. Here you will slow down and enjoy the simple things. The main harbor is Port Kalamos and has space for 30 yachts. Other options for anchorage include Porto Leone and Episkopi.
Kastos, the smallest inhabited island of the Ionian Sea, is well-known for its stunning natural beauty. It is only 6 sq. km in size, so you can walk everywhere here. Fishing, hiking and snorkeling are three of the most popular activities on the island. Kastos has two anchorages, Sarakiniko on the west and a bigger one on the east coast. There are some tavernas dotted around the harbor, where you can enjoy a delicious meal.
This tiny, uninhabited islet is an untouched natural paradise not to be missed. It is located South of Lefkada island and Northwest of Ithaca. There are two bays that are suitable for anchorage: One House Bay on the east coast (prefer this one) and Cliff Bay on the south coast.
Discover Ithaca and Kefalonia
This iconic place of nostalgia is without doubt Greece's most mythical island. Ithaki is located between Lefkada and Kefalonia and has managed to maintain a rhythm of life in harmony with nature. With boundless crystal blue waters, picturesque villages and amazing hiking trails, Ithaca will satisfy every type of traveler. If you are a sailor, keep in mind that the bays of Kioni, Frikes, Aetos and Vathy, provide good and safe shelter.
Visit the largest of the Ionian islands for its sprawling chalk-colored beaches, for the fairytale cave-lake of Melissani, for the pastel coloured village of Assos and of course for Mountain Ainos, the only national park situated on a Greek island. The island has a large number of ports and anchorages: Argostoli, Lixouri, Assos, Atheras, Fiskardo, Poros, Agia Pelagia etc.
Discover Paxos, Antipaxos, Corfu
This little gem is a godsend for anyone searching for near-deserted beaches with turquoise water, isolated tiny coves and scenic villages. You can moor to Gaios which is the main harbour of Paxos or you can berth in the anchorages of Lakka, Mongonisi and Longos. The island of Antipaxos is the smallest of the Ionian Islands and is located 3 kilometers to the south of Paxos. Its waters are particularly impressive: calm, translucent and ideal for snorkelling. There are two bays to anchorage on the east side.
With its instagrammable town and its rich history, Corfu is one of the most cosmopolitan islands in Greece. Travellers can explore the Venetian forts, visit the Achilleion and swim in the sapphire waters of Palaiokastritsa beach- all before dinner at one of the island's wonderful restaurants. Berthing options: Corfu town, Kasiopi, Palaiokastritsa, Petrini and more.
Lefkada: sun, light winds & easy mooring options
One of Lefkada’s most recent acquisitions is the marina, the most modern in Greece, situated on the east side of the town. Its mooring capacity is for 620 boats and its buildings comprise a control tower, a multi-purpose building, sailing club offices, a complex of offices and shops, a small hotel, a boat repair and maintenance facility, parking for 455 cars, winter mooring for 300 boats, a road network and a green belt. It has a 1700 metre - long breakwater and 940 metres of floating wharfs. It is a town within the town of Lefkada with its own life, bars and restaurants also frequented by non boat - owners to enjoy its comforts and the picture of the liquid mirror of the channel reflecting the rosy fingers of the sunrise and the mystique of the moonlight.
Ports in Lefkada island
Lygia: east coast
✔ docking facilities | ✔ restaurants & cafes | ✔ grocery story
Nikiana: east coast
✔ docking facilities | ✔ restaurants & cafes | ✔ grocery story | ✔ ATM
Nydri: east coast
✔ docking facilities | ✔ fuel supply | ✔ restaurants & cafes | ✔ grocery story | ✔ ATM | ✔ shops | ✔ bank
Vlicho: east coast
✔ restaurants & cafes | ✔ grocery story |✔ ATM |
Syvota: south coast
✔ docking facilities | ✔ restaurants & cafes | ✔ grocery story | ✔ ATM | ✔ shops
Vassiliki: south coast
✔ docking facilities | ✔ restaurants & cafes | ✔ grocery story | ✔ ATM | ✔ shops
Bareboat, skippered or crewed?
Well, it's up to you!
The bareboat yacht charter comes without a skipper, so you can be your own captain as long as you are an experienced skipper with a valid international sailing license. Keep in mind that in that case you should also need a co-skipper, an assisting crew member (up to 18 years old) with some boating experience.
The skippered charter is a very common option for those who don't have a boat license or they just want to have more free time on board and fully enjoy their sailing vacations. You can hire a sailing yacht with a professional skipper. With the freedom to create your own itinerary, your skipper will help you explore the Ionian islands and discover a secret summer paradise only a few knew about. Keep in mind that this option comes with an extra cost, the skipper has to get paid.
The crewed yacht charter offers you a superlative sailing charter experience and a more luxury vibe on board! Your yacht or catamaran comes with an experienced captain and hostess who will take care of all navigation and organisational, as well as the cleanliness and the tidiness of the boat, leaving you free to enjoy your tour.
Best sailing companies in Lefkada
Sail Ionian Yacht Charter
31 Stunning Yachts to choose from in 2022
Sail Ionian is a friendly, family owned yacht charter company, run personally by the current owners for the last 15 years. They are based in Vliho Bay on the Greek island of Lefkada. Sail Ionian has been built up on a foundation of dedicated service and a passion for the sailing lifestyle and the ever popular holiday destination of the Ionian.
Charter your own luxury yacht for 7, 10, or 14 nights! With Sail Ionian the boat you book is owned, chartered and personally cared by for them - they are no yacht agents! They offer exceptionally high standards of maintenance and cleanliness of all of their yachts and provide a fast and comprehensive support service whilst you are in the Ionian on holiday if required. Their Sunday & Monday mooring assistance is unique to Sail Ionian and provides their guests with initial support to refresh their skills. For anyone needing formal training, their RYA Sea School provides tuition to all abilities.
2022 Season Starts Sunday 10th April
Find more about the Sail Ionian Yacht Charter here
📍East Lefkada, Vlicho
Vliho Yacht Charter
A People Based Yacht Club Providing Yacht Charter, Yacht Service & A Home Away From Home
Ruairi & Vicky Bradley founded Vliho Yacht Club in 2003. After working in Greece from the early 90’s, they travelled extensively on their own classic wooden yacht, before ending up in Ireland. Four years of project managing a new marina build there, had them yearning for a life with more sunshine, hence the Yacht Club in Lefkas, Greece. As experienced sailors themselves, the Vliho team’s concept was to create a place for people to meet as sailors, holiday makers or residents of Lefkas, and gather information, relax, eat well and feel at home. They are based in the heart of Vliho and easily accessed by land or sea. The bay is a popular spot for sailors due to its safe anchorage and shelter. With hot showers, laundry facilities, live sporting events, free Wi-Fi, book swap and plenty of information on local amenities it’s a great place to come ashore to rest and recoup. They are unique to the area in that they offer complete flexibility to your trip. No matter when, where or how you travel to them; they can create your ideal charter to accommodate your needs.
Their fleet of Beneteau’s, Jeanneau’s and Bavaria’s, ranging from 32ft – 45ft, can be booked bareboat or with a skipper. These renowned and reliable models are easy to handle allowing for a maximum sailing performance with minimal effort. They are all equipped with an electric windlass to allow for quick lifting and dropping of the anchor; ideal and perfectly suited to make the most of the excellent sailing area we have here in the Ionian Sea.
Find more about Vliho Yacht Charter here
📍 East Lefkada Vlicho
Ionion Sails Lefkas
Professional yacht owners since 1995
Ionion Sails is a family business founded by a father & son team, Vangelis Efstathiou and Gabriel Efstathiou. Nowadays the Ionion Sails team includes more than 30 employees & partners working 12 months per year in order to keep their guests’ satisfaction high! Their owned yachts and catamarans are maintained to the highest standards to ensure your charter holiday starts and ends with the perfect vessel. Ionion Sails sailing yachts and catamarans are 100% privately owned. This means that they can provide you with the lowest charter fee given that your reservation does not entail any broker!
The Ionion Sails mooring spot is located in Lefkas Main Port, next to the city centre and has more amenities than any classic harbour in Greece. Their berths offer dock refuel services with a truck, mobile workshop right in front the berths, mooring lines, harbour master & crew, free provision and water supply. All the above make your mooring as also your check in & out a piece of cake! All of their yachts and catamarans in Lefkas are available for bareboat and skippered charters.
Find more about Ionion Sails Lefkas here
📍 Lefkada Town
Make your dreams come true
In Manos Yachting their first priority is the feeling of comfort and secure sailing with the boats of their fleet. The founder of the company Mr. Manos Tsoutsoudakis retired officer of the Naval Air Force of Greece started as an independent skipper by transferring yachts from France, Italy, Croatia and Slovenia to Greece for many years. Soon after, he became the base manager of the biggest charter companies in Greece, Moorings and Athenian Yachts. In 1988 inspired by his love for sailing and sea he established the company Manos Yachting based in Lefkas Marina.
Their Company consists of an experienced team that offers the best services with responsibility. They represent boats that stand for the top quality of equipment, cleanliness and comfort. All boats belong to the famous family Sun Odyssey, from the leading shipyards for sailing boats, Jeanneau. Every year they maintain their boats with the best quality of parts and materials, as they target to keep them in top condition. This is the reason why their company is trusted from Yacht – Pool Financial – Security System and has been rated by their sailors as “outstanding” on Euminia Evaluation System.
Find more about Manos Yachting here
📍 Lefkada Town
Ionian Blue Yachting
Explore, dream, remember
Ionian Blue Yachting is a small, yet very dynamic Greek company that has been active in the Yachting sector since 2016, based out of Perigiali on Lefkada, with experienced skippers and well trained crews, ensuring that the highest standards are always met, for a safe and fun trip.
Their BAVARIA 47 sailing yacht will offer you unique moments of relaxation and entertainment, as well as authentic Greek gastronomical experiences, on the sea routes of gorgeous Lefkada and the enchanting Ionian Sea! They offer alluring yet affordable luxury to all their quests! Get prepared for a completely different type of holiday that you will never forget!
All day, every day escapes to the most beautiful beaches which Lefkada can show, all waiting for you to discover on their day trips, organised just for you, your family, or your group of friends. Their sailing yacht offers you the chance to see an aspect of Lefkada accessible only to a lucky few; the chance to enjoy the emerald waters of the Ionian Sea swim at isolated beaches, far from the hustle and bustle of summer tourists! One of the top ten beaches in the world, Egremni Beach, is a daily destination! The Ionian Sea is beautiful and everything runs at a more relaxed and quiet pace! Board one of their multi-day cruises at Kefalonia, Ithaca, Paxi, Zante, and enjoy your holiday away from the bustling crowds of tourists, relaxing in a safe environment! Explore a new type of holiday, combine trips to green islands with unique local flavours an experience unforgettable moments!
Sailing on a yacht is now an affordable luxury, with services at the highest level. Their comfortable sailing yacht meets all health and safety protocols and has experienced crew. They are here to make your dreams come true and safely offer you unique, dreamy excursions around Lefkada island!
Find more about Ionian Blue Yachting here
📍 East Lefkada, Perigiali
Sun sea sailing
Enjoy an unforgettable sailing experience
Five years of dreaming...five years of preparation. Several Yachts passed their wishlist, they got married in the meantime and sold everything to follow their dream and “Go for it”.
Their luxurious Sailing Yacht has all the comforts you could wish for. The "Yours Truly" is a sophisticated Beneteau '57 ft long (17.80 m) Sailing Yacht with beautiful lines - a real eye-catcher! She used to sail the waters of Dubai, where she regularly ranked in the Regattas top 5. The yacht is completely refitted in Sweden. As a result, this classic Sailing Yacht meets today's requirements and is fully updated to meet the needs of their guests for comfort and safety.
The "Yours Truly" is a boutique hotel on the water that provides different fabulous views every day. Outdoors the "Yours Truly" offers a spacious cockpit, a beautiful new teak deck for pure relaxation, a swimming platform and a freshwater shower. On the front deck you can swing in a hammock. Plus there's enough space just to hang out!
On the lower deck you enter the central spacious living room with mahogany interior and leather sofas. The kitchen is spacious and fully equipped with all of the necessary cooking utensils. From there you have access to the cabins. Two cabins are located in the prow (front), each with its own toilet & sink and a door to a shared shower. The master cabin is in the stern (back) and offers a private toilet, sink & shower.
A carefree holiday with just one task: leave yourselves in our hands and just enjoy.
Find more about Sun Sea Sailing here
📍 Lefkada Town
Fantasia Sailing "San Giorgio"
Luxurious yachting experience
Fantasia Sailing, located in Lefkada is a family business which deals with vessel rental. Their great love for sailing made this venture a reality with the acquisition of a brand new Catamaran Lagoon 42, 2017. That is the very reason of choosing this model and that is why they equipped San Giorgio with all the necessary extras that will make your stay relaxing and memorable.
The vessel can accommodate up to 10 people. Specifically, she provides four double cabins and each one has its separate luxury bathroom. In addition, there are two single cabins with separate toilets, a spacious salon with direct communication with the cockpit, which is her great benefit.
Easy 360o movement round the vessel without any obstacles that make San Giorgio cozy and commodious. They will try through our years of experience to offer you the best possible stay in our vessel. Make your dream a reality, travelling in Greek seas with the ultramodern Lagoon 42 San Giorgio.
Find more about Fantasia Sailing "San Giorgio" here
📍 Lefkada Town
Lefkada trip planner
How to come to Lefkada by air, by car or bus, by sea
Boat yacht rentals in Lefkada
Accommodation in Lefkada
Car rentals in Lefkada
Continue reading: Sailing in the Ionian Sea
Do you need a map of the Ionian sea region? Check this: Ionian sea charts
Recommended book:Ionian, the inland sea: Meganisi, Kalamos, Kastos
Text: Effie Barla