Boats always have something to do, they are sociable, flexible and adventurous beings.
Winter sailing is not only for the fearless scandinavians that give pride to their viking ancestors. There is actually a very thrilling life behind the curtains of the marinas that you thought forgotten in the supposedly gloomy winter.
Not everywhere are winters cloudy and rainy, especially not on sailing destinations. They are permanent paradises for the northern europeans and maybe for you too, even though their personality might change a bit. Locals and experienced sailors in places like Greece, Croatia and the south of Spain love winter sailing because they find peace in the tourist-empty sea and excitement in the rougher winds.
Excluding the permanent spring of the Caribbean or Canary Islands, each destination has its own creative way of facing the decrease of tourism during the low seasons.
In Croatia, for example, sailing is much different during the mild winter months than in the summer. The winds go wild in the Middle Adriatic Sea and the fiercest sailors gather in their pursuit. During the day it’s adventure, during the night maybe some cooking, playing cards in the peaceful marinas or, ¡more adventure! Night sailing in the raging seas. Wake up early to contemplate the inspiring dawn and enjoy some morning fishing. The sailing schools in Split and Primosten organize courses for experienced sailors who wish to improve their abilities with “bad and heavy weather conditions”. But when the Bura wind penetrates, he forces even them to leave the sea for safe land.
Locals also claim to enjoy winter sailing in Croatia. They find it peaceful and quiet and they take advantage of their sunny Adriatic days all year long. Thanks to their not-so-cold winter temperatures that stay between 17 and 25 degrees in November and 9 to 12 in January, they get the time to enjoy at ease their proud unspoiled coastlines.
Winter sailing in Greece is more worry-free than in Croatia, thanks to its idyllic calm and moderate winds that turn great for sailing. The Meltemi gusts that come unannounced from the North during summer, to shake the tranquil coves for a few but dangerous seconds, are no longer seen after August.
During the last and the first months of the year, the sailing tourism shifts to Swedish, Norwegian, Russian and other Northern-European people. They appreciate the sunny winters and come for real sailing, no sightseeing or beach explorations, just for the real thrill. They find peace in the empty islands and marinas. In some Greek coastal regions, the winters are mild and get a revitalizing amount of sun, with a bit of light rain before noon. Therefore, sailing schools stay open all year long.
In the Spanish Mediterranean some fleets shelter in Valencia, during the winter; where the sun still shines bright. The prices go down and different options of winter boat rental appear, like the “bonuses” that allow the client to exchange them for any week they choose; ideal for this season when the availability is so high. During the months from October to March we can find mostly retired people devoted to pure peaceful sailing.
Boats are also used as hotels. Yes, you heard it right, they compete with the loveliest suites and are significantly more inexpensive. In the winter months a boat can decrease its prices a 50% or more, hold up to 8 passengers and give them all the services of a hotel room or an apartment, including heating. A hotel will never offer you a better panorama or the sound of the seagulls and the hulls and floating piers rocked gently by the water.
In December and January, when there are not enough brave sailors, the boats still have a personal life, they take time for themselves. Most owners dedicate one month a year to remove the crafts from the water and give them maintainance. They are thoroughly cleaned, painted and sometimes remodeled or reequipped. They get ready to start the year like new.
Prepare for a winter sailing trip.
Take into account that, besides the boats that can get to cost even 900 EUR per week during the winter season, also the flights, hotels, tourism agencies and other members of the touristic sector, lower their prices significantly.
In these adventures, you need to be prepared for all. For sun with sunscreen , sunglasses and hats and for the cold with more complex equipment. aBoatTime recommends you to get a wind jacket that is also waterproof and some warm clothes underneath. Take with you a weather gear, some tracksuits for cool days and night sailing, winter gloves, a ski hat and soft-soled non-marking shoes.
Do not deprive yourself from the sea life. Not a day of the year should not be gloomy, when it can be revitalizing. Fill your spirits with the exciting and peaceful possibilities of the sea during the winter yacht charters, it will be an original and much more affordable experience.