Tag Archives: Messina

Crossing the Ionian to Argostoli

We set off from Messina at 8.40 on Sunday morning, the 28th and had an uneventful crossing to Argostoli in Cephalonia, arriving at 1030 on Tuesday.

White Lion on our radar

There nearest thing we had to excitement was passing John and Isabel in White Lion at 3 am, Italian time, in the Ionian Sea.   They had left Argostoli at 3am on Sunday and we were expecting to pass each other so even at night it was easy to figure out who we each were.   We had a chat with him and Isa on the VHF before we continued on our separate ways.   Small world.

“Are we there yet?” “Almost …..”
Sunset over Calabria

We managed to sail for some of the time, leaving the Messina Straits with the wind gusting to 25 knots from behind us giving us over 7 knots with one reef in the main sail.    We sailed for a good part of Monday and although we were motoring over night both nights, as the sun rose on Tuesday morning with the wind just getting to 12 knots, again from behind us, I just rolled out the Code Zero as we approached the coast of Cephalonia.

Sunrise over Cephalonia

We were making up to 6 knots in some of the gusts and it was lovely to watch the sun rise over the island with just the sound of the wake as we ran towards the south east corner of the island.   I’d never sailed under just the Code Zero before and it was interesting to find that we were getting as much speed without the Main Sail as with it.

On our way to Argostoli we were to pass the bay close to the hotel where Ivan and Lu are going to stay, and as there is nothing in the Pilot Books about the bay we decided to have reconnoitre.   Our plan is to anchor in the bay and pick them up from the beach in the tender, but that would only work if we could actually anchor and the beach was accessible.  It was a successful visit and I now know just where we can anchor to meet them, even sent them a photo of the place!

So with ‘recce’ completed we made our way round to Argostoli and moored on the town quay.   I am frequently asked whether the boat is moored, tied up, parked etc.  Well this time the technical term is moored because we had to use a technique called a Mediterranean Moor where you use your anchor to hold the front of the boat and mooring lines on the quay to secure the back.   I’d only ever done this in big ships many years ago so this was a bit of a first for me but by 1030, now 1130 in Greece, we were all secure and looking forward to some sleep after a well earned beer and a glass of bubbly in the aptly named ‘Compass Bar’ just across the road!

On the Town Quay in Argostoli