December 10th, 2018
#dodecanese meltemi winds

Best Island Group in Greece for a Gulet Charter Holiday in July and August

It’s Greece this year! School is out and you’re looking for a great family holiday that will keep the kids super happy.  Well lots of water toys and the sea is a sure winner and don’t forget to bring the underwater camera, right? The more affordable multi-family yacht charter option are gulet cruises. Wide spacious decks, roomy cabins with air conditioning and private bathrooms.  Sounds alright doesn’t it?  There are so many to choose from in Turkey for the Greek islands.  So which island group is the best in July and August?

One of the most popular island Group asked is the Cyclades. But during the months of July and August this is hard to accommodate. Why? It’s because of the serious weather conditions. The Central Aegean experiences the Etesian winds or otherwise known as the Meltemi winds or North winds between May to September. What is this like?

 

The etesian winds are the prevailing annually recurring summer winds, blowing over large parts of Greece, the Aegean Sea and eastern Mediterranean. The name derives from the Greek ‘etesios’, annual.

According to C. Michael Hogan, the Etesian winds are the dominant weather influence in the Aegean Basin. They are at their strongest in the afternoon and often die down at night, but sometimes meltemi winds last for days without a break. Similar winds blow in the Adriatic and Ionian regions.

These winds start during the early afternoon it is said, but we have seen it begin in the morning around 9:00 am or earlier and can reach between 4 – 7 beaufort.  The winds are unpredictable and can last for days, leaving boats in shelter until it dies down in the evening hours. Then at night it is still, as if the winds never happened.  It can affect a very small region and take time away from Greece yacht charter holidays.

Winds in Mykonos

Winds in Mykonos

It brings with it clear skies, excellent visibility, and great relief during hot summer months. But for gulet owners and captains it is not preferred at all and rare that you will find charter gulets that will accept a Cyclades itinerary.

Having said all that, the best island group where these winds are more calmer is the Dodeceanse, particularly the southwest region around Symi and Rhodes.  The northern islands in the Dodecanese are ok too because the islands are close enough and still, travellers can enjoy their gulet charter holidays all the way from Kos to Patmos and return.

#dodecanese meltemi winds

#dodecanese meltemi winds

The Ionian is calmer as well, but there are so few gulet charter options available. We advise the Dodecanese because that is where you will find the most selection of gulet charters for blue cruise charters in the Greek islands.

Dodecanese during Meltemi

Dodecanese during Meltemi

Those who are very familiar and enjoy sailing, windsurfers, kite surfers and the like love the Meltemi season!

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