Star Clippers add three Maiden port calls in Greece
Tall ship sailing specialist Star Clippers has included three maiden port calls within two round-trip sailings from Athens in July 2021, taking in the lesser known Greek islands of Symi, Chalki and Kastellorizo for the first time.
The departures on board the company’s head-turning flag-ship Royal Clipper embark in Athens on 20th and 27th July 2021 and for bookings made before 31st January 2021, include a 10% early booking discount, currently £1709pp for the seven night full board sailing.
The first port of call is to the island of Kastellorizo, the most easterly of Greek islands, just a mile from the Turkish coastline. Here the only sign of life, other than olive groves, tranquil bays and limestone rock formations, is the harbour village with its colourful, tall balconied houses, tavernas and yachts hugging the shore-line. The Oscar winning film `Mediteraneo’ was filmed there and Dave Gilmour wrote his instrumental track `Castellorizon’ after staying on the tranquil island.
After a port call to Fethiye in Turkey Royal Clipper drops anchor alongside its second maiden port call, the mountainous island of Symi, steeped in mythology and history and today visited by small yachts and boats seeking its isolated bays and beaches. The main harbour town is influenced by Italian occupation a century ago, with an amphitheatre of pastel coloured neoclassical houses rising on all sides of the bay.
Chalki is the third and smallest of the Dodecanese islands included in Royal Clipper’s new sailing itinerary. Its few-hundred inhabitants live in the neoclassic mansions and houses built in the mid-19th century when the island was prosperous through trade and sponge fishing. Now a traffic-free, tranquil outpost, just 10km long and 3kms wide, the island resembles a tiny Rhodes, without the tourism.
The final port call before returning to Pireaus, Athens, is to Milos in the Cyclades to the north of Crete, centred around a dramatic volcanic caldera, with dozens of beaches, picturesque villages and dramatic rock formations. The island’s most famous export was the Venus de Milo, now in the Louvre, discovered in the ancient city ruins.