Ionian Sea

From CruisersWiki

Jump to: navigation, search
WorldMediterraneanItalyAlbaniaGreeceIonian Sea
38°17.914'N, 019°55.752'E Chart icon.png
There are Port(s) of Entry here
AlbaniaSarandëVlorëGreeceCorfu or KerkyraPrevezaLefkas or LefkadaKefaloniaIthaca or IthakeZakinthos or Zakynthos or ZanteKatakoloPylosItalySiracusaCataniaReggio di CalabriaRocella IonicaCatanzaroCrotoneTarantoGallipoliSanta Maria de Leuca
About this image
The Ionian Sea Cruising Region- For details click on a name or an area

The Ionian Sea (Greek Ιόνιο Πέλαγος) is a very popular cruising area because its weather conditions in the summer months are less extreme than in the Aegean. As a result, it is more crowded. Many charter flotillas operate here and many Italians during their summer vacation move with fast inflatables between the Italian and Greek coasts.

The Ionian Sea cruising region has an area of 2,510,000 km2. The distance from Catania, in Sicily, to Zakinthos Island is 166 nM, and from the southern tip of the Salento Peninsula in Italy to Corfu is 70 nM. It is a deep sea with a maximum depth of 4,900 m (16,000 ft).

The Ionian Sea region has been inhabited at least from the Neolithic times. The Ionian islands were settled during the late Bronze Ages by the Myceneans around 1500-1100 B.C. Their main settlements were in Pylos, in the Peloponnese, Ithaca & Kefalonia, and Corfu. It is these people who are celebrated by Homer in the Iliad and even more in the Odyssey.

The west coast of the Ionian, the Calabria region of Italy was settled by Italic Oscan-speaking tribes. Two of these tribes included the Oenotri (roughly translated into the "vine-cultivators") and the Itali. Greek contact with the latter resulted in the entire peninsula (modern Italy) taking the name of the tribe.

The Eastern islands and coast of Greek Epirus, were colonized from mainland Greece, first on the 8th century BC by Eritreans from Euboea who settled in Corfu and Epirus and in the classical times from a group of refugees from Corinth came on the island and founded a colony in Corfu. Corinthians also colonized Ithaca. Then, colonists from Corfu colonized the Calabrian coast founding the cities of Rhegion (Reggio di Calabria), Sybaris, Kroton (Crotone), and Locri.

During classical times Corfu had strained relations with her mother city Corinth leading to armed conflict. During an important battle, Corfu asked for help to the Athenians. The Athenian support to Corfu was one more reason for the rise of the Peloponnesian Wars. The alliance between the two towns lasted for almost a century when the Macedonians, under Philip II, won a decisive battle in 338 B.C.

The Macedonians conquered the Ionian and put it under their protection. Corfu, in 300 B.C., was attacked and conquered by the Spartans. They were followed Illyrians and then by the Romans.The Romans ruled on the the Ionian from 229 B.C. until 337 A.D. In 330 the Roman emperor Constantine I moved the capital of the empire from Rome to Constantinople. This was the beginning of the Byzantine Empire that dominated the Ionian until the 10th century AD. At that time the Normans, under the leadership of Robert Guiscard's brother Roger, established a presence in this borderland, and organized a government along Byzantine lines that was run by the local Greek magnates of Calabria. In 1098, Pope Urban II named Roger the equivalence of an apostolic legate later formed what became the Kingdom of Sicily. The Ionian islands and Epirus remained under the Byzantines until the the destruction of Constantinople during the Fourth Crusade on 13 April 1204.

After that momentous event the fate of the Ionian Region splits. Calabria on the west falls under the Kingdom of Naples until the unification with Italy in 1861, the islands are controled by the Republic of Venice, and Epirus becomes the Despotate of Epirus which lasted until 1318. In 1430 Epirus became part of the Ottoman Empire.

After the rise of Napoleon the Ionian islands were annexed to the French Empire in 1807 until the English defeated the French fleet in Zakinthos in October 2 1809 and established the United States of the Ionian Islands under their protection. Following the Greek War of Independence Britain in 1864 ceded the islands to the new Greek state.

In the 18th century, as the power of the Ottomans declined, Epirus became a virtually independent region under the despotic rule of Ali Pasha Tepelena, an Albanian brigand who became the provincial governor of Ioannina in 1788 . At the height of his power, he controlled much of western Greece, the [Peloponnese] and (southern) Albania. In 1881 parts of southern Epirus, under the Treaty of Berlin were ceded to Greece, in 1913, after the Wars the rest of southern Epirus joined Greece, and northern Epirus joined [Albania].

During World War II Epirus was the scene of fierce battles between the Axisand Greek forces which ended in the occupation of the Ionian region. During this occupation and after the collapse of the Mussolini fascist regime the Italians surrendered to the allies and the Germans landed on the island of Kefalonia. They rounded up the Italian division which until that time was occupying the island. They executed the lot, about 3,000 men with only very few escaping, helped by the locals.

Following World War II Enver Hoxha, who was active in the resistance againts the Nazisestablished himself as the dictator of Albania. His regime, that lasted 40 years followed an extreme form of communism and totally isolated the coutry from the outside world. Travel to and from Albania, let alone cruising, was next to impossible. After Hoxha's death in 1985 many of these restrictions were slowly eased. Today it is possible to visit Albania with a private yacht but stopping is restricted to only 6 designated ports.

On August 12, 1953 an earthquake of 7.1 magnitude devastated the Ionian islands especially Kefalonia and Zakinthos.

Charts

BA
1339 Sicily to Kriti
188 Entrance to the Adriatic Sea including Nísos Kérkira
189 Nísos Sapiénza to Nisos Paxoí
Imray-Tetra
G11 North Ionian Islands
NIMA
54010 Malta to Kriti including The Ionian Sea
Greek
2 Ionio Pelagos

Weather

The summer weather in the Ionian sea is dominated by a NW to WNW wind, the maistro. In general this wind is less strong, force 2 to 5, and more steady then the corresponding meltemi in the Aegean. Nevertheless an sailor must take watch out for gusts when sailing along lee side of tall islands and be aware that in the evenings there may be katabatic winds from the tall mountains, of force 5 to 6 and from the NE.

From the October until mid May the wind can be either from the north of from the south with several gales, usually from the S to SE. At this time, waterspouts are also possible. These usually can be detected on the radar and avoided but the sailor must keep a good watch.

In the spring and the autumn there can be frequent thunderstorms with accompanied squalls. Corfu has the highest rain fall in Greece.

Sources for weather information:

  • Athens Observatory gives 3 day (every 6 hrs) detailed graphical forecasts for the Greek seas.
  • Poseidon System gives 3 day forecasts for Greek seas from the National Center for Marine Research (Not very reliable).
  • Weather on Line provides detailed 7 day forecast charts for the Mediterranean, Northern Europe and the Atlantic.
  • Greek Meteorological Service (EMY) it includes the Navtex weather bulletins.
  • Wind Guru a surfer's site with worldwide wind forecasts.

Currents & Tides

Typical Surface Currents in the Mediterranean Sea

The surface currents in the Ionian Sea are roughly counter-clockwise: they flow towards the north up the Greek coast and then turn west and south along the Italian coast. In general this current is not very strong and it rarely exceeds 1.2 knots. You can get up to date maps of surface current, temperature, and water elevation (tides) from the Hellenic Centre for Marine Research.

In general the tides in the Ionian Sea are weak - about 10-50 cm

Passages

Cruise
Popular passages & best timing, etc.

Communication

Also see World Cruiser's Nets

  • Greek Coast Guard - VHF 12
  • Olympia Radio, This is the Greek VHF network. Local channels are listed in each individual port.
  • Cellular Phone(GSM/GPRS). Despite the mountains and the numerous islands Greece and Italy have very good GSM/GPRS coverage.

Navigation

Add any navigation notes such approaches, dangers etc here. If this section does not apply remove it.

Countries, Groups, Ports, and Islands

Key to symbols: |Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |Marina icon – marina |Anchorage icon – anchorage |Needs data icon – needs data ||
Greece Italy Albania
Anticythera Anticythera /wiki/Anticythera Island icon – island |Needs data icon – needs data |
Cythera Cythera /wiki/Cythera Island icon – island |Harbour icon – harbour |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Pylos Pylos /wiki/Pylos Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |Marina icon – marina |
Zakinthos (Zante) Zakinthos (Zante) /wiki/Zakinthos_(Zante) Island icon – island |Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Katakolo Katakolo /wiki/Katakolo Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |
OxiaOxia/wiki/Patraikos_Kolpos Island icon – island |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Kefalonia Kefalonia /wiki/Kefalonia Island icon – island |Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Ithaca Ithaca /wiki/Ithaca Island icon – island |Harbour icon – harbour |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Atokos Atokos /wiki/Atokos Island icon – island |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Astakos Astakos /wiki/Astakos Harbour icon – harbour |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Meganisi Meganisi /wiki/Meganisi Island icon – island |Harbour icon – harbour |Marina icon – marina |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Palairos Palairos /wiki/Palairos Harbour icon – harbour |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Kastos Kastos /wiki/Kastos Island icon – island |Harbour icon – harbour |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Kalamos Kalamos /wiki/Kalamos Island icon – island |Harbour icon – harbour |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Lefkas Lefkas /wiki/Lefkas Island icon – island |Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |Marina icon – marina |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Preveza Preveza /wiki/Preveza Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |Marina icon – marina |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Vonitsa Vonitsa /wiki/Vonitsa Harbour icon – harbour |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Amfilochia Amfilochia /wiki/Amfilochia Harbour icon – harbour |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Paxos or PaxoiPaxos or Paxoi/wiki/Paxos Island icon – island |Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Mourtos and Sivota IslandsMourtos and Sivota Islands/wiki/Mourtos_and_Sivota_Islands Island icon – island |Harbour icon – harbour |Marina icon – marina |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Parga Parga /wiki/Parga Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Plataria Plataria /wiki/Plataria Harbour icon – harbour |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Igoumenitsa Igoumenitsa /wiki/Igoumenitsa Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |Needs data icon – needs data |
Corfu Corfu /wiki/Corfu Island icon – island |Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |Marina icon – marina |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Campomarino (Maruggio) Campomarino (Maruggio) /wiki/Campomarino_(Maruggio) Marina icon – marina |
Catanzaro Catanzaro /wiki/Catanzaro Harbour icon – harbour |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
CiroCiro/wiki/Ciro_Marina Harbour icon – harbour |Marina icon – marina |
Crotone Crotone /wiki/Crotone Harbour icon – harbour |Marina icon – marina |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Gallipoli Gallipoli /wiki/Gallipoli Harbour icon – harbour |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Cariati Marina Cariati Marina /wiki/Cariati_Marina Harbour icon – harbour |Marina icon – marina |
Le Bocche di Gallipari, Badolato Le Bocche di Gallipari, Badolato /wiki/Le_Bocche_di_Gallipari,_Badolato Marina icon – marina |
Le Castella Le Castella /wiki/Le_Castella Harbour icon – harbour |
Marina di Policoro Marina di Policoro /wiki/Marina_di_Policoro Marina icon – marina |
Marina Laghi di Sibari Marina Laghi di Sibari /wiki/Marina_Laghi_di_Sibari Marina icon – marina |
Mola di Bari Mola di Bari /wiki/Mola_di_Bari Harbour icon – harbour |Marina icon – marina |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Porto Cesareo Porto Cesareo /wiki/Porto_Cesareo Harbour icon – harbour |
Porto degli Argonauti Porto degli Argonauti /wiki/Porto_degli_Argonauti Marina icon – marina |
Reggio di Calabria Reggio di Calabria /wiki/Reggio_di_Calabria Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |Marina icon – marina |
Roccella Ionica Roccella Ionica /wiki/Roccella_Ionica Marina icon – marina |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Scilla Scilla /wiki/Scilla Harbour icon – harbour |
Taranto Taranto /wiki/Taranto Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |Marina icon – marina |
Vieste Vieste /wiki/Vieste Harbour icon – harbour |
Ksamil Ksamil /wiki/Ksamil Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Sarande Sarande /wiki/Sarande Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Himare Himare /wiki/Himare Harbour icon – harbour |Anchorage icon – anchorage |
Orikum Orikum /wiki/Orikum Marina icon – marina |
Vlore Vlore /wiki/Vlore Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |
DurrësDurrës/wiki/Durres Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |
Shengjin Shengjin /wiki/Shengjin Port of entry icon – port of entry |Harbour icon – harbour |

Things to do Ashore

See individual port, anchorage, or island.

Friends

Contact details of "Cruiser's Friends" that can be contacted for local information or assistance.

Forums

List links to discussion threads on partnering forums. (see link for requirements)

Links

References & Publications


Comments

We welcome users' contributions to the Wiki. Please click on Comments to view other users' comments, add your own personal experiences or recommend any changes to this page following your visit.

  • We found the Ionian a beautiful and easy place to sail. Lovely harbours, sheltered waters, pleasant afternoon breeze, and great tavernas. The temperatures climb quickly once into July and we found it overbearing by mid July. In contrast, the cooler waters in the North Adriatic make July and August pleasant. --Monterey July 2011



This is a usable page of the cruising guide. However, please contribute if you can to help it grow further. Click on Comments to add your personal notes on this page or to discuss its contents. Alternatively, if you feel confident to edit the page, click on the edit tab at the top and enter your changes directly.


SailorSmiley.gifContributors to this page

Names: Istioploos, Lighthouse, Summercruise, Wayward, Haiqu, Monterey


Personal tools
advertisement
Friends of Cruisers Wiki