View on Santorini sea

Sailing the Mediterranean at any time of the year is always as super exciting as it is rewarding. That’s because the region is endowed with countless dramatic coastlines, sparkling crystalline sea waters and idyllic landscapes, which never seem to lose their charm.

If you’ve been craving to experience the magic of the countries aligned across the region’s expansive coastal strip, then you can charter a yacht this coming summer and get your adventure going.

But first, you need to know where to sail in the Mediterranean. And here are top 8 destinations that can make perfect holiday spots, especially for charterers:



1. Croatia

Croatia is a pure paradise when it comes to sailing. With more than 1,200 islands spanning across the Dalmatian coast, there’s literally a lot to explore both inshore and offshore.

The beautiful scenery, tagged with remnants of the country’s turbulent history is something that will never go unnoticed. In popular destinations like Split, Dubrovnik, Hvar, and Milna, you can enjoy some exciting cruising activities alongside other enthusiastic sailors.

If you would wish to take the yachting adventure to a quieter and more secluded place, you can count that on the numberless coves and islets spread along Croatia’s dreamy coast to give you respite. After all, only 50 out of the total 1,200 islands are inhabited. So privacy, relaxation, and endless exploration are things that are almost guaranteed here.

Best time to sail in Croatia

2. Italy’s Amalfi Coast

The Amalfi coast, which spans over 30 miles long, is a yachters playground for many reasons. First is its picturesque coastline, second its sparkling blue waters and then there’s this rocky landscape that plays host to a number of hillside villages and historic ruins.

Aside from enjoying the charming ocean vibe and discovering the numerous historic remains, you’ll get an opportunity to sample designer fashion items and taste the delicious Italian cuisines while on your sailing trip.

With a chartered yacht, you can cruise to other nearby destinations like the Bay of Naples, Capri, Pompeii, Sorento, and Cetara, just to satisfy your wanderlust. The region is usually packed with crowds in the high-season of summer, something that cannot go well with those hoping for some tranquil sailing.

But on the flipside, it can be quite an ideal time if you want to join in the sailing frenzy and/or get the better of Amalfi’s cosmopolitan lifestyle.

Amalfi Coast Italy

3. French Riviera

Sitting gracefully in the southeast corner of France, the French Riviera is a Mediterranean coastline that has won the hearts of many tourists and destination writers alike. It is home to a number of popular yachting hubs like Nice, Cannes, Antibes, St Tropez, and Monaco.

A typical sailing tour in the French Riviera proffers to you innumerable opportunities to taste the best of French foods, explore the stunning beaches and party hard while at it.

And if you don’t fancy the frenzy and highlife of the mainland, you can escape to a number of nearby islands like Isle du Hyeres, Porquerolles, and Ile du Levant, which are pretty unspoiled.

View on St Tropez sea

4. Balearic Islands

The Balearic Islands, which constitute a complex of eleven islands, make up a yachters paradise, sitting off the eastern part of Spain. There are four islands here though, that outshine the others: Ibiza, Mallorca, Formentera, and Menorca. That’s basically where
most visiting yachters spend their time.

Following the passing of the new law allowing non-EU flagged commercial yachts to cruise the Balearic Islands, there has never been so much yachting activity in the Balearic Sea like now.

And everything here, from the natural beauty (both inshore and offshore) to the vibrant nightlife through to the local food simply set you up for an unforgettable sailing experience in Spain.

Balearic Islands

5. Ionian Islands

The seven Ionian Islands on the West coast of Greece are by their very standing majestic, versatile and welcoming. Lying gracefully on a 50-mile stretch from north to south of the coast, the islands feel a bit relaxed, with each of them offering its own unique adventures.

If you love sailing in flat waters at mild to moderate winds, then you can feel right at home on these islands. Corfu, the largest of the islands, is also the most popular among tourists. But if you have an eye for secluded sailing, you can try Smugglers Cove and/or the Blue Grotto in Zakynthos.

Across the islands, you’ll encounter tiny fishing villages, serene anchorage tucked into the hillsides and waterfront tavernas. Tasting the seafood, soaking in crystalline warm sea waters and studying the Greek mythology are some of the things that can make your sailing tour in the region truly rewarding.

View on a coat in Greece

6. Corsica

Lying just a few miles north of Sardinia, Corsica is a somewhat rustic island with dramatic coastal sceneries. The many anchorages and well-developed marinas in the coastline make the island even more desirable to sailors.

We cannot go without saying that the legendary Napoleon was born in Corsica. And his name still remains in the hearts and mouths of the locals. If you are so much into social life and keen in exploring the rich history and culture of France, then the islands can be a great place to be.

Even more amazing is the Calvi and Bonifacio ports that offer a romantic atmosphere paired with a nostalgic charm. And with the stunning and indigenous Lavezzi and Palombaggia beaches that sit just a tiny distance away, the relaxation and entertainment here can never be enough.

View on Corsica island

7. Turkey’ Turquoise Coast

Stretching a staggering 1,000 miles along the coast, the Turkish Coast or Turkish Riviera is as stunning as you can ever imagine. Right from fine beaches and hidden coves to spectacular mountain scenery all through to the blue-green waters, the sailing adventure here is quite unbeatable. There are a number of charter companies that have set base on the coast, so you can always feel free to charter a gullet or Turkish crewed power yacht and sail your holiday away.

8. Sardinia

Being the largest island in the larger Western Mediterranean, and dubbed the home of regattas, there’s no way Sardinia could fail to feature on this roundup.

The rugged coastline, stretching 1,100 miles, plays host to a number of stunning anchorages and harbors, beautiful beaches and bays as well as medieval villages with captivating historical and cultural remains.

The winds here often blow at a steady speed of 20 knots or more, which makes it a not-so-favorable spot for beginners. But you can always go on an adventure on the crewed charter if you aren’t that seasoned. Two of the most amazing destinations in Sardinia you should never miss as a sailor, especially on summer, are Porto Cervo and Costa Smeralda.

View on Sardinia


Conclusion

From the destinations discussed above, it is without a doubt that the Mediterranean offers super amazing spots for sailing. Soaking into the pure natural sceneries, dipping yourself in the crystal-clear waters and tasting various local foods are some of the amazing activities that can satisfy your craving for adventure in the Mediterranean.

But even more exciting is digging into the history of the ruins that are littered along the many Mediterranean coastlines If you are planning to go sailing in the Mediterranean any time soon, make sure you book a yacht charter and/or reserve a berth early enough to avoid missing out on the experience.

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Have you sailed in the Mediterranean? If so, what is your favorite place? Feel free to share your experience in the comments below.

18 COMMENTS

  1. I would like to say that I am a person who like to travel a lot and I always travel when I have time and with my family. From the list written above, I have been to Croatia. It is such beautiful and calm place and if anyone wasn’t there, they should because one more thing that is awesome is food, it is so delicious.

    • Hi Daniel,

      You are right about Croatia, it is a beautiful place to be and the food is amazing!

      Thank you for the comment and wish you a great day!

  2. Very impressed with the images in your post, it makes me want to take a trip and explore the Mediterranean Sea for myself. We have talked about where to go and what to go see in that region but have not made any plans as yet.

    The Ionian Islands looks like a dream vacation and you describe the amenities very well, is it a very family friendly environment in that area? 

    Always wondered how it would be to go on a family adventure and now they are getting to the agfe where they will be able to remember it well.

    Thanks for the interesting post and stirring up the interest in traveling to the Mediterranean Sea for a vacation.

    • Hi Chad,

      Thank you! I am glad this post inspires you to go sail in the Mediterranean:)

      Indeed, the Ionian is truly a dream place for chartering as the sea is calm and the winds are mild. The Ionian is very friendly, it is the ideal place for novice sailors and for families. I can assure you there is nothing to worry about in the Ionian!

      Let me know if you need more info, I am always happy to help!

  3. My brother has a friend that visited Croatia and one of the places he visited had a solar powered walkway that looked AMAZING! This is definitely one of the destinations I want to visit because from the photos I’ve seen, it’s definitely a gorgeous, clean place and I think this puts Florida to shame by a long shot!

    • Hi there,

      Yes, Croatia is undoubtedly a beautiful country, and you’ll be amazed at the number of historical monuments there are to visit in Croatia. 
      If you plan to visit Croatia, I would highly recommend you to do it by boat, that way you can cover more areas and you enjoy the beautiful landscapes. 

      Thank you for the comment and wish you a great day!

  4. The Mediterranean Sea is known for its tranquillity and beauty but Mediterranean sea can have rough days so it´s better to prepare yourself well and get some sailing experience, strongly recommended doing a practical training course for learning how to anchor a boat and how to avoid dangers such as submerged rocks or rough winds before crossing the Mediterranean sea. Great informative article about the Mediterranean sea, thanks for sharing.

    • Hi Bushra,

      Yes you right, but only if you are navigating the boat by yourself, but not if you have a skipper on the boat. Also when the winds are strong and the weather doesn’t permit to set sail, then you simply don’t go sailing! 
      A captain will never put his passengers in danger, they are usually well informed about the winds and sailing conditions.
      Thank you for the comment and wish you a fantastic day!

  5. Daniella,

    These are the most beautiful waters I have ever seen, and no not personally, yet.  With everything that you have provided here I am not sure which place I am going to pick to travel first the French Riviera has always been one place I have wanted to visit but now I am thinking Italy’s Amalfi coast!  Italy is the one place I am going to be traveling within the next couple of years so after reading your review I am leaning toward Amialfi coast.

    Thank you so much for opening my eyes to these locations and now I am going to be impatiently waiting until I can travel to Italy.

    Susan

    • HI Susan,

      I am convinced you made the right choice! Italy is such a beautiful country and Amalfi coast is just stunning! Not to mention the wine and the food are delicious!

      Thank you for the comment and wish you a lovely day!

  6. Hi,

    Some great tips in there. Personally, my favorite is Croatia. I am a frequent visitor there for holidays although I have never sailed, but it is something I am considering to do. Any tips on the boat for the first time sailors? Also it would be great to read about your experience with Croatia, I mean do you have any favourite place or island?

    Thanks,

    Eugen

    • Hi Eugen

      I totally agree, Croatia is a lovely country, which is why it so popular. If you have never sailed before, then you will need to hire a boat with a skipper. Now if you want to bareboating, you should, of course, learn how to navigate a boat and obtain your skipper certificate. My favorite places in Croatia are 
      Split, Dubrovnik, Lastovo, Vis, and Korcula. These are beautiful spots to stroll around!

      I hope it helped! Let me if you need more info. I’ll be more than happy to assist!

      Thank you for the comment and wish you a fantastic day!

  7. Oh my gosh, these are all beautiful destinations! I have been trying to help a friend come up with an awesome sailing trip for her wedding anniversary. She and her husband love to sail and I love to travel, so they thought I could help! Your website is great and now I have lots of choices to investigate for her. They are going to set sail for two weeks and love fun in the sun, so I would imagine any of these places will be great, right?

    • Hi Matts,

      Absolutely, all of these destinations are beautiful and no matter where your friend and her husband will be sailing in the Mediterranean, They will love it!

      Thank you for the comment and wish you a lovely day!

  8. We will be sailing the this June 2019. My friend has his own boat. This will be our first time to sail in Europe. I would like your recommendations where to sail. I believed we will start sailing in France. Can you please suggest an itinerary for us? We plan to sail for 2 weeks. Definitely, we would like to visit Croatia, Amalfi Coast, Santorini, Sardinia. Are all these possible in 2 weeks or 2 1/2?

    Thanks.

    • Hi Sarah,

      Happy Sailing:)
      I am afraid two an half week won’t be enough to visit all the countries you have mentioned:) We did sail through the Mediterranean a few years ago and it took us 2 months, with a motor yacht:) And it was not enough to enjoy all the beauties that the Mediterranean offers. Anyway, our route was:

      We started at Cannes, then sailed to Florence, Palermo, Venice, Croatia, Zadar, Split, Patras, Kalamata, and Athen.

      I hope it helped.

      Please let me know if you need more info:) I’ll be glad to assist!

      Thank you for the comment and wish you a wonderful trip!

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