Freediving and sailing vacation in Greece
An idyllic Greece diving vacation in the Ionian Sea, equally perfect for experienced free divers and those that would like to improve their technique.
Sailing and freediving in the Ionian Sea Full coaching and equipment provided Introduction to spear fishing Skandalopetra diving
£1150To£1250 excluding flights
Priced based on 2 sharing a cabin, including all the yacht costs, yoga instructor, freediving instructor, skipper, bed linen, towels, breakfast with local and fresh products and EYpackage (telescope, snorkelling, walks, basic sailing lesson).
Description of Freediving and sailing vacation in Greece
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SINGLE USE PLASTIC-FREE:
As a sailing operator we have always been very aware of plastic use. Having been sailing and exploring the area for almost 10 years now we have faced the problem of plastic bottles, plastic bags and other debris in the sea. On top of this, while freediving we can see this even more. Therefore, we have developed a mentality of taking watching our plastic usage, especially when it comes to single use such as with water bottles, plastic bags, straws and cutlery. It is important to see and understand the problem and then eliminate it.
We offer linen totes to our guests on arrival for avoiding using plastic bags during the trip for the shopping etc.
We have fresh water tanks on our boats for the refilling of bottles. We let the guests know that we have toiletries (shampoo and shower gel) so the don’t really need to bring onboard. We also recommend if they want to bring their own, to bring environmentally friendly shampoo and shower gel as well in reusable toiletries bottles.
For preserving food in our fridge we use re-usable containers to avoid the use of cling film. On top, there are no single use cups, single-use cutlery or plates onboard. The restaurants we visit do not also offer plastic cutlery, plates and cups and try to reduce plastic use when possible as well.
We have re-usable bamboo straws for drinks onboard and for use in restaurants which helps to spread the message of why we are using them to the restaurants and cafes we visit regularly during our trips.
This is a major problem and also source of motivation and inspiration. In the past. during a one week trip we would use on average around 70 plastic bottles which unfortunately could not be recycled (no appropriate facilities on the island). Therefore, we have installed fresh water tanks so we can have drinkable water onboard. We also have water bottles for the guests onboard as well as reusable glasses to fill and drink water from.
We always stop while sailing to pick up and floating plastic rubbish. Many times, we also pick up bottles or tin cans when freediving to clean the sea-bed. Any plastic bags that come onboard are stored and re-used for the rubbish. We are also planning some “cleaning” activities of the seabed and beaches at specific locations.
Education is a major part of our trips. The problem with plastic is one thing that we discuss with all guests and try to communicate our reasoning so that they too may feel motivated to tackle this problem. On our booking confirmation email starting this year, we also give advices and tips on how to avoid single use plastic onboard. What we try to develop is a mentality of avoiding plastic and consuming more than what we need at the places we visit. This has started with single-use bottles, cups and cutlery. In general, sailing is a way to think of how you can be as independent as possible and we therefore try to communicate the power we have to change things.
We can cater for vegetarian and vegan diets.
1 Reviews of Freediving and sailing vacation in Greece
5 out of 5 stars
Reviewed on 20 Sep 2022 by Siobhan Hartnoll
1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?
Elias, our skipper was incredible. As was Pavol, our freediving instructor. They balanced the personalities on the boat and we had such an amazing time.
2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?
Don't pack very much because the boat is small.
3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?
Yes, we went to lots of different restaurants spreading our money around and I felt like we were very self sufficient.
4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?
As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we've screened this (and every) vacation so that you can travel knowing it will help support the places and people that you visit, and the planet. Read how below.
PlanetWe have been sailing and exploring the marine system of the Ionian Sea since 2009 and have therefore developed knowledge and experience of both the beauty and also the threats. This way we have seen the problems that human activities create to the sea. We have tried and done our best to minimise our impact and reduce our energy demands by sailing as much as possible, using environmental friendly materials, minimise use of single use plastic, minimise waste and use renewable ways to generate electricity.
During our trips, we introduce our guests to this philosophy by providing the skills and equipment to explore the same ecosystem and therefore see in first hand both the beauty and the threats to our environment. We encourage them to act when we see any plastic floating or lying on the seabed, and to collect it. We alert our guests not to disturb the marine life and ecosystems while diving.
Some of the skills that are introduced to our guests are relaxation and breathing techniques, finning, immersion and equalization techniques. The gear provided are wetsuits so they can be more warm and comfortable in the water, quality masks for best fit and vision, weights for buoyancy adjustment and fins. Compared to scuba, freediving needs much more less gear and is focused on the mind and relaxation.
We have witnessed that people, through underwater involvement and exploration, gain a greater understanding and appreciation of the marine life and ecosystem. This itself only raises awareness and helps the protection of it. You are more likely to support and care for something that feels familiar!
Land is also a highlight in the trip.
We will go for a walk or hike either by the sea or through the paths in the hills to get to know the flora and fauna of the islands. Always taking care not to leave litter, be gentle in the way that we collect herbs (e.g. we hand-pick sage or oregan but with care not to hurt the plant so it can continue its cycle).
So far we have allowed our guests to get to know a way of living that is closer to the sea and the environment and far away from consumerism.
- We eat local . Almost everything comes from local producers and farms. We use and strongly suggest season products.
- Our menu onboard is mainly vegan/vegetarian.
- We sail as much as possible and plan trip always to be wind favoured.
- The boat doesnt use shore power. We use solar power from our P/V system.
- We encourage minimal fresh water use for showers and washing. All the loads on board are designed efficintly for low power consumption ( eg. LED bulbs).
- We have a special drinkable water tank (BISPHENOL A FREE / PHTHALATE - FREE ) , carbon filter, and hand pump so we don't use plastic bottles onboard for drinking ( a huge issue on yachting) .
In general sailing life itself consists in low energy consumption way of living . That's the spirit that we want to commune with our guests.
PeopleWe suggest to our guests specific local and family-run restaurants where we have been interacting with the owners and personnel for a long time. Local guides are employed for excursions to visit an archaeological site or for a guided hike or for other aquatic activities or even wine tasting.
There is also a specific issue that we highlight to all our guests, which is the sea farms. In our opinion they are extremely difficult to be really sustainable as they use both drugs and fish food with questionable origin. Instead, we suggest eating fresh fish brought in daily by fishermen (we can tell you which types of fish are likely to have been farmed).
We are sponsors of the Sailing Club of Patras in Greece who organise local sailing races and educate young sailors because we believe the more we get involved in the sea, the more we love it.
The trip is custom and personalised and, therefore, is against a major problem of Greece which is mass tourism. We don’t promote “all-inclusive” packages and do not organise massive flotillas (like many companies that work on the sailing vacations sector).