Nisi Dhia

Finally we’re off again after our planned over-winter of 3 months in Aghios Nikolaos.  We enjoyed our time there and made some good friends amongst the other liveaboards in the marina.  A highspot each week was a communal walk up into the hills which gave us experience of the beautiful Cretan countryside combined with wonderful views and much needed exercise.

 

Some of our friends at the bar next to the marina at Ag Nik:

 

A local landmark & views:

 

The marina and mountains beyond:

 

When it comes to leaving at this time of year, the trick is to find a weather window that will allow the adventure to re-start.  The forecast kept changing with the first weather window showing increasingly strong winds as the day approached.  Before we left it still looked within our capabilities to get to a safe port before the next storm hit so we decided to get going, as it would be another week before the winds were even in the right direction again.  In the end our first day was mostly motoring (boring), with under an hour with the engine off.  Skipper thought all was well when we headed off; electricity, water & lines all disconnected, what could be wrong?  45 mins later we realised that we’d left our boarding plank behind!  So back again and with help from our ex-neighbours, picked it up, and got going once more running 1.5 hrs behind plan which luckily wasn’t crucial.

 

We were told to avoid Iraklion, Crete’s rather unattractive capital and unfriendly port, so made instead for this anchorage on a barren island a bit to the north, reputed to have good shelter even in the forecast southerlies.  It took us a couple of goes to find the right spot to anchor in, but we did have good holding and the seas entering the inlet were much reduced from what hit us leaving the next morning!  L slept well, but D was kept awake by the wind noise and bucking boat.