The Journey as We Imagine it Today

Filled with culture and history, sailing around Europe should be interesting. The journey starts in Stockholm, in the second largest archipelago in the Baltic sea, and ends in Greece, a country of thousands of islands!

From Stockholm, the journey takes us along the Nordic coastline out into the North Sea and through the Kiel Canal. Here we will squeeze through the traffic, fighting the tide and currents of the English Channel, only to be spat out into the threaded corner of the Atlantic, the Bay of Biscay. If we are one in three lucky crossing this dangerous sea, we will reach the rugged coastline of northern Spain only very happy.

Along the journey from Stockholm to Greece there are a lot of known and unknown destinations.

Portugal is not known as a praised sailing destination but we’re hoping to find an undiscovered gem! This is where we say goodbye to canned food and replace that with the freshest of seafood! A little detour to River Douro from Porto will take us to the birthplace of the world famous Port wine - this is where we stock up on dessert wine!

To enter into the Mediterranean there is no choice but to pass Gibraltar, a strait which feeds no less than southern Europe, parts of Russia, the middle east and the entire north Africa with goods on containerships that are too large to fail when the option is to bounce a boat like ours off its course. Better keep a good distance!

Once in the Med, it’s time to hoist vacation sails and turn on autopilot. At least we hope for calmer and warmer weather! Time to show the pale skin some sun! After leaving the coast of Spain somewhere where Ferdinand is still smelling his flowers, the aim is straight for the islands. Starting with the Balearics: Ibiza, Formentera, Mallorca and Menorca.

Island hopping will be the theme of the journey, with the occasional visit to mainland in Barcelona, Cannes or maybe Monaco. Corsica is a favorite and a ‘must-visit’ from before, and in its southern end, Sardinia offers its Italian counterpart. Empty the freezer, we’re stocking up gelato!

To get to the Ionian sea, we need to squeeze through mainland Italy and Sicily, the home of ‘Cosa Nostra’. Hope there is still some Port wine left to bribe the mafiosos if necessary!

Then to a crossroads - Croatia up north and Greece further in east. Likely we will make a tour on the eastern European coastline, sailing all the way up to Split or even beyond, and then down past Montenegro and Albania. Croatia is a safe bet but Albania is more of a wild card. It might just surprise very positively, however. At least it was voted the No. 1 country to visit by Lonely Planet in 2011!

To keep the temperature nice and high as the autumn arrives, we sail east to the Greek islands, and continue island hopping. And there’s hundreds of islands to hop onto and off from! Somewhere here we will eventually leave the boat for the winter - but maybe we get to see even Istanbul before that!

The route plan is not carved in stone, as you might have read between the lines. We like to keep some flexibility and go with the weather and anything else that might lead us in a new direction. This is the journey as we imagine it now, and what inspires us to do all the hard work that is needed to make it happen. The blog will let you know how it actually goes!

Last updated 8 October, 2013