Caraya II

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Tim Aquilina writes about his trip with his family on Caraya II.

For 7 days in July of 2005 I took my family on the cruise of lifetime. We sailed to the Greek islands on a yacht skippered by the most wonderful person, Stefan Ritcher. His first mate, Soulis was the perfect accompaniment. These two showed us the best vacation we've ever experienced.

When we landed in Athens, Stefan was there to pick us up at the airport and drive us to the boat, Caraya II in the port town of Lavrion. We immediately set sail for the island of Kea where we met with an old friend, Matt Barrett. Kea
is one of the Cyclades islands and is closest to Athens so it didn't take long to get there at all. Over dinner we planned our sailing itinerary, and then retired to the boat for a good night of sleep in the harbor. The first day we sailed to the Cycladic island of Serifos, but first stopped along the way for a swim off a secluded bay near the island of Kithnos. This was the first in what I can only describe as 'the best way' to experience swimming in the Agean, or anywhere else for that matter. After our swim, Soulis prepared the most delicious omelette and Greek salad. I had never tasted anything so delicious.
This was another first in what became a series of the culinary delights, each one better than the previous.

Afterwards we sailed to the port at Serifos where we rode a bus to the top of a mountain to visit a Church overlooking the bay for an incredibly beautiful sunset. Once nightfall arrived we returned to the harbor and had a tasty meal at a waterfront taverna which Soulis and Stefan had recommended. The next morning we set sail back to the island of Kithnos, and docked in a quiet little harbor where we had another fantastic meal consisting of the most deliciously fresh fish. Stefan and Soulis were right alongside us to help us with ordering and translating, they turned out to be much more than just skipper and first mate.

The very next morning we sailed to Sifnos, an island my friend Matt Barrett had highly recommended. It was at Sifnos where I met Tony, the owner of a really entertaining bar called the Old Captain's Table. Tony bought us a round of drinks and told stories of 'the good old days' in the early 80's when Matt's
band had played there. He had pictures on the wall by the bar, too many to count of not only Matt, but just about everyone who had passed through this elusive place in timeless Cyclades wonderment. Tony also recommended a great Italian restaurant so after drinks we headed for the restaurant Da Claudios where we encountered another savory delight. Stefan had checked the weather report at a nearby internet cafe and was concerned about north winds bringing weather to the Cyclades so we decided to change our itinerary and head for safer waters in the Argo-Sargonic Gulf.

On to Hydra



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