Hope's and Howard's Sailing Adventures

Atlantic Cruising on board Mazu


The passage from Pigadhia, Karpathos to Lindos, Rhodes was about 57 nautical miles so we set off earlier than usual, shortly after 8 am.  We still had to make good speed in order to arrive and be settled well before dark.  Initially, it seemed the wind was teasing us as we thought it was filling in so we would turn the engine off and set the sails for downwind sailing,.. Read More


The original plan after leaving Fri was to head for Tristomo (a lagoon with a narrow entrance at the NE end of Karpathos), Chalki (an island off the W coast of Rhodes), and then Mandraki (at the NE end of Rhodes), following the western coasts of Karpathos and Rhodes. However, after further review of the forecast and consultation with the cruisers Greece sailing guide we decided to follow the eastern.. Read More

Crete to Kasos

We are happy with our decision to stay in Siteia until the strong Meltemi wind receded.  It seems the eastern end of Crete tends to be windy because the northerly winds funnel around the end of Crete between the two southernmost Dodecanese islands, Kasos and Karpathos.  Sunday was the peak so we stayed onboard most of the day, checking and rearranging our lines and fenders to minimize chafe from the.. Read More


We are now in Sitia, our last stop in Crete, before heading NE to Rhodes. Yesterday we took a bus ride back to Agios Nikolaos, a  very pleasant town with a good marina (overwintering potential) and lots of  restaurants. The mountain views on the switch-back road there were spectacular. The ride back in the dark was like a roller coaster as the driver was trying to make up time. Crete.. Read More

Passage to Crete

The three-day passage from Porto Palo, Sicily to Chania, Crete ended up being benign. We had time on our side which meant we could take it fairly slowly a lot of the time in the light northerly winds.  However, the old iron genny ended up being used more than we would have liked during a 23-hour stretch of practically no wind at all in the middle.  We each took 3-hour.. Read More


A couple of days in Nynashamn saw us catching up on laundry, borrowing W&K’s bikes so we could explore a little of the coast near the town, and then taking the commuter train to Stockholm and back. There is so much to see in Stockholm but we knew the Vasa museum was a must see so that was where we headed first. The Vasa was a war ship commissioned by.. Read More

Sweden – The Stockholm Archipelago

Our crossing of The Gulf of Bothnia from Finland to Sweden took into account the forecast of light, predominantly westerly, winds so we chose an anchorage bearing SW, once clear of the islands south of Marihamn.  Although we did experience some current in places, the sea was flat and Melodrama happily slipped along on a close reach until the wind completely died shortly before entering the many rocks and islets.. Read More


If you have been following our track, you may be wondering how we managed to hop from Sicily to Finland so quickly.  Having secured Mazu in Ragusa, and after three bus trips, two plane rides and a short train journey we arrived at HMVK Marina, close to the center of Helsinki, where we joined William and Karen onboard their beautiful, shiny Dehler 38, Melodrama.  We felt especially honored to find.. Read More

Sicily – The Southeast

Siracusa was definitely worth exploring more, with its history almost covering three millennia. Most recently during the allied sea and air invasion in July 1943, its harbor was a major strategic target for Montgomery. Patton went after Licata. Siracusa was founded by the Greeks around 733 BC and was the birthplace and home of Archimedes.  Apparently Da Vinci plagiarized some of Archimedes ideas. There is a nice museum with working.. Read More

Sicily – The Ionian Coast

The Strait of Messina separates Sicily from the toe of Italy.  It is narrower at the northern end (barely 1.5 nm) and wider at the southern end (about 7 nm).  It also separates the Tyrrhenian Sea from the Ionian Sea and has a reputation, dating back millennia for fearsome whirlpools and winds whistling down the mountains that border it (e.g. Scilla and Charybdis in The Odyssey).  Interestingly, the eddies in.. Read More