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Cruising Italy


We made big hops along the bottom of the boot as this area is not particularly good cruising or exploring.

Santa Maria de Leuca- anchored just outside harbor

Crotone- anchored in huge commercial harbor

Catanzaro - anchored in harbor.

Rocella Ionica- tied up to outer wall but they made us come in to marina.  Only charged 20E when police came by to check about 6 pm- if you are off the boat they do not bother you.  Harbormaster had us fill out some papers and copied our passports.  He never stamped any passports and did not give us any paperwork but it was good enough for me - at least I could say I was legal and had tried to check in if anyone ever stopped us later.  No one did even though we spoke several times with coast guard, etc.  Make sure to go to the pizza by the meter restaurant.

Next stop was Taorimina, Sicily.  Very cool anchorage and wonderful climb up to the town.  Twice when this anchorage got too rolly we moved down and anchored not far from  Naxos town behind the breakwater.  Others had stayed there with no problems in June- we were once told to move a few hundred feet and another time made to move completely.  OK to tie to the wall with the fishing boats if there is room.  The marina is expensive.  We rented a car from Thrifty just towards Naxos from the train station- this was 1/2 the price of all the other rental car places.  We drove to see the volcano and to Syracusa.  Others like anchoring at Syracusa.  It is a cool town.

From Sicily we went to Volcano- try to time your Messina straits trip with the tide and have your AIS on as the ferries are fast and furious.  Best to arrive in Volcano in daylight so you can poke around and try to find a spot to anchor.  Best is waaay to the left just by the mud pit and breakwater.  (38 24.993E 14 67.685N 15') Otherwise you will anchor in 70' or more.  Wonderful hiking and interesting island for a few days. 

We left Volcano about 5 pm so we could be off the NW tip of Stromboli at dusk to watch natures fireworks- the world's oldest lighthouse.  We made landfall at Salerno and had to go into the marina as it was rough outside.  From here easy to take bus to Pompeii and the bus along the Amalfi coast.  When you get dropped off the bus in Pompeii go to the other entrance to get the audio guides.  You can take bus or train back.  On the Amalfi coast make sure to get the bus early and sit on the ocean side.  Two different busses- second out to Positano.

We also anchored at Positano.

Capri- the fancy island.  We anchored on the east end rather than the N or S side which have big anchorage and marina.  Took dinghy to each marina to explore and left it at marina on N side to go ashore. Hard to find area to leave dinghy on S side.  East anchorage is crowded during the day and empty at night. 

Ischia- very crowded but a good spot.  Great beach if you are into that and good people watching.  We wait out several days of windy weather here in comfort.  We anchor just north of town by beach.  If you use this anchorage go to its north side.  Water taxis go back and forth all day from  town to the beach so they go past the boats on the southern side giving them wakes all day long. 

Ponza-  anchor to the right side of the anchorage to avoid the day tripper water taxis coming from the main harbor.  Good jump off point for Olbia.

Sardinia- we enjoyed Olbia and being in a really calm anchorage for a change.  You can also tie to wall for free.  From the anchorage you see a  building that looks like an old colonial government building which is right across from the traffic circle.  The street on its left has a good chandlery.  Other chandlery is around corner 1 block further up creek past fancy hotel you see from anchorage.  For grocery- tie dinghy under first bridge and cross street-  gas place is farther up via dinghy. Last tiny dinghy dock, walk past music store to main street then lefr.    If you need repair work go to the industrial section- everything there but you will need a taxi or rental car.  Best chandlery -- have everything is Olbia Marine Services in Industrial zone 1. 

Lots of nice anchorages in NW  Sardina- one every few miles.  You could spend lots of time here.  We stopped at Porto Pollo and Liscia but there are many more. 

Don't miss the gigayachats on moorings in Cala de Volpe and inside Costa Smeralda at Porto Cervo. We anchored one night at Porto Cervo and rubbed shoulders with the mega yacht crowd.

Also the Madellana islands - we were pressed for time but wish we could have explored more here. 

From Sardinia we went on to Corsica which is covered in the France section then hopped back to the Italian coast at La Spezia/La Grazzie.  Many boats did Elba and rated it highly.  La Grazzie was a delightful and totally protected anchorage and from here we took bus trips to Cinque Terra and Pisa.

Next was Santa Margherita where we anchored at the edge of the mooring field and then hiked over to Portofino.  

In San Remo we side tied to the outer wall on the port side when you enter- this is the town quay and on starboard is the marina.  We paid a small sum for tying up.  San Remo was our last stop before Monacco.

In Monacco we stayed in the small boat marina which was quite reasonable.  This marina is directly across the highway from the supermarket.  We tried and succeeded in getting our grocery cart from the store to the marina but it involved carrying the cart up some stairs.  Backpacks would be better. 




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