Harbours, anchorages and selected restaurants in Kea – Vourkari and Korissia
Kea is the island closest to the tip of Attica. Located only 12 nautical miles east of Cape Sounion, the hilly and fertile island is a popular destination especially for Athenians. 80% of the tourists here come from Athens. It takes no time at all to get to this island in the Cyclades in a yacht or a fast speedboat. We are going to give you an overview of sheltered anchorages and good restaurants in two articles.
Ormos Ag. Nikolaos is a large bay in the north-west of the island and is made up of the two smaller bays of Ormos Leivadi in the south-west and Ormos Vourkari in the east.
In Vourkari the harbour of the same name is very popular with sailors as it protects from the prevailing winds and there is less swell there compared to the ferry port in Korrisia. (Sailing)Yachts normally moor here bow-to as the rock-fill directly at the quay could damage (deep) rudder blades. To make the descent over the pulpit easier, some taverns and a small furniture dealer have built wooden steps.There is water and electricity at the jetty. The required pre-paid cards can be obtained at the supermarket where they also sell fresh bread in the mornings.
Vourkari is a typical Greek harbour with flair. The narrow thoroughfare runs directly past the harbour basin. The narrowness of the street seems to encourage most car and scooter drivers to adopt a moderate driving style, which is appropriate as the yachties tend to use the narrow pavements and half the street for spontaneous “meetings”. The later the evening (and with it alcohol consumption), the more the street becomes a wide pier.
There are a few restaurants and bars right on the street. The Aristos tavern is especially favoured for its excellent fish dishes. Kostas, the proprietor, very modestly refers to his restaurant as “world famous”. Each guest will have to decide for themselves in how far this is true. But it does not affect its popularity, especially among water sports enthusiasts. Many Greeks come to Vourkari at the weekend just to eat the fresh fish dishes at “Aristos”.
Whoever likes fish but prefers to cook on board should wait for the fishing cutters, which come in at about 9-10 am. The fishermen sell their catch straight from their boats if the catch was large enough.
The culinary offers in the harbour of Vourkari are not only limited to one fish tavern. Visitors who prefer meat should visit the “Vourkarion”. The meat comes from animals bred and slaughtered on the island. Most of them live wild in the mountains and valleys, which obviously benefits the taste.
Should any visitors not have been able to get one of the popular berths at the quay, then they can anchor in the bay. In the off-peak season it is possible to moor with the bow anchor swinging freely on the hook without a shore line when there are only a few yachts in the bay. However, the water is deep and the seabed does not provide a good hold everywhere. It is better to moor stern-to opposite the harbour. There are a number of fixing points in the rock for the land lines. If mooring here, then it is worth visiting Istrofi tou Mimi. Guests sit right on the beach with their feet in the sand and can observe the incoming yachts as they manoeuvre, very romantic.
The harbour in Korissia ia a good alternative to Vourkari. South of the ferry dock, there are berths for approx. 20 yachts. There is also water and electricity here for a small contribution. The cards can be obtained at the kiosk right next to the “Magazes” restaurant. Christos, the proprietor and heart and soul of “Magazes”, will gladly assist guests if they have problems with their yacht and need help.
The harbour town consists of a long quay and two rows of houses in the background, towered over by the pastel-coloured church with the blue dome. There is a wide road in between, which is closed to traffic every evening between 8 pm and 6 am in the season. And so the area around the harbour basin suddenly becomes a pedestrian area. A true blessing, not only for a peaceful night.
The harbour protects well but the north wind causes a slight swell in the harbour, which is why it is recommended to moor with the own mast offset from the neighbour’s. Incoming and outgoing ferries also generate a slight swell, but it has no large effect on the anchored yachts. The northern part of the dock is reserved for ferries. A small elevation on the pier marks where the berths for yachts start. Water and electricity is available for a fee.
There are a number of bars, cafés and restaurants along the waterfront. Popular with locals and tourists alike are “Magazes” and “To steki Stroggili”. The fresh fish dishes at “Magazes” are highly recommended. “To steki Stroggili”, which is located slightly up the mountain, is also known for its good meat and cooked dishes. There are also a few simple restaurants and a fast-food restaurant. The many cafés are ideal for observing the going-ons in the harbour.