Destination: Sivota, Lefkada

A popular harbour in most conditions

 

About – Sivota is a natural harbour set among the hills of the south eastern coast of Lefkada. It has an inconspicuous entrance that can be hard to spot from the sea until you are nearby. The wind can be gusty at the entrance so it’s a good idea to get your sails down before you get too close to land. Inside, the harbour opens up into a large bay overlooked by some of the island’s most beautiful villas.

Longitude & Latitude – 38°36′.87N 20°41′.52E

Birdseye view of Sivota from the entrance

How to moor – Lots of options here.

  1. Free swing on anchor in the middle of the bay. The seabed is muddy and weedy so you need to ensure you’ve got the anchor through the weed in order for it to be holding properly in the mud – give it time to settle before digging it in. The depth drops quickly in the middle so keep your eye on the depth gauge before dropping as you don’t want to fall off the shelf.
  2. Stern-to with anchor on the town quay. Town quay space is hard to come by as more pontoons seem to go in every year but if you are lucky to find a deep enough space (be vigilant as you approach the wall in reverse), you can moor up stern to with anchor.
  3. Stern-to with lazy line. The pontoons and the town quay outside the Ionion Taverna (more commonly known as Yanni’s!) have lazy lines so no need for an anchor, just reverse in and you’ll be given a lazy line or two for your bow. These spaces often need pre-booking, definitely in high season or when the weather forecast is bad.

When to go – Sivota is a sensible option in most weather conditions. The NW wind that we get most afternoons does funnel down the hills into the bay so you can sometimes expect a windy mooring. On a lazy line, you are safe even in the southerly winds but the pontoon owners may ask you to lay an anchor as well.

View from the fishing quay

When to avoid – If the pontoons are full and the weather is forecast bad, don’t be tempted to stay on anchor in the bay. Head somewhere else with more shelter from the gusts.

Facilities ashore – Sivota has a lot to offer in terms of restaurants, gift shops, bars & cafés too. Stretch your legs and walk round the entire bay for a good look round. Most restaurants offer shower facilities too if you fancy a shower ashore. If you dine there or are on the pontoon, often there is no charge. Expect to pay a few euros otherwise. Most pontoons have electricity shore power and water too so top up your tanks while you can. There are a couple of ATMs in the village.

Restaurants – There are loads to choose from, mainly offering traditional Greek food – particularly good seafood down in this fishing village! Yanni at the Ionion Taverna, Stavros & 12 Gods all have good menus, wonderful service and perfect waterfront dining locations. For something a little different, try new ‘Vibes’ on the NW shore of the bay next to the Yacht Bar – really good cocktails too. Family Café is the place to head for an English Breakfast – and for pancakes and waffles too.

Somewhere to swim? Walk clockwise around the bay and you’ll pass the Yacht Bar café and pontoon. In another 100m you’ll come to the beach. I’d recommend this one over the small beach on the south side of the harbour.

Anything else to do? If you fancy exploring a bit further afield on foot, there are some excellent walks.

  1. Head up the road out of Sivota and take the left where there are a load of villas sign posted. Follow this road for a kilometre or so before it turns to track. The track continues to wind along the coast. It’s not a circular route to turn back once you’ve had enough or got to the end!
  2. Head up the road out of Sivota, about 400m on your right there is a road heading up quite steep. Take this road and explore the hillside over Sivota. About 3/4 along is turns into a track which then heads down towards the sea. When you get to end, it looks like there is nowhere to go at the final villa but there is a small footpath down the side of the fence that leads to a tiny beach – worth visiting for a private swim!
  3. Walk clockwise around the bay, past the beach and take the track heading slightly uphill. Follow this old goat path along the coastline and you’ll come to a manmade rock platform that you can enjoy a swim from.

I’d highly suggest buying Rod Heikell’s Ionian Pilot Guide for detailed information on the harbours & bays of the Ionian.

On the chart

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