Is this trip right for you?
As the majority of this trip takes place on a sailing boat, you’ll need to feel comfortable with moving about the vessel, including the use of stairs. With that said, sea legs come naturally to some but not so much for others. Your friendly crew will be able to help with the effects of sea sickness if needed.
A zodiac is used to transport passengers from the boat to the mainland, with landings taking place at piers (dry landings) as well as on beaches (wet landings). Zodiacs can sometimes be awkward to climb in and out of, but a sense of humour and can-do attitude is all you need.
This is an adventure on board a real yacht, which means living spaces, cabins, bathrooms and showers need to be shared with other passengers. Sleeping quarters can be quite compact, but you will be spending the majority of your time above board in the open air.
Time on the water also means time in the sun. Remember to pack sun protection, such as sun screen and a hat, and drink plenty of water to keep hydrated. See ‘Essential Trip Information’ below for a full packing list.
Please note that smooth sailing is dependent on the weather, so itinerary changes may occur at the last minute if the weather becomes unfavourable. If any changes are made, you can trust in your knowledgeable skipper to choose an alternative route or activity.
Due to the size of the yachts, sound carries easily from one side to the other and can wake your fellow travellers. If you’re planning to have a late night, it’s a good idea to head into town and experience the local night life.
Summer temperatures can reach up to 40°C, which can be uncomfortable for those not used to the heat. Please consider the time of the year you wish to travel and your suitability to that season.
The minimum age on this trip is 15. Please note that triple cabins are not available. If travelling with a child, the child will need to share with one of the adults, and the other adult will share with another adult passenger, or pay a single supplement.
Please provide full passport details at time of booking including exact name as per passport, date of birth, nationality, issue and expiry dates as these are essential for booking services on this trip.
Dietary requirements are required at the time of booking so that any included meals can be properly catered for.
Please note that the majority of our sailing trips start and/or finish at a marina or port. If you have pre-booked any additional accommodation through us, you will need to make your own way to the joining point on day 1 and from the finish point on the final day. We do not provide transfers between hotels and the port/marina. Please check the Essential Trip Information for these details.
A selection of optional activities that have been popular with past travellers are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only for some of what might be available. Prices are approximate, are for entrance only, and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability, and may be on a join-in basis. It may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination, so some pre-planning for what you are most interested in is advised. When it's recommended that travellers pre-book these activities, look for a note in the Special Information section of the day-to-day itinerary. For most, they can either be organised independently on the day, or let your leader know you are interested and they can assist.
Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. Although it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Medium and high risk activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with organising these activities. Activities that contravene our Responsible Travel policies are also not listed. Please remember that the decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk.
For sailing trips the itinerary will be subject to change depending on weather conditions. Your skipper will make the final decision to ensure safety at all times. Generally daily sailing time would not exceed 6 hours.
Please note that we will endeavour to sail at all times but there may be times during the trip that we will use the sails and motor or just the motor.
During the summer months in Europe, we are unable to pre-book a mooring berth at the marinas. Therefore, depending on availability, the place we stay the night may not be as per the advertised itinerary.
FISHING ON SAILING TRIPS:
You will have the option to fish on most of our sailing trips. The boats in Europe do not have fishing rods, so you will need to bring your own if this is an activity you would like to take part in. Fishing will always be at the discretion of the skipper and dependent on the marine regulations of the area you are sailing in.
Our itineraries are updated regularly throughout the year based on customer feedback and to reflect the current situation in each destination. The information included in this Essential Trip Information may therefore differ from when you first booked your trip. It is important that you print and review a final copy prior to travel so that you have the latest updates. Due to weather, local conditions, transport schedules, public holidays or other factors, further changes may be necessary to your itinerary once in country. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary seasonally to ensure our travellers have the best experience. Your tour leader will keep you up to date with any changes once on tour.
Passport and visas
Your passport details are required to complete your booking. Please ensure the name on your passport matches the name on your booking and airline tickets. As a general rule most countries expect that your passport has a minimum of 6 months' validity remaining. Take a copy of the main passport pages and other important documents with you, and leave another copy at home with family or friends.
Visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. Entry requirements can change at any time, so it's important that you check for the latest information. Please visit the relevant consular website of the country or countries you’re visiting for detailed and up-to-date visa information specific to your nationality. Visas can take several weeks to process, so familiarise yourself with any requirements as soon as you have booked your trip to allow for processing time.
If you receive an immigration card upon entry, please ensure you keep this safe as it may be requested at point of exit.
Medical and health information
All travellers need to be in good physical health in order to participate fully on this trip. When selecting your trip please make sure you have read through the itinerary carefully and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please note that if, in the opinion of our group leader or local guide, any traveller is unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group, Italy ZP reserves the right to exclude them from all or part of a trip without refund.
You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information or for any necessary vaccinations before departure. We recommend that you carry a first aid kit as well as any personal medical requirements as they may not easily be obtained at the locations on this trip. Please ensure that you are adequately prepared.
If you are travelling with a CPAP machine on our Europe sailing trips, please note that there is a 220V socket in each cabin on most boats. These sockets only work when we are connected to shore power and is only available at some of the ports that we visit. Sometimes shore power sockets are interrupted causing a trip of the supply or is not available at all. We cannot guarantee power for the whole trip so we recommend that you bring a back-up battery (or two). If you are travelling by yourself, you will need to pay a single supplement to limit disruption to other passengers.
Food and dietary requirements
The amazing food on offer is one of the highlights of any trip in Europe. To make the most of this we’ve structured our meal arrangements to provide both flexibility and variety.
For most dinners and some lunches we will moored in a port or marina near meaning that the group will have a choice of on-land eating options available. We find our group often eat together however you have the freedom to go off and do your own thing. Our skippers can recommend options for restaurants and on many occasions will dine with the group.
While your skipper will co-ordinate the shopping for and preparation of these meals we’ve found that the best trips are those where everyone pitches in together to help with the meal preparation.
If you have dietary requirements and/or food allergies please notify us at the time of booking so we can determine the extent to which your dietary requirements can be met. There are many vegetarian options available in Greece, Croatia, Italy and France though vegans might find their choice less varied especially away from the bigger cities. Travellers that require a gluten free diet may also find their choices limited. Most of our trips start in a larger towns where you will find greater choice of supermarkets and markets however they do not stock the range of gluten free products that you may be used to at home.
Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas your itinerary covers. Please refer to our website's safety page for links to major travel advisories and updates on safety issues affecting our trips.
We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe-keeping of your passport, flight tickets, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of our hotels have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage.
Your leader will accompany you on all included activities, however during your trip you'll have some free time to pursue your own interests or relax and take it easy. While your leader will assist you with the available options in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and makes no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Please also note that your Leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it's deemed necessary due to safety concerns.
For more details on the type of conditions and safety standards you can expect on your trip, please refer to operational safety policy on our website. We recommend that you take a moment to read through this information before travelling, and would appreciate any feedback on how well it's being implemented in the field:
Italy ZP will provide life jackets for private boats, but cannot guarantee that all public ferries will have enough life jackets or life rings for all clients.
WATER SAFETY AT SEA:
Travellers that are able and confident swimmers will be able to enjoy swimming & snorkelling off the boat, but please always note the skipper's advice and instructions on when and where to swim and what precautions to consider. Travellers who are not able to swim are certainly welcome on this trip, but you will be required to wear a life jacket when we are sailing.
Alcohol abuse will not be tolerated onboard for safety reasons. The availability and consumption of alcohol on our sailing trips will be up to the skipper's discretion.
A couple of rules
Everyone has the right to feel safe when they travel. We don’t tolerate any form of violence (verbal or physical) or sexual harassment, either between customers or involving our leaders, partners or local people. Sexual relationships between a tour leader and a customer are strictly forbidden.
Use or possession of illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. If you choose to consume alcohol while travelling, we encourage responsible drinking, and expect that you’ll abide by the local laws regarding alcohol consumption.
The sex tourism industry is known to exploit vulnerable people and have negative consequences on communities, including undermining the development of sustainable tourism. For this reason, patronising sex workers will not be tolerated on our trips.
By travelling with us you are agreeing to adhere to these rules. Your group leader has the right to remove any member of the group for breaking any of these rules, with no right of refund.
If you feel that someone is behaving inappropriately while travelling with us, please inform your tour leader or local guide immediately. Alternatively, contact us on the emergency contact number detailed in the Problems and Emergency Contact section of this Essential Trip Information.
Travelling on a group trip
As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit of everyone's travel experience. Remember too that you have responsibilities to the group. If you are requested to be at a place at a certain time, ensure that you don't keep the rest of the group waiting. We have found time and time again that the very best trips we operate are those where the dynamics within the group work well - this takes just a little effort on your part. Due to privacy reasons we are unable to provide you with contact details and any personal information about your fellow travellers booked on your trip prior to departure.
The bonus of our sailing adventures are that they are small groups, a maximum of 8 - 11 travellers (with the average number of travellers 7). However when you add in a Skipper and the fact you will be eating, sleeping and lounging about together for up to 9 days in the confines of a monohull you may need to call on some patience, maybe some headphones but above all a sense of humour.
Most travellers come away from our sailing adventures saying it was a the trip of a lifetime and that they have made lifelong friends..............we're sure you will too!
If you wish to have a single cabin on our sailing trips, please advise at the time of booking. You will be required to pay double to guarantee a cabin to yourself.
Overnight boat (7 nights)
This trip is accommodated entirely on board a yacht of between 50ft to 52ft. A typical yacht for 9 travellers is equipped with 5 twin/double share cabins, 2/3 shared bathrooms and 2 showers. None of the bathrooms are ensuites. Our boats are real yachts and this is a real sailing trip. Yachts are designed to keep sleeping areas to the absolute minimum of space, while maximising common areas as much as possible.
Rooms are allocated on arrival by our skipper according to group composition, which means it is not possible to reserve or guarantee any specific berth or cabin. Single passengers will be paired up with another passenger of the same gender, this may mean sharing a double cabin with a double mattress. Everyone including the skipper shares the bathrooms on board.
While not everyone may feel entirely comfortable living in such close quarters, those who are looking to revel in the adventure and exhilaration of an authentic sailing trip usually find any discomfort from cramped living conditions is more than made up for by the whole experience.
Please note that the majority of our sailing trips start and/or finish at a marina or port. For most of our destinations, we can provide transfers between the airport/hotel and the port/marina. Please check the joining and finish point information in the trip notes for details.
While there should be electricity on board throughout your trip the voltage is likely to vary widely, from 12V to 220V, and when in port or moored we are dependent on the supply available. Please be aware that the supply may not be sufficient to power some electronic devices all the time and that you may need a voltage adapter or similar (such as portable inverter used in cars). On some trips it may be possible to charge devices ashore at restaurants or resorts, however this is not guaranteed.
Please note that our sailing boats do not have Wi-Fi. You will be getting off the boat and visiting towns regularly so you will be able to connect with the outside world then.
This is a sailing adventure so our time is spent on board a monohull yacht. You may be asked to assist on-deck, particularly when coming into or leaving port. No experience is necessary, but getting to know some 'sailing language' might help to get you into the spirit of the adventure.
Port - left
Starboard - right
Bow - front of the boat
Stern - rear of the boat
Deck - outside, upper area of the boat
Hull - the main part or body of the boat
Keel - part of the boat under water that keeps the boat stable and stops it capsizing
Mainsail - the large sail attached to the mast and boom
Mast - the big vertical pole that supports the mainsail
Boom - the big horizontal pole attached to the mainsail, coming off the rear of the mast (swing from side to side)
Jib, headsail, genoa, foresail - smaller sail near the front of the boat
Sheet - ropes used to control the sails
Booty - another word for pirate treasure
Lines - other ropes on the boat (ropes are never called ropes on yachts)
Spinnaker - large extra sail
Trim the sails - adjust the position of the sails when the wind changes strength or direction
Tiller or wheel or helm - used to steer the boat
Helmsman - person steering the boat
Running - sailing with the wind
Tack - turning the bow of the boat when sailing through the wind
Jibe - turning the stern of the boat when sailing through the wind
Figure-eight knot - the stopper: often used at the end of lines to stop them getting away.
Bowline (knot) - strong and dependable knot that is commonly used
Clove Hitch (knot) - not as secure it is often used to attach an object to a line
When it comes to spending money on the trip, every traveller is a little different. You know your spending habits better than we do, so please budget a sensible amount for things like meals not included, drinks, shopping, optional activities and laundry. It's always better to bring a little more than you think you'll need. Also make sure you've read your trip details thoroughly so you know what's included in the trip price and what isn't. This should make budgeting a little easier. You'll find this info in the Inclusions section of your Essential Trip Information (that's this document).
The Euro (EUR) is the official currency in the following destinations: Andorra, Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Kosovo, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Montenegro, the Netherlands, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain. All other European countries still have their own national currencies.
The most convenient and cheapest way to acquire money is via an Automated Teller Machine (ATM) or Bancomat as they are often referred to. Check with your bank in advance concerning the suitability of your account / card overseas and any international fees that will be applied.
You can obtain local currencies easily at airports and major train stations, but be sure to bring some extra emergency cash in a major currency that can be exchanged if the ATMs are not functioning.
When leaving home don't forget your PIN and make sure you know the telephone number for cancelling your card if it is stolen. Keep this in a safe place.
Credit cards are not always accepted in stores and restaurants. While travelling we recommend you carry some cash to pay for restaurant bills and other services. Change can be difficult to obtain so throughout the day, try to gain as many small denominations as you can.
For money safety we recommend that you carry your cash and credit cards in a secure money belt or pouch concealed under your clothes.
If you're happy with the services provided, a tip - though not compulsory - is appropriate. While it may not be customary to you, it's of great significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels, inspires excellent service, and is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry across many destinations. The following amounts are based on local considerations and feedback from our past travellers:
Restaurants: Local markets and basic restaurants - leave the loose change. More up-market restaurants we suggest 5% to 10% of your bill.
Skipper: We suggest €3-8 per person, per day for your Skipper.
Of course you are free to tip more or less as you see fit, depending on your perception of service quality and the length of your trip. Remember, a tip is not compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service.
What you need to bring will vary according to the trip style you have chosen, the countries you are visiting and when you are travelling. Generally speaking you should pack as lightly as possible. On the vast majority of our trips you are expected to carry your own luggage, although you won't be required to walk long distances with it (max 30 minutes).
Many travellers carry their luggage in a backpack, although an overnight bag with a shoulder strap would suffice if you travel lightly. Smaller bags or backpacks with wheels are also convenient although we recommend your bag has carry straps. You'll also need a day pack/bag to carry water and a camera etc for day trips.
Below we have listed the essentials for this trip:
SUGGESTED PACKING LIST
Space on board the vessel is very limited - for your own comfort and safety, luggage should be kept to an absolute minimum. The use of a backpack, soft sports bag or duffle bag is recommended - we highly recommend you do not travel with a hard suitcase. If you are travelling with a larger bag or suitcase you can leave these bags at your hotel [usually for a small fee]. This is only applicable if you are returning to the same hotel at the end of the trip, if you aren't, it will be your own responsibility to make your own way back to collect your luggage. If you are leaving a bag at a hotel or in a locker do not leave cash, credit cards, passports or any irreplaceable belongings behind.
Daypack [a smaller back pack that you can take with you on island excursions]
Comfortable clothing for warmer temperatures [shorts, t-shirts, light long sleeved tops and pants]
A fleece or warmer jumper for the evenings or early mornings
A light rain coat or poncho
Comfortable shoes [trainers or walking shoes are sufficient for most trips]
Sandals or thongs/flip flops/jandals
Sunscreen [bio degradable and waterproof if available] and lip balm [to combat the effects of wind burn]
Sunhat [that can be secured as it can get windy out on the water]
Rash vest [for sun protection while snorkelling and swimming]
Water bottle [filtered water is available on board the boat]
Bio-degradable shampoo, conditioner and soap
Pegs [so you can hang your swimming costume or towel out to dry]
Insect repellent [for island visits]
Batteries [if you do not have rechargeable camera batteries]
Please ensure you travel with all required medicines, pain killers and toiletries that you may need while in on this sailing trip. You are travelling to quite a remote destination and will not have immediate access to pharmacies and even then they may not stock your required medication.
Special Items required for this trip
- There are many opportunities for snorkelling during this trip. Diving masks, snorkels and fins are provided onboard the yacht and are for use by all passengers. Some passengers choose to bring their own, however this is a personal choice.
- Beach towels are not provided so you will need to bring your own.
- Underwater disposable camera
- During our trip, we are usually sailing and anchoring in sheltered waters. However, it is possible we may encounter some movement in open waters - if you are prone to motion sickness, and you might wish to bring some preventative medication.
Phone and internet access
Please note that our sailing boats do not have Wi-Fi. You will be getting off the boat and visiting towns regularly so you will be able to connect with the outside world then.
Climate and seasonal information
Summer temperatures can reach up to 40 degrees Celsius, which can be uncomfortable for those not used to the heat. Conversely, shoulder and off season can bring a variety of weather, from strong winds and even snow at higher altitudes to pleasant and warm spring days. Please consider the time of the year you wish to travel and your suitability to that season.