03:50,
Tuesday,
23 October 2018.

Vassiliki, Windsurfing & ...

Vass, as it’s known amongst windsurfing aficionados, is an absolute belter of a resort when it comes to reliable wind. Throughout most of the summer months, usually around 2pm, Eric, a thermal Katabatic wind blows up. He’s pretty punctual and produces winds within the force 4 to 6 range most days. Sometimes he’s backed up by a prevailing north westerly and when that occurs all hell breaks loose. Eric comes in the form of a cross-shore, blowing the more hapless drifters down toward Vassiliki harbour. Morning winds conversely, tend to be light and on-shore, ideal for beginners and practising those totty impressing freestyle manoeuvres.

At Vassiliki itself you don't see too many kitesurfers as most of them head to the north of Lefkada island where the winds tend to be more on-shore. However, some competent riders can be found sharing the water with windsurfers. As at the time of writing no kitesurfing tuition is available at Vass.

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Beginner - Windsurf

windsurfing rating

Mornings in Vassiliki are suitable for learning all the basics. Winds are usually pretty light and blow directly on-shore. More confident sailors can stay out until the early afternoon but if it starts topping a force 5 and hits the 6 you’ll probably be more comfortable practising beach starts. Most of the windsurfing holiday operators in Vassiliki offer fully inclusive board hire and coaching packages so there will be someone to hold your hand regardless of wind strength. And if you do attempt to brave the full force of Eric – and so you should – the comprehensive safety boat cover and shore based spotters ensure that if you do get into difficulties a free lift back to the beach is never far away.

Intermediate - Windsurf

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For intermediate windsurfers, Vassiliki is a great place to come. With its reliable wind and relatively flat water, intermediates can really get stuck into their planing skills, carve gybes and fast tacks. From the beach to the edge of the patrolled area there’s roughly one mile of straight planing action to be had. More than enough distance to work on upwind and downwind techniques in both directions. The shallow shelving sandy bottom is ideal for progressing from beach starts to water starts. You can gradually increase the water depth on beach starts until you’re out of your depth and the only way forward is to water start. And if you want to practice some fancy gybes but still haven’t mastered water starts the edge of the shallow area is deep enough to risk a fall in the knowledge you can always beach start if you do come off.

Advanced - Windsurf

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Vassiliki’s reasonably reliable high winds provide an ideal flat water blasting environment for better windsurfers. On good days the local wind known as ‘Eric’, a thermal katabatic wind can top Force 6, providing superb sailing conditions. Blasting sessions can last for up to five hours before Eric finely blows himself out around 7pm. Speeds topping 38 knots have been recoded here. Also a light chop builds up creating opportunities for some freestyle manoeuvres. You’re maybe not likely to achieve any flips but two-stage 360’s are not over ambitious as neither is a couple of feet of air.

Kitesurfing

windsurfing rating

Vassiliki, with its reliable wind is ideal for kitesurfing. The wind is mostly cross-shore and the water is deep beyond 20 metres from the beach, so it's not great for beginners, but fine for strong intermediates and advanced riders. One drawback however, is the lack of kite hire companies and kite schools. If you want to kitesurf here you need your own kite and you need to know what you're doing.