Featured Posts

ASA’s First Regional Meeting Held in Shenzhen, ChinaASA’s First Regional Meeting Held in Shenzhen, China Last week ASA held its first ever regional Asian Affiliate & Instructors meeting in Shenzhen, China.  Over two dozen ASA Instructors and Affiliate representatives...

Read More

Hands Across the Sea Caribbean Getaway SweepstakesHands Across the Sea Caribbean Getaway Sweepstakes Win a caribbean bareboat charter or tropical vacation... and help improve the lives of children in the Caribbean! Join the ASA/Hands Across the Sea Caribbean Getaway...

Read More

ASA Unveils Innovative TextbookASA Unveils Innovative Textbook ASA's brand new textbook, Bareboat Cruising Made Easy, has just been released to national acclaim. The updated manual of ASA’s bareboat cruising standard is designed to...

Read More

Sailing Fun for KidsSailing Fun for Kids Sailing is more fun with family and friends, so why not get your kids on the water on your next Caribbean vacation? The American Sailing Association is excited to debut the...

Read More

What you can do with your ASA sailing credentialsWhat you can do with your ASA sailing credentials Many prospective students ask us why getting certified is so important. Couldn't they pick up the same valuable sailing skills without passing a course and receiving a certificate?...

Read More

Dinghy Sailing vs. Yacht SailingDinghy Sailing vs. Yacht Sailing The kind of boat you choose to sail will define your relationship with the sport as a whole. Like wind and weather conditions, the boat is one part of the entire sailing experience....

Read More

Combine Sailing Lessons With an International VacationCombine Sailing Lessons With an International Vacation Vacations are for rejuvenation and exploration, right? So why not one-up all the normal resort-goers and take sailing lessons at your vacation destination this summer! Sailing...

Read More

Sailing is a Great Way to Spend Quality Time with your FamilySailing is a Great Way to Spend Quality Time with your... Whether you have a six-year-old son or a sixteen-year-old daughter, sailing is a wonderful bonding experience that everyone in the family will enjoy. Next time you suggest...

Read More

When it Comes to Your Sailing Education, You're the Boss!When it Comes to Your Sailing Education, You're the... One of the most important parts of beginning your sailing education is finding the right sailing school. Every individual has different strengths, weaknesses, needs, and ideal...

Read More

ASA in Croatia: Medieval Mysteries This is a story about ASA's 2012 Croatia Flotilla. For more info on upcoming ASA sailing flotillas, click here. Sailors (and tourists of all kinds) have beaten a well-worn...

Read More

Subscribe To ASA Feed

ASA in Croatia: Sailing the Adriatic

Category : Flotillas

vis harbor sunsetThis post is about ASA’s 2012 Croatia sailing flotilla. You can also read about the Top 5 Things to See on the Dalmatian Coast here, and a story of Croatia’s special cuisine here.

The Adriatic Sea was, for me, one of those places that always sounded incredibly far-off and wonderful, not quite real, a magnificent realm that I would probably never get to see. Its waters are steeped in history and legend. Strategically located between Italy and Greece, they were a focal point of the classical world, sailed by everyone from Odysseus to Julius Caesar to Marco Polo.

So even as I packed my bags and prepared to make the long flight to join ASA’s Croatia flotilla, I didn’t quite believe it. Even when I saw the medieval grandeur of Old Town Dubrovnik, hopping with party-goers on a Friday night, I didn’t quite believe it. Not even the first few minutes of motoring over glassy seas could convince me. Was this real life? Could I really be this lucky?

The answer, fortunately for me, was yes. It was real, and in the course of a week we got to taste a variety of sea and weather conditions, become pros at “Med-mooring,” and sail in the wake of history.

The first thing you notice about the Adriatic is how astonishingly clear the water is. Croatia is quickly becoming one of Europe’s top sailing destinations, but it retains its unspoiled qualities. The pristine water is perfect for swimming–cold enough to be refreshing, but you won’t freeze. The hillsides are largely undeveloped, no massive resort hotels blotting out the sun, so as you’re tacking between the steep green islands of the Dalmatian Coast, you get an uninterrupted view of picturesque vineyards and farmhouses, not to mention ruins from a wide swath of history. You’ll not only run across Illyrian and Roman ruins dating back more than 2,000 years, you’ll also find medieval castles, fortresses from the Napoleonic wars, and, on the island of Vis, a secret submarine base from the Cold War!
asa boat jana
As we stopped in the bay of Mljet Island, someone remarked that if we could travel back in time 3,000 years, the setting would likely look much the same. The only difference would be that the bay would be full of Greek triremes and Roman galleys instead of charter yachts.

But how was the sailing itself? Like anywhere, conditions in the Adriatic are variable–and the variety is half the fun! The first two days we didn’t have much wind at all, which was good in the sense that it allowed us to get our sea legs and focus on the scenery. That was followed by two days of mind-blowingly perfect sailing: 15 knot winds, light seas, and golden sunshine. All the boats in the flotilla found reasons to delay going ashore simply for the pleasure of getting a little more sailing in. The last two days the weather became more challenging–heavier winds, bigger seas, and intermittent rain. And you know what? We had a blast. Fair weather sailing is lovely, but sometimes there’s nothing like a little action to get the blood pumping. Not to mention that when you reach your next port, you’ve learned a lot, polished your skills, and you really feel like you’ve earned that evening glass of wine.
rob steering into vis
It was over all too quickly, but it always is when you’re living life to the fullest. Odysseus, Caesar, and Marco Polo. Thanks to ASA, I can now add my own name to the list.

I love it. I am going back in September 2013. My own trip will be coincident with the ASA Flotilla. The water, the people, the food, the sailing, the history…it is ALL breathtaking.

I can’t wait to get there!

My girlfriend and I are interested in an Adriatic trip for mid-August 2013. Would like to get on board as part of a crew to build hours. Just got my ASA bareboat and coastal Nav cert. Would like to put them to use. I live in Alaska, and would be interested in hosting here as well…

Post a comment